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The Shunshin's Apprentice

Chapter Text

 

A twenty year old man stands in front of the Sandaime Hokage. 

A thin scar going through his left eyebrow, was the only damage he received from his Clan’s failed Coup d'etat. Bearing a stark resemblance to his ancestor, the man also has short, unkempt, dark-coloured hair, black eyes and a relatively broad nose and well-defined eyelashes, that were turned upwards at each end. 

He wears the standard attire of the Uchiha clan which includes a high-collared, dark-coloured outfit along with a tantō strapped to the right side of the back of his shoulder. He also wears what appeared to be a harness for his tantō which ran across his chest and fastened over both his shoulders.

The Sandaime Hokage, who is named Hiruzen Sarutobi, is an elderly man, with a below-average stature. His once brown hair is now white, with a matching small goatee. Due to his age his face is gaunter, and he has wrinkles and liver spots. He initially had a single line running vertically under the outer corners of each eye, which stretched down into his face as he aged until they reached his cheeks.

When not in combat, he usually wears the official uniform of Hokage — the customary hat and haori with a red, full-length kimono that is tied using a white sash. A pipe is in between his lips, as smoke lazily floats into nothingness.

The room that they are in is the Hokage’s Office. The Hokage's office is a large, somewhat oval room usually filled with stacks of unfinished paperwork. Behind the Hokage's desk is a large window through which the Hokage can survey the entire village. On the desk itself is a stylised kanji for shadow (影) followed by the symbol of the village.

Hiruzen says, “Ah… Shisui, what a sight for sore eyes. What can I help you with?”

Shisui answers, “I’d like to apprentice one of the Graduating Genin.”

Hiruzen replies, “Well, I’m sorry Shisui… Sasuke is already getting apprenticed by Itachi-kun.”

Shisui replies, “I never meant Sasuke-chan… I was talking about one of the other Genin on his supposed team.”

Hiruzen responds, “If it’s not Sasuke, then it’s definitely not Haruno-san… Then… You must mean Naruto-kun, right?”

Shisui nods, saying, “I see great potential in him, with what he did last night. Especially with who his parents are. His Legacy, and his soon to be Legend… I’d like to be a part of that.”

Mizuki; that traterious snakelet. Tricking Naruto like that. He thought he snuffed out the murders, after the first time that Naruto was almost killed by a drunken mob. It was the first public execution in Konoha’s history. It was the exact reason he made a law to forbid anyone from talking about Naruto’s status as a Jinchuuriki.
Hiruzen then thinks for a moment. His council wouldn’t like this, but Jiraiya has been telling him some disturbing things have been happening in Rain Country. Things that Naruto will have to be as strong as possible to deal with. 

Hiruzen then says, “Okay then Shisui, you have persuaded me. You can take Naruto as an apprentice… But once Naruto starts to access its’ chakra, Jiraiya will help out. As you know, he is the Best Fuinjutsu user this village has.”

Shisui bows, and like his moniker, he uses the Shunshin to disappear from Hiruzen’s view. 

Hiruzen then sighed. He could deal with his council at a later date. While they wouldn’t like it, they couldn’t stop it, either. Plus, having a strong “deterrent” would calm the more militarist parts of his council.

The next day, Naruto is chilling in his home, eating a thing of instant ramen. As he takes a bite, he groans in both pleasure and displeasure, as a knock rings out from his door. Quickly swallowing the bite, the boy answers the door.

In front of him was Shisui Uchiha, the strongest Uchiha next to Itachi. The two of them are considered Heroes for stopping the Coup with minimal bloodshed. Though, it still meant that the Clan’s Elders needed to be killed for inciting said coup. 

Well, that is what he has heard through the streets of Konoha. Nobody but them knew what truly went on throughout that night.

Shisui looks down at Naruto, who is a bit short for his age. He has yellow-blonde, spiky hair and blue eyes. His trademark characteristics are the three whisker-like markings on his cheeks.

The blonde wears an orange and blue jacket with a white collar, a white swirl with a tassel on the left side, and a red Uzumaki crest on the back. He also wears orange pants with a shuriken holster on his right knee, blue sandals, and a blue clothed hitai-ate.

Shisui then asks, “You know it’s rude to ignore your Sensei like this, right?”

Naruto tilts his head in confusion. They weren’t going to know their Jounin-sensei until a week later, not the next day. Wait… Sensei… Was he late!? Oh, shit. Oh, shit. Oh, shit! Was he late? Ah man, he couldn’t be late for his first day as a Shinobi! That would be the worst… Believe it.

Shisui then laughs, calming the boy down. He says, “Your not late to anything. It’s just that you are going to be my apprentice. And I just wanted to get started on your training early. Do you understand?”

Naruto nods, wondering what this man was going to teach him. Was it going to be sweet fire jutsu? Or maybe a cool Taijutsu move? What about something to do with a sword? Whatever it would be, he hoped it would at least be something amazing… Believe it!

As Naruto gets more, and more excited, Shisui pats him on the head, calming him down a bit. He says, “Follow me to a training field. I’d like to test your skills a bit.”

So Naruto does what he is told, and follows Shisui to a training field. It looked like any training ground he has ever seen. A body of water, a clearing, a couple of posts, and a forest throughout.

As Shisui looks at Naruto, he asks, “What are you waiting for Naruto… Come at me!”

Naruto then gains a determined smirk, and makes a single hand seal. The Clone Hand Seal. He yells, “Kage Bunshin no Jutsu!”

In a puff of smoke twenty Naruto's bum rush Shisui. Shisui smiles, and destroys all of them in seconds. Another twenty clones then appear, and all destroyed with the same result. And then another twenty clones, which Shisui destroys like the rest.

With a pause in the action, Shisui smiles. Naruto was trying to determine his fighting style. It is a smart strategy, especially in the middle of battle, with all the Shadow Clones he can make. 

Naruto then makes five Shadow Clones. He sends the first two around in an arc to attack his sides. The clone on the right goes to attack his head, while the other goes to attack his feet. Shisui, though, dodges the attack by twisting his body in midair between the two clones. A third clone then rushes the in air Uchiha, who uses the third’s head to stabilize himself. Shisui then counters by kicking the first two clones, dispelling them.

The last three Narutos then rush Shisui, who has landed. The two clones, reaching Shisui first, make the Ram seal. In a puff of smoke, they transform into different naked women, because several different seducing girls appear, the chances of meeting the preferences of the target are upped significantly. The dissipating smoke just barely covers their bodies, leaving them pressed together. 

With Shisui shocked, Naruto jumps over the naked women, and headbuts the Jounin. Shisui then gets undistracted, and grabs the Genin, slamming him into the ground.

Naruto then disappears in a puff of smoke revealing a shattered log in his place. With a yell from behind him, Shisui turns around, only to get a fist to the jaw. Though, as Naruto passes Shisui, he grabs the blonde by the ankle. He then says, “That wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t good either. So what do you call the jutsu you used to distract me?”

Naruto answers, “It’s my Oiroke: Onnanoko Dōshi no Jutsu, which is based on my Hāremu no Jutsu, which is based on my Oiroke no Jutsu. I mainly use it to prank old perverted men.”

Shisui replies, “Well, it is perfect for information gathering, and in battle distractions, as you just proved. Though, be warned, it might not work on everybody, so don’t go spamming it. Okay?”

Naruto answers with a nod, and Shisui then says, “Good. Now, in order for you to be able to use my signature technique; The Shunshin no Jutsu, you have to have at least decent chakra control… You do know what that is right?”

Naruto nods. This was like Chakra 101 here. Though, as he tries to think of what was taught about it in the Academy, Naruto could only blank on the information. That’s right, he was probably kicked out of that class for causing a “disruption”. 

Shisui then says, “Because chakra takes time and a great deal of training to gradually build up, the key to its use is not actually having large amounts of chakra but instead being able to sufficiently control and conserve it. This is called chakra control. In Konoha their are three standard techniques for training chakra control. They are the Leaf Concentration, Tree Climbing, and Water Surface Walking exercises. For this week, I’d like for you to master the first exercise.”

Naruto remembered the Leaf Concentration Exercise. Iruka taught, and explained it to him, after a day of pranking with Kiba, Shikamaru, and Choji. And they only wanted to get out of class, so they basically just used him. Though, he never completed the exercise. 

Naruto then goes to a nearby tree, and plucks a leaf from it. Placing it on his forehead, Naruto directs all his chakra onto the leaf, using it as a focal point. Seconds later, it flies off his head. 

So, that meant that he needed to use less chakra. Picking another leaf, Naruto places it on his forehead, and channels chakra onto the leaf. Unlike before, the leaf slides down his face. 

Not enough chakra it seems. Naruto sighed at that. He thought he had it that time. Well, he was pretty rusty with the exercise, so it would be self-explanatory why he is having trouble with it.

Shisui then says, “Your doing good so far, Naruto. Keep it up, and maybe I'll teach you another jutsu.”

Excitement bubbled up in Naruto. He didn’t really care if he was getting bribed or not. The chance to learn another jutsu was too enticing to even think about passing it up.

So for the rest of the day, and week, Naruto trained doing the exercise for the whole week. Though, Naruto mastered it, a day before the week was up.

Chapter Text

 

Naruto looked up at his Sensei. His Sensei was explaining his signature jutsu; The Shunshin no Jutsu.  

Shisui explains, “By using the Shunshin no Jutsu, a shinobi can move short to long distances at an almost untraceable speed. To an observer, it appears as if the user has teleported. It is accomplished by using chakra to temporarily vitalise the body and move at extreme speeds. The amount of chakra required depends on the overall distance and elevation between the user and the intended destination.”

Shisui then says, “I’ll demonstrate it for you.”

Making the tiger seal, which for Shisui, was a bit cumbersome, but he could deal with it for now. Shisui then fades from Naruto’s view, who is in awe of the technique. Reappearing from behind Naruto, Shisui then says, “Now it’s your turn! Try to make it to that tree.”

Naruto nods. He almost jumped at his Sensei’s action. In fact, the blonde was sure that Shisui was smirking behind him. Shaking that thought from his mind, Naruto concentrated on making the Tiger Seal. In a puff of smoke, Naruto disappears, and reappears shortly after, at the halfway point between Shisui and the tree.

As Naruto returns to his spot, Shisui says, “Keep going, okay, Naruto… I need to talk with the Hokage about Team Placements.”

So as Naruto continues to train, Shisui makes the sign he is most comfortable with, the Rat Seal. He then disappears in a Shunshin. Making it to the Hokage’s Office, he stands next to Itachi, who is standing behind the more experienced Kakashi Hatake.

Itachi is a fairly tall man of fair complexion. He has black eyes, under which were long, pronounced tear-troughs. He also has jet-black hair that was pulled back in a low ponytail and his face was framed with center-parted bangs that extended to his chin; the ponytail and bangs grew longer over the years. His overall appearance is very similar to Sasuke's.

He wears the standard ANBU uniform complete with arm guards, a flak jacket, and a porcelain mask which was fashioned to resemble a weasel with a red, triangular marking on top.

Kakashi Hatake has spiky silver hair often oriented to his left-side, dark grey eyes, and typically a relaxed and lazy expression. His Konoha hitai-ate covers his left eye, and he wears a skin-tight mask that covers the lower half of his face.

He wears Konoha's standard infantry clothing: a flak jacket, dark blue pants, and a long-sleeve shirt. He also wears fingerless gloves with metal plates on the backhand and is seen with a chain necklace underneath.

Next to Kakashi, is one Asuma Sarutobi, and Kurenai Yuhi.

Asuma Sarutobi is a tall man, with brown eyes, olive skin, short black spiky hair, and a beard. His clothing consists of the standard Konoha ninja uniform with the sleeves rolled up halfway, flak jacket, regular shinobi sandals and forehead protector. He also wears a sash that had the kanji for "Fire" (火) marked on it around his waist, a pair of black bangles, and bandages wrapped around the arms of his sleeves.

Kurenai Yuhi is a fair-skinned woman of slender build. She has long black untamed hair reaching her upper back, and very unique eyes that are red in colour, with an additional ring in them. She wears make-up consisting of red lipstick and purple eyeshadow. 

Her regular outfit consists of a red mesh armour blouse with only the right sleeve visible. Overall, this is very broad material which resembles bandages with a pattern on it similar to those of rose thorns. Her hands and upper thighs are also wrapped in bandages and she wears the Konoha hitai-ate and regular shinobi sandals. 

Sitting in front of them is the Sandaime Hokage. He says, “This is a meeting to confirm your Genin of choice. Asuma?”

Asuma answers, “Like before… I chose this generation’s Ino-shika-cho trio. This includes Ino Yamanaka, Shikamaru Nara, and Choji Akimichi.”

Hiruzen replies, “It is granted. Yuhi-san?”

Kurenai answers, “I’ll take Kiba Inuzuka, Hinata Hyuga, and Shino Aburame.”

Hiruzen says, “It is granted. Hatake-san?”

Kakashi replies, “I guess that means that I’ll take Sasuke Uchiha, Naruto Uzumaki, and Sakura Haruno.”

Hiruzen says, “It is granted. Now Hatake-san, please talk with Itachi-san and Shisui-san to get a proper meeting time for your team.”

Kakashi nods at that. After all, he had been spying on his future team to see what they were doing over the week. It’s why the week between graduation and team placements were a thing. 

It allowed for the Jounin-senseis to get the knowledge they needed in order to correctly teach their students whatever the Jounin thought to teach. Truly it was at their discretion. Though, some things could be stopped by the Hokage. However, that was really, really rare.

Shisui, well right now, was training Naruto with chakra control and supplemental jutsu. It would help him with the basics, and among other things that Kakashi was planning on teaching them. 

Itachi, meanwhile, was training Sasuke to help improve his usage of his Sharingan. As Sasuke had apparently just reawakened his Sharingan. So, that meant teaching him how to copy jutsu, see through and cast Genjutsu.

Sakura, on the other hand, did absolutely nothing during the week, except get her license. Though, every Genin got their Shinobi license. It made Kakashi sigh, she is a complete fangirl.

In his opinion, Kakashi would have to spend a lot of time getting Sakura up to par with her teammates.  Naruto wouldn’t be much of a problem, as he was getting taught by Shisui. They have sparred on many occasions, and he knew the Uchiha was skilled.

Kakashi turns to the Uchiha behind him, and says, “Can they be free the day after Team Placements, so that I can give them my Genin Test?”

Itachi then turns to Shisui, who just simply nods. He replies, “That’s a bit harsh Senpai… But yes our apprentices will be free on that day.”

As they all nod at each other they disappear. Shisui returns to the training ground, to see Naruto between the halfway point and the tree, which was still pretty far away from the tree. Maybe he would have to teach Naruto the Tree Climbing Exercise early? So he says, “Keep trying. I know you can do it.”

Naruto turns around, and throws a thumb up. He yells, “Of course I can do it. I couldn’t be the greatest Hokage ever, if I couldn’t… Ttebayo!”

As Naruto reaches the start point to try again, Shisui looks up at the sky. It was getting a bit dark. He then says, “Naruto! Let's pick this up tomorrow after team placements, Okay? You don’t want to be late for those like you thought when we first met.”

Naruto pouted at that. How dare his Sensei tease him like that? The Uzumaki then says, “You better watch out, Sensei… Someday, you might find all of your underwear dyed hot pink!”

The thinly veiled threat made Shisui smile. Teasing his student even more, Shisui replies, “I’m sure you can try to dye my underwear hot pink, my dear student.”

 

Chapter Text

 

Waking up the next morning, Naruto gets ready and goes to the Academy. Entering Iruka’s classroom for hopefully the last time, he sees all his classmates, and he realized he couldn’t tolerate much or any of them. So, he sits next to Sasuke in silence. 

Sasuke has black eyes and spiky black hair with a blue tint. His hair is long and has hung over his face as bangs. He is considered handsome by most girls near his age.

His typical clothing has changed a number of times throughout his short life, but the Uchiha clan's fan is usually present somewhere on his clothing, such as the back of his shirt collar. He wears a navy blue, short-sleeved shirt with a high collar, white shorts, and white arm warmers.

Sasuke looks out the side of his eye to look at Naruto. Why is he getting taught by his cousin? Shisui was the best of his clan, tied in strength with his brother. Why would he want to train the Dead Last? It was confusing to the Uchiha. Well, at least he was quiet for a change, so their was a plus.

Sasuke then groans out loud, as his most prevalent fangirls stomp through the Academy and into the classroom. These two girls are named Sakura Haruno, and Ino Yamanaka. They were pretty evenly skilled, but Ino would for sure come out on top in most spars. 

After all, Ino had years of training before she was entered into the Academy. In fact, most, if not all children that came from clans had prior training and experience before coming to the Academy.  

Soon after that, Iruka entered. He was their Academy-sensei, and favored Naruto, despite all the annoying trouble he got into. Everyone could enjoy a prank or two every once in a while, but Naruto… Well, he takes it a bit too far, as he is the “self-titled” Prank King of Konoha.

Iruka is a man of average height and build. He has brown hair that he keeps in a ponytail, dark eyes and a scar that runs across the bridge of his nose — which he has had since his youth. 

He wears the standard Konoha shinobi outfit complete with a hitai-ate, sandals, and a flak jacket. His sleeves are also rolled up about ¼ way.

Iruka then says, “Listen up… Please…  I’m only going to say this once! Team 7 consists of Naruto Uzumaki, Sakura Haruno, and Sasuke Uchiha. Team 8 consists of Kiba Inuzuka, Hinata Hyuga, and Shino Aburame. Team 9 is still in circulation, and is going strong. Team 10 consists of Ino Yamanaka, Shikamaru Nara, and Choji Akimichi. The Jounin-senseis will be here after lunch.”

Shortly after lunch, two Jounins enter the classroom. They are named Asuma Sarutobi, and Kurenai Yuhi.

Asuma is a tall man, with brown eyes, olive skin, short black spiky hair, and a beard. His clothing consists of the standard Konoha ninja uniform with the sleeves rolled up halfway, flak jacket, regular shinobi sandals and Konoha hitai-ate. He also wore a sash that had the kanji for "Fire" marked on it around his waist, a pair of black bangles, and bandages wrapped around the arms of his sleeves.

Kurenai is a fair-skinned woman of slender build. She has long black untamed hair reaching her upper back, and very unique eyes that are red in colour, with an additional ring in them. She wears make-up consisting of red lipstick and purple eyeshadow. 

Her outfit consists of a red mesh armour blouse with only the right sleeve visible. Overall, this is a very broad material which resembles bandages with a pattern on it similar to those of rose thorns. Her hands and upper thighs are also wrapped in bandages and she wears the Konoha hitai-ate and standard shinobi sandals.

Asuma, while taking a drag from his cigarette, says, “Team 10, come with me.”

Kurenai then says, “Hello, I’d like for Team 8, to please follow me.”

Though Naruto and the rest of his team wouldn't truly meet their Sensei until later. In fact, he didn’t show up until three hours later. It was damn annoying, so in that time period, Naruto decided to prank the man. 

Team 7’s Jounin-sensei then appears. An eraser falls onto his head. Making Naruto, clutch his side in laughter. While Kakashi could see it from a mile away, he was a bit glad that Sakura barely hid her amusement with an apology. It means that she can hide her emotions a bit. Meanwhile, Sasuke just stared at the other two with a look of exacerbation.

Kakashi sighed. This team was going to be amusing. 

Naruto sees the Jounin, and then says, “So your our Sensei. The one that I didn’t “borrow” a book from.”

Kakashi says, “I am indeed that Jounin. Now meet me on the roof in five minutes.” 

They then watch, as their Sensei disappears in a leaf Shunshin. 

Naruto then makes a hand seal; the Tiger Seal. Hopefully he could do it in two Shunshins. As Naruto disappeared in a puff of smoke, Sasuke was already walking out of the classroom. It took Sakura a few seconds, but she hurried to the door of the classroom. The usage of a jutsu shocked the pinkette.

Getting to the roof, in three Shunshins, Naruto sighs. He definitely needs to train with the Shunshin more. Sasuke was already there, and he walked. Sakura came a bit after Naruto. He wasted too much time, and should have just ran.

Seeing all of the Genin on the roof, Kakashi says, “How about we introduce ourselves.”

Sakura then asks, “How do we do that?”

Kakashi answers, “Name, likes, dislikes, hobbies, and dreams!”

Sakura asks, “Can you do it first, to show us how?”

Kakashi just mentally facepalms, and says, “Sure, why not. Anyway, my name is Kakashi Hatake. I like many things, and dislike just as much. My hobbies... My dreams, never thought of that. Pinky and the Brain it’s now your turn.”

Sakura says, “THAT! IS! NOT! MY! NAME!”

Kakashi says, “Then introduce yourself so I do know your name.”

Sakura moaned, and said, “Hello, I am Sakura Haruno. I like Sasuke-kun, and my family. I dislike… I don’t know. My hobbies… My dreams…” She then passes out from perverted dreams about her “Sasuke-kun”.

Kakashi then says, “Annoying blonde… Your turn.”

Naruto smiles, and then says, “I am Naruto Uzumaki. I like ramen, and training. I dislike the three minutes I have to wait for ramen to cool down after I put water into the ramen cup. My hobby is tasting different ramen flavors, and tending to my garden. My dream is to be Hokage, so everyone can acknowledge me, Dattebayo!”

Kakashi nodded, and said, “Emo Duck Butt, your last.”

Sasuke just hned, and said, “I’m Sasuke Uchiha. I don’t like much, and I dislike a lot of things. To be honest, it’s too much to list. My dream, no… It could never be so low as a dream. My ambition is to be stronger than my Nii-san.”

Well if that wasn’t the edgiest thing he had ever heard. Kakashi then says, “Tomorrow we have our first mission.”

Sakura asks, “What’s the mission?”

Kakashi replies, “You won’t like what it is, but I’ll tell you anyway, since you asked. It’s a survival test.”

Sakura says, “But we already did those in the Academy.”

Kakashi nodded, as he said, “You did do those in the Academy, but this one is different. You see, your opponent will be me. In fact, this is the actual Genin Exams. Which have a 66% fail rate. Which also means only three teams will pass. Go to Training Ground 3 in the morning, around 7 o’clock, and don’t be late! Also I wouldn’t eat breakfast, or you’ll puke. Anyway, good luck, and Ja ne!” 

Kakashi then gives a cheerful wave, and then Shunshins away somewhere, most likely his apartment. It kinda scared Sakura, as Naruto and Sasuke simply just walked away. Though, Naruto does it with a bit more energy, then Sasuke did. The grump that he was. 

Chapter Text

 

Naruto then makes his way to the training ground to train his use in the Shunshin. For him, it still wasn’t practical for battle, much less moving around the village.

When he got to the training ground, Shisui was already there. In his hand is a tantō and a scroll. He says, “I know you want to complete the Shunshin, but I figured that since you are doing a test tomorrow, that you would rather know something to help you fight. Since I know you know that for now the Shunshin isn’t the most practical for you yet.”

Naruto could only look at his Sensei. How did he know? Shisui then says, “Look I know that both you and I have high expectations for yourself, but mastering a jutsu like the Shunshin in a single day is still kinda out of the realm of possibility. So will learning how to fight with a tantō, but I feel that you can get the basics to be able to use it in tomorrow's test.”

Then Shisui hands the scroll and tantō to Naruto. He easily straps it to his lower back, which allows for the weapon to be easily hidden by his jacket. 

Opening the scroll, Naruto finds that it is full of diagrams of katas. So, Naruto unsheathed his tantō and got to work. Shisui was their every step of the way, making sure that Naruto’s movements were as perfect as they could be. He is a beginner, and after all, practice makes perfect.

As day turned to night, Shisui stopped Naruto. The Jounin didn’t want him to be too tired to be able to do anything in his test. He says, “Let’s pick this up tomorrow, okay?”

Naruto nods, and replies, “Yes, Sensei!”

The next morning, Naruto is the last one of the Genin to make it to the training ground. He woke up late. Though, you couldn’t really blame him, as he was too excited for today, and practiced all night. However, he took in every detail like he was the first one there.

The third training ground is a portion of land located inside of Konoha. There is a view of mountains in the landscape and a large and deep river with forests on both of its sides. There is a glade and in its center there are three stumps lined side by side where, below there is the memorial stone, a polished kunai-shaped structure.

However, since Kakashi wasn’t there, he got some shut eye. Two hours of extra sleep would do him good. 

Kakashi appears before them, waking the blonde up, even though he was the first one there. Kakashi pulls out a clock, and two bells. He sets the clock on a rock, and ties the bells to his belt. 

The Hatake then says, “Your objective is to get these bells. If you fail, the other will eat lunch in front of you, while you are tied to a training post.” 

As all of their stomachs growl, Sakura asks, “Sensei, why are their only two bells?”

Kakashi answers, “Why, because one of you will not be a shinobi after today. Anyway, you have till noon to get the bells. Now come with the intent to kill me.”

Naruto throws a couple shuriken almost perfectly at their Sensei. Kakashi catches the shuriken with his fingers. As the shuriken are spinning around his fingers, Kakashi says, “I didn’t say go yet, but you did show intent to kill. So, I’m liking you all a little bit more.”

Naruto says, “We are Genin, not little kids. You don’t have to baby us. Plus who says go in a real battle?”

Kakashi replies, “You got a point about the battle thing, but your still not officially Genin until you pass my test, and to tell you the truth…  No team has ever passed my test.” 

This makes the team gulp, as Kakashi pauses for a second. He then yells, “GO!”

Every member of Team 7, except Naruto, hides. Though, Kakashi already knew where they were. Kakashi then takes out Icha Icha, and begins to read. The Jounin then smirks under his mask, as Naruto gets enraged at him for not taking him seriously. He almost rolled his eyes, as he easily took a kunai that Naruto threw, and used it to deflect the other two kunai.

This is when Naruto appears before him, jumping with his knee outstretched. Kakashi blocks it with his palm. Naruto easily pivots his body, and attempts a heel kick, which Kakashi lazily ducks under. Speaking of Kakashi, he then smacks Naruto on the crown of his head with his book, enraging the blonde even more.

Jumping away from the Jounin, Naruto makes a single hand seal. The Clone Seal. He yells, “Kage Bunshin no Jutsu!”

Three Shadow Clones appear next to Naruto. Then all four Naruto rush Kakashi, and as they get close, the real Naruto disappears in a puff of smoke. Reappearing behind Kakashi, Naruto throws a couple shuriken at the Jounin. 

Though when they pass by his head, they dispel into a puff of smoke, blinding the Jounin. This allows for two clones to dig their fists into Kakashi’s stomach. With Kakashi doubled over the two fists, the third clone jumps high into the air, and begins to somersault. The clone then comes spinning down, slamming his heel onto Kakashi's head.

As Kakashi’s head slams into the ground below, he disappears into a plume of smoke, revealing a shattered log in his place. Kakashi then appears behind the real Naruto. He says, “Well, I’m not going to lie to you, Naruto… I was expecting worse from you. Now time for Konohagakure Hiden Taijutsu Ōgi: Sennen Goroshi!”

Kakashi then tightly clasps his hands together and extends their middle and index fingers, resembling the Tiger hand seal. Using the full weight of his body, the Jounin thrusts these four fingers between Naruto’s buttocks. Only for Naruto to disappear into smoke revealing a shattered log in his place. 

From her hiding place, Sakura blushes. Why would anyone use such a move? Meanwhile, Sasuke thought, ‘At least Naruto didn’t entertain Kakashi by comically leaping into the air.’

Then Kakashi tilts his head to the side, dodging a strike from Naruto’s tantō. He then blocks another strike with a kunai. After that, Kakashi has to duck under a wide slice. A smirking Naruto then attempts to kick Kakashi in the face. However, Kakashi grabs him by the ankle and throws him far away.

Kakashi then wonders… Sasuke, or Sakura? 

Deciding soon after, the Hatake goes after his pink haired student. Finding Sakura just as quick as he decided to target her, Kakashi thinks, ‘In her academy file, it said that Sakura could be a budding Genjutsu Specialist, or even an Iyro-nin. Let’s do a bit of a subtle one. Kori Shinchū no Jutsu (Sly Mind Affect Technique)!’

Now all Kakashi had to do was watch her. Waiting to see if she would notice the Genjutsu. He would leave a Shadow Clone to watch her, as he would then test Sasuke. Preparing for the memories to enter his mind, the Jounin appears in the clearing. 

Sasuke, seeing the Jounin appear in his sights, weaves through hand seals. Rat → Tiger → Dog → Ox → Rabbit → Tiger → Monkey. The Uchiha then unleashes a volley of shuriken with one hand, and at the same time, exhales fire-infused chakra onto them. Then the fire chakra infused shuriken flew into Kakashi, only for him to dispel into a puff of smoke, revealing a burning log.

Sasuke then feels someone poking him in the shoulder. Grabbing a kunai, he quickly spins around to stab whoever touched him. Kakashi blocks the kunai, with one of his own, and then kicks Sasuke into the clearing.

When Kakashi appears in the clearing shortly after, Sasuke blitzes the Jounin. Sasuke first attacks Kakashi with a kick, which is immediately followed by a punch and another kick from the opposite leg. Kakashi, however, blocks every attack.

And with Sasuke upside down, he reaches for the bells, only getting a finger tip on them. While he does this, Kakashi pushes the Uchiha away. 

In mid air, Sasuke weaves through another set of hand seals. Snake → Ram → Monkey → Boar → Horse → Tiger, Sasuke then expels a big, fireball, for a Genin, from his mouth. 

It would have surprised Kakashi more, if the boy hadn’t been taught by Itachi of all people. Though, to anyone else, it was a very impressive feat for a Genin. 

Before the fireball landed, Kakashi sinked into the earth below him. He was lying in wait, and as his hand ripped through the earth to grab onto Sasuke’s leg, the boy jumped. Though, it was a tad bit late, as Kakashi, ultimately pulled him down neck-level into the ground.

Kakashi then kneels in front of Sasuke. He says, “Your good. Skilled. Much like I was at your age… Though, I was already a Jounin then, but let’s not speak of semantics, shall we? You will not be able to touch these bells again…”

He then gains the memories of his Shadow Clone. Sakura had just escaped from the Genjutsu he had placed on her. It wasn’t bad for the type of Genjutsu he placed on her, but it still wasn’t good either. An enemy Shinobi could have killed her in that time span, and her teammates wouldn’t have been any wiser.

Then his clone decided to fight her. Her skills are… What’s the word? It was just on the tip of his tongue. Ah… their it was. Sakura was textbook, in everything she did. She has memorized everything she learned, and did it to the efficiency of the Academy’s standards, and nothing more. It was quite sad, in his honest opinion.

Her only other noted skill was her abnormally high chakra control. And it was that skill that made the Academy Sensei’s think she would be a great Genjutsu specialist, or even a medic-nin. He would probably teach her the basics of both.

And as Naruto tried to slice him through with his tantō, the clock rang across from the training ground. Kakashi then grabs the blade, stopping the attack in full. The Jounin says, “Go get Sakura. I’ll help Sasuke.”

Now on the ground, Naruto sheaths his tantō, and goes to run off. Though he stops short of the tree line, and turns to the Jounin. He asks, “Where is she?”

Kakashi sighs, but tells the blonde anyway. It would waste too much time, otherwise. 

Soon after, Naruto returns with Sakura, who is then taken by Kakashi, and tied to a post. Handing the bento to Naruto and Sasuke, Kakashi says, “Here you go enjoy. Now, let’s wait for Sakura to wake up, because I’d like to tell you that you all failed at the same time.”

Kakashi then sticks up three fingers, presumably for three seconds. Soon Kakashi only held up two fingers, and then one. Finally, he dropped his remaining finger, and Sakura woke up with a deafening scream. 

Ignoring her cries, Kakashi then asks, “Will you humor me, and answer a question for me?”

Naruto asks, ”But didn’t you just ask a question?”

Kakashi sighs, replying, “I meant another question, Naruto. Do you know why Genin are put on teams of three?”

From the textbook, Sakura answers, “Genin are put in four-man cells, or squads, consisting of three genin and a Jounin-sensei, in order to learn teamwork and experience true ninja life under the supervision and protection of an elite shinobi. The make-up of these teams is based on the individual skills of the genin, so that there will be a balance between the teams.”

Sasuke then says, “So… The bells were meant to divide us… Correct?”

Kakashi nods, “You three have impressed me. So I’m going to give you another chance. So enjoy your food while you can, and don’t give any to Sakura. After all she was the worst of you three. I’ll be back in an hour. Ja ne!” 

Right after Kakashi leaves, Naruto opens his bento. Cracking apart his chopsticks, Naruto raises the food to Sakura’s lips. As Sakura was about to protest, her stomach growled. Sasuke then asks, “What are you doing? This could make us fail!”

Naruto replies, “Teme… Did Kakashi-sensei say anything about failing, if we fed Sakura? You know, I may be stupid, but if we are going to get those bells, we will need Sakura’s help. That much I know. She can’t work on an empty stomach, can she?”

Sasuke sighs. He opens his bento, and cracks apart his chopstick. The Uchiha then raised his food to Sakura, who gained a bit of a blush. Though, she chose to eat from Naruto’s bento, not for any particular reason.

Though, as soon as she swallowed the food, the sky darkened, and it began to thunder and lightning. Kakashi then appeared before them, and for the first time actually looked angry and stern. He asks, “Naruto, why did you go against a direct order for your commanding Officer?”

Naruto answers, “Technically, Kakashi-sensei… You said it yourself at the beginning of the test. We aren’t Genin yet. And as for your question. What was the point of this little test? It is teamwork. We can’t get the bells without the help of each other. After all, you did just give us a cheat sheet before you left.”

Kakashi sighs. Of course that was Naruto’s train of thought. He then yells, “YOU… YOU… Pass! We are now Team Kakashi.”

The sky then cleared, as Kakashi’s only visible eye turned into a smile. He says, “Follow me.”

The Genin then follow him to a monument. It’s called the Memorial Stone, and is a polished kunai-shaped structure. Their is also what looks to be a thousand names engraved onto it. 

Naruto could only make out two. One being; Minato Namikaze, the Yondaime Hokage. While the other name is Kushina Uzumaki. Was this Uzumaki person, his family? Was this Uzumaki his mother? He would have to ask Hokage-jiji to be sure.

Kakashi then says, “These are the Heroes of Konoha. People who died protecting our village, and everyone in it. My friends, my teammates are on this stone. My Sensei is on this stone. And while I am alive, I don’t want to see your names on this stone. So, with that in mind… I want to leave you with a quote… Remember this, wholeheartedly. “In the ninja world, those who break the rules are trash, that's true, but those who abandon their comrades are worse than trash.” Your free for the rest of the day.”

The three Genin then leave. Though, Naruto falters a bit. He wanted to etch the name Kushina Uzumaki into his brain. Hopefully whoever she is, has the answers he has always wanted.

 

Chapter Text

 

Naruto yawns. It had been a couple of days since he passed the Genin Exams. They were mainly doing boring shit, not that it wasn’t important. As without teamwork, they could very much die. So was the one D-Rank mission they had. Though, he could kinda see how it was mainly used as another teamwork exercise.

And to top it off, Kakashi-sensei forbade him to use his shadow clones. So he and his team was stared at, while they worked pulling the weeds in some old person’s garden. 

He could feel the venomous stare from even the far end of the garden. He was sure Kakashi felt the stare, if he could. Meanwhile, Sakura was oblivious to them, as was Sasuke.

Walking dogs were met with more stares. As he cleaned the park, parents hoarded their children away from him. Another person, a shop owner, glared at him the whole time while he painted his shop. 

It was annoying, and now that Naruto knew why he was getting the looks, he was getting more angry then sad. That stupid fox!

Naruto sighed, once again. He would train. Hopefully it would take his mind off of his thoughts. So the Uzumaki enters the training ground that he and Shisui used. And for the next week, Naruto would be training alone. Shisui was on a mission, and left a scroll with some techniques for him to learn and use. 

In the scroll, was another control exercise. It is called; the Tree Climbing Exercise. This training involves focusing a fixed amount of chakra to the bottom of one's feet, and using that to climb a tree without using one's hands. He was to use a kunai to mark his progress.

If the stream of chakra is too weak, the user will lose their footing on the tree and fall off. If it is too strong, the user will be pushed away from the tree, causing the tree to break around the point of contact and the user will fall.

Naruto shrugged, he could do this. After all, it sounded easy enough. Though, the blonde jinxed himself, as four steps up the tree, he slid right back down, landing on his ass. So, he needed more chakra then.

Another try, and Naruto still slid down the tree. Again and again and again. After ten whole steps up the tree, Naruto was frustrated. He was barely making any progress. Maybe… He should train with the Shunshin now? After all, Naruto had the time.

So there Naruto was, at the Beginning point for his Shunshin training. Making the Tiger Seal, Naruto channels chakra throughout his body. Disappearing in a cloud of smoke, the blonde reappears just before the edge of the tree’s shadow. 

Making it under the branch after two more tries, Naruto consulted the scroll, to see if it said anything. In Shisui’s own words, “Their is more to the Shunshin than just distance. Now you have to think of elevation, as this time, I’d like for you to Shunshin on top of the branch, instead of under it.”

It also said that completing the Tree Climbing Exercise would help in the endeavor, as would experience. So Naruto put that on hold for now, to practice with his tantō. He has been wanting to better implement it into how he fought. Creating a Shadow Clone to spar with, the Uzumaki got to work.

Unbenounced to him, a rat made of ink was watching him. This week was the only time the rat could freely spy on the blonde, otherwise Shisui would sense it. 

When Naruto was done, he went to go to Konoha’s Archive Library. Thank you, Hokage-jiji for the location. 

It was a simple plea, of wanting to research someone on the Memorial Stone, who caught his attention. The Hokage didn’t question him on it, and gave him the location easily.

Konoha’s Archive Library is built into the same mountain that has the Hokage Rock. It has information on all of it’s ninja — past and current — is stored there. If their was anything on this “Kushina Uzumaki”, it would be in this building.

In a darkened room, a person as old as Naruto got rigid, as his ink rat returned. Splashing itself back on the scroll revealing all it saw and heard. The elderly man behind him, asks, “Sai, what does it say?”

Sai has short, straight black hair, and dark eyes which contrast with his translucent-looking pale skin. He is usually seen carrying a small backpack with his brush, scrolls, and ninja ink in it. He wears a short black-and-grey jacket with red straps.

He also carries a tip-less tantō on his back. The rest of his outfit consisted of a high-collared midriff shirt, black pants, shinobi sandals and gloves with his index and thumb fingers exposed, most likely to facilitate the use of his drawing based techniques.

Sai answers, “The Jinchuuriki want’s information on a person named Kushina Uzumaki.”

Kushina Uzumaki… Hm. Now that wasn’t a name that the elderly man had heard recently. As a Genin, she was his student. She was his prized student. Easily learning all that he taught her. 

Though, in his opinion, when she married that man, Kushina became weak. Or rather, he felt that she became soft.

The elderly man says, “The lady at the front desk owes me a favor. Tell her to give one Naruto Uzumaki her information that the Archive Library has whenever he comes in. Say… On a weekly basis.”

Sai answers, “Of course, Danzō-sama.”

Danzō appeared as a frail, old man, who would normally walk with a cane. He had black, shaggy hair, and his right eye was bandaged. Danzō has had an x-shaped scar on his chin ever since his youth.

He wears a white shirt, with a black or dark grey robe over the top of it covering from his feet, to just over his right shoulder. The robe conceals his right arm which was bandaged, and covered with three large golden braces.

Sai then quickly draws a rat, making it live through chakra. The rat then scurries away from them, to fulfil its only mission in life.

Naruto then enters the Archive Library. Walking to the lady at the front desk, he asks, “Do you have any information on a woman named Kushina Uzumaki?”

The lady answers, “I have some, but a lot of it is confidential… But if you come back in a week, at closing time, I’ll hand you some more information on a weekly basis. Understand?”

Naruto nodded. He replies, “I understand. So could you give me the information?”

The lady answers, “Of course.”

So after a couple minutes, she found the information, and handed it to Naruto. Leaving, he smiled to himself. Entering his apartment, he opened the file he had.

A picture was clipped to the right side of the thin stack of papers. She was beautiful. She was a fair-skinned and slender woman of feminine build with violet eyes, and straight red hair. 

Was the red hair a standard trait of the Uzumaki? He even saw a picture of Mito, and she had the same red hair. So it must have been.

Kushina died on the tenth of October… On his birthday, at age twenty-four. That made him sad. She was killed by the Kyuubi, probably fighting to keep Konoha safe.

Her blood is type B. She was a Jounin of renowned skill, and fought in the early stages of the Third Great Shinobi World War. It also listed her weight, and height.

In the file, it also had an address… It was an old one. Wait a goddamn minute… He knew the address, it was his address. Why would the Old Man give him this woman’s old apartment? He would have to ask the Hokage himself. 

Maybe she hid something here? Their are some loose floorboards. Though, he always thought that they were just loose from their old age, and not some secret space for some woman’s things. 

Closing the file, a knock rang out of the door. Placing the file under his table, Naruto answers the door. It is Sakura, and they had another D-Rank mission to complete. 

This time it was to catch the Daimyo’s wife’s cat, who is named Tora. Naruto swore that it had to have some ninja training. To be able to dodge a Genin like Sasuke was difficult.

Through the rest of the week, Naruto mainly trained from the scroll. Team Kakashi also did D-Rank missions twice a day. Right after the other. And with each passing day, the blonde progressed nicely with everything that he did when training. The Tree Climbing Exercise, the Shunshin no Jutsu, his work with his tantō. 

At the end of the week, Naruto completed the Tree Climbing exercise. He also is close to completing the Shunshin no Jutsu. Kenjutsu was like Taijutsu with all of the repetition it needed, but Naruto has completed the basic forms to the best of his abilities.

Looking under his floorboards, Naruto found a diary. Kushina probably just forgot about it. But it talked about the Uzumaki Clan, and their specialty: Fuinjutsu. It talked about her boyfriend; one Minato Namikaze. 

It talked about her life as the Jinchuuriki of the Kyuubi… Wait another goddamn minute… Kushina also held the Kyuubi. Did the Yondaime know? He had to have known, right? They were dating, after all. 

Naruto then frowned. Kushina had to be his mother. Now, he truly believed it. 

They are both Jinchuurikis. She died during his birth, like the Hokage said his parents did. She was a Shinobi, like his parents were said to be. Wait a minute… Does this mean that his father is the Yondaime Hokage? 

That is absolutely insane… Right? He, now more than ever, needed to speak with the Hokage.

Chapter Text

 

The next day, Shisui returned to Konoha. Finishing his report to the Hokage about his mission, the Uchiha wanted to see Naruto and his progress. 

Knocking on the blonde’s door, it creaked open, revealing a sleeping Naruto. His head was laid on a small black book. What is in that book that made Naruto so tired that he fell asleep overtop of it?

Gently lifting Naruto’s head, Shisui grabbed the book. Skimming through it, he gasped. It was one of Kushina’s diaries. How did he find this, under the floorboards? 

Returning the book under Naruto’s head, Shisui looks around the apartment. Entering Naruto’s room, he finds an out of place piece of the hardwood floor, under his student’s bed. He really did find this under a floorboard. Well, that was ironic.

Naruto then asks, “When did you get here?”

Shisui turns around, and answers, “Just a couple minutes ago. I was going to test you today, but it turns out that we need to talk.”

That made Naruto a bit nervous. Shisui then says. “Kushina, along with being a former Jinchuuriki, was also related to the wife of the Shodai Hokage. She was also married to the Yondaime Hokage. So she was an important figure in Konoha. This is very important, what do you know, other than what is in that diary?”

Naruto nervously hands his Sensei the file he got from the Archive Library. Shisui skimmed through it. From what he knows of how the Library files things, this wasn’t part of the confidential files. So that was good. 

Wait… This also lists Genin Teams. Jounin-sensei: Danzō Shimura. Shit. Was he behind this. He would have to tell the Hokage right away. Shisui then says, “Looks like you are going to know some deep secrets soon, Naruto. Follow me!”

Naruto silently nodded. The Yellow Flash; Minato Namikaze, was his father? The person who sealed the Kyuubi inside of him was his father? The supposed strongest Kage of his Generation was his father? 

He would have screamed, if it wasn’t so shocking. Though, if Naruto had to tell the truth, he always had a sneaking suspicion that the Yondaime was his father. The same hair color, the same eye color. It was nothing concrete, as many people have that same color combination. 

But, now it was all but basically confirmed. All that needed to happen is for the Hokage to outright say it. Though, Naruto doubted that. The Hokage then says, “Whatever you think about how Kushina Uzumaki and Minato Namikaze are related to you… They are.”

The Hokage outright said it. And as an afterthought, it was kinda funny, though  Naruto scoffed. Then why lie about it his whole life? 

Shisui then replies, “Think about it, Naruto. What would a young you do if you found out that your Tou-san was Minato Namikaze?”

Naruto thinks about it for a moment. The Yellow Flash of Konoha. Minato Namikaze… The man is his role model. The person that he inspired to be. The person he strived to be, due to the admiration that he got from the village. He quietly says, “I’d tell the world.”

Hiruzen responds, “You’d probably do it today, as well. Now I don’t need to tell you this…” Hopefully. “But, you need to keep this a secret, like how you being a Jinchuuriki is a secret from your age group.”

Naruto nods, asking, “Did they leave anything for me?”

Hiruzen answers, “No… Everything was destroyed during the Kyuubi Attack, but you can look on your own, if you want. I am sure that you can find something the ANBU didn’t.”

Everything else was unimportant to Naruto for that conversation, well, other than the mention of the Uzumaki Clan. Their was no inheritance. Their was no home. Nothing was left, according to the Hokage’s ANBU. Though, someone could have taken it. It is a real possibility, after all. Though, it is just not very likely. 

From what he has been reading up on the Kyuubi… It’s chakra is very corrosive. It is very likely that it’s chakra just burned through everything, while it’s weight crushed everything else. Maybe their was another hidden diary? He would have to look.

And like before, Naruto was without a family. Well, that is not true, as they were just dead. This must be what Sasuke and the rest of his living family felt like. To have something, but not truly have something… It was painful to say the least.

Meanwhile Hiruzen and Shisui are staring at each other. A mostly silent conversation. The two of them came to a single conclusion; one Danzō Shimura. 

The thought wasn’t lost on Hiruzen. It was just another plot to try and turn Naruto into a mindless drone, and Hiruzen wouldn’t allow it. Minato wouldn’t have allowed it. Even Kushina wouldn’t allow it, and Danzō was her Sensei. 

She knew what he knew. But she also knew the benefit of emotion. It could weaken and strengthen you at a drop of a hat. Rage could empower a strike, but could cloud and weaken the mind.

Throughout the next day, Naruto read up on everything he could about the Uzumaki Clan. Who they were related to. What their specialty was. What the Clan symbol was. Naruto even found where the nearest shrine was. 

He’d probably have to ask the Hokage to go to it. He could always do that at a later time, as tomorrow Shisui was going to test him to see what he has learned from his self training.

Standing across from Shisui in their usual training ground, the Uchiha says, “Go!”

As a basis, Naruto knew what Shisui could do. Shunshin no Jutsu, Kenjutsu, and Taijutsu; which was better than what he knew a day after Graduation. 

Going for his signature technique, Naruto made the single hand seal. He yells, “Kage Bunshin no Jutsu!”

Four clones appear next to him in a big puff of smoke. Then all of them bound away from Shisui, running up the trees, surrounding the Jounin, as they jumped from tree to tree, in a circle. As they keep running literal circles around the Uchiha, the Naruto’s throw kunai and shuriken at the man, to make sure he couldn’t move from his spot. 

Shisui smiled, it would have been a good tactic on anyone else. Blocking what appears to be the last shuriken, it dispelled into a plume of smoke. A Henged rock, another good tactic. 

However, Shisui has to spin around to block a slice from Naruto’s tantō. Though, as he does, Naruto disappeared into a puff of smoke. 

A Shunshin. Quickly scanning the area, Shisui tilts his head up to see Naruto. Weaving through hand seals, Shisui paused midway, as a Naruto clone jabbed the pommel of his tantō into his stomach.

Another Naruto appeared behind Shisui, in a crouched position. His hands are tightly clasped in a similar shape to the Tiger Seal. Using the full weight of his body, the Clone thrusts these four fingers between Shisui’s buttocks. Only for the Uchiha to disappear into smoke. 

Reappearing behind the first Clone, Shisui dispelled it with a kick. Using the momentum from the kick, Shisui then threw a kunai through the second Clone’s head, dispelling that one as well. 

Shit! The Sennen Goroshi, huh? Shisui didn’t think that would hurt, as much as it did. Though, it was comparable to the rumors, at least.

The Naruto in the sky then falls onto Shisui, stabbing his tantō into the Uchiha’s shoulder. This time, Shisui used a Kawarimi that made him disperse into a murder of crows. Naruto then gets kicked into a tree, dispelling into a puff of smoke.

This meant that their was two more Naruto’s alive still. Which one would attack him next? Though, as he thought that, he got a two-footed kick in his back. And as smoke enveloped him, the real Naruto attempted to stomp him into the ground from above. Only Shisui was able to easily contort his body to dodge the attack.

Shisui then got up, stopping the test. Naruto’s ability to coordinate with his clone would make him a serious monster with anything he did on the field. Though, he’d probably have to start trying in these spars soon, or Naruto would actually start to win them.

Shisui then says, “Now that you completed what I told you… I have two things to teach you.”

Naruto excitedly asks, “What is it?”

Shisui answers,”Well, the first thing is that while you are my Apprentice, and you know my two signature things I use in battle… You don’t know what my summoning clan is or any Katon jutsu. In fact, you don’t know any elemental jutsu at all.”

Naruto asks, “Summoning clan? Elemental Jutsu? Like the fireball Jutsu?”

Shisui nods to the questions. He then replies, “The Karasu (Crow) Kawarimi that I used in today’s spar, is a jutsu that incorporated my Summoning clan.”

Naruto then says, “So, you can summon Crows… That’s cool!”

Shisui nods, saying, “It is cool, and today, I am going to teach you how to summon the Karasu Summoning Clan. Though, after I teach you. You, Naruto, will have to learn  another chakra control exercise.”

Shisui then bites his thumb, rubbing the blood onto his palm. Then the Uchiha weaves through hand seals. Boar → Dog → Bird → Monkey → Ram. He says, “Kuchiyose no Jutsu (Summoning Technique)!”

In a puff of smoke, a large crow appeared. It has pitch black feathers, beady red eyes, and a large scroll in it’s beak. Giving the scroll to Shisui, it dispels itself. Naruto was shocked. The crow looked to be big enough to ride on.

Unfurling the scroll, Shisui says, “To summon an animal of a summoning clan, one must make a contract with that animal clan. Like the Gama (Toad) Clan, or so I am told, the Karasu Clan also has a scroll. The summoner then signs their name using their own blood and further marks with the fingerprints of one of their hands.”

So Naruto sits next to Shisui, staring at the previous summoners of the Karasu Clan. Itachi Uchiha, Shisui before him. After Shisui, Naruto didn’t know the names. Biting open his thumb, Naruto then writes his name vertically down the scroll. Applying blood to the rest of his fingers, he pressed his hand down, right under his name.

Shisui then says, “Congratulations, Naruto! You are now a summoner of the Karasu Clan. But for right now, I don’t want you to try summoning any yet.”

Naruto was about to yell at his Sensei, until the Jounin stopped him, saying, “Naruto, do you remember what I said about that other chakra control exercise earlier? Well, if you don’t have enough chakra, and enough control, you could summon an egg, killing a Crow. Then you could easily lose the right to summon any member of the Karasu Clan. Do you understand, Naruto?”

Naruto simply nodded, asking, “So what is the control exercise this time? Learning to walk on air?”

Shisui chuckles, replying, “No… This exercise is called the Water Surface Walking Exercise. Unlike having a fixed tree to walk on, one needs to constantly emit a stream of chakra to their feet. As water flows, so do you.”

Using the stream of water next to them, Naruto channels the correct amount of chakra to his feet, and runs onto the water. His first foot stays up, but his other foot sinks, making him sink as well. 

Shit. This was going to be harder than it looked. Naruto then tries again and again. And with each time, he gets a step further. Shisui nods, as he watches. Naruto was not as good as he was when he was learning this exercise, but the blonde was progressing well enough for both of their standards.

 

Chapter Text

 

The blonde sighed. For a month, all he had been pretty much doing was D-Rank Missions, teamwork exercises, and training. And at least the training was useful. 

Though, he still didn’t have the Water Walking Exercise down yet. Sure, he could walk on the water just fine, for a literal minute. And the less he could say about fighting on top of the water the better. This also meant that he couldn’t try to summon any crows. 

So it was back to those stupid D-Ranks. He sighed once again. If Naruto had to catch that stpuid cat one more time, he’d most definitely kill it. The blonde didn’t really care about the jail time for such a crime. Maybe the Daimyo would even give him some extra Ryo?

Though, something was up, as when he got to his usual training ground, both Shisui and Kakashi were already there. Why was Kakashi here? Was he going to teach him something other than teamwork?

Shisui then says, “It’s possible. Though, it truly depends on what your chakra affinity is. Kakashi also happens to be better at explaining it than I am.”

Naruto then sighs. He really needed to be not so readable outside of battle.

Kakashi waves lazily. If Shisui wanted to start Naruto on Elemental jutsu now, maybe another bell test was in this team’s future. Maybe even start Sakura on Medical-ninjutsu. 

In any case, Kakashi says, “Hello Naruto. As you may, or may not know their are five standard Elemental types for chakra. Fire chakra, Wind chakra, Lightning chakra, Earth chakra, and Water chakra.” 

Making sure Naruto was paying attention, Kakashi paused. He then says, “In general, every person's chakra has an affinity towards one of the five basic nature transformations. Affinity can at times be genetic, or at least common to a particular family; most members of the Uchiha clan have an affinity towards the Fire nature. One's affinity can be determined using pieces of paper made from a special type of tree that is grown and fed with chakra. When this so-called "Chakra Induction Paper" is exposed to even the slightest hint of chakra, it reacts according to the chakra's latent element.”

Kakashi paused once again. He then says, “Fire chakra makes the paper ignite and turn to ash. Wind chakra makes the paper split into two. Lightning chakra makes the paper wrinkle. Earth chakra makes the paper turn into dirt and crumble away. Water chakra makes the paper become wet or damp.”

Kakashi then hands Naruto a piece of the Chakra Induction Paper. As he touches the piece of paper, Naruto channels a bit of chakra into it. The paper split into two. He has Wind Chakra.

It was something that the both of them were not that skilled with. However, they could still teach the basics, at least. 

Shisui then turns to the Jounin, and says, “Thank you, Senpai… But I can take over from here.”

Kakashi simply gave them a patented “eye-smile”, and then his patented “lazy wave”. With that contractually out of the way, the Jounin disappeared in a contracted Shunshin, with the contracted leaves lazily floating to the ground. 

In any case, a certain someone would have called this action, “hip”. The mention of this certain someone made him sneeze. Losing concentration, he thus failed at his task. And if you know this certain someone, the failing task was even harder than the task itself.

Anyway, back with Shisui and Naruto. The Jounin holds a leaf in between his hands. A second later, he removes one hand, to show a leaf cut in half perfectly down the center. Shisui then says, “Using pure wind chakra… I want you to cut a leaf in half. After you do, I’ll teach you a Futon jutsu that I know."

So, Naruto grabs a leaf, and places it in between his hands. And try after try after try… Nothing happens. And with each try Naruto gets more and more frustrated. Shisui calms him down, and then says, “I’ll give you a hint, okay Naruto. What does wind do other than push?”

Naruto then thinks. What does wind do other than push? Hmm? His eyes then widened! He yells, “It cuts, Ttebayo!”

Shisui simply nods. Though, still, as Naruto keeps on trying, nothing happens. Not a single leaf is cut, like Shisui’s example. Most of the leaves, in fact, have exploded rather than cut. Then seeing that it was dark, Shisui stopped Naruto so that he could sleep.

The next day, Team Kakashi is standing in the Mission Assignment Room. Naruto groans. Sitting behind the desk are the Hokage, and Iruka. 

The Daimyo’s wife, Madam Shijimi, just left, with her cat being strangled in a suffocating hug. Which, in Naruto’s opinion, is what the damned thing deserves. Though, he could still be empathetic, and say even that is a bit rough for the cat.

Hiruzen heard the groan, and asks, “Do you have something to say, Naruto?”

Naruto nods, answering, “Yeah, Hokage-jiji. I have something to say. I want a real mission. We’ve been doing these stupid ass chores for a month and a half. We should at least get a chance to prove ourselves!”

Hiruzen then looks at the rest of Team Kakashi. Sasuke was oddly finding himself agreeing with the Blonde. As is Sakura, who covered that agreement, by choosing to try and get Naruto to be respectful to him. Naruto replies, “But, Hokage-jij is old.”

Hiruzen sighed. The statement hurt a bit. He knew his age, and he didn’t need a brat like Naruto to remind him of it. As Iruka is lecturing Naruto, the Sandaime turns to look at Kakashi. Interrupting the Chunin, he asks, “Kakashi… Do you think that they are ready for a C-Rank mission?”

Kakashi answers, “A C-Rank? Yeah, they are ready for such a thing.”

Hiruzen looks through the C-Rank Mission files… Protection detail for a Bridge Builder in the Land of Waves… Hmm? 

Jiraiya hasn’t told him anything good about the Country in recent years, but it shouldn’t be too difficult with Kakashi their with them. Maybe Shisui would be of some help, as a just in case? 

Though, he dismissed that thought, as he says, “ANBU, bring in the Client for C-Rank 135. Tell him, we found a perfect team to protect him.”

A couple minutes later, an elderly man enters the room. He has grey hair with a large beard, and wears glasses. The man wears a sleeveless v-neck shirt with an obi, pants and a pair of sandals. He also carries a towel around his neck and wears a pointed hat on his head. 

The man looks at the team of ninja, and scoffs. He asks, “What are a bunch of Gakis going to do?”

Naruto flicks two kunai into his hand, throwing them. The elderly man jumps in freight. As the kunai embed themselves into the wall behind the man, Naruto says, “I fixed your beard. You missed a spot when you shaved this morning.”

The Hokage sighed, while Sakura blaunched. How could Naruto do such a thing? Did having a dedicated trainer really help Naruto improve this much? 

Well, during the past month, Shisui had been training Naruto on his Shurikenjutsu, Taijutsu, and Kenjutsu. This was on top of the chakra control. He was even taught the Uchiha clan’s famous split kick. 

Kakashi then says, “Naruto! Please do not scare our client.”

The Hokage then says, “Ah, Tazuna. I’m sure Naruto’s demonstration has calmed your nerves. And if that hasn’t, Kakashi, here, is one of the most elite shinobi in Konoha. So you have nothing to worry about.”

After a quick conversation between Kakashi and Tazuna, the Jounin relays the information to his Genin. They would leave first thing in the morning. 

So that is why that afternoon, Naruto was sitting at his favorite restaurant: Ichiraku’s Ramen. It is a small ramen stand owned by a father, and daughter. 

The ramen came from the father’s secret recipe. It is a recipe that even the daughter wasn’t allowed to learn… Just yet.

His daughter is a slender girl with long, dark brown hair and large black eyes, plus fair skin. She wears a white robe with the sleeves folded, a sort of dark blue apron with ribbon ties at the top and a bright white bandanna. A small, but caring smile is always on her face.

The Father’s Daughter hears him enter, and walks up to the counter. She says, “Hello, my name is Ayame Ichiraku… Oh, hello Naruto-kun. What can I get for you today.”

Naruto says, “I’ll have an extra-large bowl of miso ramen!”

Ayame replies, “Your usual? Okay. I’ll have my Tou-san make it right up.”

Ayame then disappears into the back and comes back after a while. A steaming bowl of ramen is placed in front of him, as the father stands behind the stand.

The father is a plump man, with small eyes that look closed. His hair is grey, and the top of his head bald. All from old age. His clothes are a white cap with red writing on it, a white kimono with a black obi that is tied around the waist, and sandals. 

The father then says, “Been a while since you came here… Almost thought you forgot about us?”

Naruto replies, “Their is no way I’d forget about you, Teuchi-jiji. Plus I came here two days ago… Speaking of coming here, I have my first mission out of the village. So, I will not be coming here for however long this mission is.”

Teuchi says, “First mission out of the village, huh? Congrats. How about this? Your first bowl is on me!”

Naruto jumps up, almost spilling his sacred ramen. He yells a scream of pure joy. Who wouldn’t want free ramen? Surely not Sasuke. And in his opinion that was truly quite the shameful act.

When Team 7 got to the front Gate of Konoha, the next day, they saw Kakashi, who was already there with Tazuna. This shocks the three Genin, as Kakashi is three hours late to everything. Naruto even thought that it was a Genjutsu, and yelled, “KAI.”

This made everyone, but Kakashi laugh. Kakashi then asked, “Am I always so late?”

He didn’t allow any sort of retort, as he says, “Well, in any case, let’s go through a checklist before we leave Konoha. Clothes? Medical supplies? Food Rations?”

Kakashi then sighs, as Naruto raises his hand, so he could ask a question. Though, Kakashi cut him off before he could ask it, saying, “No Naruto… Cup ramen is not a food ration. Yes, you can keep it in your bag.”

Naruto quickly nodded with a smile on his face. He could bring ramen; the holy grail of the food hierarchy. He did actually bring food rations, though he hated them as they tasted as bland as dirt.

Kakashi then says, “Let’s continue on with the checklist. So… Shinobi tools? Wires? Explosion/Fuinjutsu Tags? Kunai? Shuriken? Good? Then let’s go. We will protect Tazuna in the diamond formation.”

Kakashi signs himself, and Team 7 out, and they then begin their journey to the Land of Waves. 

 

Chapter Text

 

As Team Kakashi and Tazuna are walking to the Land of Waves, Danzō is sitting in an office. In front of him is a businessman, who is widely considered as one of the richest men, if not the richest man in all of the Elemental Nations. His name is Gatō, and his business is headquartered in the Land of Waves.

Gatō has shaggy brown hair and sports a pair of small, circular black glasses. He wears a black suit with a purple tie, a yellow shirt underneath his coat and closed-toed shoes.

With a bottle of sake between the two shady men, Gatō asks, “So… Why are you here, Danzō?”

Danzō answers, “A team of Konoha Shinobi is coming this way, with Tazuna in tow. I don’t care about Tazuna or the girl, but I want one Kakashi Hatake dead. The other Genin must survive and be brought back to Konoha. Do you understand?”

Danzō then laid his killing instinct onto the coward of a businessman. The Darkness of Konoha wanted to make sure that the man followed his orders. Otherwise, well, Gatō will lose all of his backing, and be dead. 

As Danzō gets up to leave, he says, “I’ll have a spy here to help you. So do not mess this up.”

The spy appears next to him. It was Sai. Gatō then asks, “What is your name, Spy?”

Sai answers, “Uzutake Chiharu.”

That was the stupidest name he had ever heard and it was completely fake as well. Gatō replies, “Just go find Zabuza Momochi and his apprentice… And tell them the plan. I’d rather not go against Danzō’s orders.”

Sai then says, “Yes, that is quite a wise thing to do. I shall go then.”

Then Sai disappears in a Shunshin.

Standing behind his Genin, Kakashi is reading his book. At this point, they were a couple hours away from Konoha. 

The Genin are surrounding Tazuna in the Diamond formation. Naruto has a hand itching for his tantō, as a just in case. As was Sasuke, who’s hand was suspiciously too close to his kunai holster. Even Sakura was a bit on edge, as well.

And then he himself tensed, not that anyone could tell. Through his nearly two decades of experience as a shinobi, he felt a spike of chakra. It is something usually only a Sensor-type should have been able to do. 

As they passed the stupidly obvious puddle of water, three unnamed Chunin from Kirigakure jumped out, ready to skewer him. Kakashi sighed, as he subtly used the Kawarimi no Jutsu to replace himself with a log, as they each stabbed him with poisoned kunai. Those Chunin wouldn’t tell the difference, anyway.

Kakashi then watches the rest of the fight from in the trees.

And as the three Chunin rush Tazuna, Naruto appears above them in a Shunshin, Slamming his hand on the back of the middle one’s head, Naruto then perfectly does a split kick. He then flips over the middle Chunin, grabbing him in a one handed chin lock. Landing on the ground, Naruto knocks the Chunin out.

The Chunin on the right then stumbles into Sasuke’s direction. Seeing this, Sasuke does a quick combo of punches to the guy’s stomach, ending with a snap kick to his chin. Thus knocking the Chunin out, as well.

The last Chunin standing then rushes Sakura, who has a kunai in her hand. She was ready to defend the client to the best of her ability. It seems that he would have to intervene. 

Only the Chunin stops, as Sakura says something. Kakashi smirks, an auditory Genjutsu. As the Chunin screams out in agony, Sakura stabs him in the gut, killing him. 

Her epic first moment as a Shinobi was quickly ended, as Sakura let go of her kunai, and puked her gut out. As her kunai clanked against the ground Kakashi appeared before her, holding her hair and rubbing her back in a circular motion. He then whispers softly into her ear to comfort her.

As she looks up to him, she wipes her mouth out with her arm. Sakura then asks, “Does it get any better, Kakashi-sensei?”

Kakashi answers, “No… But it gets easier to deal with. If you want, I can help you find a hobby to help you cope.”

Sakura replies, “Thank you, Sensei.”

Kakashi just simply nods, saying, “Of course, Sakura.” 

Naruto and Sasuke then look at the pink haired girl. Naruto really didn’t like the idea of killing. Would he be able to when the time was right? Could he kill when he needed to, when the job asked him to? He would have to talk with Shisui.

Sasuke was kinda sure that he was going to get the first kill of the three. He didn’t really know why he thought that now, but he did. Though, now that he saw Sakura kill someone… Well he wasn't so sure of himself, on the killing someone front, anymore. 

So he had the same thought as Naruto. Would he be able to kill when the time was right? Could he kill when he needed to, when the job asked him to? He would have to talk with his brother. 

As the two then go to support their teammate, Kakashi turns to face Tazuna… He leaks his killing intent. He asks, “Now will you tell me why three unknown Chunin from Kirigakure just tried to kill us?”

Tazuna swallows a lump in his throat, as he answers, “Do you know Gatō, of Gatō Industries?”

Kakashi replies, “I do. He is one of the richest men in the world, but… Why does he matter, though?”

Tazuna then answers, “A couple years ago, Gatō came to Nami no Kuni, to expand his business into the shipping industry. Though, as he did, he bought out every company my country had, bleeding even the Daimyo dry. Nami no Kuni, as a whole, just barely had enough money to get a C-Rank mission. This bridge will help my family. This bridge I am building will help Nami. I’m the last hero my country has… Please!?”

A desperate plea. He has been in this kind of situation before, as a Chunin. Kakashi sighs, before he replies, “We will help. Not that I want to or anything, but I have already accepted this mission… And it would look bad on me, my team, and Konoha as a whole. Now that that is done, it is getting a bit late, we will make camp here, and continue on in the morning.”

So that is exactly what they do, as they make camp, and eat a dinner compiled of rations. They were hated by all of the Genin, but not even Naruto complained. Soon after, Team 7 made a monitoring watch. Naruto first, then Sasuke after him. Sakura was next, and Kakashi was last. Next time they camp, it would be the opposite, which is right before they reach the shore of Hi no Kuni.

 

Chapter Text

 

Sasuke and Naruto are talking with each other. The usual way they do it, with insults, and back-handed compliments. It was a rapport that they were used to. Though, as always they went too far, and Sakura had to reel them back in. Then the man piloting the boat sushed them all.

This was their first time on a boat, which meant none of them had gone through a tunnel of love before. Neither has he, but that wasn’t the point. It was quite the trip, especially seeing the bridge that Tazuna was building. It proved he was a Super Bridge Builder, as he had boasted that he was multiple times during the trip.

Getting on land, everyone was on alert. Kakashi and Naruto (somehow) knew they were being followed. It was showed by how tense Naruto was. He’d talk to Kakashi about it later.

Two figures then blitz out from the forests around them. They attack, and “kill” Kakashi with a chain that connects them. These two figures are the Demon Brothers, Meizu, and Gōzu.

Gōzu and his twin brother Meizu were chūnin of Kirigakure before defecting and becoming mercenaries.

Gōzu had shoulder-length, wild dark-brown hair and dark eyes. He wears a rebreather that covers the lower half of his face and a large, clawed, poisonous gauntlet on his right arm which had a chain coming out of it that had the other end attached to his brother's own gauntlet. He wore a camouflage suit with bandages around his waist, dark-coloured, knee-length sandals and a ragged black cape. His Kirigakure hitai-ate had a single horn on it.

Meizu had shoulder-length, wild dark-brown hair and dark eyes. He wears a rebreather that covers the lower half of his face and a large, clawed, poisonous gauntlet on his left arm which had a chain coming out of it that had the other end attached to his brother's own gauntlet. He wore a camouflage suit with bandages around his waist, dark-coloured, knee-length sandals and several pouches around his waist. His Kirigakure hitai-ate had two horns on it.

The Brothers rush Tazuna, saying, “One down, four to go!”

Sakura, being the closest to Tazuna, gets in front of the bridge builder, and gets ready to fight with a kunai in hand. While Naruto unsheathes his tantō, and rushes Meizu, while Sasuke rushes Gōzu.

Naruto blocks the gauntlet with his tantō. Jumping, he aims a kick at Meizu’s neck. When Meizu stands his ground, Naruto flips his other foot around to the other side of the Chunin’s neck. As Naruto slams Meizu’s head into the ground, he slashes his stomach; blood is now staining what was once invisible.

With Meizu now on his back, Naruto dispels himself, covering the area with smoke. Apparently, Meizu was able to stab him at the same time Naruto slashed him. It was a good thing that Naruto sent a clone first. 

The real Naruto then appears above the downed Meizu, slamming his heel into the man’s gut. Blood and spit fly out of Meizu’s mouth, as he gets knocked out. Though, he will soon die of the blood loss.

Gōzu then stops on a dime, turning towards Naruto, rushing the blonde. Naruto dodges the initial strike from the gauntlet. He then combos through several punches, before being erupted into a plume of smoke. A kick then lashes out at the side of the Chunin’s head.

The dispersing smoke then reveals one Sasuke Uchiha, who weaves through another set of hand seals. Snake → Ram → Monkey → Boar → Horse → Tiger. Sasuke then expels a big fireball, from his mouth. 

The fireball then hits Gōzu, exploding, burning the top of the suit off. Bouncing off the ground, aggravating the burns across his body, Gōzu gets knocked out. 

Kakashi’s Genin sigh, as he appears in front of him. Naruto asks, “Another Kawarimi Sensei, really?”

Kakashi simply nods, replying, “I can’t casually spam thousands of Kage Bunshin, you know. Remember Naruto, not everyone is a chakra monster like you.”

The Jounin then turns to face Tazuna. With the Demon Brothers here… So is Zabuza. Well, shit! He would have liked to back his team out of this mission, but he can’t. Hatake already told Tazuna that they would complete the mission. 

Kakashi then turns to Tazuna, and says, “Please show us to your home.”

Tazuna could only nod, as they somewhat followed him home, even if he was the one in the middle of them. When there, Tazuna, along with Team Kakashi enter the house. Tazuna says, “Tsunami, I’m home.”

Tsunami has long blue-coloured hair. She wears a short-sleeved pink shirt with the end of the sleeves and the collar being red in colour. She also wears a long blue skirt. 

Tsunami walks to her father, and says, “Tou-san, I was worried that you weren’t going to make it. Anyway, who are the Shinobi who protected you on your trip here?”

Tazuna answers, “The blonde is… Naruto. The emo is Sasuke. The pink cotton candy is Sakura. And finally their Sensei, the Cyclops: Kakashi.”

Sakura then weakly says, “Hello, my name is Sakura Haruno.”

Tsunami asks, “What happened? Will she be alright?”

Kakashi helps him to keep standing up, saying, “She’ll be fine. She just had a hard time coming here. I’ll spare you the details.”

Tsunami nods, as she walks up the stairs, beckoning for them to follow her. She lets Kakashi, Naruto, and Sasuke share a room, while Sakura gets the other spare room all to herself. Tsunami then leaves them alone, so they could get situated.

Inside their rooms, Naruto is talking to Kakashi. He says, “I think I felt their intent… Their emotions”

Kakashi asks, “Who’s intent? Who’s emotion?”

Naruto answers, “The brothers.”

Kakashi nods that this. Inside though, he was a bit worried. Was it his Uzumaki genes? After all, Mito was known to be a great Sensor as well, as many other Uzumaki, before and after her. Was it the Kyuubi? 

In any case, the Hatake says, “Well, this means that you are a Sensor-type.”

Naruto asks, “What’s a Sensor-type?”

Kakashi answers, “A Sensor-type is a Shinobi that is capable of detecting others, typically by sensing their chakra, or through their five senses.”

Naruto nods in thanks. He was a bit worried that he was going insane. The brothers felt gleefully mad. He knew they were going to attack Kakashi first. 

What if it was just like his minor regeneration due to his Uzumaki lineage, and the Kyuubi? Though from what he has heard, his mother wasn’t known for her sensing ability, Kyuubi or not. In any case, he will think about it later.

 

Chapter Text

 

The next morning, the three Genin stand in front of their Sensei. Kakashi asks, “What do you know of Chakra Control?”

Naruto, somewhat unsurprisingly, answers, “Because chakra takes time and a great deal of training to gradually build up, the key to its use is not actually having large amounts of chakra but instead being able to sufficiently control and conserve it. This is called chakra control. In Konoha their are three standard techniques for training chakra control. They are the Leaf Concentration, Tree Climbing, and Water Surface Walking exercises.”

Kakashi replies, “Well, that is correct. Who knew Naruto-kun could be so smart?”

Naruto grumbled at the snarky comment. He was going to do more than that, but Sakura elbowed him in the side. 

Kakashi then says, “Mah mah... Naruto-kun, don’t get so worked up. How many of the three have you mastered?” 

Naruto answers, “The first two. I am also half way mastered with the water walking technique, and Shisui-sensei has introduced me to the Futon jutsu exercise.”

Kakashi nods, “Ah, is that the one where you have to cut a leaf in half with just pure wind chakra? That is way more difficult than walking on water.” 

Turning to Sasuke, he asked the same question. Sasuke answers that he was close to mastering the third exercise. Kakashi didn’t have to ask Sakura, as he already knew, but he did anyway. Sakura answers that she easily mastered all three exercises already, due to her already high degree of chakra control. Though that last part was unmentioned to her teammates.

That tidbit, Kakashi already knew obviously. But for his other two students to really push themselves, he wanted them to know that the “weakest” of them already mastered something that they haven’t, and easily at that. 

It would breed a healthy rivalry between the two. Something that he and Obi… This train of thought was getting a bit too personal, and too close to home for him. So Kakashi shut it down real quick. 

Kakashi then says, “While Sakura and I guard Tazuna, I want you two to master the Water Surface Walking exercise. I don’t know when, but a way stronger opponent trying to kill Tazuna, and this will get you both at least a little bit ready, if you have to face him at any point.”

Naruto asks, “Who is this opponent?”

Kakashi answers, “Zabuza Momochi…”

Meanwhile in Gatō’s mansion, he sits at his desk, two shinobi stand in front of him, while the spy stands behind him. 

The male shinobi rudely asks, “So who’s the brat?”

Gatō answers, “He’s a spy. Making sure that when you go to kill Tazuna, that Kakashi Hatake and a pink haired girl dies as well. Do you understand?”

The shinobi then asks, “So who does he work for?”

Gatō simply replies, “My backers, and superiors. The Darkness of Konoha doesn’t tolerate failure.”

The shinobi in front of Gatō widen their eyes. Well, fuck. Who knew that Gatō had such high connections? Danzō Shimura was a name well known in the shinobi world. A rival of the Sandaime Hokage. A man who fought through the first two Shinobi World Wars. A man so ruthless that… He didn’t want to think about that. After all, it was just a rumor.

The train of thought was interrupted by Gatō. He then asks, “Do you understand now, Zabuza? Not only is my life on the line, but so is yours and your daughters. Do not fail, or we all die!”

The shinobi now known as Zabuza nods, as does his so-called daughter. They had a plan, and they needed to complete it at all costs. They will work towards their dreams or die trying.

Back with the boys of Team 7, Naruto and Sasuke were stepping out onto the water for the first time that day, in their trunks. The two walked out pretty far, with each step coming faster, and faster. Well that is until they both fell into the water. Naruto went first, while Sasuke fell a couple steps later.

As for the rest of the day… Well it was pretty much the same. They were neck in neck. Neither wanted to fall into the water first. Neither gave too much to the other as far as distance, and time on the water was concerned. This silent competition kept them going all the way till dinner. 

Wolfing down the food, Naruto thanked Tsunami. Sasuke did so silently. Sakura meanwhile was chistizing the two boys about their manner. Though, they ignored her as they were too hungry to do much other than eat.

A child watched this. Steaming with barely hidden anger, as he slams his utensils down, and stomping up the nearby stairs. 

The child has spiky black hair and dark-coloured eyes. He wears a green jumpsuit with a yellow shirt and a simple pair of sandals. He also wears a blue and white striped hat under the brim of which he would usually look at people.

As the child stomped up the stairs, Naruto watched his back disappear. He asks, “So, uh… Who’s brat was that?”

Sakura then slaps him upside his head, yelling at him about his manners. He grumbled. It wasn’t like he was an orphan from birth. Sure, like the Hokage or anyone else could or would teach him such a thing. 

He scoffed at such a notion. Naruto had to learn manners through visuals and practice, while he was out and about the village. The blonde had the bruises for days to back it up.

Tsunami then interrupts Naruto’s inner monologue. As she is bowing, she says, “That is my son, Inari, and much like everyone else that lives in Nami no Kuni... He too has lost hope of someone coming to save us. So, please forgive him, and everyone else who has lost hope.”

This stirs up something in Naruto. Placing his own utensils down, he storms out of the house in a controlled rage. He would train some more, to calm himself down. If the brat lost hope, he would be the embers that reignite the flame. That was a promise… Believe it.

 

Chapter Text

 

The next day came with obviously more training for the two boys. For Sakura though, it was guard duty. More importantly, the guarding of Tsunami and her son, Inari. Though it wasn’t like the kid was even home during the day.

So their she was, walking side by side with Tsunami in the nearest village. Seeing the poor, the dirty, and the hungry. It got to her emotionally, a bit more than it would have Sasuke. The natural stoicism he had was perfect for any ninja to have.

And with her limited knowledge of her teammates, it was probably something that Naruto would have dealt with a lot, since he was so… What was the word? Ignored. Hated. Unwanted. Orphaned. Yeah, she didn’t want to really think about it.

Then Sakura realized that she had to keep her guard up. This was a mission. Anyone of these people could be an assassin in disguise working under Gatō. 

Her hand unconsciously strayed towards her kunai pouch. She needed to be prepared, just in case. A slip of contact poison, and it was all over for the Land of Waves and it’s citizens.

Meanwhile, Sasuke was fuming in anger, as he stood on the bank of the water. He was watching Naruto progress much faster than what even he, as a prodigy, was used to seeing. Is having that highly skilled person teaching you, making that much of a difference?

Much like everyone else, even he didn’t think the blonde ramen obsessed idiot didn’t have much potential. Though being assigned to this team was an eye opener for Sasuke. 

Did Iruka see some hidden potential that nobody else did? What about Shisui? Was this why Shisui is teaching Naruto?

Then Kakashi has had them do those weekly spars, not that it was mentioned by anyone. The Jounin needed to see how their skills progressed, and spars are the perfect device to show it. Every week Naruto got stronger and stronger. The worst of the worst in the Academy was actually quickly catching up to him in skill, and that was a scary thought to Sasuke. 

Was Naruto a secret Prodigy? Was his label of deadlast, just because nobody cared enough about teaching the lowly orphan? Was it because Naruto didn’t care? Did nobody like Naruto because of the… It couldn’t have been the stupid pranks. Could it?

Now Sasuke wasn’t stupid. He saw some of the looks that Naruto got around the village, when they did the D-Rank missions. The pranks that Naruto has pulled doesn't deserve the kind of scorn that Sasuke saw in the eyes of the villagers. The kinda scorn that the now dead Elders of his clan used to talk about Konoha and it’s government.

Then their was Sakura. Even she had more potential than what he initially thought that she would ever have. Her skill with Genjutsu was quickly blossoming. He inwardly sighed at the stupid flower pun that his own mind thought of. Her Taijutsu was coming towards a par. 

Was Kakashi that good of a Teacher? Or was he just better at giving one-on-one instruction? It was something that he would have to look into, much like what he has hidden under that stupid mask.

The splash of water interrupted his thoughts, as he now watched Naruto swim back to shore. Both of them were getting better with each try, but now it was Naruto pulling a head. He was sure that the blonde would master it by the end of the week at his pace. 

Sasuke really needed to catch up, or he would be left behind. And that was something that Sasuke could not let happen. No he was an Uchiha, and he still had his pride. There was no way in hell that he would let Naruto upstage him in anything. 

Sasuke then rushes out on top of the water. Then Naruto follows Sasuke when he gets back to shore, shortly after.

Kakashi sighed as he got the memories of his Shadow Clone. The “Foundation of a Youthful Friendship”. He chuckled behind his book. His friend, Gai, would have loved to see that unknowing youthful bonding moment between his two students. 

Once again, he chuckled, the Jounin couldn’t help it. This team, while being similar to his own, when he was their age, well, they were completely different. They were bonding on a whole different level than his ever did. And the only reason his old team bonded, was because of death, and boy… That was a horrible thing to think about, but it was true. 

Kakashi then sighed. It was the only thing his mind could do right now. Why did his past have to cloud him so completely?

At dinner that night, Inari sat there between his mother and grandfather. The eight year old was watching the ninja more than eating. How could they be so loud, cheerful, happy? Didn’t they see the condition of his home? A full two years of that man reigning over them. And look what happened? It reduced everything to a husk of their once happy past. 

The boy then set his focus on the blonde. The loudest of the four. Why couldn’t he understand? He kills all who got in his way! His mother didn’t have to shield what he had already seen. 

One example was right in front of him. The ripped picture that hung on the wall. The man who he thought of as a father… He couldn’t think about him any longer, as he slammed his utensils onto the table, and stormed up to his room, for what was a second day in a row. 

He had one last thought before he fell asleep. Those ninjas were too damn annoying. 

A couple days later, not even a full week has passed since they entered Nami, and Sakura is outside, helping Tsunami with the chores. Tsunami, herself, was quite thankful for the help. Though, the smack of a punch distracted Sakura. 

Turning her head, she watches as Naruto, and Sasuke spar on the water, a few feet from the shore. Apparently they were finished with the chakra control exercise. 

She sighed. She was jealous, and even Tsunami could tell. Sakura was one of the best kunoichi of her graduating class, and here she was feeling weak at the display that her two teammates were making. 

Naruto with his small series of clones, doing series upon series of combos on Sasuke. Then speaking of Sasuke, who was easily keeping up with his Sharingan. He was blocking, and countering every shot that he could, taking only the ones that were acceptable to take. 

All though, the number of shots that he was taking seemed to grow, even if it was minor. It means that Sasuke was getting better, and better. Then at this moment, she could tell… In a couple of years, she would be left behind. The “Career Genin”, a footnote in the careers of two great shinobi.

She remembered what their Sensei had said earlier in the day. Kakashi had said that it was training to help Sasuke to be able to use his Sharingan against multiple people. 

Apparently training the Sharingan was kinda different. It could only grow in power through trauma. The Uchiha think that it’s only through negative trauma, as their has been no reported activation through positive trauma, like seeing your father for the first time in many, many years. So one could only get better at using the eye, which means repetitive usage of the eyes.

Sakura hated that thought. The “Career Genin”. She stomped her foot. When they get back to Konoha, she would ask Kakashi-sensei for more training. It was the only way for her to keep up with those two.

Inari had finally had enough. It was almost a full week, that those stupid ninja has been here! Clenching his hands into fists, he slammed them into the table with all of his force. The ninja looks at him, as does his family. 

They were not shocked, or impressed. He didn’t care, he was too angry to do so. The boy yells, “Why don’t you all leave. You’re no good. All of you are just going to die, like everyone else who stood up to him. Their are no heroes here, so leave. We do not want you here!”

Naruto stares at the boy. Trying his hardest to not let his anger explode out. He asks, “Do you know what it’s like to be unwanted? Do you know what it’s like to be ignored? What about being Hated? Loneliness? I have, from birth in fact. Heroes… Ha, that’s just perspective. In one place one person can be the Villain, while in another that same exact person can be the hero. The only place I want to be a Hero for, is my own village… But anytime soon, I will show you what it means to be a Hero. So learn well, Brat!”

Inari stared at the blonde through teary eyes. His anger turned to sadness, as he rushed upstairs to his room. He didn’t know, but Naruto was crying. It was something the blonde didn’t even know until later. He to then stormed out of the house, once again

The rest of dinner was a quiet event. Well, until it ended, and Sakura asks, “So… Not to be rude, but who is the person in the photo, with his head ripped from it?”

Tsunami answers, “That is Kaiza… He was my husband, though he wasn’t Inari’s Tou-san from birth. We were married for three years before his death at the hands of Gatō, a year back.”

Tazuna then says, “Inari adored the man. As did the rest of Nami no Kuni. He was their Hero. With his death Nami lost it’s heart, along with the will to stand strong against Gatō and his vile ways. As I had previously said, this is my reason for building the bridge. It’s so Nami has a Hero once more! So, I thank you for being here.”

 

Chapter Text

 

The next day appeared, and Naruto unceremoniously woke up late. On the day that Zabuza was supposed to attack, no less. He had trained late into the night. On top of being angry at Inari, Naruto wanted to make sure that he was completely ready for whatever, or whoever Zabuza brought with him.

Getting dressed, Naruto snuck out the only window the room had. And as he was dashing through the forest to the bridge. About half way towards the bridge though, Naruto stops. Slashes from a sword were all over the bark of the trees, and even a boar. Though these slashes resembled more like the claws of an animal, then an attack from a katana.

As Naruto turned around to return to the house, Tazuna and the rest of his team made it to the bridge. The bridge was covered in a dense chakra-coated mist. Zabuza was already there.

Stepping onto the bridge, Kakashi flared his chakra, just a bit, to remove the mist. All around them were the unconscious bodies of Tazuna’s workers. He would know, as he checked. 

Plus Zabuza was professional, and vicious. He killed only who he was told, or had to, to complete his mission. 

A voice then says, “Ah, Sharingan no Kakashi. What a surprise? Doing a D-Rank, I see. Babysitting. Haku!”

Zabuza is a tall and noticeably muscular man with light grayish skin, short spiky black hair, dark brown eyes, and small eyebrows. He was normally seen wearing bandages like a mask over the bottom half of his face. Under his mask, he has a relatively narrow jawline and jagged-teeth, a trait he shared with his fellow Swordsmen. He wore his hitai-ate sideways on his head.

He wears a sleeveless black shirt and matching pants, complete with a waist-guard, and yet again, Kirigakure's striped wrist and leg-warmers. He also has on bandages that are loosely tied around his neck like a scarf.

In his hand is Kubikiribocho. One of the Seven Swords of Kiri. All Kiri Swordsmen who have defected have taken their swords with them. 

Kubikiribōchō is a large broadsword, as tall as a full-grown man, shaped like a butcher knife. The blade itself has two cut outs, a circle close to the top and a semi-circular one nearer to the handle, the former of which is aptly fitting the sword's purpose of decapitation.

The person, who must be named Haku, then appears at his side. 

Haku's normal shinobi outfit consisted of the standard Kirigakure pinstriped outfit which stopped at his knees. Over this he wears a green haori with white trimmings, and around his waist a brown sash with a fringed trail wrapped around his waist twice. He also wears light-brown platoon sandals with straps in the same colour as his kimono and nail polish on his fingernails and toenails in matching blue-green colour. 

When wearing this outfit, Haku's long hair is gathered in a white bun holder, while two locks of his hair fall loose framing his face, bound with metal hair cuffs at the ends. 

Haku also wears a black forehead protector with the Kirigakure's symbol upon it. When in battle or moving covertly, he wears a hunter-nin mask on top of his forehead protector, which was white with thin, curved eye-holes and a red wavy design in place of the mouth, as well as the Kirigakure symbol etched in the top.

Zabuza then says, “Please give up, so I can kill you, Tazuna, and that pink haired girly.”

Upon his return to the tree line around Tazuna’s house, Naruto sees people with katanas enter the household. Sneaking back into the home, Naruto watches from the top of the stairs.

Inari is at the bottom of said stairs, a dull knife was shaking in his hands. In fact, his whole body was shaking in fear, at the two swordsmen who held his mother.

The first swordsman is a light-skinned man with bluish-white hair and black eyes. Lined markings are tattooed under his eyes. He commonly wears a dark purple hat on this head, the top of which extends far beyond the top of his head. Zōri also wears a blue jacket with multiple pockets and tied to his waist is his blue handled katana.

The second swordsman is of tall stature, wears an eye-patch over his right eye and has brown hair which he parts in three, finishing in an elaborate topknot. He has an intricate tattoo that seemingly stretches across his entire left side and left right, inner thigh, as well as a stitched scar on the left side of his forehead, and the left side of his mouth. 

He wears what seems to be a loose-fitting kimono, albeit not in the traditional manner as the top half of the outfit falls around his waist leaving his upper body exposed. He also wears bandages wrapped around his waist, simple sandals and carries a fairly long sword.

Everyone then watched as Inari then rushed the men, only for Tsunami to scream out. She yells, “Leave my son out of this, or I’ll bite my tongue off!”

It made everyone freeze. Would she really kill herself to save her only child? And as to prove her threat real, the last part of her sentence was mumbled, as if her teeth were pressed against her tongue. Which they were 

The first then sheaths his sword, saying, “You should thank your Kaa-san, Brat. You almost died today. Let’s go, Waraji.”

The second swordsman, Waraji, simply nods, as he turns around to leave the house following after the first swordsman. Inari watches this, falling to his knees crying. A hand lands on his shoulder, scaring the crap out of him. But, after calming himself down a bit, Inari looks behind him to see Naruto standing there, with his hand on his shoulder.

Naruto then says, “You did good, Inari… But now stay here. It’s my turn. I’ll save your Kaasan, Ttebayo!”

The determined smile on Naruto’s face gave Inari all he needed to know. It wasn’t bravado… No, Naruto would save his mother. Their would be no ifs, ands, or buts about it.

Naruto then appears outside the door. And in a puff of smoke, there was his mother right outside the door. It made the boy cry in happiness. Meanwhile, Naruto was in the grasp of Waraji. Using the shock of the smoke, Naruto stabbed Waraji through the back of the neck, snapping his spine and killing him with a single strike.

As both the blonde, and Waraji fell to the ground, Naruto held back the puke that was sure to come pouring out. He would do it later, but he still needed to fight the first swordsman.

Landinging on his feet, Naruto appears before the first swordsman, striking his gut with the pommel of his tantō. Naruto punches the first swordsman in the gut. Twisting around, the blonde lands a harsh kick to the side of the man’s head. 

Naruto then watches as the man bounces off of wooden planks that made the floor the porch. It was like he was a stone on water. He waits for the man to get up, wanting to formulate a better plan than the one he already had, which was just to beat their asses in.

The swordsman then stands back up. His hand hovering over his sword handle. He says, “I am Zori. May I ask who it is I am fighting?” 

Naruto indulges the swordsman, answering, “I am Naruto Uzumaki. Kage Bunshin no Jutsu!”

In a plume of smoke, four clones appear rushing Zori. Zori, though, easily slashes through the first three clones, with a single swing of his sword. The fourth clone blocks the strike. 

As their locked in a stalemate, the clone smirks as he begins to gain the upper hand. Only Zori wouldn’t let that happen, as he begins to push down on the smaller blonde. This makes the clone smirk once again, though instead of pushing back, the clone dispels itself.

The now empty force that was the clone, makes Zori stumble forward, as he is blinded by the smoke. Naruto then lands on his back, stabbing through his spine. Zori spits out blood, as he goes unconscious. He’d be dead in a few seconds anyway.

Naruto then stumbles off Zori, a hand covers his mouth, as his other drops his tantō. Retching, Naruto heaves and pukes over the edge of the porch. He has done it. He killed someone. No, that isn’t right. He killed two people. 

Falling to his knees, Naruto looks at his hands. Was this what Sakura felt like when she killed that Kiri-nin? No wonder they both puked. This feels horrid. 

Composing himself, Naruto wipes the blood from his tantō, sheathing it. Turning to Tsunami and Inari, he smiles. Then he says, “I’d go somewhere safe for now, if I were you. I have to get to the bridge. If they came to get you, it must mean that Zabuza has attacked Tazuna and the rest of my team.”

Tsunami just nods in response, as she watches Naruto rush to the bridge. Inari  cries as he is being held in her loving embrace. His mother was safe. He was safe. Nothing else quite mattered to him right now.

Wait… What would the hero do right now? That’s right! The hero would rally the people of the village to fight against it’s oppressors. 

Wiggling out of his mother’s grasp, Inari ran as fast as he could to rally the people of Nami no Kuni. With his mother running after him, the boy thought, ‘This is the only way I can be a Hero, just like him. Like Naruto-niisan.’

 

Chapter Text

 

On the bridge, while Kakashi and Sasuke were staring down the enemy, Sakura discreetly moved Tazuna away from the four powerhouses. 

There was no way that she could realistically keep up with either Sasuke or their Sensei. Even Naruto could now keep up. It made her fume in anger and jealousy once more. It made her feel more useless than she already was. This was a feeling that she absolutely hated with a passion.

She then watched as Zabuza made a single hand seal. Tiger. Four clones made of water appear beside Zabuza, and his companion Haku. Kakashi simply nods, As Sasuke disappears from her sight. 

Sakura was astonished. Was this pure speed, or was this something like the Shunshin no Jutsu that Naruto uses so much?

Sasuke then appears before the clones, dragging his foot through their bodies. Dispelling them all in a single hit. Landing, he smashes his fist into Haku’s gut. Once. Twice. Three times. He then finishes the combo with a massive roundhouse kick to the side of his face. It made him grunt in pain, as he smashed into the other side of the bridge. 

Sasuke then appears above Haku, his foot extended. As he falls, Sasuke spins, adding force to his kick, which shatters Haku’s gut into thousands of shards of freezing cold ice.

Quickly doing a couple of cartwheels to get away, the shards of ice begin to float. They change their shape becoming thinner and longer, much like that of a senbon needle. The hundreds of needles then fly at top speed towards Sasuke.

It was too much to follow, so he turned on his two-tomoe Sharingan, and flipped several times till the ice senbon were destroyed. Quickly grabbing a kunai he blocked a strike from Haku’s metal senbon. 

With his strength, Sasuke pushed Haku away from him. Spinning around, he kicks his enemy in the gut. And as he flies away from him, Sasuke throws several shuriken. 

As Haku lands, his body is covered in cuts. Sasuke himself then grunts in pain. Looking down at his body, his arm was limp from a senbon sticking out of it. Taking it out, Sasuke blocks several more senbon that was thrown at him.

Haku’s senbon then meets Sasuke’s kunai in another stalemate. He then weaves through one-handed hand seals. Using the water around him, Haku creates a thousand long needles, which surround the target. Carefully aiming, Haku launched the needles at a rapid speed. 

Sasuke looks at each and every needle. Their was no way he could escape from anything other than jumping over them. Escaping any harm, Sasuke jumps high into the air.

Kakashi then watches as Sasuke unleashes the Uchiha’s standard fireball jutsu. Next to him, Zabuza asks, “So, a Uchiha, huh? Haku will be a tough opponent, as he has a Kekkei Genkai.”

Kakashi answers, “I have faith in my student. Though, I will admit that I haven’t taught him much. That honor goes to his Nii-san, Itachi Uchiha.”

Zabuza replies, “Itachi… Uchiha… is his Nii-san?”

Kakashi simply nods, saying, “Well, we can’t have the new generation outshine us just yet.”

Using his right hand, Kakashi raises his hitai-ate from his right eye, revealing a three-tomoe Sharingan. Zabuza, though, switches his sword from his right to his left hand. Moving the sword behind him, he flings it in front of him in an arc, catching it in his other hand.

This attack cleaved Kakashi in half. Only for the two halves of the Hatake to dispel into plumes of smoke. In their place is a bisected log, which clattered on the ground.

Kakaahi then kicks Zabuza in the back, making him shoot forward. As Zabuza is flying from the kick, Kakashi appears before him and upper cuts him right on the chin. The uppercut makes Zabuza launch in an arch to the ground.

Zabuza then gets up. He was a bit dazed as he got to his feet, but his mind cleared, as he wiped the blood from his lip. It was time to get serious. Making a hand seal, thick chakra-coated mist covers both of them.

And as Zabuza was attacking Kakashi from the mist, Sasuke slammed his fist into Haku’s gut. As he spat out blood and spit, Sasuke punched him in the gut once more. This is followed immediately with a kick to the chin. With Haku at the height of his momentum, Naruto appears above him, with a clone. While the clone punches him, Naruto kicks him. This launches Haku into the bridge, cracking it.

When Sasuke sees Naruto, he says, “Your late.”

With a chuckle, Naruto replies, “The hero always arrives late.”

Sasuke just sighed. Naruto and that promise. He was taking it a bit far, much like his crappy pranks. He then says, “Let’s just beat this guy, okay?”

Naruto replied with a smirk, as the two disappeared. Reappearing right next to Haku, they go to town on him. It was as if Haku was a ping pong ball, and Naruto and Sasuke were masters of the game. 

As the endless combo ends, with a kick that launches Haku high into the air. Back on the ground, the two Genin throw a volley of kunai and shuriken at the prone masked ninja. And as the thrown weapons pierce Haku, he turns to ice that shatters in a million pieces. The ice then rains down onto the two Konoha Shinobi. The ice leaves them with hundreds of shallow cuts. 

Then Haku appears before them. He weaves through a series of hand seals. The ice and water from all of his clones and attacks rise up to form several large mirrors. 

The Genin look all around them. The mirrors were spaced enough for both of them to get through. And this time Sasuke couldn’t just jump high into the air to escape, as the many large ice mirrors were in the shape of a dome.

Zabuza then stops his attack, as he feels the flare up of his student’s chakra. Letting the mist thin out, he wanted to see the despair on Kakashi’s face, as his students die in that inescapable dome of ice. 

Kakashi sees the dome of ice. He whispers, “Hyoton (Ice Release).” While he has encountered the fake Ice Release, he has never dealt with a true Hyoton user. Though Kakashi had heard the rumors, and he didn’t like them. Hatake wanted so badly to help his students, but the blade of Zabuza stopped him. It dripped with his blood 

Kakashi turned to face the missing-nin. Zabuza then rhetorically asks, “Do you want Tazuna and the girl to die?”

Kakashi then sighs, as he says, “Well, then I’ll have to finish this quickly.”

The mist rethickens to the point of Kakashi not being able to see even an inch in front of his face. Kakashi sighs. There still wasn’t enough  of his blood on Zabuza’s sword for his summons to track, especially through this mist.

So he lets himself get hit. Once. Twice. It was time to unleash his counter attack. Pulling a scroll from his vest, Kakashi unfurls it. Fuinjutsu was all over it. Pouring his blood on it, he weaves through some hand seals. Tiger → Snake → Dragon → Dog. He then slams it on the ground.

In a puff of smoke, a pack of hounds, also known as ninken, are summoned underground. The ninken use their superior sense of smell to track the target, converge on their location, and then all together burst from the ground and take hold with their fangs. With the target captured in this way, the summoner can easily locate them and finish them off.

Kakashi then appears in front of a blooded Zabuza. Kakashi says, “You know… I’m known as a Copycat. A ninja that copies your jutsu and kills them with it. It’s time for you to know my own original jutsu.”

Zabuza watches as Kakashi weaves through several hand seals. Ox → Rabbit → Monkey. As a highly concentrated amount of lightning covers his hand, it produces the sound of a thousand birds chirping. Once the chakra is gathered, users charge at their target and thrust the Chidori into them, piercing them and typically causing fatal damage. 

Only Kakashi stomps mid charge. He shivered, as the aura of chakra that emitted from where Naruto was haunted him. Did the Kyuubi get loose? What is happening?

Speaking of Naruto, red chakra surged around him, as his hair got spikier. His eyes turned crimson as his pupils slitted. His whiskers got thicker. His canines sharpened to a point. The nails on his hands and feet became claws.

It horrified even Haku, as a single loud roar destroyed most of his mirrors in an instant. The punch that broke the mirror he was in, and destroyed the rest of the mirrors.

Then in his anger, Naruto began to pound on Haku. Punch after punch. Fist after fist. Left after right. It was a good thing that her mask just now broke after Naruto’s burning hot rage subsided. His appearance returned to normal, as fear was forever stuck in Haku’s eye. This man could kill Zabuza, his master.

This hurt Naruto, as he stumbled back, and fell onto his ass. That had to be the Kyuubi. Was this the malice behind the raging Biju? That red hot anger. That absolute rage. It scared him as well.

Then once again, a thousand birds chirp at the same time alerting everyone who could hear it. Haku gasped. Zabuza didn’t know any sort of technique that gave off such a unique sound. Zabuza is going to lose, and that was a scary thought for Haku.

In a single Shunshin, Haku appeared in front of Zabuza, right as the condensed lightning chakra slams through his heart. His last moments were seeing the complete shock in Kakashi’s eyes. And as he slid back onto Zabuza, Kakashi stumbled back. 

The man’s eyes were closed for what seems like forever. The face he saw was not Haku, and it would forever haunt him. He sighed, calming himself, as he covered his Sharingan. Kakashi was a bit low on chakra.

Clapping was then heard, as the mist that surrounded the bridge let up. On the end that was unfinished, stood Gatō, and what is easily two hundred bandits.

Gatō has shaggy brown hair and sports a pair of small, circular black glasses. He wears a black suit with a purple tie, a yellow shirt underneath his coat and closed-toed shoes.

Naruto stood back up, as Gatō, stomped on Haku. Probably for some hot and spicy disrespect. As Naruto made the clone seal, Zabuza stopped him. He asks, “What are you doing here, Gatō?”

Gatō answers, “Why? You failed. So to save my ass I am gonna kill you and take your bounty. Along with Kakashi’s as well.”

Zabuza scoffs. He should have seen this coming. Gatō always had a bad reputation. Turning to Naruto, Give me a kunai kid. We have a truce now that I’m out of a job.”

Naruto smirks, giving the Demon of the Mist a single kunai. Placing it in his mouth, chakra explodes from him, creating a purple aura of a demon around Zabuza. He then appears in front of the group of bandits. Killing all who got close enough, Zabuza made his way towards Gatō. Once he reached the businessman, Zabuza decapitated him, This allowed for the rest of Gatō’s thugs to kill the missing-nin.

When Naruto returned to Sasuke, he saw that he was not dead, talking with Sakura. He sighed with relief. But as he stopped moving, He saw a masked shinobi appear behind his Team’s Sensei. In a Shunshin, Naruto blocked the tantō strike with his own tantō. 

Kakashi quickly turned around. His schooled expression was stoic compared to his spiraling internal thoughts. That was the mask of ROOT. He watched as Naruto punched the assassin in the gut, and then roundhouse kicked him into the railing.

Naruto then appeared above the masked ninja. Letting himself fall, Naruto completely stabs through the ninja’s shoulder. Then the ninja explodes into ink that wraps around Naruto restricting his movements. The masked ninja appears in front of Kakashi, only for Sasuke to switch places with him in a Kawarimi.

His Sharingan was already active. The masked ninja wasn’t ready, and thus he was trapped inside of a Genjutsu. As the masked ninja falls down, Naruto appears in front of Sasuke. Kneeling, he places his tantō at the ninja’s mask.

Kakashi then walks up to them. He asks, “What kind of Genjutsu did you use?”

Sasuke answers, “The kind that keeps you unconscious until someone else gets you free.”

Kakashi replies, “Good, now let’s get away from them. I don’t want his body to explode and kill all of us.”

This is when Sakura comes by a bit frightened. She asks, “Could a jutsu do that?”

Kakashi simply shrugs. He didn’t want them to know just yet that there are if fact pretty complicated Fuinjutsu that you could place on yourself that would turn yourself into a suicide bomber. With them having so many different activations, it was best to stay away from dead bodies, especially dead ANBU bodies.

So with that encounter over with, the townsfolk, with help from Team Kakashi, beat back the bandits that wanted to ransack their country once again. Especially with their meal-ticket dead.

 

Chapter Text

 

There they stood, Team Kakashi, in the Land of Fire. They are being sent off by Tazuna, his family and every one of the Waves’ citizens. Beside Tazuna, stood the Daimyo, in his official garb.

A festival went through the main road from the bridge into the city. It was a celebration, and all of them were at least a bit tipsy. They had just gained freedom from Gat ō, after all. Every Generation of the Waves’ citizens would remember this day, and the Heroes that made it happen.   

After saying their goodbyes, the citizens watched as their heroes walked off into the distance.

The Daimyo then asks, “Now that this grand bridge is built, I think it deserves an equally grand name. What do you think, Tazuna?”

Tazuna blinked. He didn’t think the Daimyo would give him such an honor. Naming it after Kaizo, just didn’t seem right. The Land of Waves, after all, hadf new heroes. Yellow hair that shined like the sun stuck in his vision. He asks, “How about the Great Naruto Uzumaki Bridge?” 

The daimyo hums in thought. He answers, “It’s perfect. I accept it. On this honored day. I bring forth that this grand and mighty bridge will prosper for as long as we do as well.”

A couple hours later, Team Kakashi is back in Konoha. Another hour, and they are down with the Mission Report. Meanwhile, Danzō sat behind his desk. A dim light showed all he needed to see. Sai himself had just finished his report on the mission. A mission that failed.

Kakashi Hatake still lived. As does his pink haired student: Sakura Haruno. Naruto and Sasuke are more skilled than he gave them credit for. 

Sai, even now, is still one of his best operatives. For them to take him down, it’s something to be proud of. Truly. But his pride in Konoha’s newest Generation was dwarfed by his pure anger at one of his best operatives failing a mission.

He dismissed Sai. Humming in thought, Danz ō frowned. He would need to be more reserved than he usually was. Hiruzen has definitely been told about his operative by Kakashi. Damn… 

Naruto is in the training ground that he and Shisui use. In front of him stood Shisui. He says, “So I heard you mastered the Water Walking Exercise during the mission to Nami no Kuni. I would like to see if it is true. Will you indulge your Sensei, Naruto?”

Now in the middle of the lake, the Jounin and Genin face each other. Making the signature clone seal, three Naruto’s appear next to the real one. Each one grabs their tantō. They rush the Jounin, switching positions, between each other. The one in the middle throws the blade at Shisui, while another Naruto throws it high into the air.

Shisui then blocks the first tantō. Then he has to step back to dodge the second tantō. Blocking a punch, he feels an ankle slam into his shoulder. Grabbing it, he slams one of the Naruto’s into the ground. 

Another Naruto then lands on the tantō kicking him back. Then another Naruto punches him in the cheek, while a third appears below him, kicking him in the back of the neck.

This makes shisui pop into a plume of smoke. He then reappears, hidden in the smoke. Grabbing the two clones, he flings them into the water, dispelling them. Shisui then says, “That display was quite good, Naruto… So, with that in mind, I think it’s time for you to actually begin to summon some crows. Do you remember how to do the hand seals that I showed you when I first mentioned Kuchiyose no Jutsu?”

Naruto scratched his chin. He didn’t want to say it to Shisui… But he indeed did not remember the hand seals. After all, he didn’t really want to learn the hand seal;s for the Jutsu that he was forbidden to use.

Shisui’s chuckle ends with a sigh. He says, “Don’t worry about it, Naruto. I’ll show you them again.”

Shisui then bites his thumb, rubbing the blood onto his palm. Then the Uchiha weaves through hand seals. Boar → Dog → Bird → Monkey → Ram. He says, “Kuchiyose no Jutsu (Summoning Technique)!”

In a puff of smoke, a large crow appeared. It has pitch black feathers, beady red eyes, and has three legs. The Crow wears pure white haori, with the kanji for family on the left breast.

The crow looks down on Naruto, as it stood at the same height as Shisui does. The beady red eye made Naruto nervous, but he stood his ground. He would earn this crow’s respect.

In the grass, next to a tree is a toad. The toad is a small thing that is not meant for action. Its only purpose was for spying. It is maintaining his eyes on which hand Naruto uses to summon the crows with. 

Naruto then summons a regular sized crow. It too has pitch black feathers and beady red eyes. A scar runs through it’s right eye to it’s right wing. He calls himself Karamaru. Karamaru is to be his personal summon. If you thought of crow and Naruto in the same sentence, the crow you think of should be Karamaru.

Shisui then faces the toad. He watches as it dispels in a plume of smoke. So Jiraiya was watching them this whole time. Good to know that Jiraiya was at least interested in learning what his future student could do.

Meanwhile, in the Hokage’s office, sat an old man. This old man is a tall and well-built man in adulthood with fair skin. He had waist-length, spiky white hair that he usually ties back into a ponytail, with two shoulder-length bangs framing his face. There were red lines under his eyes which extended further down his face as he got older, going all the way to the bottom by the time he was an adult. By the time he was middle-aged, he developed wrinkles around the corners of his mouth and a wart on the left side of his nose.

He wears a green short shirt kimono and matching pants, under which he wore mesh armour that is visible at his wrists and ankles. He also wears hand guards, a black belt, traditional Japanese wooden sandals, and a red haori with two yellow circles on each side. He often carries a large scroll on his back, and has a tattoo on his left palm, and he wears a horned hitai-ate with the kanji for "oil" (油).

Across from this old man, is an even older old man, obviously named Hiruzen Sarutobi. Hiruzen then asks, “So, Jiraiya, what do you think of Naruto?”

The old man named Jiraiya, scoffs. He answers, “Naruto truly wasn't that bad. Sure he is rough around the edges, but he has potential.”

Hiruzen simply nods his head in agreement. This Naruto is much better than the one who graduated just a couple months ago.

Jiraiya then says, “So what else do I need to know?”

Hiruzen answers, “Due to the Memorial stone, and secret help from Danz ō, that was unknown to him, Naruto now knows who his parents are. I couldn’t keep it from him any longer.”

Jiraiya simply nods. A frown marred his face. He had wanted to be the one to tell Naruto who his folks were. 

Minato Namikaze. his prized pupil. Kushina Uzumaki His wife. Naruto’s parents. A true travesty. But Jiraiya could teach him father’s ultimate technique. He could teach him his mother’s speciality: Fuinjutsu. He could teach the Genin a lot. The Summoning Technique is not one of those things, as Shisui already taught it to him. 

Standing up, Jiraiya says, “Don’t worry, Sensei. I’ll meet with the brat soon enough, and teach him all I can. For Minato, Konoha, and himself.”

Hiruzen simply sighs, as his student jumps out of the window, disappearing from sight. Why couldn’t his student be normal for once and use the door? Even Kakashi uses the door.

Meanwhile back with Shisui and Naruto, the Jounin says, “I heard you killed some enemies during your mission. Would you like to talk about it?”

Naruto shrugs, replying, “They were thugs. Looked like discarded Samurai. They were trying to kidnap our Client’s daughter. I fought them after Kawarimi-ing myself with the Daughter. I don’t know…. I feel wrong.”

Shisui says, “That’s usually a common thing for Shinobi just starting out. After my first kill, I got home and the first thing I did was puke my guts out. It’s a good thing you feel wrong, but you gotta do it. Sometimes to succeed on a mission you must kill. Just make sure you never like or even love the act of killing. A hobby will help you keep your mind clear from guilt. Why do you think Kakashi is always late? Why do you think he reads all those books?”

Naruto mutely nodded. Thanking his Sensei in silence. It didn’t really help, but it calmed his nerves. Shisui did say something about a hobby. Maybe his garden would help?

 

Chapter Text

 

Shisui stands next to Naruto. In front of them is Konoha’s Hot Springs.

It is the public bath of Konohagakure, divided down the middle between genders. Shinobi can use the baths as a training ground for basic chakra training. Using the hot water as a form of motivation, the trainee is more focused in using their chakra to support themselves on the water.

Naruto asks, “So why are we at the Hot Springs? Here to take a bath?”

Shisui shakes his head. He answers, “You used the Kyuubi’s chakra in Nami no Kuni. In this place their is a man who can help you train with it’s use, and make it easier for you to draw out if you need to use it.”

Naruto widens his eyes. Who was this man who could teach him a thing like that?

Shisui says, “His name is Jiraiya. He is a Fuinjutsu Master, one of the Legendary Sannin, a student of the Sandaime Hokage, and the Sensei of the Yondaime Hokage.”

Naruto’s eyes widen even more. This man taught his father? He must be crazy strong. Naruto then replies, “What are we waiting for? Let’s go!” 

Naruto then dashes forward. Shisui was about to say something, only to stop when Naruto stopped moving shortly after. Turning his head with a look of disgust on his face, Naruto looks directly in the direction Jiraiya is in.

Shisui was a bit surprised… But he remembered that Kakashi told him about how he found out that Naruto is a Sensor-type. Emotions and Intent are the things that Naruto can sense. Pretty good thing to sense as well, could probably tell when someone is lying to him instantly, if he trained the sensing ability well enough. 

This instinctive usage wasn’t going to fly for Shisui, but he didn’t know the first thing on how to train a sensing ability. It was probably just a common sense thing, that as a non-sensor he just couldn’t understand all that well.

So all Shisui could do was sigh, as he followed Naruto all the way to Jiraiya. And of course, Jiraiya was doing this. He should have known that the man would be peeping on naked and bathing women. Shisui scoffed, while Naruto yelled at the old pervert.

Jiraiya was about to yell back when he took notice of Shisui, and stood at his full height. It made the kid fall to his ass.

He wears a green short shirt kimono and matching pants, under which he wore mesh armour that is visible at his wrists and ankles. He also wears hand guards, a black belt, traditional Japanese wooden sandals, and a red haori with two yellow circles on each side. He often carries a large scroll on his back, and has a tattoo on his left palm, and he wears a horned hitai-ate with the kanji for "oil" (油).

Jiraiya then says, “So your the brat that Hiruzen has been talking about. The son of my student, and the container of the Kyuubi. I’m the Gallant Toad Sage. A peak of Shinobi. A fantastic writer loved by all. And a lover of women. My name is Jiraiya. Jiraiya the Gallant!”

Naruto simply facepalms. It sounded so cool at the beginning only for a lame self introduction to happen. It deflated all of Naruto’s expectations. Though, Naruto replies, “Nice to meet ya, Pervy Sage. I’m Naruto Uzumaki. Student of Shunshin no Shisui and a future Hokage. A Hokage that will have no equal.”

Shisui sighs. He could tell that it was sarcastic, but for it’s purpose… Well, it fell short, like his height. Which in all honesty is such a travesty. Even this joke is a bit of a low blow. Shisui then chuckles at his crappy jokes. The crappy jokes that he has not yet told to Naruto, because in all honesty being the cool teacher was awesome. 

Schooling his features once more as the two stared at him, Shisui watched the two resume Naruto’s training. He was mainly there as a last ditch case, by using the Sharingan to knock the blonde out before he rampages.

Jiraiya then talked his way through meditation. He says, “Staying as still as you can, I’d like you to meditate.”

Naruto asks, “Why?”

Jiraiya sighs, answering, “So you can enter your mindscape, the internal space of that represents the link between you and the seal. It’s easier to use the Kyuubi’s chakra if you can speak with it, and form a bond. And let me guess, the first time you used it was in anger, right?”

Naruto simply nods his head, as Jiraiya continued, “Of course, I’m right? The Kyuubi’s chakra can influence your reasoning and emotions. The angrier you get, the more you can draw on the kyuubi, making it able to escape. So to negate that, speak with it, form a bond, allow it to freely lend you it’s chakra. This is why we, and I mean you, are meditating.”

Jiraiya sighed. Sure Naruto didn’t know any of this, but like try to at least connect the dots. 

He would absolutely hate to have to do this on a timer. Like for instance the month long training period the Chunin Exams grant you in between the final two rounds. If he was honest with himself, he would have probably kicked the little booger off a cliff right about now, which would have forced the interaction between the Kyuubi and Naruto. 

However, that method was a bit unorthodox. And to even try it is a risk that most Villages would never allow, as their Biju might escape, and destroy the village in a rampage.

Jiraiya then says, “Don’t worry if you can’t get to the mindscape, it is harder than it looks.”

As Naruto meditates, he closes his eyes. His rhythmic breathing puts him in a trance, as he opens his eyes once more. All around him, is now a tunnel. It’s walls are lined with leaking pipes, as the floor is filled with a thin layer of water. 

Was this a sewer? It was, wasn't it? Well, that sucked. 

There is only one way forward, so Naruto takes a step, and walks forward, towards the Kyuubi. The red chakra consistent with how he has seen it explode out from him pushes him from the mindscape.

Back with everyone else, Naruto snaps his eyes open. He throws himself to his feet. And as he is about to fall on his face, Jiraiya grabs him by the shoulder stopping him.

Naruto looks at Jiraiya, who simply nodded. The blonde was a bit frazzled, and anyone could tell. He knew this was going to happen, and so he wouldn’t fault Naruto. Jiraiya says, “Good job kid. We can try this tomorrow after you get your team training in.”

Shisui then says, “Go home. Naruto. Me and Jiraiya will talk a bit more.”

Naruto just simply nods. Leaving in a Shunshin, Shisui sighs. Then Jiraiya asks, “Does the Karasu Clan care about being able to summon another Clan?”

Why did Jiraiya ask this? While anyone could summon at least two animal clans. Most only can summon one, due to chakra, as well as what the clan believes, when you are aligning yourself with them. Certain clans care very extremely about the loyalty of their summoner. His clan, the toads, they do certainly care, but… they were case by case.

Shisui answers, “All they care about is family. Family will always be together, even when you move out of the nest. Why do you ask?”

Jiraiya answers, “Well, I’ve been hearing some bad rumors about Amegakure, nothing concrete. It is very concerning, at the very least. And with the Toad Clan having a certain technique for absorbing chakra in nature and then releasing it as attacks. I think it would help Naruto in the long term.”

Shisui widened his eyes. While the Crow Clan didn’t have anything like that he had heard rumors. Senjutsu. Sage Mode. Their was a rumor that the Yondaime Hokage had this technique. 

And then their are the rumors from Amegakure. If it concerned Jiraiya of all people, then his assessment of “very concerning” was going to put Naruto in some deep, deep shit. 

Shisui then asks, “So, What are you going to teach him, other than how to use his Biju?”

Jiraiya answers, “I haven’t really thought about it… But, I was thinking that the Rasengan would be best, for now. Maybe give him an introduction on Fuinjutsu, as well. He doesn’t know any ninjutsu, right?”

Shisui replies, “He has a Futon Affinity. So he is learning how to cut a leaf in half with pure wind chakra. From the looks of it, he is halfway there though.”

Jiraiya then says, “So, I’ll teach him some Futon jutsu. I know some from when I was in the Second War. Though, I haven’t really used them in a while. But knowing some Futon should help him crack the funk he is in with that exercise.”

 

Chapter Text

 

Sasuke sat next to his brother, in complete silence. Dango lazily sat in his hands, from a shared plate. Itachi saw the dazed look on his brother, but didn’t say anything. It wasn’t his right to. In time his brother would speak.

Sasuke then asks, “Nii-san… How do you cope?”

Itachi adibaly hn’s, in thought.  Itachi answers, “Me? How do I cope? I cook, and take care of you. I hang out with Shisui. It’s not much, but it’s all I need. I couldn’t keep my teammates with me, so be glad that you have people, friends, a team that can share the burden for, and with you.”

As Itachi takes a bite of his dango, so does Sasuke. His stomach, as well as his mind felt light. It was as if he found the correct medicine to cure the disease that plagued him. Sasuke then whispers, “Thank you, Nii-san.”

Itachi ruffles his hair, replying, “You’re welcome…”

Itachi’s voice drifted to silence as Kakashi said, “The mandatory time off has ended. We will be doing some D-Ranks, and maybe some actual low tier C-Ranks until the Chunin Exams. Now it’s time to tell Sakura. Enjoy your dango, Ja Ne?”

While that was going on, Sakura was sickeningly silent with her parents. It worried them, something fierce. So during lunch, her mother decides that today was the day to ask about it.

Her mother is a fair-skinned woman with shoulder-length, blonde hair with a single bang which falls down into her face. She also has green eyes and wears a white qipao dress with three red circular designs at the bottom of the front of her dress as well as the back. Underneath the dress, she wears pink ¾-length pants along with brown sandals.

She asks, “Sakura… Sweetie… What’s wrong? We thought you would be happy coming home from your big mission out of the village? What happened?”

Her husband frowned at his wife. He knew he wasn’t much of a shinobi, that even his wife couldn’t tell. A chunin sure, but he was a paper pusher. He has seen the horror of war, and death. He fought in the Third World War. Though after the war he had to retire from injuries that didn’t heal quite right.

Sakura then turns to her father. 

Her father is a kind-faced man with blue eyes, and dull-pink hair which is styled into the shape of a cherry blossom — a possible allusion to his daughter's name. Unlike his wife and daughter, he has a darker skin-tone. He also has sideburns which flow into his angular moustache and a bit of stubble on his chin.

He wears a dark, loose-fitting kimono-shirt which has a green, inner-lining and sleeves which extend beyond his kimono shirt. This is held closed by a simple obi which he wears along with burgundy coloured ¾-length pants, and a pair of simple slippers. He also wears a simple silver necklace with a pink cherry blossom design on it with a single petal being a deep plum colour.

Worry was quite evident on her face. He then says, “You don’t have to tell us if you don’t want to, but it has worried us to see like this. So, if you need to speak, you can speak with us. Do you understand?”

Sakura mumbled something, and then said, “Thank you, Papa, Mama. I’m sorry… It’s just that I… I killed during our mission. It's been quite hard to sleep. The nightmares… The blood. It just hurts, I’m scared, and I don’t know what to do?”  

The two parents then rushed to her side, hugging, as the trio broke down and cried. Sakura sighs. Maybe, just maybe, she had found her answer. And whatever she found, she hoped that it worked in any capacity.

An awkward clearing of a throat interrupted the sweet family moment, as the three turned around to see Kakashi Hatake standing there. He bows, and then says, “I am sorry for the intrusion, but it is my duty to inform you, Sakura, that our Team”s mandatory week off has now ended. Like I have already told Naruto and Sasuke… W e will be doing some D-Ranks, and maybe some actual low tier C-Ranks until the Chunin Exams. Ja Ne. And once again, I am sorry for the intrusion.”

The family of three then watch as Kakashi walks towards the door. In fascination, they watch him put his sandals back on, and leave their house. At least he had the decency to take his shoes off. 

Sakura could only groan. Why did her Sensei have such bad timing?” Meanwhile, it made her parents laugh, which she could not endure much longer, and began to laugh as well.

They had their first mission after that C-Rank the next day. A simple D-Rank to get back into the regular motions for a bit. Though they groaned as it was to once again capture Tora, that stupid little cat.

Spying the little devil, Naruto, through his earpiece, says, “It’s in my field of vision.”

Sakura answers, “I see it too.”

While Sasuke replies with a hn.

Kakashi then commands, “You three know what to do! Catch that cat!”

As Tora is running through the forest, Sakura appears in front of it. Turning around, the cat sees Sasuke in it’s path. Unknown to Tora, Naruto is up in the foliage. He then drops down onto the cat, grabbing it around the torso. 

In the Mission Assignment Room, sits Iruka behind the desk. And like always, the Daimyo’s wife, Madam Shijimi, just left, with her cat being strangled in a suffocating hug.

At first Naruto thought it was just a one time thing. Yeah, spoiler alert! It wasn’t. So now he just felt bad for the poor thing. That still doesn’t mean the thing was a bitch and a half to catch, 

And after the Tora mission, they did one more. Kakashi didn’t want them to be too tired for some team training that would be occurring tomorrow.

 

Chapter Text

 

Naruto groaned as he woke up the next day. Being off duty for that long was not good for his pre-established habits towards waking up early in the morning. The training last week was a bit more lax than it usually was. 

So he got there a bit later than usual. While Kakashi was a bit early for a change, though, he was still an hour late. In Team 7’s opinion, being an hour late was better than not even coming in the first place.

Kakashi waved at his Genin. A smile was hidden by his mask. The progress in their skill and strength was something to see. He was sure that they all could be Chunin right now.

But now, He had to train them. After all, it was his job to turn them into a capable team. A capable team will then be promoted to Chunin, and then they should be promoted to Jounin. It is something his teammates should have become.

Kakashi then says, “ it’s time for team spars. Naruto v Sakura, Sakura v Sasuke, and Sasuke v Naruto.” 

Naruto then stands across from Sakura. He smiles, Sakura, his one time crush. Though that was no more. They are friends. Sakura smiled back at the blonde, both were ready for action.

Kakashi stared at them, raising his hand high into the air. He then drops his hands, as Naruto disappears. Reappearing in front of Sakura, she blocks a kick, and then counters with a straight punch of her own. 

Sakura then continues, with a puch, and then a third. Her fourth attack is a roundhouse kick that Naruto catches. Spinning in a circle he throws her far away from him. He then launches a couple of shuriken, which she protects her face from, cutting her arms up. 

Landing, Sakura meets Naruto in the middle, blocking a kick. Naruto then erupts into smoke, blinding Sakura, who takes several heavy punches and kicks to her body. Stomping on her foot, he spun around, elbowing her in the side of the head.

Sakura then dispels into smoke, a smashed log was in her place. She smirks, and then weaves through two hand seals. Snake → Rat. Kakashi then says, “You two can stop now. Sasuke, switch with Naruto.”

As Sasuke steps in front of Sakura, Kakashi says, “Alright, let’s keep it going.”

So that is what Sakura does, blitzing towards Sasuke. In quick succession, Sasuke blocks a punch, a kick, and a chop. He then counters with a kick to the stomach that pushes Sakura off her feet. While in the air, Sasuke throws several kunai at the pink haired girl, who quickly grabs one of her own, blocking them all.

Landing, Sasuke was already on top of her with a punch. He then follows it up with another, and another, To end the combo, Sasuke lashes out with a kick to the side of her head. Only to jump away as he flashes his Sharingan to dodge shuriken that was thrown through Sakura. 

Cartwheeling to his feet, Sasuke looks all around. The Sakura in front of him dissipated like mist, and out of the mist steps the real Sakura. Genjutsu? No, she must have done a Kawarimi with the regular clone, and then made it seem like it was a Genjutsu. Smart.

Sasuke then weaves through several hand seals. Snake → Dragon → Rabbit → Tiger. Sasuke then spits flames from their mouth that, like a dragon's, quickly travel forward in a straight direction.

Seeing the fire, Sakura weaves through her own set of hand seals. 

Tiger → Hare → Boar → Dog or Ram → Dog → Ox → Snake. Slamming her hands onto the ground, this allows Sakura to create a protective wall out of earth. 

The fire from Sasuke’s jutsu burns away at the hardened earth, but it protects Sakura well enough. Above the crumbling wall, Sasuke just got done weaving another set of hand seals, though, Kakashi says, “That’s it, Sasuke. You two are done sparring. Sakura, please switch with Naruto.

Sasuke smirked, as Naruto stood in front of him. It wasn’t said, but he wants to fight Naruto. Not to the death, or anything, but he doesn’t want either of them to hold back. He wants to truly see with his own eyes how much he has grown in skill and power thanks to his cousin.

As they focus on each other, Kakashi then says, “Alright, let’s keep it going! This is only the warmup.”

The two Genin then blitz each other, meeting in the middle. A kunai clashes with tant ō. Naruto throws a punch, connecting it with a kick to the sternum. He then throws his tantō, cutting Sasuke’s cheek.

After a Shunshin, Naruto appears behind the flying Sasuke, kicking him in the back. Flipping to his feet, Sasuke weaves through a set of hand seals. Snake → Ram → Monkey → Boar → Horse → Tiger. Sasuke then expels a big, fireball, for a Genin, from his mouth. 

In response, Naruto creates two Shadow Clones that toss him up high into the air. In the air, he creates another two Shadow Clones, which he launches at Sasuke. The first one decks him in the jaw, while the second one flips at the last moment bringing his heel down onto Sasuke’s shoulder. The kick drops him to the ground in a puff of smoke, a shattered log laid in his place.

Landing, Naruto blocks a punch, and parries another with another kick. Naruto then slams his fist into Sasuke’s cheek, then again with another to the jaw. He then finishes the combo off with a roundhouse kick that Sasuke catches. Then Sasuke slams him into the ground, creating cracks in the ground on impact. 

Sasuke’s eyes then widen, as Naruto’s tantō is pressed to his throat. The Naruto on the ground then dispels into a plume of smoke, revealing it to be a Shadow Clone. Sasuke raises his hands in defeat, as he says, “You win this time, Naruto. Don’t expect their to be another.”

Sheathing his tantō, Naruto chuckles. He replies, “Like I haven’t won the last two spars? I’ll believe it when I see it, Sasuke.”

As the two make their way back to Kakashi, a voice enters their ears. It was another Jounin, behind them is Team 10: Ino Yamanaka, Shikamaru Nara, and Choji Akimichi.

Ino has fair skin, light blue eyes (sometimes depicted as green in the manga), and long platinum blonde hair worn in a high ponytail with bangs framing the right side of her face.

Ino regularly wears a purple outfit consisting of a high-collared blouse and matching apron skirt. sports this attire with bandages on her abdomen and legs, small hoop-earrings, her hitai-ate is worn as a belt.

Shikamaru has narrow brown eyes and a typical expression suggesting he is either bored or irritated. He has shoulder length black hair tied in a spiky ponytail.

He wears a short-sleeved grey jacket with green-edged sleeves and the rudimentary Nara clan symbol on the back, under which is a green-lined mesh armour T-shirt. He also wears brown pants, a pair of his clan's traditional silver hoop earrings, and wears his blue hitai-ate around his left arm. 

Like other Akimichi, Choji has a rotund build and markings on his cheeks in the form of swirls. He has spiky, light brown hair that sticks upward.

He wears a green, short-sleeved haori with a long, white scarf over a light-green shirt, with the kanji for "food" (食) on it. He also wears black shorts, hoop earrings, and bandages around his legs and forearms. His blue forehead protector is styled in a manner that allows two tufts of hair to poke out at each side.

Their Jounin is a tall man, with brown eyes, olive skin, short black spiky hair, and a beard. His clothing consists of the standard Konoha ninja uniform with the sleeves rolled up halfway, flak jacket, regular shinobi sandals and Konoha hitai-ate. He also wears a sash that had the kanji for "Fire" marked on it around his waist, a pair of black bangles, and bandages wrapped around the arms of his sleeves.

With a lit cigarette hanging from his lips, he says, “Hello… Uh, my name is Asuma Sarutobi. Am I late Kakashi?”

Kakashi smiles, replying, “Not at all, Asuma. Now that the warm up is done, let's get to the real training for today. This will be based on your guy’s C-Rank, slightly at least. I’ll be the “Tazuna”, and I’d like for you to protect me from the “Enemies” Team 10. Do you understand?”

As the three Genin move to make a triangle around their Sensei, Kakashi then says, “We will do this two more times, and once a week. Asume, if you would, do the honors?”

Flicking ash off his cigarette, Asuma simply says, “Go!”

As Team 10 disappears into the forest, Naruto bites his thumb drawing blood. Boar → Dog → Bird → Monkey → Ram. Slamming his palm down onto the ground, he says, “Kuchiyose no Jutsu (Summoning Technique)!”

In a plume of smoke,  Karamaru appears, looking  physically unchanged. Naruto then asks, “Be my eyes, okay… Karamaru.”

The crow caws, and flies high into the air. As it flies, it periodically caws. Naruto says, “Karamaru hasn’t found them yet. It would be best to move into the forest, so it will be harder for them to visually track us.”

As they move, Kakashi then asks, “Since when could you use the Kuchiyose no Jutsu, Naruto?”

Naruto asks, “I’ve known how to summon since before the Nami, but only now do I have the control to actually summon.”

And as they continue walking through the forest, Naruto hears Karamaru caw twice. He says, “Karamaru sees them…” After another caw shortly after, Naruto says, “And they’re close.”

Sasuke then throws a kunai, which hits another kunai thrown at Naruto, deflecting it. He replies, “Yeah, too close.”

Sakura comments, “We should still be walking. Standing still like this isn’t good, especially against Shikamaru of all people.”

They then hear the lazy drawl of Shikamaru, who says, “ Kagemane no Jutsu (Shadow Imitation Technique)… Complete.”

Naruto grunts, saying, “Shit!”

Team 10 then walks out into Team 7’s vision. They held a smirk that said victory. Shikamaru then says, “Naruto has always been troublesome, especially now. So give up now, or else!”

As Shikamaru goes to raise a kunai to his throat, Naruto gives a smirk. And that was not good. Naruto dispels into a puff of smoke. Team 10 goes wide eyed. A clone Jutsu, and a solid one at that. 

Naruto then appears above Shikamaru, upside down. Flipping to his feet, Naruto grabs onto his jacket, and throws the Nara over himself and onto the ground, forming a small crater. He then roundhouse kicks Ino in the temple, and as flies away from Naruto, he tries to block an enlarged fist from Choji. Even with a small boost from his chakra, it was no good, as Choji threw him into a tree, shattering it.

Choji then goes to restrain Sasuke, with his enlarged fist. Running full speed. Only he gets pulled down into the earth at neck level. Beside Choji stands Sakura, who says, “Doton: Shinjū Zanshu no Jutsu (Earth Release: Double Suicide Decapitation Technique).”

Sasuke then punches Sakura in the throat, and finishes the combo with a roundhouse kick. However, Sakura grabs the kick, and slams him into the ground hard. As the ground craters on impact, Sakura then stomps on his head, knocking the Uchiha unconscious. This also happens to knock Ino out as well.

Naruto then appears behind Sakura blocking  several thrown shuriken and kunai. Rushing towards Shikamaru, Naruto widens his eyes, as the Nara surrenders, raising his hand in defeat. He internally deadpans. Their was no way he could win now. As sweat runs down his brow, Shikamaru says, “It’s troublesome, and Ino will hate me for it, but I quit.”

Asuma appears, picking up his students. He says, “Thank you Kakashi. Now I see how much more I need to whip them into shape. Have a good day, Team 7.”

The Sarutobi then disappears from their view. As Kakashi say, “You did good. Now let’s get some food… And no, Naruto, it will not be ramen this time.”

 

Chapter Text

 

Standing in the training field, all alone, is Naruto. His hands cupped together with a leaf inside. Watching him is Jiraiya, who is sitting in the shade, writing the next chapter of his own book series. Icha Icha.

A huff exertion alerts the old Sage to Naruto’s plight. As Jiraiya looks at the blonde, he sees that the leaf has only been half way cut. He frowns. The wind chakra isn’t thin enough. Jiraiya then asks, “Naruto… How does a blade of wind cut? Thick, or thin?”

Naruto’s eyes widened. It was much like the blade of his tantō. It only cuts when the blade is thin and sharp. So that means his chakra must also be thin and sharp. How did he not think of this earlier? 

So Naruto does exactly that. The mantra of thin and sharp running through his head. His eyes closed tight in concentration, as he felt the leaf get cut completely in half with only his chakra.

Opening his eyes, and removing  his top hand, Naruto cheers. He did it! He cut the leaf in half. As Naruto is jumping up and down, Jiraiya smiles, as he watches the scene in front of him. Like with Minato before him, and the Orphan’s before Minato. Seeing them grow as people and shinobi was the only time he felt like he wasn’t a complete failure.

Shaking his head free of those saddening thoughts, Jiraiya beckons Naruto to come towards him. He says, “While Shisui has another Futon jutsu, he is going to teach you, I got one of my own. It’s been awhile since I used it last, so let me remember it… Ah, I got it. Fūton: Reppūshō (Wind Release: Gale Palm)!”

Jiraiya then slowly weaves through a set of hand seals, so Naruto could see in detail what they were. Not that he couldn’t if it was done any quicker, Jiraiya just didn’t want Naruto to mess up the hand seals. Snake → Ram → Boar → Horse → Bird → Clap Hands Together. A powerful gale comes from the clasped hands, knocking Naruto onto his but.

Jiraiya then says, “It is a versatile Jutsu that has more uses than this, but that is what the jutsu was mainly used as back in the Second War. Though… I’m sure you can think of these uses at a later time, when you master the first use of this Jutsu.”

So Naruto tries the Jutsu out for himself. He smiles as he weaves through a set of hand seals. Snake → Ram → Boar → Horse → Bird → Clap Hands Together. Unlike the powerful gale of wind that came from Jiraiya, Naruto’s was much more like a gust of wind.

Seeing the discouraged Naruto, Jiraiya says, “Don’t worry about the differences between the power of the Jutsu, Naruto. You just started to use it, while I have been using it for at least three decades at this point. So of course my use of the Jutsu is going to be more powerful.”

Naruto smirks, replying, “What else do you have in store, Pervy Sage?”

Jiraiya growled at the name in disgust. Though a devious smile covers it up soon after. He says, “Meditation! And then after you are done, you are going to be learning how to summon the Gama (Toad) Clan. that is all for today.”

Naruto asks, “Why do I have to learn how to summon the Gama Clan? I already have the crows? And, can’t I only summon one clan?”

Jiraiya sighs. He knew that it would have to be logical. He answers, “The Toads have a very special and difficult technique. It’s called Sage Mode, and it increases everything around the board. Though, you are not quite ready for it, yet. And as for your second question… Well, it truly depends on the Summoning Clan, but yes you can have more than one summoning contract. Just make sure to use the blood from the hand opposite of the one you used on the Crow contract.”

Naruto nods, sitting down in the shade to meditate away from the sun. His mind was a bit occupied with the mention of Sage Mode. Was it that strong? Though as he cleared his mind, Naruto found himself back into his mindscape once more. The sewer-like place was unpleasant, but familiar to his eyes.

He still hasn’t been able to meet the Kyuubi face to face yet. Hopefully today will be the day. Even when he has been doing it multiple times every day since he first did it when he met Jiraiya, Naruto still hasn’t gotten close to where the Kyuubi lies. The closest he could estimate is about halfway at the least.

Though at what Naruto perceives to be the halfway point, he can see the entrance to the main chamber. And with any step further he took, he would anger the mighty beast. But he took that step anyway. He needed to. To get stronger. To get more skilled. To be the best Hokage. And as his foot collided with the floor, the Kyuubi shot him out of the mindscape.

Naruto then opened his eyes with a sigh. Jiraiya could tell Naruto was getting more and more frustrated. So Jiraiya says, “I told you this would be hard. So worry about it a lot, just keep trying. You will do it. Now let’s get you signed up with the toads. Okay, Naruto?” 

Meanwhile, an ink rat scurries off. It did not notice Jiraiya’s smirk. And as the rat splashes down onto Sai’s scroll, he frowns. He has to take this to Danz ō. Doing just that, Sai knocks on the office door. Waiting for a reply he then enters. 

When Danz ō looks up and sees Sai, he asks, “So… Sai, what is the news on the Jinchuuriki?”

Sai answers, “The Jinchuuriki is getting taught how to control the beast by Jiraiya. Who is also allowing him to summon Toads. The Jinchuuriki also finished the Leaf Cutting Exercise for Fūton usage.”

Danz ō then asks, “Does he know any Jutsu?”

Sai answers, “ Fūton: Reppūshō (Wind Release: Gale Palm).”

Danz ō hums in thought. Not a bad Jutsu to start off learning the element with. Damn it though. He has waited for too long. No longer shall he play the long game. He needs the Jinchuuriki, as well as Shisui’s Sharingan. And he needs them now. He won’t be Hokage without them at his beck and call.

Danzō then pulls out a scroll from his desk as well as a brush and an ink well. Writing down a quick letter, he rolls the scroll back up, and hands it over to Sai. He orders, “Sai! Give this scroll to Shisui.”

Sai palms the scroll and bows. As he disappears in a Shunshin, Danzō smirks. He fully expects them to come meet him inside the time he set in the letter. After all, Shisui is loyal to Konoha, and doesn’t want anything bad to happen to the village. 

Hmm. A frown forms on his face. Maybe he should speak with Orochimaru. Where is that Snake hiding anyway? Upon another scroll a letter is written. Snapping his fingers, a member of his ROOT appears. Danzō then orders them to find Orochimaru. They had some plans to discuss. He smirks once again. His plans were finally coming to fruition.

Back with Naruto, he is seated in the training field. Across from him is a giant toad, named Gamabunta. He easily towers over the trees of the field.

Gamabunta is coloured a dull, rusty red, but around his eyes and on his lips and chest are brighter red markings. Over his left eye, he received a scar at some point in the past. His tongue has a series of stud-like piercings on both the upper and lower side. He often wears a large blue happi vest that has the kanji 蝦 (ebi) on the back, and always carries a massive dosu blade at his hip. He also carries a large kiseru pipe which he often smokes.

In front of him is a sake dish that is large enough for the toad to drink out of. In his own hands is a smaller sake dish, well compared to Gamabunta’s dish. Gamabunta then says, “Dip that dish into the sake from my dish so that we may drink.”

Naruto does exactly that, and clinks Gamabunta’s dish. As they raise their dishes, they drink. Naruto makes a face, as he hadn't drank before, so it was a bit too much for him. But overall, he liked the Toad Sake.

Gamabunta then says, “You may now use the symbol of the Toads. Now when you have the chance Jiraiya, the Elders would like to meet him.”

Jiraiya asks, “Ma and Pa?”

Gamabunta replies, “Who else? He isn’t going to meet the Great Sage.”

Jiraiya threw his hands up in peace. He wasn’t going to anger the Toad any longer today. Letting Bunta return to Mount Myoboku, Jiraiya got Naruto home. The kid was probably wasted at this point. It was the least he could do.

 

Chapter Text

Shisui groaned. A letter from Danzō was not a good thing. The last time he was summoned by Danzō, was not a memory that he liked to think about. Gaining the memories of your own Shadow Clone being poisoned to death as said Elder tried to take your eye, was not fun.

This time, it wasn’t just for him, it was also for Naruto. And it specifically told them no Shadow Clones. He sighed. The Uchiha then Shunshined to the Hokage’s Office. The Hokage was shocked, but asks, “So what do I owe this pleasure, Shisui-san?”

Shisui set down the scroll on the desk. He says, “He is at it again. And this time he doesn’t just want my eyeball…”

As Shisui was talking, Hiruzen was reading the letter inside of the scroll. He finishes Shisui’s sentence by saying, “Naruto!”

Shisui nods. He asks, “What do I do? What do we do?”

Hiruzen sighs in thought. What would they do? He then nods to himself. It was time. He has been too lenient with Danzō. The Hokage then says, “Shisui. I am sorry for what Danzō has made your clan turn into. I’m sorry for being so lenient with him as a Hokage. With that in mind, it is time to step up, and do my duty as I should have in the beginning. He will be sentenced to treason and be killed by my hand. This is my plan…”

Shisui just listened to the plan. Nothing was particularly wrong with it. He sighed though, as this involved his student. Naruto is a shinobi, but he was still just a kid. A kid that he has considered as his little brother for a while now. He would protect him with his life if he had to.

Shisui bows, and disappears in a Shunshin. Hiruzen didn’t even see the door open. Man, he was slipping. He would need to train to beat Danzō. Hopefully Gai would allow him to polish some wasted skills from his youth? 

He called an ANBU to get the eccentric Jounin, who brought along his team. Probably as a teaching moment for the Genin in his charge, or he thought it was a mission that they would be going on. This was when he realized that this was not going to be fun for himself.

Shisui sat in Naruto's home. His table was full of basic Fuinjutsu theory that Jiraiya has been having him read. Apparently, it has been nothing short of headache inducing for the blonde, who was sitting at said table, nursing his temple for any sort of relief he could find. Though, Naruto was getting none.

Shisui then says, “Did you hear me Naruto?”

Naruto answers, “A bit. Some no name Elder wants me and your eye to become Hokage, but Hokage-jiji won’t allow it. So we have to meet him and confirm it so that Hokage-jiji can beat the Elder’s ass.”

Shisui sighs. He says, “Naruto! Danzō isn’t some no name. He is the Darkness of Shinobi, of Konoha. He was the Sandaime Hokage’s rival. But yes, Danzō wants both my eye and you. The Sharingan can Genjutsu the Kyuubi. If he gets what he wants, Konoha will burn. The great leaves of this village, the future generation, burned to ash! Do you want that to happen?”

A frown formed on Naruto’s face. Sure, Shisui was a bit strict with him, but he cared. He cared for him, he cared for Konoha, he cared for his clan. It wasn’t really in that order, but… Naruto replies, “Sorry, Nii-san… I mean, Sensei. No Konoha will not burn, not with us here to keep those great leaves flourishing.”

Shisui smiles. Naruto was grandstanding, sure, but they would win. He then says, “That is okay, Otōto. You have spoken like a true Konoha shinobi. I will train you harder in the next month than I ever have. Now let’s go.”

So Naruto gets up, and follows Shisui out of his home in a Shunshin. A smile graced his lips. If this was as important as Shisui said it was, would this be an S-Rank mission? That thought got him excited for what was to come. 

Meanwhile, Danzō is sitting in a lab. It stunk of death and is in the land of Sound, formerly the Land of Rice Fields. In front of him is Snake Sannin, Orochimaru.

Orochimaru's most conspicuous characteristic is his snake-like appearance: he has very pale skin, golden eyes with slitted pupils, purple markings around his eyes and fang-like teeth. He also has pronounced cheekbones and straight waist-length black hair with some locks covering and framing his face or to his shoulders.

Orochimaru usually wears plain gray garbs with a black polo and pants underneath, a thick purple rope belt tied in a large knot behind his back, blue tomoe-shaped earrings, and shinobi sandals with bandages around his calves.

He asks, “How nice to meet you again, Danz ō. What do you require of me?”

Danzō answers, “You know of my need to be Hokage, right?”

Orochimaru nods. He knew. Sarutobi knew. Anyone with a brain knew. 

Danzō replies, “I am going to get possession of the Kyuubi Jinchuuriki and Shisui’s Sharingan eyes. What I want you to do is to kill Sarutobi. Haven’t you wanted to do that since you left Konoha?”

A smirk placed itself on Orochimaru’s face. Danzō is playing with the proverbial fire. It will not end well for him. He asks, “Do you care when, or how he dies?”

Danzō answers, “As long as he dies, I do not care.”

A snake-like chuckle escapes Orochimaru’s lips, as he says, “It will be done, Danzō."

A month later, Naruto groaned. With the Kyuubi’s room only feet away, the tailed-beast was increasingly being an obstacle. Sometimes, the Kyuubi wouldn’t even let him take in the view of the mindscape, much less take a step. This process will be slow and annoying.

His Gale Palm was improving nicely as was the Jutsu that Shisui taught him. Shinkūken (Vacuum Sword). It allows him to swing his sword, or rather tantō, releasing a gust of wind that is released in an arc that it is swung in.

His Taijutsu has been progressing nicely. He wasn’t as good as some higher ups in the village, but he should do nicely against good Chunin and crappy Jounin. 

His Genjutsu casting skills were as they were in the Academy, which was as crappy as every other skill he had in the Academy. His only decent one being Taijutsu, and even that was crap. His skills in detecting Genjutsu and dispersing them from himself was good enough for his spars against known Uchiha prodigies in Shisui and Sasuke.  Though Sasuke didn’t use Genjutsu as much as Shisui did or even Itachi. It would be nice to have a spar against the elder teen.

The Teacher and Student are sitting next to each other. Shisui asks, “Are you sure that you want to go through with this? You can send a Kage Bunshin, if you want?”

Shisui was trying to protect him. While it was nice, he is a Shinobi. Naruto sighs. He didn’t want to do this, but for Konoha, he would pretty much do anything. The Uzumaki answers, “He will find out, if I’m not there.”

Shisui squinted his eyes, replying, “He didn’t know last time until the pain of the poison and the taking of my eyeball destroyed the clone.”

Naruto frowns. He didn’t quite like the sound of that, nor the pain that would cause. If Danzō would do it to Shisui, what made him think that he wouldn’t do it to him? And in any case, he has Sensor-types as bodyguards for a reason. 

Though, Shisui was faking this confidence. He couldn’t predict the outcome of this. But he was prepared to put his life on the line. This mission was for the betterment of Konoha, and it’s people. He would do nothing less.

Shisui then says, “If your not backing down from this, then I won’t try and talk you out of this anymore. I’m sorry, but I don’t want to see you get hurt. After all, you are my Otōto. Now… Let’s go!”

From Naruto’s shoulder, rose Karamaru, who sinked into its own shadow. This is Karamaru’s special ability. It is a space-time ninjutsu, that allows the bird to sink into it’s shadow, and travel to any other shadow that he has seen before in a kilometer radius. It was a good thing that Karamaru had seen the Sandaime’s shadow.

The two then disappear in a Shunshin. They reappear in a forest's clearing. In front of them are two shinobi.

The first Shinobi is a fairly tall and lean-built man. He has fair-skin, short spiked dull black hair, and is also heavily clothed. He wears a short black jacket with red straps over the shoulders, as customary of all Root members. This most likely showed their allegiance to the organization. He also wears a high collared, all black outfit with a red sash around his waist and what appeared to be an apron over his pants, and wears a pair of black gloves.

The second Shinobi is a young man with auburn coloured hair and amber eyes. He wears a short, black jacket with red straps on the shoulders like all members of Root which most likely shows allegiance to the organization. He also wears a red short kimono under the jacket with a black sash, a pair of black gloves, dark-coloured pants, and regular shinobi sandals.

The first Shinobi then looks at the second, who nods. He says, “You two check out. Follow us. Danz ō is expecting you.”

 

Chapter Text

 

Danzō is watching the four shinobi run through the forest towards his ROOT ANBU’s chambers. A smile easily rested on his face. His plan was coming to fruition. Naruto was quite slower than that of Shisui, or even his elite bodyguards, especially with Aburame insects draining his and Shisui’s chakra like they were. 

He is quite wasteful with his chakra as well. Pouring too much, and using so little. Despite all those months that he spent getting taught and learning chakra control. Danzō would have to correct this when he got his hands onto the Jinchuuriki..

Shisui looks back at his student. A huff of exertion escaped his lips. Usually he could do this all day, every day. He had the control to do so.

Looking back at Naruto’s face that is pressed in full concentration, it sent the perfect message to the Uchiha. Naruto rarely ever looked tired or strained. Even after a long day of training. He has the stamina to go for days. Someone was definitely draining their chakra. It was the only  explanation he had.

It had to be one of the shinobi in front of them, but who? His only guess would have to be the first Shinobi, who looked suspiciously like an Aburame. The second Shinobi is probably… Hm? A Yamanaka? He had the looks, after all. They were not  known as the best looking Clan in Konoha, for nothing.

Naruto is pissed. He hasn’t struggled with the Shunshin like this since he first started learning how to use the jutsu. 

When Shisui looked at him, he was red in the face. This aggravated him so, so much. He almost growled as his eye flickers crimson, his pupils quickly switch from rounded to slitted and back to rounded. It killed the insects instantly.

Out of the corners of his eye, Shisui saw this. He also saw that the first Shinobi unconsciously flinched. So the first Shinobi was draining their chakra. That was good to know. Turning back to his student, he smiled. Shisui could tell that he was way less strained than just a few moments ago. Now it was his turn.

Shisui then builds up chakra in all 261 tenketsu points, super heating it to the point it could burn his skin off. He quickly releases all of the heated chakra, burning the insects that are draining his chakra to ash.

Shisui grunted in pain, though he hid it quite well. Shit! That took more chakra than he expected. How could the Hyuga do this on a semi-regular basis? 

It was probably because of the fact that the Hyuga don’t mix elemental chakra with their attacks. Though, now that Shisui thinks about it, that would be a cool thing to see. Practical as well. Allow that stuck up clan to progress with the times. Though the Uchiha clan was a bit of the same. So he was being a bit hypocritical. 

Danzō smirked as he saw this. Those two are surprising. Naruto was a bit behind, but he was keeping pace. As well as being able to use the Kyuubi, the Jinchuuriki was progressing quite well. 

Standing up, Danzō stretched. He would have to meet his guests soon, they would be here any minute. After all, he still had his manners. Putting his crystal chakra ball away, he smirks. Nothing could spoil this for him. 

Pulling away the black robe reveals a bandaged right arm that has three golden arm braces. Removing the bolts from the braces they fall to the ground with a heavy thunk. Danzō then removes the bandages, revealing a grotesque and pale arm covered in Sharingan eyes and a face of some sort on the shoulder. 

Danzō then pulls the robe back over his arm, like nothing happened. Though, he had to remove the braces from the room first, otherwise Shisui would be suspicious about what they were.

Exiting to the entrance to his base, he finds his bodyguards are already there with the Jinchuuriki and Shisui. Danzō says, “Torune, Fu! You two can leave us now, it won’t be long. Now, Shisui-san, Uzumaki-san, please follow me. We can speak in my office.”

Shisui nodded, but kept quiet, as did Naruto. They were a bit tense. After all,  anything could happen. 

The Uchiha knew this “nice” act was bullshit, even Naruto could tell. Though this was due to his ability to sense emotions and intentions, which he called Emotion Sensing. His usage of his sensing ability has gone a long way from when he first used it.

Danzō then turns around to let them follow him into his office. He almost smirked, but became stone-faced. He couldn’t let his emotions go at a time like this, especially with the Jinchuuriki, who could sense emotions, so close to him. It was a bit stupid of them to think that he wouldn’t find out about it.

Opening the door, Danzō allows the two to enter first. As the duo sits down in the chairs in front of the desk, the Elder sits on his own. Shisui then asks, “We are here. So what do you want, Danzō?”

Danzō, being surprisingly honest, answers, “I’d like to train the Jinchuuriki. We both have Futon. I trained his mother. I have as much stake in training the boy as Jiraiya does.”

Shisui replies, “Futon, you ask? Well, so do I. You’re not special. Now tell me, when I was in this office, the last time… What did you do? That’s right. You poisoned me, and tried to take my eye. So tell me, Danzō. What do you truly want?”

Danzō answers, “I want your Sharingan to mind control the Jinchuuriki to kill Sarutobi and become the…”

Danzō then snapped out of it. He growls in anger, as he pulls a kunai from his sleeve. Jumping over the desk, a sickening scrunch sounds out, as Naruto appears in front of Shisui. The kunai lodged deep in his right eye, as his tantō is placed towards the Elder’s neck, drawing blood.

Danzō’s eye widens in shock, as Naruto’s blonde hair spikes more than it usually was. His remaining eye is crimson, with slitted pupils. His whiskers got thicker. His canines sharpened to a point. And the nails on his hands and feet became claws.

A roar launched from his throat, as he sliced his tantō through Danzō’s throat, decapitating him. Turning around, a cloak of bubbling red chakra erupts from him, as he flips his blade in his hand, and slashes down Danzō’s chest and stomach.

Another roar rips through Naruto’s throat, launching Danzō’ through his office doors. Meanwhile, Shisui was shocked. He knew what Shimura had just done. It is a Kinjutsu of the Uchiha clan. 

The Kinjutsu is a Genjutsu casted by the Sharingan called Izanagi. It allows one to cast an illusion on reality itself, giving the user control over what is and is not real as long as Izanagi is active.

How could Danzō do such a jutsu? He didn’t have the Sharingan, did he? Wait a minute, could he have taken an eye from the Uchiha that died during the Coup? After, all, it was totally a Danzō move

He stood up, and widened his eyes, as Naruto instinctually dodges multiple beams of wind, slicing one with his tantō, that launches an arc of wind back at Danzō.

Naruto then weaves through a series of hand seals.  Snake → Ram → Boar → Horse → Bird → Clap Hands Together. Then he slams his hands out towards the arc of wind, allowing a gale of wind to increase the speed of the arc. 

Danzō barely twists out of the way, though the top half of his robe gets destroyed. This makes the Elder have to toss it to the ground, revealing his Sharingan arm to Shisui and Naruto.

Seeing the arm grossed Shisui out. How could Danzō do such a thing? He wasn’t really surprised, as it was totally a Danzō move. But, like, why?

Shisui then activated his Sharingan, activating a quick Genjutsu on Danzō. As the Uchiha did that, Naruto slammed his palms into Danzō’s gut. As the Shimura flies backwards, Naruto appears kicking him in the back of the neck, launching him high into the air.

Naruto unsheathes his tantō. Swinging the blade in a haphazardly fashion, he releases multiple arcs of wind that slam into the Elder, cutting up his body. As Danzō falls Naruto creates two Shadow Clones.

The Shadow Clones then launch the original towards the Shimura, with the Gale Palm. As Naruto speeds through the air, the clones dispel themselves. Reaching Danzō, Naruto slams his tantō through the Elder’s throat, killing him once more. 

Thus allowing one more eye to close. This makes the total number of Sharingan eyes to come to eight. 

Danzō appears behind Naruto, only to get a blade slashed across his chest. He watches as Naruto makes the clone seal. Though seeing no Shadow Clones, he smirks. Well, that was until the Shadow Clone puts him into a full nelson, dropping him through the bridge that was below them, and smashing into the concrete below, where all of his recruits train. 

Danzō though has to use Izanagi once more. Looking at his arm, he sees only two eyes closed. He sighs. The Shimura looks around at his compound. Danzō frowns as all of his recruits that are down here are dead. Before him is Hiruzen. 

This was not going as planned. Especially when Naruto appears above his head, and with a flip, he slams his heel into Danzō’s head, smashing it into the concrete once more. 

Naruto then jumps out of the way, as Hiruzen weaves through a set of hand seals. Ram → Horse → Snake → Dragon → Rat → Ox → Tiger. A stream of fire comes from his mouth, taking the shape of a dragon. The fire dragon then splits itself to strike the target from the left, right, and front all at once. The focused strikes, quickly reducing Danzō to ash upon contact.

However, Danzō uses Izanagi once again to escape damage, reappearing behind Naruto. He grabs the Jinchuuriki by the neck, and slams him into the concrete below face first, knocking him out. 

He was done with the Jinchuuriki’s troublesomeness. To make him use Izanagi twice was an accomplishment though, so he had to commend him on it, but his anger was too high for him to allow him to commend the blonde.

Meanwhile, Hiruzen squinted his eyes at Danzō. He should have been dead after the Katon: Karyū Endan (Fire Release: Fire Dragon Flame Bullet). The four closed eyes on his arm are most likely Sharingan, as well. So that could only mean one thing. Danzō was using the Uchiha clan’s Kinjutsu, the Izanagi. 

Hiruzen sighs, and then sadly asks, “How low have you fallen, old friend?”

Danzō frowns. He answers, “This is for Konoha! This is for peace, under my rule of every Nation!”

Hiruzen replies, “That would cause a fourth shinobi war before peace could ever be achieved, and you should know that.”

Danzō says, “If it is necessary for the rise of Konoha, then so be it. I will do it!”

Hiruzen then says, “And I will kill you before you can!”

 

Chapter Text

 

Danzō frowns at Sarutobi. Who did he think he was? Kill him, yeah right! He only has three eyes closed. Danzō could easily kill Hiruzen before he could close two more of his eyes.

Danzō then says, “Kill me? Ha! You are too weak willed in your old age, Sarutobi. Just look at what happened with Orochimaru, all those years ago. What about Tsunade, huh? Or maybe we could ask you children of your failures as a Tou-san?”

Anger flashes through his features, as Hiruzen doesn’t reply. How could he? After all, Danzō was correct. He has grown soft in his old age. Maybe it was because of his age? Maybe it was his failures? Maybe it was his guilt? It didn’t matter now. 

Why? He was the Hokage, it was as simple as that. And right now, he has a job to do.

Though, before he could move, Shisui appears behind the Shimura, and stabs him in the back through the heart. Seeing Danzō dematerialize, Hiruzen makes his move. And as Shisui blocks a roundhouse kick, Hiruzen grabs the grotesque arm, and rips it from his socket with all his might.

Shisui then grabs onto Danzō’s ankle, slamming him into the concrete. As he bounces, Hiruzen slams his fist into the Elder’s gut. Blood and bile escape Danzō’s mouth, as the Hokage speeds through a set of hand seals. Tiger → Ram → Horse → Snake → Dragon → Rat → Ox → Tiger. He then breathes out a stream of fire, at point blank range, onto the Elder. Burning him to a crisp.

As the Hiruzen cancels the jutsu, Danzō appears before him, with a kunai shoved into the Hokage’s gut. From what Shisui could see, it wasn’t life threatening, but with Danzō, he just couldn’t tell.

Danzō smirks. Ha! He yells, “See Sarutobi? You’re weak! You couldn’t kill me. Your will doesn’t matter, for now, it is my time to shine. My time to be the Hokage of Konoha, and then I will be the only Kage in the world!”

Danzō then rips the kunai from the Hokage’s stomach, and as Hiruzen drops like a sack of flour, he throws it at Shisui, who blocks it with his tantō. Shisui watches as the Elder appears before him, it was a bit shocking. To be this weakened, and still be this strong was quite the feat. 

Though, it would be all for nought, as Shisui locks eyes with him, catching Danzō in another Genjutsu. As darkness covers all of Danzō’s senses, he freezes. He hadn’t expected the Shodai’s signature Genjutsu. This allows the Uchiha to decapitate him for the first and final time. 

Cleaning his blade, Shisui sheathes it, and falls to the ground. He wasn’t tired at all, it was the emotional turmoil, which was a bit too much for him. Seeing Naruto slumped on the ground was not a sight any Teacher wanted to see, and to see his student fight like that was something else, especially with who his opponent was. 

Though, Danzō was overconfident, and it cost him, severally. He looked down on his opponents in a life and death situation. A three v one, was not a fight that the single fighter should get overconfident in. It was, after all, common sense.

As the ANBU bodyguards of the Hokage rushed the man to the hospital, he picked up his student from the ground. He sighed, as he began the trek back to Konoha. 

While Shisui is leaving the compound, a single shinobi kneels in front of Danzō’s body. It was Sai. Tears of unknown origin are flowing down his face. Why? Was he sad? He didn’t think so, but the man was the only father-like figure in his life. It wasn’t saying much, but at least it was something. Did he cry like this when his brother had died? 

ANBU then appears before him, cuffing him, as they Shunshin away. The last thing Sai sees is another ANBU sealing the remains of the one person he could say was his father. 

And for some reason, it was making him so, so angry. Though, he didn’t quite know how to express this sudden eruption of emotion. It causes him to lash out in a tantrum, that makes the ANBU have to knock him out.

It was quite painful to see. The emotionless kid that is now feeling, though he doesn’t know what he is feeling. It was sad, but the ANBU had a job to do, and they would do it. So they escorted the unconscious Sai to T&I.

Walking up to the doors of the Hospital, Shisui dropped to his knees. He was drained. His unconscious student weighed on him. His clan was finally avenged.  And as a nurse rushes to the man, picking up Naruto, he passes out, collapsing onto the floor beneath him.

The next day, Shisui woke up, as a nurse was doing an examination. She says, “Oh, you are awake. You passed out from Chakra exhaustion. I’m surprised you were able to get here, while carrying someone. By the way, he woke up a couple hours ago. You should visit him, he was worried when another nurse told him that you were also in here.”

Shisui nodded at the nurse, as he slowly stood up. His legs were a bit weak, but he could freely move. Making his way to Naruto, he sighed. Everything was alright. His student wasn’t injured. 

Entering the room, Shisui sees the rest of Team Kakashi. Standing next to the Jounin, he sees that Naruto is happily chatting with his teammates. Shisui asks, “So, how is he Kakashi?”

Kakashi answers, “Chakra exhaustion. Much like you. I heard the rumors of what happened, as most Jounin have. And with the Hokage being poisoned, a council meeting has been called for. Me, Gai, Jiraiya, Itachi, and you have been called to attend.”

The Hokage was poisoned? He sighed. Of course Danzō would do such a thing. He would do anything to complete his goals.

The Council has called for him? That is shocking. Shisui asks, “Why?”

Kakashi answers, “Why do you think? We need an acting Hokage, while the Sandaime gets treatment. If the other Villages hear about this, it could very much mean war. In any case. The meeting is in a couple hours, so we should prepare for it. Ja ne.”

Shisui then watches as Kakashi leaves. He was completely shocked. The council thought he could be the Hokage? That was a bit humbling. Though he was brought out of his thoughts, as Naruto calls out to him. 

The only thing different about the blonde was the thin small scar across where his blue eye should have been. It was now just an empty eye socket, and that thought teared at Shisui’s mind. It should have been him.  

Shisui asks, “How are you, Otōto?”

Naruto chuckles. He answers, “Other than my unsavable eye, I’m in top shape. At least that is what the nurse had said.”

Shisui smiled at that. Though, he frowned, as he asks, “Are you going to get a donor to give you a new eye?”

Naruto replies, “Are you going to be giving me one?”

It was a joke, Shisui could tell. Though, he knew that without a doubt that he would give Naruto his right eye. Shisui answers, “If that is what you want, Naruto. It is yours.”

This shocks Sasuke. To give someone out of the Uchiha clan your Sharingan eye. Most Uchiha didn’t like the idea. The Uchiha thought that it was the single most blasphemous thing that they could do. Even Kakashi having one, was to most, something a true Uchiha would never do. 

But, he truly wondered, would Itachi give him his eyes if his own were injured? What if he was blind? Was this something that an older brother did? Sasuke was sure that it was.

As Sasuke walked out, Sakura bid the blonde goodbye, and a wish to get back to doing missions. She has grown stronger, as her teammates have done, and she wanted to prove it to herself and them.

As his teammate leaves, Shisui says, “We will talk about this later. Okay? I have a meeting to attend, and being in this hospital for any longer would be a bad idea. So get well Otōto.”

Naruto nods at Shisui’s request. As his older brother leaves, the Uzumaki smiles a great big smile. He had a family. He has a family that consists of Team 7, Jiraiya, and Shisui.

 

Chapter Text

 

Shisui, along with the rest of the Jounin, stood in the chamber room that the meeting would take place in. The Jounin stood in a line from most likely to least. Jiraiya, Kakashi, Itachi, Shisui, and then Gai. 

It wasn’t based on strength, nor who was more likely to accept the position. It was based on mettle. 

Jiraiya was the student of the Sandaime Hokage, and the teacher of the Yondaime. He is one of the Legendary Sannin. If anything, Jiraiya was the best candidate to be the Hokage. Plus, from what he had heard, Jiraiya had been asked to be the Hokage at least once before.

Kakashi was well known throughout the Shinobi world as the Copy Ninja. A Jounin of the highest caliber. The only living student of the Yondaime Hokage. 

Itachi Uchiha and him were tied as candidates for Hokage. They are even in strength and renown. While he was feared as Shunshin no Shisui, Itachi was known as Sharingan no Itachi. 

Itachi is a master of Genjutsu with no equal. Even the Genjutsu Mistress of Konoha couldn’t keep up. And that was quite telling for her.

And as for Gai, while he was as strong, or even stronger than Kakashi. He wasn’t as well known. He is a master of Taijutsu. Shisui has personally seen Gai open Five of the Eight Gates.

It was then, when the council asked if Jiraiya wanted to be the acting Hokage. Unsurprisingly, he declined. He had more pressing things to do, like research, and train Naruto. Kakashi declined as well. Itachi didn’t really give an answer. Only stating that if it came down to it, he would lay his life down for Konoha and it’s people.

The council then asks him, “Would you like to act as Hokage, in Hiruzen Sarutobi’s absence?”

Shisui thought for a moment. Was he strong enough? Sure. Did he have the mettle? Yeah. In good conscience, could he accept this? No! He couldn’t even protect his student. How could he protect Konoha? Shisui answers, “I’m humbled by the offer, but I can not accept it at this time.”

Gai was humbled as well. Though, he couldn’t accept, as he had to train his team for the upcoming Chunin Selection Exams. 

As the council racked their brains on who could be the Hokage in the Sandaime’s absence, Jiraiya spoke up. He says, “Council. I think that you forget that there is another Sannin that has even more mettle to be Hokage. The granddaughter of the Shodai, and Nidaime. One of my teammates, so she is also a student of the Sandaime.”

One member asks, “Your not talking about who I think you are… Right?

Jiraiya answers, “Of course I am. I am talking about Tsunade Senju. The greatest Medic-nin Konoha has ever produced.  If anyone should be Hokage, it’s her. Plus with her back in Konoha, she can heal Sensei. It will be perfect.”

Another member sighs. They say, “If you want her to be Hokage in the Sandaime’s absence, then so be it, but you will be the one to find her. So we grant you a mission to find her. Bring anyone you see fit that will help you. This is an A-rank mission. Though, the only danger we expect is from Tsunade herself.”

Jiraiya bowed, hiding his smile. He had always kept tabs on the single teammate that was still somewhat loyal to Konoha. From what one of the Toads had told him just minutes before the meeting started, Tsunade was on her way to Tanzaku Quarters. Their is a Gambling festival once a year around this time. It was something that Tsunade wouldn’t skip. 

In fact, there are two things that Tsunade just couldn’t skip. One is obviously the gambling festival, the other Lightning Sake from the Land of the Clouds. It was their premier export. 

Lightning Sake is made by mixing Sake with a little amount of Lightning chakra during the brewing process. The taste was, from what he had heard, electrifying. Sadly Jiraiya has never had the chance to try it.

The Council then called for the end of the meeting allowing for Jiraiya to speak to Shisui, and Kakashi. Jiraiya says, “I’d like to take Naruto with me. It’s the perfect chance for him to learn Minato’s signature jutsu.”

Kakashi was skeptical at the notion. He asks, “I’m not doubting his skill, Jiraiya… But is he ready to learn such a jutsu?”

Shisui then closes his eyes, as he lets out a breath. He sees Naruto in his mind’s eye. The strong and capable shinobi that he is. One that is stronger than Sasuke is now. Especially if he learns the Rasengan. 

The Uchiha then says, “It doesn’t matter if he is ready. It matters about what will come. The Chunin Exams are two months away. We have all seen the horrors that are the Exams. The question is, will he need it? My answer is yes. He doesn’t have a jutsu that is solely meant for offense like the Rasengan is. Most of what I have taught him, jutsu wise, is supplementary. They are helpful, sure… But they are not really meant for offense or defense.”

Kakashi hums in thought. Maybe he should teach Sasuke his own signature. Though, was he mentally ready to learn such a jutsu?

Shisui then says, “Take him. He needs a breath of fresh air, and being in Konoha won’t help, especially with what just happened with Danzō.”

Kakashi nodded at that. Naruto must be shaken up. He could have been put under a Genjutsu to attack Konoha. He could have had the Kyuubi ripped from him. Naruto could have died. 

Jiraiya then says, “I’ll talk to him later, and then we will go in the morning.”

Meanwhile, Naruto was facing off against Sasuke. He needs to get used to his missing eye, and he needs to do so now. So they were sparing. And because of that he was taking too many shots to the right side of his body. It was a weakness that any shinobi couldn’t afford to have.

So when he blocked a kick to the right side of his head with his arms, Naruto smiled. He counters with a punch, and quickly follows it up with another punch that digs into Sasuke’s gut. He then finishes the combo with a roundhouse kick to the side of the head, which Sasuke catches with help from his Sharingan.

Changing his grip on Naruto’s ankle, Sasuke slams him into the ground, cracking it. Only Naruto dispels into a plume of smoke. As Sasuke curses, Naruto lands three lightning quick punches to the Uchiha’s body, snapping around with a kick, which Sasuke parries with his own kick. It allows him to slam his foot into the blonde’s chest, kicking him away.

Using the space that Sasuke had given him, Naruto quickly unsheathes his tantō, swinging it haphazardly, he unleashes several arcs of wind that Sasuke had to dodge. Sasuke then watches as the Uzumaki sheathes the blade, and rushes forward. 

As he rushes forward, Sasuke weaves through a set of hand seals. Snake → Ram → Monkey → Boar → Horse → Tiger, Sasuke then expels a big, fireball, for a Genin, from his mouth. 

Naruto makes a single hand seal, creating a Shadow Clone a few feet in front of him to block the fire Jutsu. Jumping away from the fire, he makes two more clones. They rush around the fireball that had exploded on contact with the first clone. The one on the left goes high, while the one on the right goes low. 

Sasuke dodges the both by scrunching his body as he leaped from the ground. This allows Naruto to slam his fist into the side of Sasuke’s head. Sasuke dispels into a plume of smoke, revealing a shattered log in his place. 

Landing on his feet, Naruto sighes, as a kunai is placed at his throat. Naruto raises his hand in defeat. He chuckles, as he says, “Good one, Sasuke. Wasn’t quite expecting the Kawarimi at the end there, and I had to overcorrect a lot of my movements due to my eye.”

Sasuke sighs, “Speaking of which. You didn’t say what caused you to lose your eye. What happened?”

Naruto sighs as well. He answers, “It was during a classified mission. I’m sure you understand that, but the enemy took out my eye with a kunai, just like the one that you have at my neck.”

Sasuke nodded, sheathing his kunai. He understood. He then asks, “How about we get some ramen, huh? I’ll pay.”

That made Naruto’s single eye widen. If Sasuke was going to pay, he would make this ramen trip so, so, so worth it Sasuke then groaned. He instantly regretted saying that he would pay for the ramen.

 

Chapter Text

 

A couple hours later, Naruto is chilling at Ichiraku’s Ramen. Sasuke had just left. His wallet was completely empty, as he also offered to buy ramen for Sakura, who was already eating at the restaurant.

It was a pleasant thing for Naruto to experience. To be around people that didn’t look at him with half hidden hatred. Especially now that he could literally sense whenever someone was angry inside the village. Sure he could turn it off, but he was so used to using it for his training that he forgot that he could tune it out.

Coughing, Naruto groans. Jiraiya was standing right behind him. He asks, “What do you want, Pervy Sage? Can’t ya see I’m eating ramen?”

Jiraiya sighs at the nickname, but replies, “I have a mission, and I’m taking you with me. Or would you not like to learn a very powerful Jutsu?”

Naruto spins around on the chair. Bribing? Really, Pervy Sage? Such a low blow, in his mind. Though he wondered what the jutsu was? So, he asks, “So, what’s the Jutsu?”

Jiraiya answers, “The Rasengan. It was one of Yondaime's most signature jutsu. It’s called the Rasengan.”

Naruto nodded. Jiraiya wanted to teach him one of his father’s most recognizable jutsu. It was shocking. He didn’t think that anyone would know the technique. Hiruzen said everything was lost. Though, if he was honest with himself, If he created a jutsu, he would show it to his Sensei.

Naruto then asks, “What’s the mission?”

Jiraiya answers, “The mission is an A-Rank. We have to find Tsunade Senju, and bring her back to Konoha. So, wanna come?”

Naruto, lazily shrugs, replying, “I’’l bite. When do we leave?”

Jiraiya says, “The morning, so get some rest.”

Naruto nods, as Jiraiya disappears in a Shunshin. He spins around and continues to devour his ramen with no loss to his gusto.

That night, Naruto is sitting at his table. Across from him is Shisui, who is staring at his scarred eyelid. Naruto understood where this was going, even if he was uncomfortable with his Teacher looking at him like this. The blonde asks, “Is this about what we said in the hospital? About you giving me your eye?”

Shisui nods, fully serious. Pointing to the corresponding eyes, he answers, “ I know you were joking when you first said it, but… If you want this eye, I will give it to you.”

Naruto is wide eyed. He didn’t think Shisui was that serious. His thoughts are then interrupted by Shisui, who says, “It is the job of a Sensei to acknowledge their pupil’s dreams, and help make them a reality. You have said many times before that you want to be the Greatest Hokage of all time. I will help make that dream turn into a reality.”

As Naruto begins to tear up, Shisui then says, “I don’t want you to think I am forcing you or anything. So take your time. Think it over. You should be able to do just that on your mission coming up. I’ll be here when you come back. Give me your answer then. Okay?”

Naruto simply nods. He felt a little overwhelmed. Nobody cared about his dreams like that. Nobody, but himself, dared to make them a reality. He sighs. Naruto could not rush this decision. It was too big of a deal to do so. 

This is the Uchiha Clan’s Kekkei Genkai. This is the Sharingan. This is Shisui Uchiha. This is Shunshin no Shisui, we’re talking about.

Naruto rushes around the table, and collides against Shisui with a hug. He says, “I… Thank you, Shisui-niichan.”

Shisui ruffles the blonde’s hair. He replies, “No problem, Otōto.”

The next morning, Jiraiya stood at Konoha’s massive gate. He was waiting for Naruto, who was walking down the main street towards him. And as the blonde stood in front of him, he ruffled the boy’s hair. Jiraiya then says, “Let’s go! We are wasting time.”

Naruto groans at his messed up hair. Did Jiraiya not know how long it took to get it the way he likes?

Was it a stupid thing to get upset about? Yes. Did It in fact take very little time, to no time at all, to do his hair? Yes, but that wasn't the point. It was the thought that counted, and Jiraiya didn’t even think before he just carelessly messed it up. And that was what annoyed Naruto.

Naruto then asks, “Are we signed out?”

Jiraiya answers, “Of course we are. What do you think I am?”

Naruto flatly replies, “Incompetent.”

Jiraiya sighs. Kettle, pot. Pot, kettle. It was quite the introduction. Though, he verbally ignored the comment. After all, he had it coming.

As the duo leave, they wave to the guards at the gate. It was the friendly thing to do.

 

Chapter Text

 

The next day, The two shinobi stand in a field somewhere in the Land of Fire. Around them is a grouping of trees. Before Naruto could say anything, Jiraiya said, “Today, I will be showing you how to do the Rasengan. As you know the Rasengan is the Yondaime’s signature Jutsu.”

Jiraiya raises the palm of his hand. Naruto watches as chakra begins to spin around in his palm. The spinning chakra then turns into a spinning ball of chakra. Naruto looks on with awe. 

Jiraiya says, “This is the Rasengan. Your Tou-san based it off a Biju Bomb, which is a jutsu only Jinchuuriki, and Tailed Beasts can use. Their are three steps in learning how to use this Jutsu, but first I want to show you what the Rasengan can do.”

Naruto’s jaw drops to the ground, as Jiraiya spins around. The Rasengan grinds through the side of the tree. A shredded hole goes through to the other side of the tree. And before Naruto knew it he was splashed in the face with a water balloon. The blonde blows up in anger. Why did Jiraiya just do that? It was quite annoying, if Naruto said so.

Jiraiya then says, “That water balloon is the first step to mastering the Rasengan. To complete this step, I want you to pop the balloon with just your chakra. Here is an example.”

Jiraiya grabs a water balloon in his hand and begins to spin his chakra. In just a couple seconds, the Sannin pops the balloon. He says, “Now that you have an example, I need to speak to the locals to see if they saw Tsuna-hime. Depending on where she came from, she would have come through here.”

In fact, Jiraiya knows she came through here. His Toad that keeps tabs on her for him said as such. He was only going around to make sure. Also he needed to do some research. He needs to finish his most recent chapter, and quickly. His publisher has been getting on his ass for the past couple days, and it was annoying. He has been in a middle of a bout with writer’s block.

Naruto then watches as Jiraiya places down a bucket full of water balloons, and leaves him to train. He says, “That should be enough balloons for step one. Though, if you need more, just ask.”

For a couple minutes, Naruto just stood there. Sighing, he thought it was stupid. Though, the more he stared at the damaged tree, Naruto sucked it up. If popping balloons could make the Rasengan, and the Rasengan could destroy that tree like that, then popping a couple water balloons seemed worth it.

Grabbing a balloon, Naruto began to channel chakra into the balloon. He then spins the chakra in the balloon. Frustration, and concentration evident on his face, as the balloon only deforms. 

And seconds later the balloon slips from his hands. Naruto walks over, and picks up the balloon. He was now more determined than ever to pop this stupid balloon. Though he yelled, when the balloon soon fell out of his hand once again.

Meanwhile, an ash-gray haired shinobi is kneeling in front of someone, reclining on a stone throne. The man on the throne hisses, “Tell me your report!”

The shinobi says, “Of course, Orochimaru-sama. Danzō is dead. The Sandaime, Shisui, and the Jinchuuriki were admitted to Konoha’s hospital. Both the Uchiha, and the Jinchuuriki awoke the next day. The Sandaime, though, is still under bed rest. I do not know why, as his records are sealed way too tight. Jiraiya has taken the Jinchuuriki to find Tsunade, hoping that she will heal the Sandaime.”

Orochimaru hisses in delight. His plans were coming to fruition. Orochimaru then asks, “How are my forces?”

The shinobi answers, “They will be ready to attack Konoha when the Chunin Exams commence.”

That pleased Orochimaru. It was now his turn, and for this plan to work, he needed to have a nice little chat with the Kazekage. The Snake Sannin was sure that the man would agree to his plan. A sick, demented smirk appeared on his face, as Orochimaru thought of what would happen if the Kazekage didn’t agree.

And as Naruto is training, Jiraiya is chilling in a dango shop. Across from him is the Shopkeeper. Though, as he finished their conversation, the man left to do his job. Jiraiya smiled. Tsunade did in fact come through this village. She even ate at this shop, though she stiffed the Shopkeeper on his tip. Because of course she did.

All throughout the day, Jiraiya had pretty much gotten the same story. Tsunade came through. She then ate and drank, and then paid and left. All without leaving a tip. Sure nobody really tipped in the Land of Fire, but it was a nice gesture for a good time and service. Jiraiya, himself, always tipped the hookers that he visited.

Eating his last bit of dango, Jiraiya paid the Shopkeeper, giving him a bit extra that his former teammate did not, and for the information. A Spy Master’s courtesy, if you will.

Now it was time for some research. Nasty, nasty research. 

Now back with Naruto, he sighed. He has returned to the motel they were staying at, for a break. His hand was hurting. Probably from channeling so much chakra through the area at one time. 

And while the balloon popped, it was not from chakra usage. No, it was from Naruto, who stomped on the thing ten times over. His frustration with the exercise turned into violence. 

Though, as the blonde was watching a cat play with a ball of yarn, his eyes widened. A lightbulb went off, with the perfect idea. Naruto was inspired. Grabbing the bucket of balloons, he rushes off back to the field he was in, and gets to work. 

He looked at this wrong. He was supposed to spin the chakra, but not all in the same way. It was kind of like a way a blade would move to an untrained eye. While it may look erratic, it was anything but. It was uniform, and precise. Steady, and strong.

And so as he channeled chakra through the balloon, Naruto began to spin his chakra each and every way. He watches as the balloon deforms. Then came the pop, as a pouring of water fell from the balloon, deflating it.

Naruto then shouted with glee. He had done it. He had popped the balloon. Though in the middle of his celebration, a hand touches his shoulder, making him jump. Quickly spinning around, Naruto sees Jiraiya standing before him. Jiraiya says, “Good job, Naruto. Though I wasn’t expecting this part to be done so quickly. How did you do it?”

Naruto then goes on to explain it to Jiraiya. All about how he was only spinning his chakra in one direction. Then he went on about the cat, and the ball of yarn, and how the thing was spinning it back and forth between it’s paw. Naruto then says, “It gave me inspiration. So I came back here to test it, and that was my first attempt.”

Jiraiya then smiles, and says, “Now it’s time for the second part of the Rasengan training. Popping a rubber ball! This is harder than step one. So do not get discouraged. Now with that out of the way, I found out that Tsunade did in fact come through here. We will be leaving in the morning. So be ready.”

 

Chapter Text

 

The next day, the duo left the village for Tanzaku Quarters. From Jiraiya’s own estimates they were at least a day behind Tsunade. And as they are walking, Naruto is training. 

He is trying to pop that stupid, stupid, stupid ball. The blonde was sure that if he got any more frustrated that the Kyuubi would show itself. It was either that, or he would pop the thing with his tantō. At this point, it was whichever came first.

Jiraiya placed a hand on his shoulder to calm the boy down. He says, “Take a break, Naruto. I don’t think your hand can take much more chakra.”

Naruto sighed with relief. Placing the ball back into the bucket. His eyes widened. Someone had intent to kill. Intent to kill both him, and Jiraiya. He signaled Jiraiya with ANBU sign language. Jiraiya acknowledged him, with a response. At the motel. Naruto nodded at that.

Up on a hill, in the distance, stood two people. They are watching the duo of Konoha Shinobi travel to the next village. It would be a pity, if the young one cared about either of them. This next village will be their final resting place. In that motel, the Legendary Jiraiya will die!

The young one then says, “We will take the Jinchuuriki at the motel.”

The tall one growled at that in displeasure. His sword was craving the chakra of the Jinchuuriki, just down the hill. And he, much like the young one, wants to kill the duo. From what the tall one knew, the young one has a pretty personal  grudge, and hatred for Jiraiya, and the other two of his ilk. 

He really didn’t care, but what did the Sannin do to him?

The tall one then stares at the young one. He sighs, and finally says, “Fine! We’ll wait. Much better to see the Jinchuuriki surprised in fright, unable to move, as I lop him limb from limb, with Samehada.” 

Darkness erupted around them, and imploding in on itself. And as the darkness turned into nothingness, the two were nowhere to be found.

In the motel room, Naruto is once again training. He has not been able to pop the rubber ball, at all. He has been doing it correctly, Naruto was sure of it. Chakra spinning around in multiple directions. What was the problem? Power? Volume? Density? 

Naruto then loudly cursed. Fuck! That was his problem. He was only using enough chakra to pop the water balloon. 

Pouring chakra into the ball, Naruto begins to spin it around. He then pours more, and more chakra into the ball, increasing the volume and density. With a loud bang, Naruto pops the ball. Throwing the destroyed rubber onto the ground, he jumps high into the air with a shout of victory.

It had been a couple days since Naruto had popped that water balloon. And now, he finally completed part 2. Now he was wondering. What was part three going to be? It probably had nothing to do with popping. He sighed, if that was the case, Naruto would be probably popping a ton of balloons or balls.

A knock rang out on the door. It made Naruto squint his eyes. Jiraiya, like never knocked. He was rude like that. And if he did knock, it was in a special series of events. A slow knock, then a series of fast knocks, and two more slow knocks.

This was a plain old knock, and that is what made the blonde worried. Jiraiya was still out and about. Creating a Shadow Clone, Naruto sends it to the door, before whoever knocked got impatient.

As the clone unlocks the door, Naruto slips through the window. The door opens, as the window closes. In front of the Clone are two people. One is tall, the other looks young, like younger than he is.

The young one is mostly covered in bandages, including his mouth and arms. He has long white hair, pale-white skin, and red eyes. He wears a long black cloak, with red clouds, a red interior, and a chin-high collar. He wears light blue nail polish.

The tall one is a very tall, muscular shinobi. He has a distinctive shark-like appearance, complete with pale blue-gray skin. He has small, round, white eyes, 3 sets of curved facial markings under his eyes, gills on his shoulders, and sharp triangular teeth, the latter of which is a shared trait amongst most of the other members of the Seven Swordsmen of the Mist. He also styled his blue hair in the form of a shark fin. On his fingernails are dark-purple nail polish.

He wears the same cloak as the young one. Though a brown sash is worn across his cloak, probably to hold what he calls a sword that is on his back. His hitai-ate shows the symbol for Kirigakure no Sato, though it’s cross through. It is modified to cover his ears.

Naruto squints his eyes for a moment. He asks, “Are you two, Food Service? I swear if Pervy Sage forgot about the food, I’ll…”

The young one interrupts Naruto, saying, “No…”

Naruto interrupts the young one, by slamming the door in their faces. Through the door, he yells, “Can’t you see the don’t interrupt sign? Leave me alone!”

The young one sighs. The tall one snickers. He whispers, “How rude… Can I chop him up, Hiruko?”

The young one, who is known as Hiruko, says, “For now… We need him alive, Kisame. Though, if you could, break the door down, I’d be glad.”

Kisame sighs, as he walks up to the door, and kicks it open. This starles Naruto, who weaves through a series of hand seals. Snake → Ram → Boar → Horse → Bird → Clap Hands Together. A powerful gale of wind erupts from his hands, knocking over everything around him. 

Kisame blocks the wind with his sword. Even as several blades of wind destroys the bandages that cover it.

As he creates four more shadow clones, the real Naruto is blitzing through the village they are staying at. He has to, has to find Jiraiya. It was his only chance for survival. Listening keenly to his surroundings, Naruto hears the perverted giggle of his Teacher.

Running directly to where the giggle is coming from, Naruto finds Jiraiya. He skids to a stop, as his hands drop to his knees. Huffing, Naruto says, “Room is under attack… Did a Clone switcharooney.”

Jiraiya easily moves the women from him, and stands up. He asks, “Do you know who they are? What are they wearing?”

As Naruto was about to say something, he blinked his eyes in surprise. He says, “I didn’t know who they are, but when they destroyed my clone, it’s like I remembered when they spoke. What they did. What they are wearing. Is this a feature of the Kage Bunshin that I never knew about?”

Jiraiya smiles, “I was wondering when you would find out about this. The Kage Bunshin no Jutsu was originally created by the Nidaime Hokage, Tobirama Senju. The original purpose was that it was supposed to be used for spying. When a clone dispels, It’s memories return to you, as does a portion of it’s chakra. Now, I wouldn’t abuse this if I were you, as it could damage your brain quite badly.”

Naruto then asks, “If the Kage Bunshin did that, then how come I never found out about it?”

Jiraiya answers, “Could be because during a fight, you aren’t paying attention, or you are just too close to seeing what the Bunshin does, that your mind ignores it. Or it could be that having a Bunshin dispel like that is very traumatic, and your brain just locks it away. I do not know, and would have to look into it more. Now, who attacked you?”

Naruto answers, “Two guys, one short and the other is tall. Tall one is named Kisame. While the short one is called Hiruko. They wear black cloaks with red clouds on them.”

Jiraiya replies, “Kisame Hoshigaki: the Tailless Tailed Beast. The Monster of Kirigakure. Now tell me, Hiruko… What does he look like, that name, it sounds familiar.”

Naruto says, “White hair, white skin, red eyes. Why?”

Jiraiya answers, “Because, If I am correct, Hiruko used to be a Konoha Shinobi.”

Naruto then asks, “What happened?”

Jiraiya answers, “Remember the scroll that you stole, well it is filled with some of the most dangerous Jutsu that has come from Konoha, and it’s shinobi. It is filled to the brim with knowledge on Kinjutsu, and fuinjutsu that can revive the dead.” 

Jiraiya then pauses for a bit, and then says, “Their is a work in progress Kinjutsu that Hiruko stole from the scroll. A Kinjutsu that could copy Kekkei Genkai, or at least the effect of one. I don’t quite remember, but it never worked. But still, due to that certain Kinjutsu, the Sannin were sent after him. I’m sure I don’t need to tell you what happened next, to make you understand.”

Naruto shook his head. Jiraiya really didn’t need to say more. He understood. 

With that out of the way, Jiraiya then says, “It’s best to get some disguises, get our stuff, and then head towards Tsunade. Did you complete part 2 of the Rasengan training?”

Naruto says, “I did, right before I was attacked. So what is part 3?”

Jiraiya replies, “I’ll tell you after we get out of this village, and get a new motel room, Preferably in Tanzaku Quarters, which is where Tsunade is supposed to be, right now.”

Chapter Text

 

Naruto sighs, as they walk out of the village, with the rest of their things. A lot had been damaged during the fight between the two missing-nin and his clone’s. 

He didn’t know what group they belonged to. And he still didn’t know why they wanted him, in particular. Probably for the Kyuubi that is sealed into him? But why? Just to take it? That would seem pointless. World domination? Well that depends on if they want all of the Tailed Beast or not.

Naruto asks, “What group are they apart of? Why me?”

Jiraiya sighs. He says, “I forgot to mention this earlier… But they are members of the Akatsuki. They want to capture all the Biju. I don’t know why, but it’s probably for world domination. I first heard rumors about them, when I was around Iwagakure, and Amegakure. You are not ready to fight them, every member is an S-Rank missing-nin. So if you see any of them, run. I don’t care where to… Just run! Now the festival Tsunade’s attending will be finished in a day, we better make sure that we get there in time.” 

Meanwhile, as a hologram, Hiruko and Kisame stand around seven other individuals, who are also seen as a hologram. Each one looked different, despite all wearing the same cloak. 

One has slanted blue eyes and long golden blond hair which he wore drawn into a half ponytail with the rest hanging down freely. Bangs hang over his left eye. His hitai-ate has a trach through it, though the symbol was covered by his hair. He wears black nail polish.

Two has medium-length gray hair that was slicked back and distinctive purple eyes. His cloak is open revealing that he wears no shirt, along with his crossed out Yugakure forehead protector around his neck and Jashin amulet.

Three is a very tall (easily standing as the second tallest member of Akatsuki), tan-skinned man with long dark-brown hair. His eyes had an unusual coloring: green irides, no pupils and red sclerae. Noticeably, despite his advanced age, he still appears as a man well within his prime, retaining a very muscular build. 

He dons a gray hood which covers his hair, along with a black face mask. He also wears brown nail polish.

Four has short, straight blue hair with a bun, amber eyes with lavender eyeshadow, and a black labret piercing. A light blue paper flower was clipped in her hair. She wears orange nail polish.

Five has short spiky orange hair and ringed light purple eyes. He also has six piercings. A metal bar through each ear, three studs through the side of its upper nose, and one spike stud on each end of the bottom lip. He also has three piercings on each wrist, at least one on its upper wrist and some just under his neck. His face is a little pale. 

He wears a necklace, and red nail polish.

Six is a man, with a hunched over figure. He wears a bandana-like face mask, and has black cornrows. He wears teal nail polish. 

Seven has the two Venus flytrap-like extensions that emerged from their sides, enveloping their head and upper body as a shell, which they were able to open and close. Below this, they has short green hair, and a single yellow eye. The right side of his face is black, with the left side, with the eye, is white.

They wear pink nail polish on their hands, and blue nail polish on their feet.

Five asks, “Have you failed your mission, where is the Kyuubi Jinchuuriki?”

Hiruko answers, “We are sorry, Leader-sama. We have failed. The Kyuubi Jinchuuriki  tricked us with a Kage Bunshin no Jutsu.”

Five, or otherwise known as the Leader of the Akatsuki, sighs. He says, “We were told he was weak. Last in his class. How does a Genin trick you two?”

Hiruko says, “Jiraiya is with him. We also spied him talking about his Nii-san, Shisui Uchiha teaching him before then.”

Leader hms in thought. He says, “That is fine. The Jinchuuriki is stronger than we thought. You two will go after another Jinchuuriki. Your new mission is to go after the Yonbi Jinchuuriki. The rest continue what you were doing. Hidan, Kakuzu, you two go after the Gobi! We will meet again, when you four complete your missions. I expect no failures.”

Then one after the other, the eight of them say, “Yes, Leader-sama!”

The next day, the duo made it to Tanzaku Quarters. With the festival winding down, Naruto didn’t get to experience much. But what he did see, though, was enough. He didn’t celebrate most, or rather any festivals in his youth, as most out right hated, or ignored him. It was easier that way, for all parties involved. 

Though right now, Naruto sat on one of the beds in the motel. In front of him stood a bucket of balloons. It was time to start part 3 of the training, and he had called it. He fucking called it. He had to contain the chakra inside of the balloon, without it popping. Naruto just knew that this would suck.

Jiraiya had just left the motel. He wanted to make sure that Tsunade was still in town. Naruto sighed, Jiraiya had sounded so confident that she was here, so he was probably looking for some women to spend some time with.

That made the blonde sigh once more. Grabbing a balloon, he got to work training.He wouldn’t make progress, if he didn’t start somewhere. And in any case, with the last two parts completed, this should be a piece of cake. 

Though, he probably just jinxed himself. Naruto then concentrates on the balloon, channeling chakra into it. And as he begins to spin the chakra around… 

POP!

Naruto curses. He barely had any time to actually start spinning the chakra, before it just exploded on him. Okay, this was going to be way harder than he thought it would be.

That night, Jiraiya decided on going out to eat, instead of getting food service. Especially with how last time went. Seeing as he was almost attacked, and kidnapped the last time, anyone could see why they were going to eat at a more open place.

The place, as Naruto finds out, is a bar. Why? Well, because Tsunade is an alcoholic. So, it is obvious that they should be at a bar. It was a “one stone, two birds” situation. 

Though, what the both of them didn’t realize, until they walked in, was that Tsunade was in the first booth, along with her assistant, and a pig. Naruto sees her for the first time, and is exactly like how Jiraiya described her appearance.

Tsunade is a fair-skinned woman with brown eyes and straight blonde hair that parts above her forehead. Her hair has shoulder-length bangs that frame her face and the rest reaches her lower-back. Her hair is tied into two loose ponytails. 

A violet diamond sits in the middle of her forehead. Must be a seal of some sort.

Tsunade wears a grass-green haori with the kanji for "gamble" (賭) on the back, inside a red circle. Underneath she wears a gray, kimono-style blouse with no sleeves, held closed by a broad, dark bluish-gray obi that matches her pants. Her blouse is closed quite low, revealing her sizable cleavage. She wears open-toed, strappy black sandals with high heels. She has red nail polish on both her fingernails and toenails and uses a soft pink lipstick. She wears the First Hokage's necklace.

Tsunade frowns as she looks up, after Jiraiya gets her attention. A sigh escapes from her lips. Her mood has been forever ruined. And after they sit down, she asks, “What do you want, you Pervert?”

Chapter Text

 

Tsunade’s assistant, Shizune watches as Jiraiya sits down. So does Naruto, who follows closely behind him. Jiraiya asks, “Can’t former teammates just casually hangout?”

Tsunade eyes Naruto. She sighs. He looked like him. She asks, “What’s with the brat? Thought you stopped taking students after Minato?”

Jiraiya scoffs. He asks, “Who do you think that this brat is?”

Tsunade looks him up and down. She simply scoffs. It irritated Naruto. Tsunade then asks, “Now tell me why you two are here?”

Jiraiya answers, “Danzō finally acted. He poisoned Sensei, and attacked a Jounin, along with the Jinchuuriki of the Kyuubi. The council would also like you to act as Hokaga, while Sensei is hurt.”

Tsunade eyes Naruto. His single eye told the whole story. The whiskers did help as well, though. Tsunade nonchalantly says, “And what does this have to do with me? The Hokage is a fool’s errand. A job that ends in a young death!”

Before Jiraiya could answer, Naruto’s eye flashed crimson. Slamming his fist down onto the table, cracks forming under the fist. He says, “Aren’t you Tsunade Senju? The greatest Iryo-nin alive? How the mighty have fallen, or have you forgotten your vow as a medic?”

Naruto then scoffs. The look of rage flashed through Tsunade’s eyes. Who did that little brat think he was? That is what she is probably thinking. 

He says, “My name is Naruto Uzumaki, and all I see is a washed up old hag. Hokage? Fool’s errand? A job that ends in young death? A Shinobi’s job is to fight, kill, and die for their village… Right? Isn’t that what the Hokage does as well? Do as the Shinobi under his command would do? This is pointless, Pervy Sage… Let’s go!”

Tsunade scoffs once again. She asks, “Why is the position of Hokage so important, you stupid brat?”

Naruto answers, “You should know the answer to that question already, Senju. After all, aren’t you the granddaughter of the Shodai Hokage, as well as the grandniece of the Nidaime Hokage?”

As Naruto got up to leave, Tsunade grabbed him by the collar, and pulled him so they could see eye to eye. She smirks, as she says, “What… Are you leaving so early? Where are the balls you had to call me a “washed up old hag” go? How about a bet, you brat?”

Naruto returns the smirk. He answers, “What’s the terms, Legendary Sucker?”

Jiraiya giggles, as Shizune looks worried. Tsunade then grows a tick mark, as her fist clenched into a fist. She says, “How about this, okay? We fight. I will use a single finger. If you can hit me, just once, I’ll return to Konoha with you two, and give you this necklace. If not, you will leave me alone, and I get all the money in your wallet. Got that!?”

Naruto smirks. He yells, “You got yourself a deal!”

As Tsunade drags Naruto out of the bar, Shizune looks towards Jiraiya. She asks, “Shouldn’t we stop them, Jiraiya-sama?”

Jiraiya looks at Shizune. He remembers when the girl left Konoha with Tsunade. 

Shizune is a fair-skinned woman of average height and slender build with onyx eyes and jet-black hair; her hair is straight and shoulder-length with bangs that cover her ears and frame her face.

Normally, Shizune is seen in a long bluish-black kimono with white trimmings, held closed by a white obi, and open-toed sandals with low heels. She, however, doesn't wear a hitai-ate.

He says, “Hello to you too, Shizune. It’s been a while hasn’t it?”

Shizune says, “It’s nice to see you, as well… But, shouldn’t we stop them?”

Jiraiya sighs at the question she has asked twice. He answers, “No, It is best for them to see each other’s view on the same topic. Sometimes to do that, it is best to fight it out. That doesn’t mean that we can’t limit their destruction.”

Shizune nods, holding a pig in her arms, as she follows Jiraiya out of the bar. They will pay for their food later. At least, that is what she hopefully thought. Tsunade was known to skip paying a meals tab, once in a while, after losing too much when gambling.

Standing outside, Shizune watches as Naruto dodges a finger strike to the ground. And as the ground splits into two, Naruto tosses a couple shuriken to distract the Sannin. Though she broke each of them with a flick from her finger.

As Naruto lands, he makes a couple Shadow Clones, and sends them after her. Ducking under a poke that would surely destroy it, at the last second, the clone does a quick jab to her stomach. When she realizes this, she jumps away from him. His fist barely touched her top, much less her stomach.

The Second clone jumps off the first, hoping to do a jumping knee that would land on her chin. She blocks it with her finger. Using the same finger, she slammed the clone into the ground, dispelling it.

The third and fourth clones stay behind, as they weave through hand seals. As they clap their hands, Naruto jumps into the air. The clones then slam the condensed air into the soles of his sandals. 

Naruto growls in victory. It was now or never. As he shoots forward, he moves so fast, it’s like tunnel vision. His right hand then begins to channel chakra. Tsunade’s eyes widen, as she sees the Rasengan in the blonde’s hand. 

He was going too fast. She would have to use more than a finger. 

Tsunade brings her finger back, forming a fist, to block the attack. And as she throws her fist forward, Naruto twists his body, dodging the attack. He then slams the ball of chakra right into Tsunade’s stomach. As it grinds into her stomach, the Rasengan propels Tsunade across the ground. It then bursts, causing her to fall on her back, yelling in pain.

Shizune then blitzes to her master's side. Flashing some hand seals, she places her hands over Tsunade’s stomach. As her hands glow green, Naruto and Jiraiya watch as the wound heals itself.

Tsunade groans, as she slowly sits up. She sighs, and then says, “You hit me, brat. A bet is a bet. I come with you. I hate losing, but you proved me wrong tonight. Come here. Let me give you this necklace.”

Though, as she looks down to take the necklace off, she freezes in terror, at the sight of her own blood. It makes everyone else freeze, as well. Except Naruto. It was only blood. Was she afraid of it? 

He sighs. Naruto then walks up to her, and slaps her. As she jolts in shock, she stares at Naruto, who slices his hand open. He then shows her his blood. As she goes to turn away, Naruto makes two clones, who force her to stare at the blood.

Naruto says, “When we return to Konoha, you will have to operate on Hokage-jiji. If the rest of his doctors can’t heal him… No offense, but Shizune won’t be able to either. Look at my blood, and conquer your fear. Conquer your fear, just like how you conquered the medical field. Conquer your fear.”

With what felt like hours, Tsunade stared at the drying, and dripping blood. 

She sighs, and softly back hands the bloodied hand away from her face. Tsunade had enough. Just like the blonde had told her, she conquered her fear. He really did just look like her brother. 

Tsunade says, “Don’t expect any “thank yous”, you brat… But your right. Thank you, Naruto.”

Tsunade then grabs the necklace. She says, “I got this from my Grandfather. In turn, I gave it to two special people, who wanted to become Hokage. They never got the chance. So, with this necklace, I am believing in your dream. You did want to become Hokage, right?”

Naruto looks at his feet, as Tsunade puts the necklace of the Shodai Hokage around his neck. What he really wanted to do was protect his home. Being Hokage would be the best bet for him to do so. With determination, he answers, “I do want to become Hokage, Baa-chan.”

The two people watching this, smile. The moment between them, would be forever remembered for the rest of their lives.

Tsunade, though, frowns, as she was called that. She knew that she was old, god damn it! Jiraiya then laughs, as she flicks Naruto hard in the forehead. And as he flies off into the distance, Tsunade turns to him. A smile that was a bit too sweet sat on her lips. She asks, “Do you want another beating too, Pervy Sage?”

Jiraiya drops into a crouch, and as a depressing mood settles over him, Tsunade just laughs. It was just like old times. 

This allows Shizune to laugh, as well. She has never seen her master laugh so freely. It made her happy.

As Tsunade is laughing, she sighs. She was returning to Konoha. This was a place that she told herself that she’d never return to. Would it still feel like home? Like it used to? Or would it feel like despair, like when her brother and her lover died?

Chapter Text

 

It was like any other day, for the guards of Konoha’s mighty gate. The mighty Kotetsu Hagane, and Izumo Kamizuki. Both are former ANBU, not that they want you to know that. Because they don’t.

Kotetsu has long, spiky, black hair and dark eyes. He has a strip of bandage running across the bridge of his nose and a black colored strip on his chin. He wears the standard attire of a Konoha shinobi complete with a hitai-ate and a flak jacket. 

Izumo has brown hair, and dark eyes. His hair is combed down and always covers his right eye. He wears his hitai-ate like a bandanna along with the standard Konoha shinobi outfit which goes all the way up to his chin, and a flak jacket.

They were just shooting the shit, as they worked. Their shift was ending in a couple hours. You see, Kotetsu and Izumo are only two of eight people who guard the gate. Every pair of guards guard the gate for six hours each.

While Kotetsu was the more immature, and childish one, he noticed the advancing figures on the horizon. Notifying his partner. They watched as the figures became more distinct in their appearance. There were five people and a pig.

Wait… Was that Tsunade? The Tsunade? The greatest medical ninja alive? She was back? Didn’t know they would come back so soon. Their mission was stated for at least a month and a half, at least that is what Jiraiya wrote, when the checked out. It is just over a month. 

In Naruto arms is a pig. The pig, who must be Tsunade’s, is of a light pinkish color, much like any other ordinary pig. Her cheeks blush in a darker shade of the same tint as her skin. She is always seen wearing a pearl collar and a dark red jacket.

They watched, as the blonde petted the little pig on her head. The guards chuckle at the scene. It was kinda cute. It was like a little kid interacting with a puppy for the first time. 

Jiraiya then chuckled as the pig oinked in satisfaction. Though, if only the blonde would scratch behind her ear. Tonton just loved that.

Shizune was a bit glad at not having to carry Tonton. Don’t get her wrong, she loved the pig to death, but carrying it all the time was taxing.

As Jiraiya walks up to check them back in. Kotetsu says, “Welcome back Tsunade-sama.”

Tsunade simply nodded, as Izumo says, “We notified the council of your return. And seeing that Tsunade is here, you have good news to tell them.”

Jiraiya says, “If she wants to become Hokage… That’s between Sensei and her.”

Tsunade sighs. She says, “I’ll heal Sensei, while you go please the council. Shizune, follow me!”

As Shizune follows her master, the pig scurries from Naruto’s arms. The pig then runs off, following Shizune. That made Naruto pout, playfully. And as he gets patted on his head by Jiraiya, the man says, “Go hang out with your friends, you little brat.”

Naruto perks up at this, and rushes off into the heart of Konoha. He was hungry, and Ichiraku’s ramen was calling his name. 

Jiraiya then sighs. This was going to be fun. He disappeared in a Shunshin, so he could get to the council faster. The Sannin didn’t want to waste any more of his time on them. He had to send in his most recent chapter. It was just finished, and he wanted to celebrate by doing research. 

Jiraiya stands before the council. He says, “Tsunade has returned.”

A council member then asks, “Then where is she? We would have hoped that she would come to see us.”

Jiraiya gains a frown at this remark. They don’t care about the Hokage. They only care about the longevity of Konohagakure. He answers, “She is probably at the hospital right row, looking over Sensei. After all, he isn’t dead. Just poisoned. Now. If that is all, I’d like to celebrate a mission well done?”

Another council member says, “You are dismissed, Jiraiya. Have a good day.”

Meanwhile, Naruto has made his way to the sacred ramen stand, Ichiraku’s ramen. Though in his spot, sat a kid. 

The kid has short spiky brown hair, blue eyes, and a small chip in his tooth. A blush is on his cheeks, probably from all the godly ramen he is eating. Around his neck is a long blue scarf. On his head, wait, that looks familiar… It was a pair of goggles that looked exactly like the pair that he used to wear. His clothing consists of gray shorts and a yellow shirt with a red Konoha symbol printed on it.  

Naruto smiles. It is Konohamaru. He hadn’t seen him in a long while. Too busy doing missions, and training. 

He then spies that closet pervert, Ebisu. Ebisu has been portrayed as having dark hair and brown eyes and is never seen without his trademark sunglasses. Usually he is seen in the standard Konoha shinobi outfit, albeit without the flak jacket. He also wears his hitai-ate like a bandanna. 

Sitting down on the opposite side of Ebisu, Naruto pats Konohamaru on the head. He then chuckles, and asks, “How has it been, Kono!”

Konohamaru then gets rigid, in anger, about to yell at the person who touched him. He wasn’t a germaphobe, not in the slightest, but he was just eating. It was annoying to get interrupted in the middle of a good meal.

Then Konohamaru sees that it is Naruto, and gets excited. It had been so long! He says, “Tell me a story, Nii-chan!”

Naruto chuckles, as Ayame walks back to her father, to tell him that Naruto was here. The blonde thinks for a bit. He sighs, and then says, “Of course, Kono. I can always tell you a story.”

And so, Naruto begins to tell Konohamaru, about his most recent mission. The one to find Tsunade. How he tricked two super strong missing-nin, and won a bet against Tsunade Senju. He told her how they fought, and how she could crack the earth with a single finger.

Konohamaru was enamored with every word that Naruto spoke. How could that Senju lady be so strong? And what was that attack the Naruto used to defeat such a strong woman? Rasun… No! Resan… No! Rasengan… Yeah, that is what it was called.

Naruto told him that it was a spinning ball of chakra that is held in your hand. He left it at that. Told him that he was too young to learn such a Jutsu, as it is an A-Rank Jutsu. Naruto also told him that when he graduated, he might teach it to him. It was something the young Sarutobi could look forward to doing in the coming years.

The blonde’s ramen was then placed in front of him. A steaming extra-large bowl of miso ramen. It was by far his favorite flavor.

Teuchi says, “From what I heard, that was some mission, huh?”

Naruto replies, “It sure was, Dattebayo!”

Teuchi then says, “I heard that the Chunin Exams are coming up soon. In a couple of weeks actually. You’re participating, right? If you get promoted, come here. Your first couple of bowls will be on the house. Okay!”

Naruto nods, he was too busy enjoying his ramen to really listen. But, he heard “bowls”, and “on the house”. That meant one thing… Free ramen! It made him hollar in excitement.  Naruto says, “Will do, Teuchi-jij!”

Teuchi then sighs at the suffix. How dare he call him an old man!? The owner, though, let it go. He couldn’t scare off his best customer, now could he?

Chapter Text

 

Shisui sits across from Naruto. He asks, “So… Now that you are back. What are your thoughts about me giving you my eye?”

Naruto sighs. He has been thinking about this. He even talked to Kakashi about it. Kakashi said that it leached chakra from him, and put a lot of strain on his body. That is how it is for everyone who gets a Sharingan implanted into them. But the boon it gave, was generally worth it. 

In the end, Kakashi told him that it was up to him. Only he could make this decision. Though, he is worried, and he worries hard. Was this the right decision?

Naruto knew that Shisui would do anything to keep him alive. But, how could he, when he himself is going to weaken the man. The Uzumaki then sighs. 

He answers, “Shisui-nii. I’ll gladly use your eye.”

Shisui replies, “That is great. Tsunade has offered to implant it for us. I’ll go tell her.”

Naruto then asks, “Isn’t she the Hokage? Does she even have time to implant the eye?”

Shisui answers, “Tsunade isn’t Hokage, just yet. Sandaime-sama is going to give her the hat, after the Chunin Exams pass. Right now, she is just running the hospital. Speaking of the Chunin Exams, I won’t be teaching you anything new, other than how to use the Sharingan, when you get it. It won’t be helpful, if you don’t know how to use it.”

Shisui then gets up and goes to leave. Only, he stops at the door, and says, “Also don’t forget about the training with your team. I heard from Kakashi that it is another cross team training situation. So hurry up! I wouldn’t want to be late If I were you.”

Naruto sighs, speaking of training. Learning Fuinjutsu was going good. Way better than he thought he was doing. He had a perfect jutsu to try out during training. 

His sensing is good, not great or amazing. It was good enough for him to consciously use it, and use it well. Like when he sensed those two Akatsuki members. They could have at least tried to control their murderous intent. He could sense it from a couple hundred meters away.

Naruto got ready, and went to the training grounds that Team 7 used. Kakashi, along with his team, was already there. So is Team 8, along with their leader. 

Kakashi then says, “Your late Naruto. What kept you?”

Naruto answers, “Forgot! Sorry Sensei. So, I am guessing that this is going to be similar to what we did with Team 10, right?”

Kakashi replies, “It is exactly the same, Naruto. Now, I am sure that you all know Team 8, but reintroduce each other. Names only should be fine. And after that, I’ll tell you exactly what will be going down today.”

Team 8 consists of Hinata Hyuga, Shino Aburame, and Kiba Inuzuka along with his nin-ken Akamaru. Their Sensei is Kurenai Yuhi.

Hinata is a slender girl of fair-complexion who, as a Hyuga, her most distinguishing trait is the Byakugan, giving her featureless white eyes, with a tinge of lavender around the edges. She has dark blue hair that she keeps in a forehead-length hime-cut. On each side are two chin-length strands of hair that frame her face.

Hinata usually wears a cream-coloured hooded-jacket with a fire symbol on the upper sleeves and fur around the cuffs and hem. She also wears navy blue pants and keeps her hitai-ate loosely around her neck.

Shino is a fair-skinned man and the tallest member of his graduating class. He has dark, bushy, brown hair and dark, sharp eyes. As with other members of his clan, Shino constantly keeps his eyes covered to others, as even his teammate did not know what his eyes truly looked like. He is regularly seen sporting the same style as the rest of his clan, consisting of dark round sunglasses and a sea-green jacket with a high, upturned collar. 

Kiba's personality and fighting style is further complemented by his wild appearance as, while clearly human, he has several physical traits more akin to animals. Like most of his clan, he has messy brown hair, sharp black eyes with vertical slit-like pupils, pronounced canine teeth, and nails that he can change into claws. He also has the distinctive red fang markings of the Inuzuka clan on his cheeks.

Kiba's attire consists of dark grayish pants reaching to his calves and a gray, hooded fur-lined coat, with the hood usually placed on his head, over an apparent plate of armor and fishnet undershirt with a blue hitai-ate and blue sandals.

Akamaru is a small puppy with white fur, and resembles a Great Pyrenees, regularly carried on Kiba's head or inside his jacket. Akamaru's eyes are usually squinted, appearing closed, and he has a brown nose, as well as brown patches on his ears and a brown outline around his mouth. His fur on top of his head is styled to somewhat resemble a mohawk. 

Kurenai Yuhi is a fair-skinned woman of slender build. She has long black untamed hair reaching her upper back, and very unique eyes that are red in color, with an additional ring in them. She wears make-up consisting of red lipstick and purple eyeshadow. 

Her regular outfit consists of a red mesh armor blouse with only the right sleeve visible. Overall, this is very broad material which resembles bandages with a pattern on it similar to those of rose thorns. Her hands and upper thighs are also wrapped in bandages and she wears the Konoha hitai-ate and regular shinobi sandals. 

As the two Jounin are speaking, so are the teams. Hinata stood behind her teammates, even as Naruto stood there. She was just ready to talk to him, but that scar… It scared her. What happened? Is Naruto all right?

Naruto picks up on it. He turns to face Hinata, as she begins to heavily blush. He says, “I’m fine, Hyuga-chan.”

Just saying that made Hinata rigid. The pace of her heart raced, as the blood rushed to her head. Kiba had to use all of his strength to keep her standing, just by her shoulder. 

As did Shino, who continued to cordially speak with Sasuke. Kiba was speaking with Naruto, as Sakura and Hinata were speaking with each other.

Kakashi then cuts everyone off from their conversation. He says, “As my team knows, you two teams are going to be doing an exercise together. It will be just like last time. Team 8 will be trying to capture me, and take out Team 7 in the process. It is a three v three. I will be the client, our goal is on the other side of the training grounds. Kurenai will be there at the goal watching over everything. Do we all understand?”

With a nod, everyone got into their positions. Team 7 is walking through the training ground in a diamond formation. A Shadow Clone is in the back. The Naruto in front then stops everyone, as a spinning drill, named Kiba flies right in front of Naruto.

The spinning drill, named Akamaru, follows shortly after Kiba, which Naruto ducks under. Hinata then tried to speed past Naruto, but both he and Sasuke stopped her, and threw her towards Sakura. Sakura catches her around the waist, and suplexes her straight into the dirt below. As she jumps to her feet, a cloud of insects block her path towards Hinata. 

Kiba then throws himself back at Naruto, who switches himself out with the Shadow clone. The Inuzuka gets up to his feet, only for a couple kunai to fly past him. He begins to chuckle, as Naruto misses. Kiba didn’t see the smirk on the Uzumaki’s face, as he pulled on ninja wire, making the kunai wrap around Kiba, trapping his arms to his sides.

Akamaru then comes to his partner’s rescue, attempting to slam into Sasuke. He dodges this, as he jumps to the side. The Uchiha throws a single kunai in the dog’s direction. And as Akamaru stops spinning, the kunai slices one of the dog’s tendons, dropping him to the ground. It should stop him for quite a while.

This makes Kiba shred the ninja wire with his elongated claws. He jumps towards Sasuke, though Naruto jumps in before Kiba could slice him open. Naruto blocks the claws with his tantō.

Naruto then goes on to block three more strikes. He even cuts Kiba’s cheek, as well as several different places on his body. With a pause in the action, Kiba asks, “”So when did the Dead-last get so good?”

Naruto answers, “It was when people cared enough to teach me.”

Naruto then slams his fist into Kiba’s stomach, launching him into a roundhouse kick from Sasuke. As Sasuke knocks Kiba out, Sakura has been dodging attack after attack from Shino. She was feeling a bit drained as well. 

Sakura usually doesn’t feel as drained as she is from just Taijutsu. Shit! One of his insects is already on her. Jumping away from the bugman, Sakura readies her hands to weave hand seals for a Genjutsu. Though before she could even start, her teammates threw kunai and shuriken at Shino.

Shino then says, “I am sorry, Team 7… But I have won.”

Sasuke scoffs, as he asks, “Why do you think that? It’s three on two now?”

Though Sasuke loses his balance, and has to take a step forward. Naruto frowns. Naruto says, “Your insects have been on us from the very beginning, haven’t they? We fell into your trap, and we fell hard!”

Shino answers, “That is quite an observation Naruto. After all, it is the correct one. Now if you would please surrender, I’d appreciate it.”

Naruto, though, smirks. He was too confident, and that worried Shino, just a bit. Before he knew it, four Shadow Clones rushed from the trees to attack Shino. A punch to the face, an elbow to the side, a low spinning kick to the ankle, and finally a palm thrust into Shino’s chest. It is a combo that Shino gets knocked out from. 

Only the Shino that is knocked out turns into a bunch of insects, and disperse into the air. He then reforms behind Naruto to put a kunai up to his throat. Though Naruto counters with a kick to Shino’s head, that drops him to the ground.

Now it was three to one. Poor Hinata! 

She stands up, and stands her ground. She was ready to fight. Hinata was ready to fight for her down teammates. She was ready to begin! A single thrust into Sakura’s stomach, and she was down for the count. Two more attacks landed on Sasuke, who dropped to his knees. He was too tired. Too drained of his chakra to continue.

It was now one v one. Hinata versus Naruto. She hesitated though. She couldn’t fight Naruto. She couldn’t fight her crush. Naruto sees this. He knows this. So he yells, “You can do this!”

She gets her fighting spirit back in an instant, and rushes Naruto, who dodges the first attack. He blocks the second, and counters the third with his own attack. As she backs off to create distance for herself, a kunai cuts her cheek. 

On top of her is Naruto, who goes on the offensive this time. Hinata does her best to dodge and block. It was too much, too different. And the amount always changed. She couldn’t tell if she was fighting Naruto or if it was just a clone. The real Naruto then gets behind her, and places his tantō at her neck. He says, “Good job, Hyuga-chan. Your team almost had us their, for a moment. Could you congratulate them when they wake up?”

Hinata simply nods. She couldn’t trust herself to speak. Naruto was too close, her cheeks were too red. And as soon as Naruto sheathed his blade, Hinata passed out.

Kurenai then appears in front of everyone. She looks at Kakashi, and then back at the only Genin standing. It shocked her. She was sure that her team could win this. What happened?

Kakashi says, “Shino underestimated the amount of chakra Naruto has, as well as his ingenuity. He is almost unpredictable in a fight. Getting trained by three top tier Jounin also helps.”

Kurenai asks, “Three?”

Kakashi nods, “Me, Shisui, and Jiraiya.”

Kurenai could only widen her eyes in shock. Jiraiya!? She wasn't one for gosip, but how did she not hear about that one? Jiraiya is one of the Legendary Sannin. One of only four people to ever survive a conflict against Hanzo the Salamander. 

Kakashi then says, “Team 7 won, you can go your separate ways for today. This was all I planned for today.”

Kakashi and Kurenai pick up their students, and send them to the hospital. It was small things, but the Chunin Exams were around the corner, and every Jounin she talks to wants to enter their team. It was better to be safe than sorry.

Naruto then walks off the training ground. He sighed. The blonde couldn’t try out that jutsu that he wanted. 

Shisui then appears in front of him and takes him to god knows where, in a shunshin. Naruto found himself in front of the Konoha Hospital. Standing in front of the door is Tsunade. She says, “Let’s get this shit over with, Brat! I have more important things to be doing than implanting an eye into a Genin’s head!”

Naruto smiles, as she grabs the both of them, and drags them through the hospital.

 

Chapter Text

 

The Chunin Exams are just in three days. Three days. Genin from every major and minor village were starting to enter Konoha. From what Kakashi knows one Suna team has already entered the village. 

His own team has been training over time to make sure that they had everything the needed on lock down the past month. Naruto and Sasuke with their Sharingan.  Sakura with some Doton, and Genjutsu. 

Sakura also knew how to clean, and dress a wound. Any sort of medical jutsu was still out of her grasp, as of yet. She was hoping to learn under Tsunade. Time will only tell for that, but she does have the skill for it.

He sighed, as he stood along all of the Jounin that led Genin teams. They stood in front of the Hokage, in his office. He asks, “So who is going to allow their team to enter the Chunin Selection Exams?”

The Hokage started with the teams with the most experience. And now it was down to the Rookies. The teams that just recently graduated. That included three teams. Team 7 or rather Team Kakashi, Team 8 or rather Team Kurenai, and finally Team 10 or rather Team Asuma.

Kakashi takes a step forward. He says, “Team Kakashi: Naruto Uzumaki, Sakura Haruno, and Sasuke Uchiha. I allow them entrance into the Chunin Selection Exams.”

Asuma then says the same thing, as does Kurenai. It was shocking, and outrageous. It has been a while since this last happened. It was probably Might Gai, and the rest of his age group, who entered the Chunin Exams for the first time.

It was rare that all of the Rookie Genin were participating in the Chunin Exams. Usually one team sits it out every year, to get them up to par with the rest of the participants.

The Hokage calms them down. It was a bit shocking for him as well, but he was the Hokage, and kept the shock from his face. He says, “I accept this. I will now hand you everything you need to enter your Genin into the Exams. You all are dismissed.” 

The next day, the Genin of Team 7 stood on the bridge that was the entrance of their training ground. The three of them were talking, and making jokes to pass the time, as they waited for their chronically late Jounin-sensei to arrive. Though, as Kakashi arrives, he says, “Sorry I’m late. I had to get you these permission slips.”

Sakura asks, “What permission slips?”

Kakashi answers, “The ones for the Chunin Exams. The one that is being held in just two days. Also be careful some Most of the Genin from other villages are going to be arriving today, and tomorrow. Be pleasant, and don’t antagonize them. This is important for village relations.”

Sasuke asks, “Is their anything else we need to know?”

Kakashi replies, “Yes. Sign those slips, and on the day of the Chunin Exams, bring them to room 301. Now this is all I needed to tell you, so… Ja ne!”

Kakashi then disappears in a puff of smoke, from a Shunshin. With Kakashi gone, the three Genin conducted light spars, to keep them in shape. Not to tire them out with heavy training, that knocked them with fatigue for a day or two. After Sakura left, Sasuke and Naruto stayed. They took turns placing each other in the standard Genjutsu of the Sharingan. The two with the Sharingan do this until dark, where they then leave to their respective homes.

The next day, Kakashi had them do light sparing, as they did yesterday. No Ninjutsu, nor Genjutsu was allowed to be used. The trio did this until lunch, where they decided to go to the same spot. Since it was Naruto’s turn to choose, he obviously picked Ichiraku’s Ramen.

Though before they could, Konohamaru walked up to Naruto. He wanted to cash in that promise that he made, just a week ago, to play ninja with them. Sakura thought it was stupid, and in turn Konohamaru called her stupid for thinking his favorite games was stupid. Haruno obviously did not like that, as Konohamaru had to jump away from a punch. 

Naruto then chuckles, as Konohamaru bolts away from Sakura, who begins to chase the Academy student. He then follows after Sakura, making sure that Konohamaru was in his vision at all times. Sasuke sighed. This was too stupid, and so he went home.

This was the grandson of the Sandaime Hokage, after all. He has a target on his back, just by being born. Even if he could sense a flash of emotion through the ANBU that followed the boy around the village. The ANBU would really only do something if the threat was serious enough.

Naruto winced as Konohamaru bumped into a boy, with a Sunagakure hitai-ate. The boy wears a Bunraku puppeteer's costume; a black, baggy, full body suit with a red and yellow circle on the front. He also wore a black hood which covered his head completely, and had cat-like ears and his hitai-ate on his forehead. He sports a triangular face-paint design.

He now holds Konohamaru up by his collar, his fist raised. A female, who stood next to him, sighs. She says, “Gaara will kill us, if you do anything.”

He then freezes for two reasons. One is the girl, who in his eyes was drop dead gorgeous. His mouth was even wide open. And for once he really didn’t care about any flies that would fly into it.

She has teal eyes and sandy blonde hair, which is gathered into four consecutive pigtails. Her outfit consists of a single light purple-coloured, off-the-shoulders garment that extends to halfway down her thighs, with a scarlet sash tied around her waist. 

In addition to her outfit, she incorporates fishnets. The fishnets are worn over her shoulders and legs, specifically on her right calf and her left thigh. She also wears her black hitai-ate around her neck.

The second reason, was the serious feeling of murder. It was a good thing that it wasn’t aimed at Konohamaru. It was outrageous how much this person wanted to kill the boy. The person radiating this aura of murder, was hiding in the tree that was next to him. 

The girl sighs once more, as he shakes his head, clearing it. Naruto clears his throat, and says, “I would put him down if I were you?”

The boy asks, “Why is that, Punk?”

Naruto shrugs, and then answers, “Because that is the grandson of the Sandaime Hokage. And if you even think about touching a single piece of his hair on his head…  Well, the Hokage can, and will throw your whole team from the village, destroying your chance of even competing in these Exams. Do you understand? Because if you do, and I’m sure you are smart enough, you will put him down, and go on your merry way!” 

A voice then says, “Kankuro, Temari, you two are a disgrace to our village.”

Naruto turns his head to look at the boy. So this was the person with that murderous intent. It was intimidating, for sure, but Naruto was used to it.

This boy has fair skin, green eyes, and short auburn hair, which is spiky. He lacks distinctive pupils or eyebrows. Carved in his forehead is the kanji for "love" (愛). 

He wears a black bodysuit with an open neck, t-shirt-like sleeves, and almost full-length leggings. With this, he wears a white cloth over his right shoulder and the left side of his hips. He has a wide leather band from his left shoulder to his right hip with which he carries his sand gourd and around which he wraps his hitai-ate.

His eyes widen, as a deep rumbling runs through his chest. Was that the Kyuubi, trying to say something? Just throughout the last month, he had managed to see the tailed beast. And he even managed to speak to it. The beast allowed him to freely use it’s chakra. But it was usually antagonistic at best.

Naruto shook his head, to clear it once more. He again looks at this person, and asks, “So you must be Gaara?”

Gaara’s frown deepens, as he says, “Mother wants your blood, but she is afraid…  Mother is never afraid. Who are you!”

It wasn’t a question, and Naruto knows it. He answers, “Naruto Uzumaki.”

In a Shunshin of sand, Gaara appears behind his teammates. He roughly grabs them, making Kankuro flinch. This makes him let go of Konohamaru. They then disappear in another Sand Shunshin.

As Konohamaru rushes toward Naruto, he says, “Go home Kono. I’m sure that you are tired from this. We will play another time. Okay?”

Konohamaru nods, and without another word, he goes home.

The next day is here. The day of the Chunin Exams was here. With that came a wardrobe change for Naruto. He wears a blue open coat, with orange fur. On the coat is a white swirl with a tassel on the left arm, and a red Uzumaki crest on the back. It was a present from Shisui, for even attempting the exams. 

Underneath the coat, is a white, v-neck t-shirt, fishnet armor, and orange pants. He wears his navy blue shinobi sandals, and just above his right knee is a shuriken holster. His hitai-ate is tied around his forehead, and his tantō is where is always his, on the small of his back, horizontally.

He then meets his team back at the Academy for the first time, since they got teamed together. Sakura smiles at him, as Sasuke scoffs. She says, “Nice coat.”

Naruto replies, “Thanks, Shisui-nii gave it to me.”

Sasuke then says, “Lets go! We don’t want to be late, do we?”

Naruto, as well as Sakura smirk. They most definitely did not want to be late.

 

Chapter Text

 

Entering the Academy, Naruto let go of a breath he didn’t realize he was holding. He hadn’t come back here since he graduated. Not even once did he try to come here to see Iruka. 

He has seen Iruka, that wasn’t the point. Naruto felt a bit guilty. Iruka was the one who protected him that night against Mizuki. Iruka was the one that let him graduate. This was the night he learned of the Kyuubi.

He had been busy though. Training with three different Jounin. Finding a family that consists of his teammates. The Mission to the Land of Waves. The business with Danzō. Tsunade and Jiraiya. The Akatsuki. He has definitely been busy. So, Iruka would forgive him.

Walking up two flights of stairs, he has been feeling odd since the first floor. Though, their wasn’t any strange emotion or intent here. So, he goes to open his Sharingan eye, but Sakura places her hand on both of the boys, to cancel the Genjutsu they had been stuck in since they entered. Sakura says, “This must be another test. Let’s go! We don’t want to be late, do we?”

As the trio goes to walk past the crowd of fooled Genin, the guy at the door yells, “Where do you think you are going? This is the third floor!”

Sasuke sighs. He then asks, “Do you really think a Uchiha like me could be fooled by this level of Genjutsu? Even then, Sakura noticed it first.”

That enraged the guy, who dashed throwards Sasuke, with a punch. Sasuke replied to the rage, with a kick. The attacks were caught. Naruto’s eyes widened. He didn’t see this guy move. Just who is this guy?

A girl, who is his teammate, just sighs. She asks, “Lee, I thought we were going to hide our strength?”

Lee yells, “I’m sorry, Tenten!”

Lee then appears in front of Sakura. He blows a kiss at her. The kiss flies from his lips to hers. Though, Sakura ducks under it. He asks, “My name is Rock Lee. I will protect you with my life. Will you go out with me?”

Sakura answers, “No, sorry!”

This is when Naruto gets a good visual on this Rock Lee guy. Lee has shiny black hair cut into a bowl cut, round eyes with prominent lower eyelashes, and very thick eyebrows. He wears a green jumpsuit, orange leg warmers, and a red forehead protector worn as a belt. He has bandages around his forearms up to his fingers.

Rock Lee then turns to Sasuke. He says, “Fight me! Talent versus Hard Work. Only one will win, and I need to test myself against you for Sakura’s honor!”

Sasuke says, “I won’t fight you for Sakura’s honor. It’s stupid, especially at this point in time. Look if we make it to any point where we can fight against each other, let’s do it then. What do you say?”

Lee stands straight. He yells, “Of course Sasuke. We shall fight in these mighty exams, for Sakura’s heart!” 

Lee then returns to his team. The other guy on his team looks sick and tired of Lee and his antics. Naruto would probably be as well, but it wasn’t his team to judge. So he follows his teammates up to the third floor.

Standing in front of the door is Kakashi. Sakura asks, “What are you doing here, Sensei?”

Kakashi answers, “What? Can’t I wish my cute little Genin Luck?”

Sasuke sighs, but he nods in thanks anyway. 

Naruto as well is thankful for their Jounin-sensei, despite the little amount he taught him. But he taught him just enough. 

Sakura was the most thankful. Kakashi practically taught her everything she knows. Genjutsu, Doton, and even the limited medical knowledge she has, was taught to her by Kakashi.

Kakashi simply eye-smiles at his Genin, and says, “Good Luck.”

They then watch as he disappears from view. Team 7 then entered room 301. They stood strong against the murderous intent that was thrusted upon them. Then came Team 8, who entered the room. 

Kiba, like always, was loud and proud. He was already declaring them the Konoha 9. He yells, “You won’t beat us this time, Naruto!”

Team 10 then enters. Shikamaru says, “This sure is troublesome, like these two blondes.”

Ino gasps in shock, like she wasn’t one of the blondes. She then tries to flirt with Sasuke. Like he does with any sort of female attention, Sasuke ignores it.

Naruto watches as an older teen walks up to them. He has onyx eyes and ash-gray hair, which he normally keeps in a ponytail. His most consistent feature are his black rimmed circular glasses. He wears a dark purple shirt with a high collar, a white under-shirt, and dark purple pants with a white cloth waistband. He also wears dark purple fingerless gloves with armored plates on the back of the hand and a blue Konoha hitai-ate. 

He says, “You guys are being too loud. You all are the Rookies, right?”

Sasuke sighs, while Shikamaru groans. Their is something not quite right with this guy. Even Naruto could tell something was wrong, as he couldn’t get a good reading on him for some reason. He must be quite good with disguising his emotions and intent.

He then says, “I can give you some info, as your Senior. What do you say?”

Shikamaru asks, “Who are you, and how will you do this?”

He sighs, answering, “How could I forget? My name is Kabuto Yakushi. And as for the info, I have ninja Information cards.”

Sasuke has heard of these kinds of cards. They were pretty obscure though. And the only reason he knows about them is because of his brother. Ninja Information Cards, often shortened to Ninja Info Cards, are a type of ninja tool where information can be burned on it by using chakra. 

The cards look blank to the naked eye with the kanji for "shinobi" (忍) on the back, but when chakra is applied, various categories of data ranging from information about the Five Great Shinobi Countries to the ninja that inhabit them are displayed on the card, even in 3-D. However, only the person who originally burned the data onto the card is able to retrieve it.

Sasuke then says, “Do you have information on Rock Lee, his male teammate, and… Naruto, who was that Suna-nin you met two days ago? I forgot his name?”

Naruto answers, “His name is Gaara. Also I’d like you to read about me, Naruto Uzumaki. Dattebayo!”

Kabuto frowns, but nods. Even if he was playing as an attention seeker that he was, it was too obvious coming from the Jinchuuriki, himself. He thinks that I, Kabuto, will just blab that information out. After all, he is a Genin, and that was too much information for a Genin to know. Plus, it is way too early for him to get caught, and Orochimaru-sama doesn’t like failure.

Kabuto says, “Rock Lee, you say? Easy! Rock Lee. A Genin under the leadership of Might Gai. Teammates are Neji Hyuga, and Tenten. 21 D-Ranks, and 12 C-Rank missions.”

This is when the Team under Might Gai enters the room. Neji frowns at what he just heard. Kabuto then says, “Neji Hyuga, a member of the Branch Family. Nephew of the Clan Head of the Hyuga Clan. A Genin under the Leadership of Might Gai. His teammates are Rock Lee, and Tenten. 21 D-Ranks, and 12 C-Rank missions.”

This made Neji frown even more. Damn the Hyuga, and it’s main family.

Kabuto says, “Gaara, son of the Yondaime Kazekage. His teammates are his older siblings Temari, and Kankuro. They are under the leadership of a man named Baki. 9 C-Ranks, and 1 B-Rank mission.”

That made Gaara snarl in rage, as the room gasps in shock. A Genin, who didn’t do a single D-Rank mission. It was simply unheard of. 

Kabuto then says, “Naruto Uzumaki. Genin under the Leadership of Kakashi Hatake, and the apprentice of Shunshin no Shisui. His teammates are Sasuke Uchiha, and Sakura Haruno. 7 D-Ranks, 1 C-Rank, and 1 A-Rank mission.”

Naruto doesn’t say anything, as the room explodes in volume. An A-Rank mission as a Genin, that is unheard of. In fact, it simply shouldn’t happen.

Naruto, though, sighs. He was sure that this “Kabuto” guy would have mentioned his S-Rank mission, or the fact that he was a Jinchuuriki. Apparently his plan didn’t work out. Oh well.

Kabuto hides a smirk. Did that blonde idiot really think that he would say anything incriminating? Say, like the fact that he has an S-Rank mission on his file, or the fact that he was a Jinchuuriki. Stupid! Stupid! Stupid! Stupid boy!

The explosion in volume caused the proctor of the First Exam to appear in the room, by a Shunshin, along with a gang of Chunin. He walks to Kabuto, and places a hand on his shoulder. The Proctor says, “My name is Ibiki Morino. I head the T&I Division, and I’m the Proctor of the first part of the exams. Exchange your entrance slip for your seat number. This is a written test.” 

Ibiki has a large, imposing figure, which he complements with a rugged head and face covered with old wounds and scars. Ibiki's head is always covered by his hitai-ate. He wears a darker version of the standard uniform of the Intelligence Division, along with a black trench coat and gloves.

After all of the candidates sit down. Ibiki says, “Everyone! Eyes up front! I have some rules to say. Rule number one. The scoring system is a point reduction system. You start out with a perfect score of 10 points. If you miss three you have a score of 7 seven points. Rule number two. The test will be graded by the total team points. If you have zero points your team will get disqualified. Rule number three, these Chunin here are to look out for cheating. If you are caught cheating, you lose 2 points from your score. Which means if you get caught cheating five times you, and your team gets disqualified. The last question won’t be given out until the last 15 minutes of the test. Get started.”

The Genin flip over their tests to see that it’s way too hard for Genin to know. Naruto instantly knew what he was supposed to do. It was so simple. Ibiki made it so that they’d have to cheat. 

Naruto then looks around the room, his Sharingan spinning in all of it’s glory. Who to copy off of? There! His handwriting was too confident. Too steady. A plant? Naruto begins to copy his pencil strokes.

 Before they knew it, over half of the Genin had been disqualified. Ibiki says, “It’s now past the last 15 minute mark. I’ll give you the 10 th question. You can choose whether to get it or not. Raise your hand if you don’t want to take it, but before you do, if you do choose to take the question, and get it wrong you can’t take the Chunin Exams ever again.”

The whole room gave out a gasp. They were shocked, angry, and scared. Ibiki liked the faces on the soon to be Chunin. Soon one after the other, hands shakingly shot up.  Naruto saw this, and started to raise his hand. He then slammed his hand on the desk, and said, “Your not going to fool me. I don’t care if I’m a Genin. It doesn’t say anywhere that one has to be promoted to Chunin to be a Kage or rather the Hokage. Nor do I have to be promoted to protect Konoha, and all who live inside her walls!”

Ibiki sees the total confidence in Naruto’s, and all of the Genin’s eyes. It was a well spoken speech, one worthy of a Kage. much less the Hokage. He then says, “You all pass.” 

The Genin were shocked, well most of them were. Ibiki then explains the true purpose of the test. Some were angry, but they realized the man was right. Sometimes you have to take the risk. 

Then a white banner came crashing through the window, and held to the wall with kunai. The banner said, ‘The single and Sexy Anko Mitarashi the Proctor for the second part of the Exams!’ 

Like before, Anko is an average-sized, young woman who was of slender frame. She has light brown, pupil-less eyes. Her hair is violet and is styled in a short, spiky, fanned-out ponytail.  She usually wears a fitted mesh body suit that covers her from neck to thigh. Over this, she typically wears a tan overcoat with a purple in-seam and a pocket on each side, a dark orange mini-skirt, a dark blue belt, and pale gray shin guards. In addition to the typical hitai-ate, she also wears a small pendant that looks like a snake fang and a wristwatch.

She then eyes all of the Genin She says, “Ibiki… How could you let so many through. Your test was too easy.”

Ibiki then retorts, by saying, “Or maybe there's a stronger crop of candidates this year.”

Anko says, “They sure don’t look like it. Trust me by the time the second test ends half of you will be gone. Report to Training Ground 44 in two days. Your Senseis’ will have the directions!”

Anko then disappears through the same window she appeared through.

Chapter Text

 

Team 7 stands at the entrance of Training Ground 44, along with every other team that passed the first exam. 

Naruto remembers this place, just barely. He hid here once, when the kids pretended to play hide and seek with him. The blonde hid there, by the fence all day, before he realized what happened. Looks as menacing as it did all those years ago. The dark and dreary forest surrounded by the metallic fence, rumored to have been created by the Shodai Hokage himself.

In front of them, stood Anko Mitarashi. She says, “Welcome to Training Ground 44, or more commonly known to Konoha; as the Forest of Death. This place is my home away from home. It's filled with human eating plants, and animals of all sizes."

She looks onto the scared Genin. Anko sees a blank-faced Naruto. And with Anko being Anko. Well, she decides to scare the piss out of the blonde. She throws a kunai at the boy. Though as it flies by Naruto, he tilts his head to the side doding it. In all actuality, Anko threw the kunai a little too quickly for Naruto, as a small and thin cut was now on his cheek.

A devious smirk is on her face, as she says, “Maybe you won’t die in the forest, but others will. Most people who act like you will die in the forest.”

Anko then continues, “All teams will be given either a heaven or an earth scroll. Once inside the forest, the Genin must take the other scroll from another team. Only those that make it to the tower in the center of the forest with both scrolls will advance to the next stage of the exams. You and your team have five days to do this. Also sign these consent forms, so Konoha won’t be liable for your death in this forest.”

Choji then  asks, “Five days? What about food?”

The rotund boy was worried about his chips, as an Akimichi would. Anko replies, “Well you could always find your food, but I should warn you once again, anything and everything in this forest can and will kill you!”

Signing the consent forms, Team 7 sent Naruto to exchange it for their scroll. An Earth Scroll. This means that they need to look for a Heaven Scroll. Team 7 then heads to their gate.

After all of the Genin Teams get to their intended gates, Anko then speaks over the mega-phones. She says, “Part two of the Chunin Selection Exams have now started! GO! GO! GO! Also, don’t die!”

The Genin then rush into the forest. Hours later, they find a small spot to rest for the moment, Team 7 begins to think up a plan going forward. It was better to do it beforehand, but whatever goes down in this forest will be practically unpredictable. So, they should do it now, while they have a breather to do so. 

Sasuke asks, “So, what do we know of this “Forest of Death?”

Sakura answers, “The forest is huge, and dark, full of big ugly monsters. Insects, and plants that will eat a human whole. With everything in the forest being practically poisonous, it's practically a death trap for even the best of Konoha's Shinobi. A metallic fence surrounds its perimeter with 44 gates equally spaced around it; this perimeter is where the shinobi entered. Inside is a river, the forest, and a tower located in the exact center; the forest's radius is about ten kilometers.”

Sasuke then asks, “Anything else?”

Naruto replies, “It has been rumored to have been created by the Shodai Hokage.”

Sasuke sighs, “So that is all we have… Great!”

Sakura then says, “It’s probably more information than the other teams might have.”

Naruto nods, replying, “It’s the best information we have, so… Deal with it! Now which team seemed the weakest? Preferably not a Konoha team. I’d rather not have to fight a comrade until I have to, understand?”

Sasuke ponders, “The one wearing full body suits?”

Sasuke simply nods in response.

Naruto then says, “Then let’s spy on them?”

Sakura asks, “How?”

Naruto sighs. He had clones, along with two different summons available to him. In any case, he sends out a duo of Shadow Clones to go and spy on them. He would have prefered to use Karamaru for this, Naruto felt he should use the Shadow Clones.

A couple hours later, stands noticeably more straight than he usually was. The blonde then says, “Well… Get ready they are coming this way.”

Sasuke asks, “How far?”

Naruto replies, “A klick away from the northeast. Coming straight for us!”

Sakura then sighs. She was a bit nervous, as she says, “That will give us some time to plan.” 

So as Team 7 is planning, the team from Amegakure is speeding towards Team 7. This team is called Team Oboro, and like every other team in the Chunin Exams, they have three members: Oboro, Mubi, and Kagari. 

Oboro is obviously the leader. He says, “Remember what he told us, Mubi, Kagari?”

The other two deviously nod, as in unison, they say, “Delay the team with the Uchiha!”

Oboro simply says, “Good!” 

Naruto then says, “I know their names. Oboro, who is most likely the leader. Then their is Mubi, and Kagari.”

Sasuke asks, “Anything else?”

Naruto nods, “They were told by someone, a guy, to delay us. Though the term they used is, “The team with the Uchiha”.”

Sakura then asks, “Who would want Sasuke?”

Sasuke answers, “Anyone who would want my Kekkei Genkai. Though, in all actuality that number is probably really small, since the Massacre. Most of the good Sharingan are, from what I know, kinda useless due to time.”

Naruto could think of one name that fit the bill, so to say. Especially with Danzō dead, and if what Jiraiya has told him about Orochimaru is correct, well… Though for right now, the Uzumaki didn’t want to have that man’s name come from his mouth.

With that out of the way, the three of Team Oboro rush through the tree line of the small clearing that Team 7 was in. Only before they knew it, they smacked into an earthen wall.

Naruto jumps onto the top of the wall, as Sasuke and Sakura run around it. He jumps off the wall, and slings himself around Oboro’s head, kicking his two teammates away from him. As Oboro’s teammates stumble away from him, Naruto spins around his head some more, slamming it down into the ground with a flip.

Flipping to his feet, Naruto throws some kunai, and shuriken at Mubi and Kagari. The distraction works as Sasuke easily knocks his opponent, Mubi, out with a kick to the head. Sakura was able to do the same thing to Karagi, with a punch to the jaw.

Mubi wears a yellow jumpsuit that is stitched up the middle along with a pair of sandals. He also wears a hitai-ate that covers his whole head, a rebreather and a sash around his face leaving only his left eye visible.

Karagi wears the same yellow jumpsuit as his teammates which was stitched up the middle along with a pair of sandals. He also wears a hitai-ate that covers his whole head, and a sash around his face that obstructs his eyes. Though, he is missing the rebreather, as it was shattered along the ground.

Naruto then stomps on Oboro’s head, knocking him out. He says, “Find their scroll. I don’t want to be in this forest any longer than you two do.”

So, that is what they do. Naruto raises his hand, and in it is the Heaven Scroll. Sasuke then says, “We have both scrolls now, let’s enter the tower!”

The other two nodded in agreement.  With that acknowledged, they make a dash towards the center of the forest.

While running, Naruto flashed through some ANBU sign language. He wanted to make sure that Sasuke and Sakura knew that they were being watched. Naruto had heard the underground shuffling of someone, or something a while back.

The sign language was something Kakashi taught them pretty early in the teamwork phase of training. Though, they haven’t really had a need to use it until now.

Naruto then yells, “Drop!”

As they drop to the ground, Sakura weaves through some hand seals. Tiger → Hare → Boar → Dog → Dog → Ox → Snake. Slamming her palms onto the ground, she raises a featureless wall, up from the ground as a barrier in front of them.

Though it didn’t quite help, as a hurricane breaks through his wall, uprooting many trees, and Naruto himself. As the blonde flies away, a Kusagakure Shinobi appears before them. 

The Shinobi has long smooth black hair and black eyes. He wears a straw hat on his head with his forehead protector underneath and an attire that resembles Orochimaru's but with the jumper’s legs matching the jumper's top half and doesn't have bandages around his calves and ankles.

The Shinobi says, “Kukukuku! That was quite impressive, Sasuke-kun. Show me more!”

Sasuke could barely block the punch from the Shinobi, who reappeared right in front of him. As Sasuke throws a punch himself, it gets caught. The Shinobi then throws Sasuke over his shoulder, and sucker punches Sakura in the gut, laying her down.

Sasuke then takes a page from Naruto’s book. While flying through the air, he lands on a tree, and jumps off of it, flying through hand seals. Monkey → Rabbit → Snake. Sasuke then yells, “Doton: Iwadeppō no Jutsu!”

Using a jutsu, he never even used before, would be tough, but he could do it. His brother showed it to him, so he could learn how to use the copying power of the Sharingan.

The Uchiha then expels bullet-sized bits of rock from his mouth, with great speed and force. As they are flying through the air, the bullet-sized rocks expand into giant boulders. Sasuke then weaves through another set of hand seals. Rat → Tiger → Dog → Ox → Rabbit → Tiger. He yells, “Katon: Hōsenka no Jutsu!”

Sasuke spits a volley of small fireballs into the air, and as they fly through the air, the fireballs combine with the now giant boulders. The fiery boulders slam into the ground where the Shinobi is. 

Sasuke knew that wouldn’t have worked. He also knows that this shinobi probably wouldn’t be under him. Though, it was a bit too dangerous to move, so he got kicked in the back, and slammed into a tree by the force of said kick.

From then on, Sasuke knew that this Shinobi was no mere Genin. So he bolts from the tree, with a semi-conscious Sakura on his shoulder. The Shinobi greedily smiles as stares at Sasuke’s back. He thinks, “When will Sasuke-kun show me his wondrous Sharingan?”

While this is happening Anko is chilling on the stage, eating dango. A Chunin interrupts her, saying, “We found something! I know you’d know who did this.”

Anko sighs, throwing her dango stick into a tree, completing a heart. Completely serious, she says, “Show me!”

Anko is now staring at a dead body, with a missing face. Shit! She only knew one person who could do this. Though, why would her former Sensei be in Konoha? Then right as she asked herself that question, Anko already knew the answer. It was the Sharingan.

Anko then yells, “Tell the Sandaime that he is here. He’ll understand what you mean! I need to get into this forest!”

Before any of the Chunin could react, Anko was already off, and running straight to the Forest of Death.

 

Chapter Text

 

Naruto then wakes up in a clearing, to the sound of hissing. Oh… Great a giant snake; the worst of his worries. It zones in on him, and strikes, Naruto barely rolls out of harm's way. 

Now on his feet, Naruto bites his thumb, and spins to face the snake. Weaving through hand seals, Naruto slams his bloody palm onto the ground.  Boar → Dog → Bird → Monkey → Ram. He hasn’t done this jutsu very often, so he says, “Kuchiyose: Yatai Kuzushi no Jutsu!”

Naruto then summons a toad in the air, which falls to the ground. On impact, with the giant snake, the ground shakes, and the snake is now pinned. Though the toad wasn't as big as Gamabunta, the snake wrapped it’s tail around it’s neck, and flung the toad off of itself.

The toad landed right next to him. It was Gama, the holder of the Toad Summoning Scroll. 

Gama is a very large toad, enough for Jiraiya to ride on his back. His orange skin is covered in blue markings, he has bandages wrapped around his body and left foreleg, and wears a necklace with seven large beads on it, with the kanji for "loyalty" (忠) on the central, largest one. He also has three swirl-like markings in the middle of his left palm which are similar to the one's Jiraiya sometimes has.

In battle, like he is right now, Gama is almost always seen wearing samurai armor, composed of a plate cuirass and arm-guards paired with traditional samurai pauldrons.

Naruto asks, “You okay, Gama?”

A simple nod was all he got. That was enough for the blonde, especially since the toad doesn’t speak any sort of human language.

The snake then whips it’s tail around, which Gama jumps in front of, blocking the attack. As it slides back from the force, Naruto jumps off of Gama’s back and into the air. In the air, he unsheathes his tantō, and unleashes several arcs of wind that he speeds up with a simple usage of the Gale palm. 

As Naruto lands, Gama lashes out several attacks with his tongue. The combo ends with the tongue holding the snake down in place. Seeing this, Naruto smashes a Rasengan into it’s nose, dispelling it. 

With this battle drawn to it’s end, Naruto thanks Gama, who dispels back to his home. Naruto then rushes towards where he remembers his team was once at.

Meanwhile Naruto is rushing at full speed, Sasuke, with his Sharingan active, is blocking and countering as best he could. And to be completely honest, Sakura was useless right now. She is still somewhat out of it, laying on a nearby tree.

Getting some space, Sasuke weaves through more hand seals. Snake → Ram → Monkey → Boar → Horse → Tiger. Sasuke then brings his fingers to his lips, and breathes out a huge fireball, about the size of Kakashi. 

Though, much like Kakashi in the bell test, the Shinobi was nowhere to be found. Sasuke, learning from the last time, spins around, and then jumps as a hand rips through the ground below him. The Uchiha then summersaults, stretching his leg, as he falls, slamming it into the Shinobi’s head. The Shinobi’s head then drops into the ground cracking it.

This makes the Shinobi’s face start to crack revealing a serpentine-like yellow eye, with purple coloration around it. Sasuke begins to wonder, “Who is this person?”

The Shinobi then creepily chuckles. He says, “You are pretty impressive… Though, Itachi-kun was better. Beat me with a single Genjutsu. Look what you’ve had to do to even get this far? Three, no… Four Ninjutsu? Kukukukuku! It is quite a shame!”

The seed of doubt began to grow in the Uchiha. How strong was his brother to beat this man with a single Genjutsu? If this man was truly this strong, what would he be able to do? What about Naruto, who, despite everything he has trained for, is stronger than him? What could the blonde do?

This spiral cost the black headed boy, who got a fist to the gut, making him spit out blood and saliva. As he flies away from the Shinobi, Sasuke’s motion instantly stops, as he gets kicked in the back. Sasuke then could only slump into the ground.

Unknown to both of them, Sakura awakes. Seeing Sasuke slumped on the ground scared her. More importantly it enraged her. How dare this man hurt her teammate? How dare this man hurt her crush?

Forcing her whole being to be quiet, Sakura gets up. She didn’t want this man… No, monster to know she was conscious once more. Rushing forwards at full speed, Sakura gathers as much chakra into her fist as she possibly could and attempts to punch this person’s jaw off… Only, the Shinobi catches the punch. His broken hand absorbs as much chakra from the attack as he could, mitigating some of the damage. 

As the Shinobi's grip tightens on her hand crushing it, he says, “Kukukukuku! This is something quite shocking. You are lucky that I am only here for Sasuke-kun. Kukukukuku!”

Sakura yells, “Get away from Sasuke… You… You… You monster!”

She didn't know what she did, but Sakura had to do it again. It hurt this thing in front of her. Gathering chakra in her other fist, she slams it into the Shinobi’s gut, making him double over her fist, spitting up saliva. As he is doubled over, Sakura almost gasps seeing Sasuke appear over top of the Shinobi. Sasuke then slams his foot into the back of the Shinobi’s head. 

Again this makes the Shinobi’s face crack, revealing very pale skin, and a pronounced cheekbone. All in all, this man might just be a snake in disguise. 

Sasuke thought it was a bit stupid, but he wouldn’t put it past anyone to summon a shape-shifting snake to fight him. After all, he is one of the last owners of a prized Doujutsu.

The Shinobi then gets back up, and stares down the two Konoha Genin. His pure killing intent froze them. It felt nothing like Zabuza’s. No, in fact, it was worse. They could see their death, like it was a Genjutsu. 

As the Shinobi began to take a step forward, he was then blindsided by a Kyuubified Naruto. Naruto then spun around, delivering a heel kick to the back of the man’s head, launching the Shinobi head first into a tree. 

Naruto appears in front of the Shinobi, his fist already impacting the man’s stomach. Then another punch, and another, and another. The tree cracks from the force of Naruto’s punches, sending the Shinobi through it. 

And as the Shinobi gets to his feet, Naruto drops to the ground, and does a spin kick. With the Shinobi on his back, Naruto jumps, stomping on his chest. The Shinobi then turns into mud. Naruto growls at this.

Sakura tensed as her other two teammates did. She was wondering if that did it? Did they win? She did not know of the clone jutsu that the Shinobi switched himself out with.

Sasuke blinked, something was different, and it wasn’t Naruto’s chakra cloak, even if it was a bit odd. Now his vision is now sharper. How did he know that? He saw the shinobi kick Naruto in the back, even before the blonde himself did. Sasuke caught him, before Naruto could truly fly off, and be unable to help them.

Sadly it was not to be. They did not win. As they hear the Shinobi, who laughs, “Kukukukuku! Hello, Naruto-kun. If you could only be mine… But alas you are tainted by those horrid Toads of Mount Myōboku.”

Naruto couldn’t help himself, as his body inadvertently shivered. Who wouldn’t though… That comment was really creepy. 

The Shinobi then reveals himself. A half torn face still covered his own. Though that changed soon after, as the Shinobi grabs the face, and rips it off of his own. 

This action reveals his snake-like appearance. He has very pale skin, golden eyes with slitted pupils, purple markings around his eyes and fang-like teeth. He also has pronounced cheekbones and straight waist-length black hair with some locks covering and framing his face or to his shoulders.

Naruto replies, “Well. Well. Well. I didn’t think the Snake Sannin of all people would show up here. It’s the Sharingan, isn’t that right… Orochimaru!?”

The shinobi, now named Orochimaru, chuckles. He wouldn’t have put it past his Sensei to remove all mention of him in the Academy. Guess he hasn’t.

Orochimaru wears plain gray garbs with a black polo and pants underneath, a thick purple rope belt tied in a large knot behind his back, blue tomoe-shaped earrings, and shinobi sandals with bandages around his calves.

Sakura gasps, “Wait… You mean Orochimaru: the S-Rank missing-nin? The former student of the Sandaime Hokage?”

Orochimaru replies, “Kukukukuku! One in the same, sweetheart!”

Then Naruto disappears from his teammate’s vision, reappearing with his fist digging into Orochimaru’s gut. Jumping up, he spins, kicking the Sannin in the shoulder. Finally he ends the small combo with a full force punch to the top of the man’s head.

As Orochimaru slumps to the ground, he crumbles into dirt. Seeing no alternative, Naruto leans forward, and then back unleashing a mighty roar that uproots the dirt and the trees.

With the ground crumbling all around him, it wasn’t safe for Orochimaru to be hiding in it. So he appears behind him ready to hit the blonde. Only Naruto spins around, blocking a kick. 

They then push away from each other. Naruto makes a hand seal, and in a puff of smoke, four shadow clones appear. They then rush Orochimaru, delivering a series of open palm strikes and kicks. And as they dispel, more gain their place. Naruto and his clones launch themselves into the air and begin to somersault. They then come spinning down, slamming their heels onto the target's shoulders and head one after the other.

Somehow he was still standing by the time the real Naruto hit Orochimaru on the head. Orochimaru grins, grabbing Naruto by the ankle, he slams him into the ground a couple times.

Naruto then thinks, “Kyuubi… I need more!”

The Kyuubi grows in his mind, but allows it. He wouldn’t let his container die this easily. As soon as the tail grew, his teammates gasped in shock. With a single step he broke the ground he stood on, and the sound barrier. 

A grin was on Naruto’s face. It was time for Orochimaru to be on the defensive. He is blocking and dodging the whole time. Though, Orochimaru was still barely taking any damage. 

Naruto then rushes the Sannin, only to be caught by the neck. As he struggles to break free, Orochimaru weaves one-handed hand seals. He then gathers "wicked" chakra to his five fingertips. Slamming it into Naruto’s stomach, right over his seal, Orochimaru gives a wicked smile. Only for Naruto to cough up some blood, through a smirk. Naruto then dispels in a puff of smoke. 

Orochimaru then looks up to see the real Naruto, with a wind covered tantō in hand. Before Orochimaru could react, the blade was already in his shoulder, cutting and tearing all that connected to it, as Naruto’s blade slid down Orochimaru’s chest, and stomach.

From there, Naruto then fell onto his knees, taking deep breaths. Before anyone could react, the blonde fell on his face, unconscious. 

Sakura then asks the only question she could. She asks, “Did… Did we win?”

Sasuke is staring directly at Orochimaru. The faint wisps of chakra that remain in that body… With some worry, the Uchiha says, “No… He is still alive.”

As they watch Orochimaru heal himself, the Snake Sannin says, “Quite an astute observation there, Sasuke-kun.”

In a burst of speed, he knocks out Sakura, and then extends his neck. In a second, Orochimaru then bits down on Sasuke’s neck, causing the Uchiha to scream out in pain. And as Orochimaru unlatches himself from Sasuke, the Uchiha slumps down onto the ground, unconscious.

 

Chapter Text

 

As Naruto is unconscious, he dreams of what happened before his big fight with Orochimaru. A fight that he lost, despite how it looked like he was winning.

 Naruto is running full speed back to the clearing, when he hears an unfamiliar scream. His heroic tendencies flared, so he just had to check it out. Orochimaru, or any of his thugs could be attacking other Konoha Shinobi. He just couldn’t let that happen.

As he gets closer to the screaming, he begins to hear growling. Speeding up, he disappears from any who could have possibly seen him, if anyone was near him at the time

Abruptly stopping, Naruto spots the person who was screaming, and the bear, who was growling. The person, who is a girl, looks familiar. Though, he couldn’t really put his finger on it. Wait… That red hair… It couldn’t be… Could it? 

Unsheathing his tanto, Naruto flings it with perfect accuracy, and watches as it flies through the bear’s skull. Appearing next to the bear, he cleaned his tanto of any blood. Sheathing it, he walks up to the girl. Grabbing her glasses in the process, Naruto helps her up. 

As she puts her glasses on she sees the person who helped her, and instantly gains a red blush. Naruto, though, gets a better look at her. 

She has crimson eyes, fair skin, and the characteristic red hair of the Uzumaki clan which she wears in an unusual hairstyle: her hair is short and spiky on the right side, while longer and straight on the left side. She wears brown narrow glasses, which have a serrated blade hidden in them, Naruto could tell from just picking them up.

She also wears a mesh shirt and stockings, a purple skirt, a light brown short sleeved jacket with an orange stripe going across the chest, and black sandals. She also had the Kusagakure hitai-ate on her forehead.

Naruto asks, “Are you an Uzumaki?”

The girl’s eyes widened in panic. How could a kid her age know about such a clan? 

Naruto then says, “Sorry if I worried you… I’m also an Uzumaki, at least on my Kaa-san’s side of my family.”

Her wide eyes then change from panic to wonder. She had found family. She then says, “My name is Karin Uzumaki… Who is your Kaa-san?”

Naruto answers, “Kushina Uzumaki.”

Karin then whispers, “Kushina-oba-san.”

Naruto heard her whisper though. They are cousins? 

Naruto then hands her a slip of paper. He didn’t think he would ever use it, though. The female Uzumaki asks, “What’s this?”

Naruto answers, “That slip of paper allows any Uzumaki, if they want to, to be able to defect from their village with no repercussions, and join Konoha.”

Karin asks, “How?”

Naruto answers, “My Kaa-san’s Tou-san was the Leader of the Uzumaki. This means that I am the rightful heir of Uzushiogakure. I can’t read up much on it, but their is a clan law that states, any Uzumaki has the right to go where their leader, or heir is staying.”

That dairy had mentioned more than just his mother’s crush on his father. Since he first read it, Naruto has found mention of his mother’s father, certain clan laws, the hope and desire to find another Uzumaki, her dream to be the first female Hokage, her guardian in Konoha; Mito Uzumaki, and the hidden chains of the Uzumaki clan. Sadly, Naruto hasn’t been able to use them as of yet, but he is working on it.

In any case, Naruto says, “You don’t have to do it right now. It’s just something to think about. Okay?”

Karin nods, as Naruto then says, “Oh, and ah… Find your teammates and pass this test… For family!”

As they go their separate ways, Naruto sits up, now awake. Next to him was Sakura, who was asleep, but not unconscious. Sasuke though, is completely unconscious. 

He sighed, as he rubbed his head. Why did he dream of that? Was it because they were family? Was it because they were immediate family?

In any case, he checked his person, as well as the rest of his team. He wanted to make sure that they still had the scrolls. They did, which was a good thing. Anyone could have stolen them, and with the five day mark creeping up on them, it would have been almost pointless to be able to even try and find another pair of the scrolls.

Picking up Sasuke over his shoulder, Naruto turns to the sound of a groan. It is Sakura, who is now awake. Naruto smiles, “Morning… Sleeping Beauty.”

Another groan is heard from Sakura, as she asks, “What happened?”

Naruto then loses his smile. The memory of getting played with by Orochimaru was not a good one. He says, “We were thoroughly defeated by Orochimaru. We were fighting for our lives, while he was acting like he was in a friendly spar. It fucking sucks! At least no one stoll any of our scrolls.”

Sakura nods at that. This would have been pointless if someone stole the scroll at this point. They then sighed. What are they going to do now?

Naruto then answers that question, by saying, “We need to get to the tower… But we need Sasuke awake to do so. Though it’s closing in on the fourth day. We can’t afford to waste any time.”

So today was day three, huh? Sakura then asks, “What’s wrong with Sasuke?”

Naruto answers, “He’s unconscious. It is a by-product of whatever Fuinjutsu that was most likely given to him by Orochimaru.”

Sakura replies, “Can you do something about it?”

Naruto shakes his head. It was way over his head, and he told her as such. He then says, “Kakashi-sensei could probably do something about it, though. He is better than me with Fuinjutsu.”

Jiraiya could probably do something better than Kakashi could. Naruto had heard that he is a Seal Master on par with the Yondaime Hokage, and his mother. Even if he is his father, calling him as such, well, it is still a bit foriegn for him to call him as such.

Though, Naruto takes these thoughts out of his head. Right now, he is the only person able to be the leader, so he needs to be focused on the exams, and not whether or not Minato is his father, which he was… Or how weird it is to call him as such.

Turning towards Sakura, he says, “We need to go. We’ve stayed in one spot for way too long.”

Sakura nods. She completely agrees with that statement. If they want to pass this stage, they need to get moving.

So with that agreed upon, they run as fast as they can. Before dark, they take refuge under a giant tree that has been hollowed out. Naruto then orders Sakura to take care of Sasuke, so that he could build some traps. 

Sakura didn’t say anything, and went to work. She had the best skills in order to take care of Sasuke at the moment, and Sakura could trust in Naruto’s trap work. In the Academy, he had, surprisingly, some of the best grades in that class.

As night turns into day, the two take turns taking care of their unconscious teammate. With the sun rising, Naruto was still asleep, at least that is what Sakura thought. 

He was in a state of meditation that Jiraiya had been grilling into his whole body. One reason was obvious enough, it was for him to get in touch with the Kyuubi, and the other reason is that, apparently, it was a prerequisite to learn Sage Mode.

This is when a team from Otogakure appears in the clearing that is in front of the hiding spot. This team is called Team Dosu. The leader of this team is Dosu Kinuta.
Dosu has bandages covering most of his face, leaving only his left eye uncovered. He also wears a large poncho with long sleeves, a snake patterned scarf around his neck, a straw raincoat protruding from the back of his scarf, and a large amplifier on his right arm for most of his attacks. His back was hunched, which made him look smaller than he actually was.

The next member of Team Dosu is Zaku Abumi.

Zaku has spiky, black hair and dark eyes. He wears a beige shirt with two black stripes and three prints of the kanji for death (死) down the front. His hitai-ate had an attached happuri under the cloth rather than connected to the metal plate, As with his teammates Dosu and Kin, he wears a snake-patterned scarf around his neck.

The Final member of Team Dosu is Kin Tsuchi.

Kin has fair skin, black eyes with very long black hair, almost reaching down to the ground, tied by a violet ribbon right near the end. She wears a hitai-ate, a pale green vest somewhat similar to a flak jacket, snake patterned pants with a snake patterned skirt over it, and a snake patterned scarf around her neck.

Dosu then yells, “We are here for the Uchiha! Leave, or die!”

Sakura replies, “Then you will have to get past me!”

Dosu sighed, “Kin!”

Kin gained a violent smirk and went to attack the pink-haired girl. Only for a tantō to knick her ear. The tantō then continues to fly, which Dosu easily dodges with a tilt of his head. The tantō then dispels into a puff of smoke, revealing a second Naruto, who is holding a tantō. He covers his tantō with wind, and sends several arcs of wind to the back of Dosu’s head. The arcs of wind were then sped up with a small burst of his Gale Palm. 

The arcs of wind were too fast for Dosu to dodge, or even block. They cut into his back, and his head was sliced off.  As he flies back, Naruto rebounds off of a tree, dodging a blast of sound and air. When it passes under him, Naruto spins around, throwing several shuriken. Zaku blocks the attack with more sound and air.

The Oto-nin then has to block a knee shot to his sternum. After that it is a heel kick to the head. Though he could not block the stunner, that breaks his neck, killing him in the process.

As Naruto gets back up, he sees Sakura, held in a tight grip by her hair. Her feet are barely touching the ground. While this was going down, Kin was criticizing Sakura, like she herself didn’t have long, luscious hair. That was called being a hypocrite, one hundred percent. Though, Sakura finds her confidence once again, freeing herself by cutting said hair with a kunai.

As Kin jumps away from Sakura, she throws the kunai that she used to cut her hair. Though, Kin easily dodged it. Before anyone else could do anything, though, an eruption of dark feeling purple chakra flooded the area. Naruto turns to face the epicenter of said eruption, and it was Sasuke, who was standing up. Sasuke was more rigid than ever before though.

Sasuke then growls, “Who hurt her? Who hurt Sakura?”

Kin scoffs, saying, “And what are you going to do about it?”

Sasuke replies, “Kill you!”

Kin once again scoffed. This kid couldn’t do shit to her. Naruto sighed. He knew that sort of confidence; it was called arrogance. After all, the blonde did kill two of her teammates by himself. 

Naruto then could barely see what happened next. As within a blink of an eye, Sasuke moved behind Kin. He then grabbed her head, and violently twisted it. Sasuke almost took it off of her shoulders. It was safe to say that Kin was dead.

With that done, the chakra that Sasuke was emitting stops, entering the seal on his neck. Naruto was in deep thought. So that is what it does. Well, at least that is what it does on the surface.

Naruto then asks, “You good, Teme?”

Sasuke growls, “I have a Tou-san, Usuratonkachi!”

Naruto then playfully looks around, his hand over his eyebrows. He replies, “Then why haven’t we seen him?”

Sasuke just sighed. He would get nowhere with this argument. In fact, he never has. 

Sakura then asks, “Shouldn’t we get to the tower now?”

Naruto nods. While Sasuke made his usual noise of confirmation… A hn. Though, it is also his noise for everything else. It is mainly used when he doesn’t want to speak.

After this, they jump back into the trees, rushing for the tower. They only had one more full day to pass this test. Right now, is what many consider a now or never situation. 

From the incident, earlier in the day, Naruto could tell that they were being followed. Naruto slows down to make sure that if their was going to be a confrontation, that he would be on the receiving end of it. Sensing that whoever is following them is now in front of them, Naruto shoots forward, ahead of his teammates. As he does that, Naruto throws a kunai.

The guy with the info cards from before the first part of the exams appears before them. Naruto’s kunai is in his hand. Kabuto smiles, and then playfully say, “You dropped this Naruto-san.”

Naruto frowns, replying, “That’s Uzumaki-san to you!”

Kabuto bows, handing the kunai back to it’s rightful owner. He then asks, “As a Konoha Shinobi… Do you need help getting to the tower, or maybe a scroll?” 

From what he has seen of this team, they most likely wouldn’t have the second scroll. In his opinion, it was very likely that his master Orochimaru has one of their scrolls. That is what he told him that he would do.

Naruto frowns. He sees what's going on here. Kabuto was insinuating that they didn’t have both pairs of scrolls. As Sasuke goes to answer, Naruto clamps his mouth shut. Sakura was then about to say something, but a single look from Naruto shut her up.

Naruto then says, “Do you know where we could find a scroll?”

Kabuto answers, “No, but… There will be many teams that do when we get closer to the tower. This also means that it will be harder to get to the tower.”

Naruto replies, “Thanks for the advice, but I got it from here. So get lost!”

Kabuto worriedly asks, “What about the scroll that you are missing?”

Naruto smirks, as he asks, “What missing scroll?”

Kabuto asks, “Isn’t Sasuke carrying a Heaven Scroll right now?”

Naruto then continues to smirk. He says, “I’m carrying both scrolls. In fact, we've had both scrolls since day one in this damned forest. Now I said; get lost!”

Kabuto blinked. He needs to get out of this… Real quick. Why didn’t Orochimaru take any of their scrolls? It messed with this part of the plan to study the effects of the seal on Sasuke. Damn it! Kabuto then disappears in a Shunshin.

He then bites his thumb open, and smears the blood over his palm. Naruto then weaves a string of hand seals. Boar → Dog → Bird → Monkey → Ram. In a puff of smoke, Karamaru appears. Then Naruto says, “Find Kabuto Yakushi… Tell me everything you see in two days. Got it?”

The crow nodded, and flies. Sasuke and Sakura then turn to face Naruto, about to ask a question. Only Naruto shut them up with a look that said, “I’ll tell you later.”

With that sorted out, they continue to rush towards the tower. In less than an hour they reach the tower. Entering, Team 7 sees a mural. The trio then begins to ponder on it’s meaning, only for Naruto to yell, “We have to open the scrolls!”

Sasuke was about to say something, Sakura stopped him. She had figured out it’s meaning only seconds after Naruto did. After looking at the mural again, Sasuke allowed the scrolls to be opened. From Team 7’s scrolls, Iruka Umino appears.

Iruka then says, “Congratulations Team 7 for passing the second portion of the Chunin Exams. There are rooms for you to stay in, and a kitchen so you can snack on something.”

Iruka then says, “I hope you pass these Exams. I’m rooting for you!”

Naruto replies, “Thanks Iruka-sensei, Dattebayo!”

Iruka just smiles, and Shunshins away from the Tower.

 

Chapter Text

 

In a room full of three beds, each member of Team 7 is sitting on one. Naruto says, “Kabuto is a spy for Orochimaru.”

Sasuke asks, “What is your evidence?”

Naruto answers, “No Genin has information like he does. How did he have mission stats for a Suna-nin? Let’s remind ourselves that, that Suna-nin is probably in his first Chunin Exams, much like we are.”

Sakura then says, “He thought that you would be carrying the scrolls, right? Wouldn’t that mean he might have also seen our reports done by the Sensei’s at Graduation?”

Naruto points at Sakura with a smirk. He replies, “If we acted like how we acted in the Academy… Who would have the scrolls? Who would be the weak link to split from the rest of the team?”

Sasuke answers, “I would have taken the scrolls… The answer to the next question would be you, Usuratonkachi.”

Naruto then says, “Exactly. A Genin, no matter how experienced, shouldn’t have that information; much less even see it. In any case, we’ll see what Karamaru finds out.”

It was unsaid, but Naruto would definitely give any and all information he found to the Old Man, who he knew as the Hokage. He wouldn’t let a spy have free reign in Konoha if he had anything to say about it. 

After a while of talking, Naruto gets up, and explores the tower. The boredness was getting to him. He hopes to see that Temari girl, and speak to her. Well, that was if he could get the ability to do so, in front of the pretty girl.

As he is walking, the blonde sighs, hoping that the kitchen has some ramen, at least. It was the food of the gods after all. Who would disgrace the gods by not stocking a kitchen full of ramen? It was reprehensible. 

With that thought in his mind, Naruto would have been pissed if he didn’t have ramen. They did, so he had to heat up some instant ramen. It wasn’t as good as what he usually gets, but the gods should forgive them.

Going to the recreation room that was in the tower, Naruto sees some of the teams that have passed so far. That Lee guy from the first test was exercising. Temari was fiddling with her fan. While Kiba and his ninken: Akamaru, are playing fetch. Choji, like always, is eating a bag of chips. By the way, his favorite flavor is Barbeque.

He walks up to Temari, but she blows him off in favor of cleaning her fan, and that makes him a bit sad. Naruto will not give up, though. Finding Karin in the corner of the room, he walks up to her. Sitting down next to her, he asks, “So… What do you think?”

Karin replies, “About what?”

Naruto answers, “About living here in Konoha. About creating an Uzumaki clan here.”

Karin says, “I’d like to, but… Kusa won’t like this.”

Naruto nods. He would need to summon a spying toad. Naruto then asks, “What has Kusa done to you?”

He then hears a voice, who says, “Nothing that you need to know about, Konoha Scum!”

It was a voice of finality. Naruto really didn’t care, though. He replies, “As the only heir to the Uzumaki clan, I, in fact, do have the need… No, I have the right to know about whatever untoward act a village or person has done to my clansmen!”

The voice says, “The village of Kusagakure doesn’t know of any such clan laws!”

Naruto replies, “Well, it’s a good thing that I do! Another clan law is that since the Uzumaki were allied with Konoha… Konoha has the right to have any Uzumaki clansmen or women, who want to join Konoha, to be able to do so. Do you know what this means? Who are you again?”

The man answers, “Zosui! I am her Jounin Team Leader.”

Zosui had fair skin, black hair that was combed back and reached a shoulder length, gray pupiless eyes, wearing the Kusagakure hitai-ate on his forehead, dark brown-gray kimono like shirt with cream outlines, black pants, a white robe tied around his waist, black socks, and black sandals.

Naruto then replies, “If you touch a single hair on her body… I will find out! Then I will bring all my might onto Kusagakure!”

The Jounin scoffed. What could this Genin do to him?

Naruto could clearly see what he was thinking. He then says, “Enough to be able to not just fight, but beat Zabuza Momochi.”

The confident smirk looked so natural on Naruto’s lisps. Naruto was bluffing up his ass though. He hated to have to do this to Zabuza, and hoped that Haku would forgive him. Then he continues with the bluff, saying, “You think that I am not called the Nami no Kyūseishu, for no reason?”

He had been hearing the rumors of that name spreading from the Wave Country. Naruto was glad they thought of him like that. It meant that he was finally starting to get that acknowledgement that he wanted at one point.

As Zosui looks into Naruto’s single eyes, it flashes crimson red. Reducing the Jounin to tremble at the sight! This kid was not messing around. Even Zosui himself would get destroyed by Zabuza… The demon that he is! 

Zosui then walked away with Karin in tow, grumbling, “Fine!”

Choji then walks up to him, and they sit down together. When Zosui gets out of earshot, Choji says, “But, didn’t you fight his apprentice?”

Naruto replies, “A fact that the Teme of a Jounin doesn’t need to know. So keep quiet!”

Choji then asks, “Why are you going so far for a Kusa Genin?”

Naruto answers, “She isn’t just any Kusa Genin. She’s an Uzumaki! She’s family!”

Choji could only nod. He already had a family. He didn't need to find them. He just couldn’t understand that need. So instead, he would be supportive of that need.

Naruto then sighs, getting up. Walking away, he lazily waves to Choji. Moving across the halls, he knew that someone was following him. Spinning around, Naruto sees Gaara. The Suna-nin says, “I’m glad you made it past the forest. It will make the action of spilling your blood, make Kaa-san really happy.”

Gaara then disappears in a sand Shunshin like when they first met.

Naruto then spins around, trying to ignore whatever in the ever loving hell that was. Though the one thing he was sure about, is that it was creepy as fuck. As he finishes his spin, he gets a right cross to the jaw, only for Naruto to dispel in a puff of smoke.

Naruto reappears behind him, and pokes him in the shoulder. The male, a teammate of Karin's, spins around to face Naruto. He then tries again, with Naruto blocking the attack. 

With that done with, the teammate goes through a series of kicks, and punches. All were either dodged, or blocked by Naruto. Each time, said teammate was getting more and more aggravated.

As he goes on the aggressive once more, Naruto blocks a punch. The Uzumaki jumps over a low kick, and twists dodging the Kusa-nin, who follows through with a kick to where his gut should have been. Landing, Naruto smiles, as the Kusa Genin yells out in frustration, thus alerting the Chunin who were patrolling a nearby hallway.

They tell him that fighting isn’t allowed in the tower, and to go to his room. They were not very impartial, as they are from Konoha. Though, they did reprimand Naruto for causing something. As in the past, they have chased Naruto all over the village after many, many pranks. It was not fun in their own opinion.

 

Chapter Text

 

In the Stadium under the Tower, the Hokage is standing in front of the Chunnin Hopefuls. He says, “Today we are doing a Preliminary Round. Too many people have passed. Anyone who doesn’t feel like they can fight, can leave now. Just raise your hand.”

Kabuto then raises his hand. He says, “I just made it to the tower, less than an hour ago. I do not have the chakra to compete anymore.”

Hiruzen nods, replying, “You may go then.”

As the Genin leaves, the Hokage turns to the man beside, and asks, “How many times has he quit on this stage?”

The man, through coughs answers, “When their is a preliminary round, every time.”

The Hokage just nods at that. It was quite suspicious in his mind. He would follow up on it later during the next month.

The stadium has two raised platforms on the side of them, used as bleachers. A couple screens are on the wall, on the far side of the arena. In front of those screens a pair of hands doing a hand seal. While the Hokage, and a man are on a smaller raised platform that is an inch, or two off the floor.

Then a man, through intermediate coughs, says, “I shall explain to them the rules of the matches!” This man is Hayate Gekko, a tokubetsu Jounin (Special Jounin) of Konohagakure.

Hayate had short brown hair, dark-coloured eyes and dark markings under his eyes. Even though he was a young man, he had pronounced lines under his eyes as well as an unexplained chronic cough that plagued him. He wore the standard Konoha shinobi outfit complete with a hitai-ate that he wore as a bandanna, flak jacket and regular shinobi sandals. He also carried a katana with a rectangular hand guard strapped over his back.

Hayate explains the rules. He says, “My word is law. Whoever forfeits loses. Killing is allowed, but it is frowned upon. The first match is Sasuke Uchiha versus Yoroi Akadō. Everyone else goes to the bleachers.”

Yoroi's appearance was greatly concealed by the mask he wore around his mouth that hung around his neck, sunglasses that obscured his eyes and hitai-ate which he wore like a bandanna. 

He also wears what appears to be the standard attire of his team consisting of a high-collared, sleeveless, purple shirt with a short-sleeved, white one underneath, a simple obi around his waist, purple pants, blue sandals and purple fingerless gloves.

When everyone is one the bleachers, Hayate asks, “Are you two ready?” After seeing the nods from the Genin, he yells, “Hajime (Begin)!”

Yoroi hands glow blue with chakra, as he rushes at Sasuke. “Just one touch, and the Uchiha will lose,” Yoroi thinks. He couldn’t afford to underestimate this Genin.

As Yoroi rushes Sasuke, he activates his Sharingan. Only to be wracked with pain, making him turn it off. Ok this was going to be a bit difficult for him, but he can still beat this half bit Shinobi.

Yoroi then makes a grab for Sasuke, who rolls under the Genin’s arm. Getting behind Yoroi, Sasuke jumps into a spin kick to the side of his head. As Yoroi stumbles sideways, Sasuke pushes his advantage, punching him in the side. He then combos it with a knee, and Yoroi stumbles backwards. 

As Yoroi grunts in effort, Sasuke kicks him into the air and follows close behind them. While in the air, Sasuke provokes him into attacking him, giving him the chance to counter them and, in turn, kick them higher into the air at increasingly greater speeds. The higher up they get and the faster they move, the more damage that will be caused to Yoroi when, as his finishing blow, Sasuke inevitably kicks them back to the ground. Knocking Yoroi out cold.

Kakashi then disappears in a Shunshin reappearing behind Sasuke, who is clearly not all there. Grabbing his student, Kakashi then disappears once again.

Hayate yells, “Sasuke Uchiha wins due to knockout! The next match is Choji Akimichi versus Shino Aburame!”

When the two Konoha shinobi get down to the arena floor, Hayate asks, “Are you two ready?” After he sees the nod, Hayate yells, “Hajime!”

Shino is regularly seen sporting the same style as the rest of his clan, consisting of dark sunglasses and a sea-green jacket with a high, upturned collar. He has dark, bushy, brown hair and dark, narrow eyes. He has always been wearing his signature round and dark glasses. Even Hinata, his teammate, did not know what his eyes truly looked like.

Asuma, Choji’s Sensei then yells, “Choji, if you win, I’ll pay for an all you can eat trip for some barbecue!”

Choji then does some hand seals. Ram → Special Seal. He yells, “Baika no Jutsu!” The Akimichi grows super round. 

He then yells, “Nikudan Sensha!” Choji then tucks himself into a ball, and rolls fast straight towards Shino. The Akimichi then suddenly stops rolling, and rolls to a stop right in front of Shino. Choji then reverts back to his normal size. Then a swarm of insects fly back into Shino’s body.

Shino says, “You must be wondering how you stopped rolling? I will tell you. Why? Because, it is the most logical way to tell everyone here how I won this match. You see right as Hayate-san said, “Hajime”, I placed a whole bunch of Kikaichū insects on your back. The Kikaichū ate your chakra, and you then lost control of your jutsu. I suggest that you give up.”

Choji says, “I give up!”

Hayate then yells, “Shino Aburame wins the match due to forfeit. The next match is Misumi Tsurugi versus Kankuro!”

Misumi's appearance was greatly concealed by the mask he wore around his mouth that hung around his neck and hitai-ate which he wore like a bandanna. He also wore what appears to be the standard attire of his team consisting of a high-collared, sleeveless, purple shirt with a short-sleeved, white one underneath, a simple obi around his waist, purple pants, blue sandals and purple fingerless gloves, along with a pair of round-framed glasses. 

When the two shinobi get down to the arena floor, Hayate asks, “Are you two ready?” After he sees the nod, Hayate yells, “Hajime!”

Misume then blitzes Kankuro, gets the puppet off his back, and wraps himself around Kankuro’s body. Tsurugi says, “This is my Nan no Kaizō! Using this jutsu, I  can stretch and bend my body however and whenever I please, extending it to great lengths and retracting it again. This is done by dislocating the body's joints. I would give up if I were you. I can break your neck here, and now. Which would kill you instantly.”

Kankuro simply says, “Fuck off!”

Misumi then does what he threatened to do, but to his horror, Kankuro’s body turns into a wooden puppet. Kankuro then gets out of the puppet’s wrapping, and connects chakra strings to his puppet, fixing it. The puppet user makes the puppet wrap around Misumi. Kankuro then makes the puppet break Misumi’s neck, ending the match.

Hayate then yells, “Kankuro wins the match due to the murder of his oponent. The next match is Sakura Haruno versus Ino Yamanaka!”

 When the two shinobi get down to the arena floor, Hayate asks, “Are you two ready?” After he sees the nod, Hayate yells, “Hajime!”

Before anyone can do anything, Ino does a string of hand seals, and yells, “Shintenshin no Jutsu!” Ino’s body slumps, as her consciousness is sent to Sakura’s mind.

Now a mental battle between Sakura, and Ino commences. It doesn’t last long though, as Ino loses, when Sakura yells, “SHANNARO!”

Ino wakes, and gets back up, only to see a fist from Sakura hit her cheek, making her fly across the arena. The Yamanaka gets up, and the two get into a series of punches that end with each other knocking the other out.

Hayate then yells, “No one wins the match due to a double knockout. The next match is Temari versus Tenten Higurashi!”

Tenten has black hair and gray eyes. She wears her hair in two Chinese-style buns on her head with short fringe-bangs framing her face. Tenten wears a pink sleeveless qipao-style blouse with red sleeve trimmings and yellow fastening buttons and dark green pants. A pouch is adjusted to her thigh and her hitai-ate and sandals are both blue.

When the two shinobi get down to the arena floor, Hayate asks, “Are you two ready?” After he sees the nod, Hayate yells, “Hajime!”

Tenten then quickly unseals some kunai, and throws it at Temari, who blocks it with a Futon jutsu. This happens for most of the match, until Tenten places two scrolls on either side of her in an upright position. Higurashi then does a string of hand seals. Tiger → Dragon → Monkey → Hare → Snake → Cross arms. The scrolls then rise up, and spin around each other cloaked in smoke shaped like a dragon. When the smoke disperses, Tenten jumps in between the scrolls and starts to unseal and throw weapons at her opponent in quick succession. Tenten yells, “Sōshōryū!”

Temari counters this, with a swing of her fan, as she yells, “Kamaitachi no Jutsu!” a vortex of wind forms around Tenten cutting her to pieces. 

Tenten then falls to the ground, and lands with her back facing the ground, onto Temari’s metal fan. Which knocks Tenten out.

Hayate then yells, “Temari wins the match due to a knockout. The next match is Shikamaru Nara versus Karin Uzumaki!”

When Shikamaru gets down to the arena floor, he mumbles, “Troublesome, why do I have to fight a girl?”

Sadly, Karin hears this, and asks, “What? Why don’t you want to fight me?”

While she wasn’t as bad as Temari would have been if she heard a man say as such, it was still a bit anger inducing.

Shikamaru answers, “You are a part of that Troublesome Blonde’s Clan… The Uzumaki. From what he has told me, well, they are a troublesome bunch. It’s just how things go.”

Hayate then asks, “Are you two ready?” After he sees the nod, Hayate yells, “Hajime!”

In a second, Shikamaru makes the rat seal, and yells, “Kagemane no Jutsu! success!”

Shikamaru’s shadow then races towards Karin’s shadow, and connects. With a pulse of chakra, Karin frees herself, and rushes Shikamaru, who rolls under a haymaker. He then jumps aways from a kick to the gut. Landing on one knee,  Shikamaru does the rat seal, and yells, “Kagemane no Jutsu! success!”

Shikamaru’s shadow then races towards Karin’s shadow, and connects. Though once again, Karin frees herself with a strong pulse of chakra, and rushes Shikamaru. The Nara then has to dodge, and block a flurry of Taijutsu. 

As Karin attacks once more, Shikamaru rolls under a punch. Spinning to face the female Uzumaki, Shikamaru makes the rat seal, and yells, “Kagemane no Jutsu! success!”

Standing up, he grunted with effort. This would be his last attack. Grabbing a kunai from his leg pouch, Shikamaru then throws it. As Karin’s kunai gets closer and closer, Shikamaru dodges it, by bending backwards at the waist. 

While Shikamaru bends at the waist, so does Karin. Though, unlike Shikamaru, who was safely away from any wall, Karin wasn’t. So when she bent back, she hit her head on the wall, and knocked herself out.

Hayate then yells, “Shikamaru Nara wins the match due to being knocked out!”

After Shikamaru returns to his teammates, yells, “The next match is Kiba Inuzuka versus Naruto Uzumaki!” When the two shinobi get down to the arena floor, Hayate asks, “Are you two ready?” After he sees the nod, Hayate yells, “Hajime!”

Chapter Text

 

Naruto then stares down Kiba, who stares back. Kiba smirks, as he says, “Akamaru… I got this!”

The small dog barked in reply. His master, his friend, should let him help. Naruto is way stronger than he was when he was in the Academy. In fact, Akamaru has told Kiba many times to never underestimate anyone. Even if they are the “Dead Last”, which Naruto was clearly not.

He remembers the last time the fought, in that training simulation. Kiba was thrashed by Naruto. His team was thrashed by him and his own team. Kiba needed his help, but he would respect Kiba. Akamaru will stay out of it, until he asks for that help. 

Another quick bark from Akamaru. It meant that Akamaru would follow the order, but he didn’t like it.

Naruto then watched as Kiba got on all fours, growing claws on all four limbs. Kiba then rushes, swiping his claws at the blonde, who easily blocks the attack. Kiba then smirks, as he flips back, attempting a kick to Naruto’s head. It was an attack that Naruto moved away from himself. 

Then as Kiba lands, he slashes down at Naruto. As blood flies from his chest and stomach, Naruto could only smirk, as he dispels in a puff of smoke, blinding the Inuzuka. Kiba then flies forward from a hard kick to his back. Naruto then disappears in front of Kiba’s flight, and kicks him in the chin, launching him into the air.

 Naruto was going to follow him, in a move similar to Sasuke, and Lee… But he didn’t. He Shunshins above the flying Inuzuka, and opens his right eye. Kiba gasps in shock, as he stares directly into s three-tomoe Sharingan, thus getting trapped in a Genjutsu.

Kiba is ramrod straight, as Naruto kicks him back into the ground below. Though Naruto frowns, as when the Inuzuka lands, a shattered piece of a log appears in his place.  

Kiba chuckles, a smirk is clearly evident on his face. He asks, “My Sensei is the Genjutsu Mistress of Konoha, did you think that I wouldn’t have some way to get out of a Genjutsu?”

Naruto then lands, his tantō in his hand. Unleashing several arcs of winds from the blade, he replies, “I figured you would be too shocked by the fact that I have a Sharingan to even think of trying to get out of the Genjutsu.”

Kiba smirks once again, as he dodges the arcs of wind. He asks, “How about we finish this, huh? Akamaru, catch!” 

Kiba then throws a small soldier pill at Akamaru, who catches it in his mouth with a small leap.  Akamaru’s fur then turns red and he becomes more feral, which is why he was named Akamaru.

Then Naruto watches this unfold. He was pretty unpredictable himself, but he didn’t really expect this to happen. He also didn’t expect Orochimaru, but that is a story for a different time.

Akamaru was now on Kiba’s back. The dog then transforms into Kiba. Akamaru jumps from Kiba’s back, straight to Naruto, who catches the transformed dog by the hands. Swinging in a complete circle, Naruto lets go of Akamaru, who then flies towards Kiba. 

With Kiba who now has to catch his partner, Naruto thinks it’s the perfect time to act. Naruto then throws down several smoke bombs, which errupted with orange-tinted smoke. It was a special bomb that he made for a prank, back in the Academy. He never really had a use for them afterwards, but Naruto liked to carry at least one with him at all times.

Kiba took one sniff, and gagged. It was a fucking stink bomb. Akamaru wined in annoyance at that. The Inuzuka looks apologetically at his companion, and jumps into the smoke. So Akamaru follows him.

As the smoke begins to clear, they see Naruto weaving through a set of hand seals.  Ox → Snake → Ram. The Uzumaki exhales a large amount of thick mist. The three begin to fight inside of the mist, or rather Naruto is whooping their asses, having painstakingly learned the Silent Killing technique. 

Sakura then turns to see her Sensei next to her. She asks, “Isn’t that?”

Kakashi nods, “That is the Kirigakure no Jutsu, the signature jutsu of Kirigakure.”

Sakura then asks, “How did he learn that?”

Kakashi shrugs, saying, “He probably saw me do it a couple times.”

He recently has been trying to get rust free. So he has been training with different Jutsu in his arsenal. The Kirigakure no Jutsu was just one of them, if not also the most recent. It was a tough thing to do, as he knows a thousand different jutsu, but Kakashi was getting there.

Naruto happened on Kakashi training one day. It was the Silent Killing Technique. From what he has heard of it, it seems like a useful jutsu to have in one’s arsenal. So, copying Kakashi, he began training to use it as well. It was painstakingly difficult, until he got the Sharingan, and was able to copy the movements from the man himself. The same happened with the Mist jutsu that he used.

As the mist soon clears, there are three Kiba’s. One Kiba says, “Kiba… One of us is Akamaru. While the other is Naruto. Punch one of us to dispel the Henge.”

Kiba then lunged forward, and sucker punched the Kiba that was speaking. As the smoke dissipates, it shows Naruto, who stomps the ground below him. The action erects a barrier underfoot, rendering anyone within the seal formula incapable of escaping. Naruto then unsheathes his tanto, and puts it into Kiba’s neck, drawing a small amount of blood.

Naruto then asks, “Do you give up!?”

Kiba could only nod. He was too defeated to speak. The Kiba beside Naruto then dispels in a puff of smoke revealing nothing. It was just a shadow clone who used a Henge to look like Kiba.

Kiba was flabbergasted, which then quickly turned to anger, as he yelled, “Where is Akamaru!?”

Naruto chuckles, as he says, “Akamaru is getting lovely petted by the Hokage. Don’t worry.”

Hayate then yells, “Naruto Uzumaki wins the match due to Surrender! The next match is Hinata Hyuga versus Neji Hyuga!”

Neji has fair skin and long dark brown hair. When his Byakugan was not active, he has featureless white eyes, with a slight lavender tint. 

Neji wears a beige-coloured shirt, a dull blue shirt beneath that, and mesh armor beneath that. He wears dark brown shorts, blue shinobi sandals, and wrapped bandages around his right arm, chest, and right leg. He tied his hair back in a loose ponytail tied a few inches above the end. He wears a black hitai-ate, under which is a smaller headband with two straps that frame the sides of his face, both of which hide his Hyūga main family's juinjutsu that is applied to his forehead.

When the two shinobi get down to the arena floor, Hayate asks, “Are you two ready?” After he sees the nod, Hayate yells, “Hajime!”

They both activate their Byakugans, and rush at each other with a flurry of Jyuken (Gentle Fist) Strikes. It goes on and on. She wanted to show her cousin, and her crush that she was strong, that she could do this.

Hinata could now barely stand. Her legs threatened to give out under her. Though she would not give up. She had something to prove.

Neji sighed, “Give up, Hinata-sama ! We both knew the outcome of this battle. Fate has declared it so! I will win, just like always.”

Neji then angrily aims a strike to her chest, ready to kill her. Before he could strike, Hayate then yells, “Neji Hyuga wins the match! Neji! You better get away from Hinata!”  

Neji goes to attack her anyway. Only to get blindside from a punch by a Kyuubified-Naruto. Naruto was, and is pissed at Neji. No one should hurt a family member, especially if they are weaker than you. You should protect your family members, especially.

 A second later, Naruto unleashes a loud roar. He then says, “Do what your fucking told! You are trash, and scum! And you better hope to whoever the fuck you believe in that you don’t face me in the finals, or you will be leaving that fight crippled!”

The Hokage then says, “Naruto! Stand down!”

The chakra cloak resends back into Naruto’s body. Bowing to his leader, Naruto returns to where his team was standing.

Hayate then again yells, “Neji Hyuga wins the match! The next match is Gaara versus Rock Lee!”

When the two shinobi get down to the arena floor, Hayate asks, “Are you two ready?” After he sees the nod, Hayate yells, “Hajime!”

Gaara then shoots a tendril of sand at Lee, who blitzes towards Gaara. Lee attempts a punch, only for it to be blocked by a wall of sand. He then jumps up into the air, and attempts a spinning kick, which again gets blocked by sand. Bushy Brows then drops low to do a sweep kick, which also gets blocked by sand. Lee then hears his sensei, who yells, “TAKE YOUR MOST YOUTHFUL WEIGHTS OFF, LEE!”

Lee then yells, “OF COURSE GAI-SENSEI!”

Rock Lee then appears on top of the hand seal. He bends down and lifts his leg warmers up to reveal weights. He unclasps them, and lifts them at his head. While this is going on Ino, who has woken up already, asks, “What are weights going to do?”

She then sees Lee drop the weight, which creates a huge crater, and dust to fly up into the air. Lee then disappears, and reappears in front of Gaara, and gives him a huge uppercut. As Gaara is in the air, Lee jumps up, and kicks him back to the ground.  When Gaara lands, Lee also lands another kick. Lee then hears Gai, who yells, “LEE! USE THEM!”

Lee then yells, “Kaimon! Kyūmon! Seimon! Shōmon! Tomon!”

Kakashi asks, “Did you really teach him the Hachimon?”

Gai answers, “Yes I did. He can’t perform Ninjutsu, or Genjutsu. It’s his dream to be an excellent shinobi through only the use of Taijutsu. The Hachimon is the only way for his dream to be accomplished.”

Lee delivers an upward kick to Gaara, sending them high into the air. He follows the opponent along their upward trajectory, taking tight hold of them so that they can't move or escape; Rock Lee wraps opponents with the bandages he wears to help in this regard. Once they've reached the peak of the initial kick's arc, the user begins a spinning motion and propels them headfirst towards the ground. The user releases the opponent right before impact and retreats to safety, leaving the opponent to collide with the ground alone.

Lee then watches as the Gaara he sent headfirst into the ground dissolves into sand, and reforms perfectly fine. He tries to get away from two tendrils of sand, but his left leg, and right arm gets captured. Gaara clutches his hand into a fist, and says, “Sabaku Sōsō!” The sand then crushes Lee’s left leg, and right arm.

As Gaara tries to kill Lee, Gai steps in, Hayate then again yells, “Gaara wins the match! This has concluded the Preliminary Round!”

The Sandaime then stands up, and says, “You are now to pick to see who you will be facing in the Finals.”

The Genin do exactly that.

Naruto: 1

Neji: 2

Shikamaru: 3 

Temari: 4

Shino: 5

Kankuro: 6

Sasuke: 7

Gaara: 8

They then go to train for a month.

 

Chapter Text

 

Naruto sighs, as he walks through the village. His training wasn’t supposed to start until the next day, so he was bored. And apparently so was Temari, who was aimlessly walking around the village, just like he was.

So, Naruto walks up to her. A soft chuckle escaped from his lips, as he asks, “Bored? I know some good spots in Konoha, like this amazing ramen stand. Wanna go?”

Temari scoffs, as she replies, “Are you asking me out?”

Naruto answers, “Only if you say yes.”

Temari giggles at that. She says, “Then show me these “spots”, Stink Bomb.”

Naruto gasps in fake shock. How could she? He says, “Then let's get that ramen, huh? Ichiraku’s, the best in the village!”

Temari smiles, she asks, “Really now? Huh… You sold me, let’s go then.”

Naruto does a bow, and says, “Follow me, like the wind from a fan.”

Temari rolled her eyes. It was corny, but her boredness was alleviated.

As they sat down, Ayame came out of the back. She looks at Naruto, and then at Temari. A small smile forms on her face. Ayame could instantly tell that Naruto was smitten with the girl beside him. He was smart in every situation, except this. He was corny, dense, and has no idea what to do. He had asked her many times on how to win Sakura’s affection when he was in the Academy. 

Ayame asks, “So… Naruto, who is this? She must be here for the Chunin Exams right? Are you showing her around Konoha?”

Naruto answers, “This is Temari. She’s from Sunagakure. She looked bored, so I asked if she wanted to do something.”

  Ayame gasps. She replies, “So, you what can I get for you two, huh? I guess, you’d like your usual, right?”

Naruto simply nods, while Ayame asks, “And what can I get you, Temari-san?”

Temari answers, “I’d like a bowl of shoyu (soy sauce) ramen, please.”

As Ayame leaves, Temari asks, “Usual, huh? How often do you come here?”

Naruto answers, “When I was little… A lot of places would let me buy things. They would ignore me, or even out right kick me out for just staring at an item. This place was one of the first places to let me buy something. In fact, my very first bowl was free.”

Temari nods, as a sad sigh escapes from her mouth. It was like her brother, Gaara. Well, without all of those assassins. She, like everyone else, saw the chakra cloak. Temari knew that Naruto was a Jinchuuriki. It was a fate she didn’t want to put on anyone. She says, “That must have sucked.”

Naruto replies, ”It did. Now, though… I have the best of friends. I have my teammates, my Sensei, my Nii-san. It’s enough.”

Naruto stayed quiet after that. The conversation got a bit awkward. And soon, Ayame served them their food. It was delicious as usual for Naruto. Meanwhile, Temari had stars in her eyes. From the first bite, it was the best bowl of ramen that she has ever had. And once they got into their second bowl, they continued to talk, until the sun began to set. 

Quickly finishing his bowl, Naruto says, “It’s time for you to see the best spot in the village.”

Temari smiles as she asks, “And what is that?”

Naruto laughs. He then answers, “A surprise.”

The blonde then pays, and drags Temari away from the ramen stand. Ayame smiles, and says, “Little Naru-chan just went on a date.”

Teuchi, as well, smiles. He replies, “Even the suna-nin could tell that he liked her.“

Ayame just nods at that.

Naruto then Shunshins to the top of the Hokage Rock. He, along with Temari, stand atop of his father’s head. The Uzumaki stares at the setting sun that rotates over his village. Temari said it best, as she gasped at the beautiful sight. She asks, “So, where are we?”

Naruto answers, “On top of the Hokage Rock. It’s a monument to every Hokage of the Village. The Hokage we are standing on is the Yondaime, Minato Namikaze.” 

The Hokage Rock is a mountain overlooking Konohagakure that has all the faces of the Hokage carved into the stone. It was envisioned by Hashirama Senju as a symbol that the Hokage would always watch over the village. The Hokage Rock is easily the most identifiable feature in the village, and as such, it was made the target of many a prank that was done by him, and Iruka, shortly after his own parent’s death.

After watching the sun set, the two Genin go their own separate ways.

The next day, Naruto woke up to a knock on his front door. It was probably Shisui, so he got up, and let him in, while he got ready. Once Naruto was ready, they went to their training ground.

Shisui then says, “I heard that you used Suiton in your match against Kiba in the Preliminaries. So you got the copying aspect of the Sharingan down then, huh?  That’s good, but for the next month, I am going to make sure your body can react to anything that the Sharingan can see.”

Naruto replies, “Then what are we waiting for? Let’s get to it!”

Shisui smiles, “I knew that is what you’d say. So, think fast!”

Naruto barely, just barely dodged a series of kunai and shuriken. 

Shisui says, “That’s good, Naruto, but this is a spar.”

Naruto then sees the wire that Shisui was holding. He curses! Naruto needs to dodge, but how? He jumps into the air, only for Shisui to wrap the ninja wire around his body. The wire then wraps around, until the kunai and shuriken land in his body. It hurt like hell.

When Naruto returned to earth, Shisui removed the wire from his body. He says, “Again!”

And so the two did it again, and again, and again. For a month straight. On the last day, Naruto finally got the day to himself. He meditates. Entering his mindscape for the first time since before he entered the Chunin Exams.

The Kyuubi looks like it always has. He is a red-orange coloured kitsune with black fur around its red eyes that stretch up to its ears, and nine long swiping tails. It also has an upper-body structure of a human, complete with opposable thumbs on its clawed hands.

The Kyuubi asks, “So what do you want, brat?”

Naruto has had a question on his mind for a while now. He asks, “Was that you that rumbled my chest, when we met Gaara?”

The Kyuubi looks at Naruto in his eye. He answers, “It was. Gaara, like you, is what you call a Jinchuuriki. I’d be careful, I don’t want to die.”

Naruto remembers their first conversation. If he dies, so does the Kyuubi. He also remembers their second conversation, where Naruto was instantly booted from the mindscape, when he asked the Kyuubi if he had a name.

Naruto then says, “Thanks for the warning.”

He then leaves the mindscape.

Karamaru then rises up from his shoulder. The crow caws. Naruto smiles. The bird gave the scroll to the Hokage, about what it found out about Kabuto. Naruto didn’t need to worry about Kabuto, as the Hokage already knew about Kabuto for a while now. 

He already received info from the spying toad on Karin. And what the toad told him, well… He did not like it.

After all of this, Naruto decided that he should get some sleep. He didn’t want to be tired, when he beat Neji’s ass tomorrow.

Chapter Text

Naruto groaned as he woke up. A smile was on his face, until he found out he woke up a bit late. So he rushed around his apartment, making a ruckus of sound, as he got dressed, and everything that he might need.

Naruto couldn’t sleep last night. Even just the thought of the Chunin Exams kept him up. He was going to show all in Konoha why they should respect him. Why he deserved to be a Chunin.

Almost kicking his door down as he left, Naruto jumped down to the ground, and bolted to the arena. All of the Chunin hopefuls, except for Sasuke, who wanted extra training before the Finals started, are standing in a huge arena. Naruto is smirking at Neji, who has a permanent scowl on his face. Naruto so wants to destroy the Hyuga in the most humiliating way possible.

Getting that out of his mind for now, he looked around the arena. Naruto smiles at Temari, who smiles back. He gives a nod to Sakura, and the rest of the Konoha Genin that sat watching.

From the Hokage Box, the two Kage present watch the proceedings. The Hokage, and the Kazekage. 

The Kazekage has auburn hair, dark eyes and usually has a very stern look on his face. He wears the standard attire of the Kazekage which consisted of a loose fitting green kimono with a white collar and the signature hat with the kanji for wind (風) on it.

The Kazekage looks towards the Genin. He sees Naruto smile at his daughter, and says, “Maybe we should do something between my daughter, and that blonde kid? Further diplomatic ties. What do you say, Hiruzen-dono?”

Hiruzen looks up at his bodyguard, for a moment and then answers, “It’s possible, but let’s wait until after the Chunin Exams, Shall we? I’d like to see what my council thinks before doing something so major. You must understand, right… Rasa-dono?”

The Kazekage, a man named Rasa, nods. He understood. Rasa then says, “Of course, Hiruzen-dono. It’s just that I feel war is brewing, if you will, and as much as I hate it, Suna isn’t as strong as it once was.”

Hiruzen replies, “I know how you feel.”

Though, the old Kage internally scoffs. The Rasa he knew would never admit that to another Kage,especially him.  He didn’t even speak about his kids, and if he did, well… Rasa never mentioned Gaara as his child, or even by name. He didn’t even mention creating a Jinchuuriki, not that the Kazekage would after all.

A man then appears in front of the Genin. He says, “Hello everybody, I am Genma Shiranui. I’ll be the proctor for the finals. The rules are the same as the preliminary round. But I will say them once again, to let everyone here get a refresher… If you will. My word is law! Whoever forfeits loses. Killing is allowed, but it is frowned upon. The first match is Sasuke Uchiha versus Yoroi Akadō. Everyone else goes to the bleachers.” 

Genma Shiranui is a Tokubetsu Jounin of Konohagakure and an elite bodyguard to the Hokage.

Genma has brown, shoulder-length hair which hangs about his face and brown eyes. He wears his hitai-ate like a bandanna, and the standard jounin outfit and always has his trademark senbon in his mouth.

Genma then says, “Everyone who isn’t Neji Hyuga, and Naruto Uzumaki get off the arena floor, and go to the participant's viewing box!” When only those two shinobi remain, Genma yells, “Hajime!”

Creating four clones, Naruto sent them towards Neji, who blocked the first clone. Then he dodges the second clone, and then counters the third. As smoke covers his view, Naruto throws two kunai through the smoke at Neji. The Hyuga easily jabs the weapons out of the air.

Naruto then appears in front of Neji, his fist already flying into his stomach. As Naruto goes to attack once more, Neji counters, throwing out a jab, which Naruto grabs. He then flips Neji over his shoulder. He lands on his feet.

Naruto then creates three more clones. The first clone attacks with his tantō, which Neji ducks under, taking out the clone’s feet, dispelling it. Before Neji could stand up, the second clone slammed his calf into Neji’s forearm, as he chose to block the attack. Neji then grabs the clone, as he gets to his feet, and slams the clone into the third clone. Both are destroyed.

Neji then says, “Like I told Hinata-sama , your fate has been predetermined. You will lose against me!”

Naruto replies, “Screw you and your fate!”

Naruto the creates two clones, who weave through hand seals. With compressed wind in their palms, the real Naruto jumps into the air, allowing the clones the slam the air into the soles of his sandals. Much like a tunnel-vision effect, Naruto is shot across the arena towards Neji. It is like a bullet that is shot from a gun, or a senbon from a senbon launcher.

Neji bends at the knees, to dodge under Naruto at the very last second. He frowns, as he stares at the flying Naruto, who has this annoying smirk on his face. The Naruto above him dispels into a plume of smoke, shocking Neji, along with the crowd that was watching the match. 

That Naruto was supposed to be the real Naruto. Did he switch out right before he flew?

Smoke then erupts under Neji, as he is kicked in the back of the head. The kick sends him flying into the air. Two Naruto clones are then sent after him. One punches him further into the air, while the second one kicks him higher than the first. This time the real Naruto, does in fact, appear above him. And he sends Neji crashing back to earth with a flip kick.

Naruto then falls towards Neji, a Rasengan forms in his hand. That shocked the two Kage in front of him. To see such a complicated jutsu as the Rasengan, was a thing of beauty to a Ninjutsu connoisseur.

Though, as Naruto falls, Neji gets to his feet. He then stands and waits. The Hyuga would need perfect timing for this to work, and it was a good thing that he indeed had perfect timing.

The moment before Neji is struck, he emits chakra from every chakra point. Neji then spins rapidly, repelling the attack (and anything else in the vicinity) away and creating a protective shield for as long as they continue to spin. The greater the force of an attack, the greater the force with which it's repelled, thus sending Naruto flying into the wall of the arena.

In the stands, the Hyuga clan was shocked. How did he do a secret jutsu of the main branch?

Neji then appears in front of Naruto, who is free from the wall. He says, “You have made me show one of my trump cards. One that I have been watching the main branch of the Hyuga do for years. One that I have been training with for just as long. How about I show you another? Hakke Rokujūyon Shō!”

Using their Byakugan's near-360° field of vision, the Hyūga envisions themselves within the center of an Eight Trigrams symbol. Neji then delivers a series of attacks to Naruto who is within the symbol's perimeter, striking sixty-four of their Tenketsu. Those sixty-four tenketsu are subsequently blocked, stopping the flow of chakra within the target's body and making it difficult for them to move.

As Naruto falls onto his back, Neji says, “These eyes of mine show me many things. One thing they've shown me… people's limitations are set, fixed, and unchangeable. Only a fool wastes his time trying to become something he can never be! The only destiny that everyone shares… is death."

A groan from Naruto’s body makes Neji tense for action. Only, Neji gets punched in the cheek by nothing. And as he is flying across the ground, he gets kicked into the air, by a now visible Naruto. The clone that Neji attacked had just popped. And at this point, it didn’t have the shock value as it did in the beginning. 

Creating two Shadow Clones, Naruto then follows Neji into the air, grabbing him by the ankles. The Naruto’s then slam the Hyuga into the ground. While still in the air, Naruto sends both of his clones sky rocketing back down, headbutting Neji in the chest, and stomach.

The final, and real Naruto then bends his arm at a ninety degree angle, and forms a spinning ball of chakra into his hand. Yelling, Naruto falls head first back down to the ground. Though, right before his Rasengan connects, Naruto changes his aim, making it connect to the dirt right next to Neji’s ear.

Naruto is staring at Neji’s unopened eyes. Getting up, he says, “Proctor-san… Neji is unconscious.”

Genma then yells, “Due to a knockout, Naruto Uzumaki wins!”

Then the cheering came. Loud, and thunderous. He could barely hear himself think. The wide-eyed smile that was on his face… Naruto didn’t know how to feel. It was such an odd experience.

The Kazekage was wide-eyed. He saw a Genin use the Rasengan, and not just once. While he had never seen the jutsu in person, he had most definitely heard the rumors of what it could do. He says, “That is quite a Genin you have there! The strategy, the jutsu. He deserves a promotion to Chunin, don’t you think?”

Hiruzen says, “I agree with that… But let’s not jump to conclusions here.”

Genma then says, “Shikamaru Nara and Temari come down to fight!”

As Shikamaru goes to raise his hand to forfeit, Naruto slaps him on his back, making the Nara fall flat on his face. As he got up, he groaned, and moaned in displeasure. Meanwhile, Temari just floated down on her fan.

A fight later, and Shikamaru forfeits. And it just annoys Temari, despite the Nara clearly being on the winning side of the fight, like always. Genma then says, “Due to Shikamaru Nara forfeiting, Temari no Sabaku is the winner of this match. The next match is Kankuro v Shino Aburame!”

Kankuro says, “Sorry Proctor, but I forfeit.”

Genma says, “Ok. Due to Kankuro forfeiting, Shino Aburame is the winner of this match. It is now time for Sasuke and Gaara no Sabaku to come down here and fight!”

In an instant, Gaara appears in a Shunshin made of sand. His arms crossed, and his face is full of hunger to get blood for his mother.
In the Kage box, Rasa asks, “So where is Uchiha-san? I’d like my son to beat him.”

Hiruzen smiles, hiding his thoughts. Orochimaru, you forget how much I have interacted with Rasa. The two had yearly semi-annual meetings. They would discuss the terms of their alliance treaty. Hiruzen then says, “I don’t know, but if he doesn’t get here soon, I’ll have to disqualify him.”

Sasuke then soon appeared with Kakashi by his side in a flutter of leaves. Kakashi asks, “Are we late?”

Genma asks, “Almost! You made it just in time.”

Sasuke is wearing a black, one-piece version of this usual attire with many small belts adorning his left arm and similar bands around both legs. He is also wearing his hitai-ate.

Kakashi nods, but Sasuke has an angry look on his face. He is yelling at his Sensei, who said that they wouldn’t be late. Kakashi retorts, “Technically, we aren’t late. Genma-san said we are just in time.”

Sasuke just sighed at the logic, he couldn’t quite refute.

The two Genin then face each other. Both tense, and ready for action. Genma then yells, “Hajime!”

When Sasuke hears this word a grin appears on his face. With speed mimicking Lee, the Uchiha appears in front of Gaara with a punch, his sand just barely blocking the attack. Then Sasuke appears behind Gaara, with a kick that his sand wasn’t able to keep up with. After that, Sasuke appears above Gaara with an axe-handle. Next Sasuke appears beside Gaara and does a sweep kick. 

Gaara’s sand could barely keep up with both attacks, So the Suna-nin surrounded himself with sand. Sasuke then tries to get through the sand. He couldn’t. Appearing halfway up the side of the arena wall, Sasuke weaves through hand seals. Ox → Rabbit → Monkey → Dragon → Rat → Bird → Ox → Snake → Dog → Tiger → Monkey. With the sound of a thousand birds chirping, Sasuke yells, “Chidori!”

And in a blazing display of speed, even Lee would be jealous of, Sasuke stabs his lightning covered fist into the sand and then into Gaara’s arm. The sand then falls to the ground, allowing Sasuke to freeze, as he briefly feels something demonic, like Naruto’s orange chakra.

Though, before the fight could continue, a bunch of feathers descended over the stadium like rain.

 

Chapter Text

 

Gaara then flees from the stadium, being carried by his siblings. Before Genma could stop him, Sasuke bolts afterwards. Naruto sees this, and kicks Shikamaru awake. He says, “Shika… It’s time to act. Konoha is being invaded.” 

Not before long, a loud bang reinforces Naruto’s statement. Naruto turns to the Kage box, which is now covered in smoke. He couldn’t help there. With Shikamaru following, he makes his way through Oto, and Suna-nin to Kakashi. 

Naruto then fills his Sensei in on the situation. Summoning Pakun, his favorite dog, Kakashi, tells them to follow Sasuke. Sakura was their to round them out a bit. She has real deceptive strength, especially when she puts her mind to it.

As they follow many Sound Ninja get in their way. Naruto didn’t allow it, putting each and every one in a Genjutsu. Sand Ninja also get in their way, though like the Sound Ninja before them, they get put into a Genjutsu.

Naruto then flashes a couple ANBU sign language to Sakura, he whispers, “We are being followed. Probably… Most likely Oto-nin.”

Shikamaru then says, “Go on, I will delay them. Don’t worry.”

Before Sakura could do anything, Naruto simply nodded. The respect that these two had for each other was evident. So, they went on, while Shikamaru stayed back, catching them in his shadow. They were in fact Oto-nin. Shikamaru then sighed. Of course Naruto had to be troublesome.

Wait… One was missing. Tilting his head, Shikamaru dodged a needle. As he tried to reach for whoever threw the needle, the rest of his shadow let go of the Shinobi he had control of.

A shinobi then appears behind the Nara, knocking out each Oto-nin in front of Shikamaru. The Shinobi says, “You deserve some rest Shika. Go get it. I’ll help the rest of your team with the Jinchuuriki.”

Shikamaru replies, “Thanks, Asuma-sensei.”

Though, Asuma kept quiet on whether he could even help. A Jinchuuriki could kill hundreds, if not thousands of ninja. And it didn’t really matter if they were all that trained or not. This Gaara was obviously trained, if only a little bit. It would be a tough fight for him.

While they catch up to Sasuke and Gaara, a puppet then blocks their way. Only for a wall of insects to block the puppets' way. Above them and Kankuro, is Shino. He says, “I’ll take him on. Why? Because, I was already supposed to. Plus you need to get to Uchiha-san. If that chakra is even a tenth as demonic as my incests thinks it is, he’ll need help.”

After Kanuro is Temari, who blocks their path with a Futon jutsu. Sakura then turns to Naruto. Nothing needed to be said, as Naruto just nodded, leaving the Suna-nin to her.

As Naruto leaves, Temari cockily asks, “What are you going to do to me? We all saw that pathetic display in the Preliminaries! You saw what I did to that Tenten girl, right!?”

Sakura gains a smirk, as she punches the tree that Temari is on, shattering it in a couple thousand pieces. Temari quickly lost her cocky smile right then and there.

Meanwhile Asuma then sees another battlefield. An Aburame was here, he could tell, as he worked with them enough. Finding Shino was easy, though transport wouldn’t be as easy. Shino was covered in a cocoon of incest, for the purpose of draining the poison from Shino’s body.

Asuma thinks, “A single Kage Bunshin should be good enough.”

Making the clone, Asuma leaves it to help Shino, in case anyone tries to attack the cocoon. Bolting from Shino, and his clone, Asuma finds the next battle, which is now a wide open field. He could tell, a fan user was here. Futon jutsu were not that hard to detect the aftermath of.

Standing over the fan-user, Temari, if he remembered correctly, was Sakura. He then inspected the area a bit more, and everywhere he could see, the ground was cracked, as if Tsunade punched, and or stomped on it. That wasn’t a good thought. Another Tsunade in the making… Uh oh. Well, mainly for Konoha’s enemies, at least.

Sakura then falls on her back, passed out. Most likely from chakra exhaustion. Guess she wasn’t used to whatever jutsu she used, or it had a bigger chakra expenditure than expected. In whatever case, He needed to get her to a hospital. So creating another clone, Asuma sends it off to get her to the hospital.

While Asuma is helping the Genin, as best he can, his father, Hiruzen is fighting his student Orochimaru. They are inside a massive Barrier Fuinjutsu, that burns anyone to a crisp if they touch it. An ANBU member found that tidbit out the hard way.

As they disengage from each other, Orochimaru weaves through hand seals. Tiger → Snake → Dog → Dragon → Clap hands. Hiruzen instantly recognized the string of hand seals. Flinging a shuriken, he flashes through his own set of hand seals. Ox → Dog → Dragon → Rat → Dog → Boar → Snake → Tiger.

Two caskets then rise from the ground. They have the Kanji for one, and two ingrained on them. A third casket, with the kanji for four on it, then rises, only for a hundred shuriken to strike it. 

As the final casket falls, the lids on the other fall, revealing Hiruzen’s two teachers. The first one is Hashirama Senju, the Shodai Hokage. The second figure is the Nidaime Hokage, Tobirama Senju.

Hashirama was a tall man with tanned skin and dark eyes. He had waist-length black hair typically styled in a center-parted fringe that framed his face. 

He often wore the standard shinobi dress of his era, consisting of dark red armor worn over a simple black suit with sandals. This armor was constructed from numerous metal plates, formed into multiple protective guards along his body; each collar of his shoulder guards bore the Senju symbol. Prior to Konoha's formation he wore a white-coloured cloth bearing his clan's symbol on his forehead, which he later replaced with the village's hitai-ate.

Tobirama was a fair-skinned man with silver, shaggy hair and dark-red coloured eyes. He had three red markings on his face, one under each of his eyes and one on his chin. 

In combat, he wore blue armor with a distinctive white fur collar over a simple black suit. This armor was constructed from numerous metal plates, formed into multiple protective guards along his body. Beneath his shoulder armor he wore two extra shoulder guards on each arm. This clothing was accompanied by sandals and a happuri in place of the more traditional hitai-ate. The happuri was initially engraved with the Senju's emblem, which was later replaced with Konoha's.

 

Chapter Text

 

Naruto and Pakun have now reached Sasuke and Gaara. Sasuke was dead tired. So tired, in fact, that even the trees could see it. This meant that Gaara most definitely saw how tired Sasuke was.

As Gaara goes to attack the Uchiha, a wall of earth rises up to block the attack. Naruto then appears on top of the wall. He says, “Teme… Go with Pakun. You are too tired. You won’t be able to do anything to help me.”

A growl emanates from Sasuke, but he complies with the order. Despite how he thought he was the leader, it has always been Naruto. Didn’t mean he had to like it. Anyway, Sasuke faced the small pug, and followed him away from the battle.

Naruto then stared at Gaara, who was way different looking. His right arm, along with the right side of his face is covered in sand. His right eye has black sclerae, with yellow irises and pupils that each takes the shape of a black four-pointed star with four black dots around it. 

Creating two Shadow Clones, Naruto sends them to attack Gaara. While the first clone slices through Gaara’s sand arm, the second heel kicks Gaara in the temple. The sand that was Gaara’s right arm, then wraps tightly around the two clones, dispelling them. Gaara’s sand arm then grows back. 

Gaara then gets punched in the cheek by nothing. And as he is flying across the ground, he gets kicked into the air, by a now visible Naruto. Creating two Shadow Clones, Naruto then follows Gaara into the air, grabbing him by the ankles. The Naruto’s then slam the Jinchuuriki into the ground. While still in the air, Naruto sends both of his clones sky rocketing back down, headbutting Gaara in the chest, and stomach.

The final, and real Naruto then bends his arm at a ninety degree angle, and forms a spinning ball of chakra into his hand. Yelling, Naruto falls head first back down to the ground. As Naruto lands head first into Gaara’s head, his Rasengan, sheared the other Jinchuuriki’s left arm off between the shoulder and elbow.

Naruto then gets back up. No way was this the end. It was too easy. He then hears a deep and crazed laugh that emanated from Gaara. Yeah… He most definitely spoke too soon.

Jumping away, Naruto covers himself in the Kyuubi’s chakra. Their was no way to beat a Jinchuuriki, without pretty much being one yourself. Then ,it was a good thing he was one.

Sand covers Gaara’s body, revealing the Ichibi, in full height. Like an angler fish, Gaara dangled over the Chakra Beast’s forehead. 

The Ichibi is a sandy-brown coloured tanuki, with dark blue cursed seal markings all over its face, body, and tail. It has a jagged, concave mouth with no tongue, and the sclerae of its eyes are black, with yellow irides and pupils that each takes the shape of a black four-pointed star with four black dots around it.

 The Ichibi yells, “ I’m free! I’m Free! ” he then looks at Naruto, and continues, “ And I just found the perfect thing to kill. Isn’t that right, Kyuubi!?

Naruto hears the Kyuubi, who growled, and says, “ I’d kill that stupid tanuki called Shukaku, but you are too weak, and I don’t want to have a weak container. So summon the damn Toad.

Naruto then weaves a string of hand seals. Boar → Dog → Bird → Monkey → Ram. He yells, “Kuchiyose no Jutsu (Summoning Technique)!” In a puff of smoke Gamabunta appears.

Gamabunta then asks, “Why am I here, Naruto?”

Naruto answers, “Sorry Bunta-sama, but I’m fighting the Ichibi no Shukaku. I need your help.”

Gamabunta replies, “I’m getting really sick, and tired of being called to fight Biju. Okay, I’ll help.”

Gamabunta jumps high into the air, while making a single hand seal. Tiger. While in the air, he spits water from their mouth which are shaped as orb-shaped projectiles. Only for Shukaku to pound on its stomach with its arm, producing a loud sound. The external pressure from the pound forces a ball of wind from Shukaku's large mouth, firing it like a cannonball. This blocks the water.

This repeated pattern continues for a while. Naruto asks, “How do we stop him?”

Gamabunta answers, “Wake the sleeping Gaki up!”

Naruto then asks, “Can you get close enough to stop Shukaku’s movement’s for a while?”

Gamabunta answers, “Not for long, but I can.”

Naruto replies, “Good.”

 Gamabunta then gets close to Shukaku, and stops his movement for a second. In this second, Naruto rockets off Gamabunta’s head, and closes the distance in the said second. Naruto then flips over, slamming his heel over Gaara’s head, waking him back up.

As Gaara awakens, he plummets down to the ground. Meanwhile, Shukaku yells, “ NOOOO!

When Naruto lands on his feet, his legs buckle, and he falls face first into the dirt. As he is using his chin to crawl his way towards Gaara, he is thinking of when Gaara told him of his past. They have had similar lives, and Naruto didn’t want Gaara to continue down the path that he was. 

When Naruto gets eye to eye with Gaara, he then says, “It's almost unbearable, isn't it… The pain of being all alone. I know that feeling; I've been there, in that dark and lonely place, but now there are others, other people who mean a lot to me. I care more about them than I do myself, and I won't let anyone hurt them. That's why I'll never give up. I will stop you, even if I have to kill you! They saved me from myself. They rescued me from my loneliness. They were the first to accept me as who I am. They're my friends.”

Gaara says, “I saw that look in your eye… The look of a killer, and of death. Was it fake, or real? I don’t know. Perhaps the companionship of an evil person is preferable to loneliness."

That is when Kankuro, and Temari appear. They yell, “Don’t touch our Imoto!”

Naruto replies, “I won’t.”

Gaara then says, “Nee-san, Nii-san. Let’s just leave.”

So that is exactly what they do.

Though, they are quickly stopped by Asuma, who then cuffs them, as best as he could. They needed to be detained, and everyone there understood that. Asuma then picks up Naruto, while The Sand Siblings pick up their youngest brother. Both were too injured to be able to pick him up by themselves. 

Following Asuma they get to the hospital to be treated. They are the children of the Yondaime Kazekage. So despite being war captives, they kinda needed to be treated well. 

Meanwhile Tobirama asks, “It’s this jutsu, isn’t it? Hello… Saru.”

Hashirama gleefully says, “Boy, now I feel old!”

Hiruzen, somewhat dejectful, replies, “Hello Senseis.”

Tobirama then asks, “Who summoned us?”

Hiruzen answers, “My biggest regret, as a Sensei.”

The two Hokage’s nodded. They were familiar with that feeling. Many who they taught left the Senju clan, or died. This was before the founding of Konoha. 

Orochimaru then says, “Kukukukuku! Let’s end this sentimental bullshit.”

Before Orochimaru could control Tobirama, he made a single hand seal. Then in an instant stopped Hashirama from being controlled by blocking the kunai, as well as placing a seal on him. Tobirama then asks, “Did you really think that I didn’t put in a fail safe for me?”

Orochimaru said nothing, and as he launched himself into Tobirama, a bo-staff expanded, parting them like the red sea. Then the three Hokage group together. Tobirama asks, “Who is this?”

Hiruzen sighs, answering, “His name is Orochimaru. He is hailed as one of the Legendary Sannin, and he was my student. With the death of so many close to him during the Second, and Third Great Shinobi World War, he became obsessed with becoming immortal. When I chased him out of Konoha… I couldn’t kill him, but this time I can and I will!”

Tsunade then decides to show herself. Seeing her family after so many years shocked her frozen. She could almost cry, if it wasn’t from such a jutsu like this one. Tsunade then says, “Not without my help, you’re not!”

Hashirama freezes at the voice, looking at his granddaughter. He asks, “Tsuna?”

Tsunade nods. She replies, “It’s me, Jii-chan.”

Orochimaru, repeating himself, then says, “Kukukukuku! Let’s end this sentimental bullshit.”

Hashirama then flashes through a string of hand seals. Tiger → Ram → Snake. The eldest Senju creates a dense growth of trees, controlling how it grows using his chakra. The trees' life force is immense enough to split the earth as they sprout and further pierce through any other obstructions they encounter.

As Orochimaru nearly gets caught, Tobirama flashes behind him, slashing off his arm with a kunai. Orochimaru then twists his body around at the waist, and weaves through one-handed hand seals. Before he could fire off the wind release jutsu, Hiruzen appears, smashing his bo-staff onto the Snake Sannin’s head. 

As the Sannin flies down toward the roof. Hashirama appears under him. Flashing through hand seals. Tiger → Horse → Tiger → Snake. Orochimaru gets skewered, as Hashirama’s arms turn into big spike-tipped trees. And as the trees remove themselves from Orochimaru’s body, his jaw unhinges, allowing for another Orochimaru to climb through, undamaged.

His head then gets smashed into the tiles below, by Tsunade, whose fist is still connected with Orochimaru’s temple. Though, before Tsunade could punch through Orochimaru’s head, he turns into mud.

Tsunade curse. He switched himself out with a clone. She then blocks a punch from the Snake Sannin. This allows Tobirama and Hashirama to appear at his sides, attempting to hit him. Only two giant snakes slither from his sleeves,  and coil around the two Senju brothers. As the snakes constrict tightly around the two Hokage, Hiruzen appears above Orochimaru. 

Hiruzen then falls, as his staff enlarges, a large monkey then manifests itself at the end of the staff, and attacks Orochimaru with his fangs. And as Orochimaru has to contend with the monkey, Hiruzen lands a kick into his gut. Then two Shadow Clones of Hiruzen appear behind Orochimaru, kicking him high into the air.

Hiruzen then weaves through hand seals. Tiger → Dragon → Rat → Horse → Tiger. The tiles of the roof then remotely float. Spinning as fast as they could, Hiruzen then launches them at the airborne Orochimaru, who sadly dodges them all. 

As Orochimaru lands, he gets held by both the Senju brothers, who then get held by both of Hiruzen’s Shadow Clones. Only for in a flash, Tobirama and Hiruzen switch places. 

Hiruzen is in shock, as Tobirama  says, “Saru… You are still needed here. That much I can see. I will do the Fuin, your not the only one who can do that jutsu.”

Tobirama then flashes through a string of hand seals. Snake → Boar → Ram → Rabbit → Dog → Rat → Bird → Horse → Snake → Clap Hands. 

Tobirama’s soul is partly separated from their body and suspended behind them. Behind their soul appears the Shinigami, which restrains their soul with its hair. Only the summoner is able to see the Shinigami at this point. After a few moments, the Shinigami wraps its left arm with prayer beads and chants unintelligibly until a cursed seal appears on its arm. It then drives its arm into the summoner's soul, thus allowing the summoner to call upon the Shinigami to seal a target: the Shinigami's arm emerges from the summoner's body and grasps the target's soul.

Said target is Orochimaru, and Hashirama. As the two Hokage, and Orochimaru disappear, Hiruzen falls to his knees. He needs another successor, and quickly. Hiruzen was getting way too old for this bullshit. He then looks towards Tsunade. They had talked about it many times before. She would take up the mettle of Hokage. As soon as this conflict with the Sound and Sand concluded, which it did soon after the defeat of Orochimaru, as the army from Suna surrendered.

 

Chapter Text

 

A week later, Tsunade sits at the desk of the Hokage. Having just been sworn in, she had some decisions to make. The first of many was… Who to promote to Chunin? 

In Konoha, they had a rule to only promote one Genin from the finals to Chunin, if the Exams were cut short for any reason. That reason for this set of Exams was an invasion.

Tsunade looks at the crop. Their were definitely skill Genin here. Neji Hyuga, Sasuke Uchiha, and Rock Lee, just to name a few. But it wasn’t just about skill. It is about the right fit to be Chunin. It is about their smarts, their tactical planning skills, and only one stood high on that mountain. That one person is Shikamaru Nara. 

Shikamaru Nara the son of the Nara Clan Head, Shikaku Nara. 200 IQ. In planning for a battle, the only people who could beat him were people who were more experienced than him, or were too unpredictable to plan for.

With a set look on her face, Tsunade turns to her predecessor, and says, “I choose Shikamaru Nara to be promoted to Chunin.”

Hiruzen sagely nods. It was a wise choice. He then says, “Now from what I hear, one Naruto Uzumaki did quite well in defending the village against an invading force. Fighting, and beating the Jinchuuriki of the Ichibi. We could promote him just on that alone. But, what do you think? Would you promote him based on what you have reviewed during the Chunin Exams?” 

Tsunade answers, “I would. His planning is a bit unorthodox, and really only works because of the fact that he is a Jinchuuriki. But the tactical planning, as well as his skills are on par with a Chunin. I wouldn’t deny him a promotion. What do you suggest, Sensei?”

Hiruzen sighs for a minute, and thinks. What would he do? Hiruzen then says, “How about a testing period. Let him lead a couple missions with some Genin Teams, if he does well, promote him, if he doesn’t, see what he does in the next set of Exams.”

Tsunade nods at that. It seemed like the perfect solution. Send a Jounin along with them, just in case. One could never truly predict what could happen during a mission.

Calling an ANBU in, Tsunade tells him to bring Shikamaru Nara to her. 

An hour later, Shikamaru was standing right in front of her. She then says, “I’m sure you two know why you are here?”

Shikamaru nods. Of course he knew why he was here, as troublesome as it was. He answers, “You want to promote me to Chunin.”

Tsunade simply nods. She says, “As the Chunin Exams were interrupted, only you will be promoted from your accomplishments during the Exams.”

Shikamaru replies, “So you have someone in mind to promote other than me. You should have promoted them, but I’m guessing it is Naruto.”

Tsunade then says, “Because you guessed it, you have to bring him here. Do you understand?”

Shikamaru sighs. He shouldn’t have opened his big fat mouth. He says, “It’s troublesome, but I’ll do it.”

He then goes to leave, only to be stopped by Tsunade. In her hand is a wrapped flak jacket. She says, “Don’t forget this… And as you are aware, with the power I have as Hokage, I promote you to Chunin. You are dismissed.”

Shikamaru then leaves. He sighed, but an order is an order. The Nara found Naruto training with Shisui, and Jiraiya of all people. Shisui, Shikamaru understood, Naruto was his apprentice, after all. But why the Sannin?

Shisui pauses the spar that they were in. He sees the vest in the newly promoted Chunin’s hand. The Uchiha says, “Congrats… Shikamaru, correct? What do you need?”

Shikamaru answers, “Thank you, but the Hokage has requested Naruto’s presence.”

Shisui then turns to Naruto. He says, “You heard the Chunin, The Hokage would like to see you.” 

Naruto nods. He really wanted to spar with Shisui today. Everytime, he would get close to winning, Shisui pulled out another stop. So, for him, today was the day that Naruto was finally going to win.  And as for Jiraiya, he taught him some Futon jutsu, along with Doton, and Suiton. Shisui, while he knew some jutsu, didn’t have quite the vast arsenal, or knowledge on them to teach ninjutsu like Jiraiya does.

Naruto then leaves the three in a Shunshin. Appearing in front of the building, Naruto enters it, and makes his way to Tsunade’s office. Knocking on the door, it opens by itself, as Shizune walks out, a stack of papers in her arms. Naruto takes it as his que, and walks in. 

In front of him is Tsunade. Hiruzen is there, helping her figure out the dreaded paperwork. Naruto heard the man complain many, many, many times about the amount of it. He then coughs, alerting them to their visitor. 

Tsunade looks at the blonde. She says, “I’d love to say that you are here for a promotion to Chunin, I can’t, not on your performance in the Chunin Exams. I heard, and have seen your skill first hand… Though, I need to see how you lead a team…”

Naruto interrupts the Hokage, asking, “So you want me to lead a Team, and do a couple missions, right?”

Hiruzen answers, “That is correct, but please let Tsunade finish speaking.”

Tsunade then says, “As I was saying, you will be going on three different missions of increasing difficulty. A D-Rank, A C-Rank, and a B-Rank. A Jounin will be going with you on the last two missions, as a just in case matter. What do you say?”

Naruto says, “I accept.”

Tsunade nods, replying, “That’s great. You will be choosing your own missions for this, so choose well. I will be choosing the teams that you will be leading. Do you understand, Naruto?”

Naruto answers, “I do, Hokage-sama.”

Tsunade then says, “Good! Now these missions will start in the coming week, so be ready by then. Now get out of my office!”

Naruto, cheekily replies, “Of course, Baa-chan!”

Dodging a small table-top statue, Naruto disappears in a Shunshin. 

Tsunade, under her breath, whispers, “That brat. When I see him next…”

Hiruzen then chuckles, as Tsunade just sighs. Was this the right decision? Only time will tell.

 

Chapter Text

 

The week Naruto was to lead the missions are here. And today, he woke up early. It wasn’t something he usually did, but yesterday was an off day. as he, along with Team 7 already did two D-Rank missions. Naruto wondered… Did he have to do them in order? He’d ask, when he had the chance. 

Getting a quick shower, and a nice breakfast in, Naruto got ready for the D-Rank mission he and a random team would be doing. From what he knew, their are certain missions that are in circulation. Missions like cleaning, or catching things. Walking the Inuzuka’s dogs is also a very common mission that is circulated in the D-Ranks.

Painting fences weren’t very common, and so not in circulation. And if one was particularly skilled in a particular area, a very rare mission was that they could teach for a day at the Academy. While low in rank, the mission is basically only reserved for Jounin, or Chunin.

 Getting to the Mission desk, Naruto grabs a simple cleaning job. Cleaning a park. Going up to find Tsunade, he knocks on her office door. Tsunade replies through  the door, allowing him entrance.

In front of him stood Team Kurenai. Tsunade stands, and then says, “This will be your team. I’m sure you don’t need to be introduced. Do you have the D-Rank mission?”

Naruto nods. He answers, “I do. Cleaning Senju Park. From the details, We only need to clean the more well used areas of the park, but we will get a bonus, if we clean outside of the area.”

Tsunade says, “Good choice. Now get out, I have work to do.”

Naruto replies, “Of course… Hokage-sama.”

Team Kurenai then follows Naruto out of the office. Following them from the office to Senju Park, is Kurenai. Tsunade told her to watch how Naruto does. Every aspect of how he will lead her Team. 

Once at the entrance of the park, Naruto turns to his team for the mission. He looks at them for a moment, and then places down a map of the park. He says, “I figure it would be easier to split up the work. We each work in an area of the park. Hinata can work the entrance. Shino can work on the island around the tree. Kiba, and Akamaru can work on the area around the island. I will be working on the area around the waterfall, over here. If you need help, don’t hesitate, I will bring over a clone to help. Is this alright?”

Shino replies, “It is alright.”

Naruto then claps his hand, and says, “Let’s get started then. The person who requested this mission has given us all we need to finish this.”

Naruto pulls out a scroll, opening it, he pulses his chakra through it. In a plume of smoke, their are four pairs of gloves, and a ton of bags. Each Genin grabs a pair of gloves, and a couple boxes of bags.

Meanwhile, Kurenai sat in a tree, with a Shadow Clone, for better coverage, and watched as Naruto and her team cleaned the park. It was nice. While Naruto worked around the waterfall, his clones worked on the pathways between the entrance, and Kiba’s section.

Naruto is confident, but allows his team to converse, and help plan. While usually their is a designated Tactician, which is usually the leader of any given team, it was just  easier that way… Sometimes the Tactician can’t always plan everything precisely, and needs to bounce ideas off on the rest of his teammates. It’s kinda like a band with more than one song writer. It helped flow.  

And from what she could see, they got it done in record time. Plus no one asked for help from Naruto. It showed that the confidence from Naruto rolled onto the team. It was one of the best traits for a leader to have. To be able to inspire the people that are below you to spur into action.

Now, only time will tell if Naruto passes the rest of the missions.

Naruto along with Team Kurenai return. They give their report, and return home for the day. As Naruto goes to leave, Tsunade says, “You did a good job on this mission, but C-Ranks are different. Though, I am sure that you already know that… Now get out, your dismissed.”

Naruto chuckles as he leaves. Aw, the mission to the Land of Waves. It was quite the experience for him. The first time he ever had to fight a hostile shinobi. It was also the first time he had killed someone. Like those bodyguards, he was ready to kill if he has to. Though, he prefered not to.

The next day was already here, and Naruto stood at the mission desk, looking through the C-Rank mission folder. He is having a hard time deciding, until he finds the perfect one. Protecting an allied Village’s Leader back to their village. It sounded simple enough

Entering Tsunade’s office, he finds his own team. Tsunade asks, “Have you found the mission yet?”

Naruto nods, “The mission to Takigakure. The Client is a man named Shibuki. He is the leader of Takigakure.”

Tsunade nods for a bit. She then says, “Well, go meet your Client, and plan out your journey to Takigakure. You all are dismissed.”

As the three Genin leave, Kakashi appears before Tsunade. He asks, “You summoned me?”

Tsunade nods, replying, “As you know, I am testing Naruto to see if he is fit to be promoted to Chunin. Though the C-Rank he chose is a bit iffy. It’s in Takigakure, and from the rumors, some village might be attacking it soon. At least that is what the Perv has told me. So You will follow them, and if anything goes wrong, you intervene. Got it. Dismissed!”

Kakashi nods, disappearing from her view with a Shunshin.

Entering the place where Shibuki is staying, Naruto quickly finds his room, and knocks on it. He says, “We are Konoha-nin, and are here for your mission to protect you on your way back to Takigakure. Can you let us in?”

After the door, unlocks, a young man opens the door. A little bit more jittery than he should be. Naruto asks, “Are you alright?”

Shibuki has ink black eyes and has long, dark brown hair. He also wears a forehead protector symbolizing his shinobi status. He wears gray pants, a green shirt, and shinobi sandals. In addition to his outfit, he has a gray shoulder pad on his left shoulder with a brown strap over it. 

Shuddering quite a bit, Shibuki answers, “N-nothing, you just s-scared me a b-bit.”

Naruto replies, “I just knocked on your door… In any case, is there anything you need to tell us?”

Shibuki nods his head, hesitantly. He answers, “Yes, I… Ah, I’m Shibuki, the soon to be leader of Takigakure. I was here learning how to be a proficient leader from the Sandaime, before he retired. Now it is time for me to return home. I will show you the way there. All I need is for you to protect me, while we are on the move.”

Naruto then asks, “When does this mission start?”

Shibuki answers, “First thing tomorrow morning.”

Naruto nods, as the door closes. As Team 7 exists to building, a motel, to be exact, Sasuke sighs. Sakura then says, “What a coward. How will he be able to lead a whole village?”

Sasuke answers, “As you know, Taki is a minor village. It’s land, it’s size, and it’s military might, isn’t as strong as, say, Konoha’s is.”

Sakura replies, “Even I know what a weak shinobi looks like.”

Naruto then speaks up, saying, “Sakura, don’t talk about a client like that. I’m in charge, and it will show badly for me, if anyone hears you.”

Sakura simply nods.

Naruto then says, “After the mission to Nami no Kuni, we know how to protect a client. Diamond formation at all times, while on the move. Take shifts at night time. None of us want to be too tired. Let’s complete this mission!”

Sasuke nods at that. Another C-Rank. He knew why Naruto was leading the mission. The chance to be promoted, but as much as he was happy for Naruto, it annoyed him. It meant that he wasn’t getting the recognition he thinks he deserves.

But for him, it was Konoha first. It was one of the many things that his brother taught him. And he took to heart. His hunger for praise, would not endanger this mission, or any other.

His eyes squinted in pain, as the seal on the back of his neck flared up. The seal that Kakashi put on is quite helpful. That power it held was addicting. Maybe he should talk to the Hokage. She probably knows more about this seal than what Kakashi does?

He once again sighs. For it would have to wait until this mission was over.

Chapter Text

 

The next day starts off fine, as they head North out of Konoha. Traveling through the trees, they did not move in formation. Though, they did move as a team would. After all, Shibuki was a shinobi, and so he too could travel like one. 

He wasn’t the fastest person their, but Shibuki wanted to return to Takigakure as soon as possible. So they stopped, only when they needed to. They practically only stopped to eat and sleep, that was basically it. And so they made it to Taki in a record pace.

They finally stopped at a waterfall. Shibuki stands before Team 7. He says, “I don’t want to show you how to enter my village, as it is a secret, only known to Taki Shinobi, and civilians. I hope that you understand. My payment is already paid, so you can leave now.”

Naruto nods, “We understand. Goodbye.”

As Team 7 goes to leave, two children run up on them, as the scream, “Shibuki-sama!”

From what Naruto can see, the children look like siblings. Brother and sister.

Shibuki then asks, “Himatsu, Shizuku… What are you doing out here?”

Shizuku answers, “Kaa-chan asked us to clean the waterfall.”

Shizuku has short neck-length brown hair and has her bangs hanging down over the left side of her face just above her left eye. She also has long sideburns and two pigtails. She has gray-coloured eyes. She wears a pink vest-like zip-up dress with a yellow outline on the bottom and a pair of black knee-length tights underneath it.

Shibuki says, “Then I have the perfect help.”

He turns to Naruto with a pleading look. Naruto sighs. He replies, “You will invoice us for this. We will get paid.”

Shibuki nods. He replies, “You will be paid, don’t worry… I know how these things go.”

Naruto replies, with a nod of his own. Turning to his teammates, he says, “You heard out Client. Let’s help these kids clean this waterfall.”

Sakura groans, as Sasuke just hn’s. This was just a D-Rank. As Naruto follows behind his team, the boy, Himatsu says, “Thank you, the current is pretty strong. So, it’s quite scary.”

Himatsu has a large crop of spiky black hair and big black eyes. He wears a blue long-sleeved jacket and tannish-coloured pants.

As they are cleaning the waterfall’s water, a man is standing in a clearing. He has long spiky hair, small dark eyes, and a goatee. He wears a dark blue jacket, gray pants, sandals, and a bandanna that holds his hair out of his face.

Standing in front of him are three people. Shinobi from Amegakure. Two men, and a woman. The first man asks, “Do you understand what I am telling you?”

The second man, a guy named Kirisame, answers, “Yeah, Yeah… We read you loud and clear.” 

The third man, a guy named Murasame, then says, “Enter Takigakure, raise some hell as a distraction, so you, Suien, can get this “Hero Water”, and leave.” 

The first man, Suien nods. He says, “Good! Now go!”

The team of three then bolt into the forest. Running full speed towards Taki.

Back at the waterfall, Naruto sits down to eat, prompting his teammates to do the same. As Sasuke and Sakura do the same, Shibuki says, “I need you to leave, now! I will not allow you to see me enter Takigakure.”

Naruto replies, “I understand, I do. But my team and I are hungry. If you let us eat, we will leave right away.”

Shibuki began to look a bit nervous, but the cowardly man stood straight, and repeated himself. He says, “I need you to leave, now! I will not allow you to see me enter Takigakure.”

Naruto then gets up, motioning for his team to do the same. He says, “You heard our client. Let’s leave.”

Though, before they could, Himatsu and Shizuku scream bloody murder. In front of them, laying face down is a woman covered in blood. From the looks of it, it’s her blood.

Naruto reaches for his tantō, as Shibuki carelessly walks up to her. The children are speechless, and worried half to death. He says, “This is their mother. I don’t know a thing about Medical Ninjutsu.”

Naruto says, “Sakura, patch her up as best as you can. Sasuke and I will deal with whoever is coming.”

Shibuki says, “Nevermind, I will allow you entry to help with this. They must be going for the Hero Water.”

Naruto asks, “Hero Water… What’s that?”

Shibuki says, “Hero Water is a specialized liquid from Takigakure. It is produced once every one hundred years from the giant tree that hides the village. By drinking the water, it allows a ninja to have at least a ten-fold increase in chakra for a short period of time. Though, with every sip, it shortens your lifespan.”

As Sakura rushes to the mother, the three Shinobi from earlier appear. Bothe Naruto and Sasuke throw a volley of shuriken at them. The two men block, as the woman makes a b-line for Sakura. A punch through her head shocks the children, only for Sakura to turn into bits and pieces of rock. Sakura then appears behind the woman, kicking her in the back of the head with a roundhouse, sending her into the rock of the cliff.

Naruto then replies, “It’s too late, not to… But like with the clean up job, we better get paid.”

The first man rushes Sasuke, who blocks his attack. He says, “I’m going to enjoy destroying you.”

Sasuke, revealing his Sharingan eyes, replies, “Like you could even touch me.”

The Uchiha then instantly puts him in a Genjutsu, knocking him out.

Meanwhile, the second man just dodges a strike from Naruto’s tantō. He then blocks the second with his kunai, only to get countered with a kick to the side of his head from Naruto. The kick sends the second man towards Sasuke, who kicks him high into the sky with a kick to the back of the head. 

Getting launched into the sky, the man attempts to block a punch from Naruto, which sends him further into the air. Then he gets kicked by Sasuke who sends him further into the air. Naruto then appears above the man, sending him crashing back into the earth with a punch to the stomach.

The impact creates a crater, as Sasuke appears above the man. His hands weave through hand seals. Snake → Dragon → Rabbit → Tiger. Sasuke then spits flames from their mouth that, like a dragon's, quickly travel forward in a straight direction. Upon contact with the man, he, along with his general area, is engulfed in flames. Thus killing him.

As the flames die down, Kakashi appears. Naruto says, “You were following us, weren’t you?”

It wasn’t a question, but Kakashi answers, “That isn’t important, right now I will finish this, return to Konoha, tell them what happened.”

Naruto replies, “No, we will help you. You will need it, if the target is as Shibuki says it is.”

Kakashi asks, “What’s the target?”

Shibuki answers, “Hero Water.”

Naruto then says, “Increase of chakra reserves, ten-fold. Decrease in lifespan.”

Kakashi thinks for a moment, not that they had any, as in the confusion, Suien slipped through the Waterfall, and entered Takigakure. The Jounin says, “I still stand by what I said… You will return home, you have already done enough here. This is just like Nami. This is an A-Rank mission, that you just accepted, out of no fault of your own. I will handle this.”

Naruto then replies, “I understand. Sasuke, Sakura, you heard Sensei, let’s go!”

And with that said, the three-man team left for Konoha.

Shibuki turns to Kakashi, and asks, “Are you sure that you can handle this?”

Kakashi answers, “Of course I can, I’m the Copy Ninja.”

Shibuki then nods. He has heard of Kakashi Hatake. The man who knows a thousand jutsu. He replies, “Well, follow me. I will show you the way inside Takigakure.”

 

Chapter Text

 

As Kakashi followed Shibuki, Naruto and his teammates were resting in a clearing. They were hungry, and so they stopped to eat. Sakura asks, “Are you sure we should be leaving Sensei alone?”

Naruto answers, “He wouldn’t do something he couldn’t. Not without backup. But if your this worried, I could have a Shadow Clone go back, just in case.”

Sasuke asks, “Isn’t that against shinobi code?”

Naruto answers, “Don’t you remember what Kakashi-sensei taught us? In the ninja world, those who break the rules are trash, that's true, but those who abandon their comrades are worse than trash.”

Sasuke just sighs. He remembers. He then says, “If your going to do it, then go ahead. I won’t stop you.”

Naruto then makes the hand seal. In a plume of smoke, a Shadow Clone is formed. Naruto says, “You know what to do right?”

The clone nods, and runs off toward Takigakure. In Takigakure, Kakashi is following Shibuki to the pavilion. Apparently, it was hidden deep within the roots of the tree that is directly in the middle of the village.

The pavilion-like structure was small in size. It overlooked some ponds that sat at the base of the tree. In the middle is a stone podium that sat vacant. A man is looking over the pond below. In his hand is a half empty clear gourd-like bottle.

The man has long spiky hair. He wore a dark blue jacket, gray pants, sandals, and a bandanna that held his hair out of his face.

Shibuki instantly recognized him, as he asks, “Suien?”

Kakashi asks, “Suien? Who’s that?”

Shibuki answers, “He is my Sensei… Well, former Sensei. He is what you’d call a Tokubetsu Jounin, though he is actually a Chunin. My Tou-san had once called him the Perfect Sensei. Suien is a missing-nin of Taki. he barely escaped with his life, after getting caught trying to kill my Tou-san, so he could get his hands on the Hero Water.”

Suien turns around, revealing his small dark eyes, and a goatee. He gives a crooked smile, and says, “Ah, Okubyōna (Cowardly) Shibuki… How’s it been? How’s your Tou-san?”

Shibuki answers, “You should know, Suien. After all, you force fed him Hero Water.”

Suien nodded in feign ignorance. He replies, “Ah… I remember that. You should have seen him, your Tou-san… You should have seen as Hisen choked to death on the water, that forced too much chakra into his body. It was glorious, as I watched as the light vanished from his eyes.. He looked so betrayed, and I stood there and laughed at him. The despair, the anger, the betrayal. I loved every bit of it.”

Meanwhile, Kakashi throws a single kunai, at Suien’s head. The kunai splashes through the man’s head, destroying the water clone that was in his place. The gourd filled with Hero Water falls to the ground, as Shibuki jumps to catch it. 

Shibuki was glad that he was able to catch the gourd. This was the one thing that was still special to Takigakure, especially after that man stole their Kinjutsu. 

And as that was going on, Kakashi was fighting Suien. Dodging each and every strike of Suien’s sword made out of chakra-infused water. It was quite easy, especially when he left himself open. So, Kakashi gets behind him, quickly brandishing a kunai, he stabs Suien in the back of the head destroying another water clone.

Suien then appears behind Kakashi, his water-sword in hand. He then stabs Kakashi through the chest. Kakashi then turns into water that splashes against the ground.

Kakashi appears above Suien, his fingers near his mouth. Fire spewing from his mouth, and onto Suien. Well, that would be the case, if Suien didn't cut through the flames as they were coming towards him. Landing, Kakashi uncovers his Sharingan, catching the man inside a Genjutsu that knocks him unconscious.

And that is when Naruto appears in front of Kakashi. Kakashi asks, “Are you a Kage Bunshin?”

Naruto nods, he says, “We were worried.”

Kakashi sighs. He then says, “Everything is alright. Dispel yourself, so Naruto can know.”

Naruto then stands perfectly straight, his hand raised to salute the Jounin. The Shadow Clone disappears in a plume of smoke, signaling to Kakashi that it was destroyed. 

Kakashi turns to Shibuki, who returns the Hero Water to the podium. He sadly smiles, as a sigh escapes his mouth. Kakashi then asks, “Is everything alright?”

Shibuki answers, “In time, it will be. It will be.”

Kakashi replies, “Then I return to Konoha. Do not forget to invoice the payment for this mission.”

Shibuki says, “I won’t. Go on… Return to your students. I need to do my job as the Leader of Takigakure.”

Kakashi nods, and then disappears in a Shunshin. He, as well as his students, need to return to Konoha.

 

Chapter Text

 

Naruto has returned home from the C-Rank mission, just the day before. Today was an off day, and so he was training with Fuinjutsu. Sitting on the couch is Karin. She was granted citizenship in Konoha just a day ago, and because of that she is on probation. 

Since he was an Uzumaki, Tsunade told him to watch over her. So, he would only be doing missions inside of the village for the time being. This also meant that he could not do that final B-Rank mission to become a Chunin, but that was fine.

After all, she used to be a forgein shinobi. So she couldn’t just become a Genin like that. They had to see if she was a spy or not. They had to test her skills to see where she would fit best. 

Karin, being a bit bored, was interested in what Naruto was doing. She walks up behind him, and asks, “What are you doing?”

Naruto answers, “Fuinjutsu. It’s our clan’s speciality.”

Karin then asks, “Could you teach me?”

Naruto replies, “I could, but I’m not the greatest. I started just a couple months ago. I just learned how to make explosion tags. If you want to really learn, you will want to learn from a master of Fuinjutsu.”

Karin was a bit let down. She wanted to learn Fuinjutsu from a member of her clan. As she walks away, Naruto says, “Come here. Let me see how good you write.”

Karin perks up at that, sitting down next to Naruto. She asks, “Why do you need to see how good I write?”

Naruto answers, “Because, if you have bad handwriting, you could, and would have a seal blow up in your face, and depending on what kind of seal that you are learning to make, it can and will be lethal. So here is a piece of paper.”

Karin nods, as she grabs the paper that was in his hands. Grabbing a brush, she begins to write. Naruto is watching her throughout, and it was making her a bit nervous. As her piece of paper becomes full of writing, Karin looks at Naruto. It was obvious what she wanted.

Naruto smiles. She had way better handwriting than he did when he started learning. This means that Karin won't be stuck on this as long as he was. He says, “Your handwriting was way better than mine was when I started learning. So it will be easier for you to start actually learning Fuinjutsu. Here is a stack of paper. Keep going, and in no time you will have better handwriting than I do.”

That was enough motivation for Karin to keep going. And with each piece of paper, her handwriting got better and better, much like how his did.

Meanwhile, as Karin was learning how to write better, Sasuke was teaching the children of his clan. Some were just hoping to go to the Academy. Others were just waiting to graduate. Sasuke is teaching them the Great Fireball Technique. After all, if you mastered this jutsu, you were considered an adult in the eyes of the Uchiha Clan.

Sasuke sighs at that. They were once a great clan, but they now dwindled to just a few Shinobi. Itachi, Shisui, his mother, and Itachi’s girlfriend, Izumi. That was basically it. Their were no more elders, no more Police Force. His father was dead. Whoever surrendered was left alive, as were all of the children. 

His mother stayed off duty to help raise all of the children, as did Izumi. As did another woman, though he forgets her name. Their were at least twenty children here. 

Sasuke says, “Remember, for the Katon: Gōkakyū no Jutsu (Fire Release: Great Fireball Technique), you knead the chakra in your lungs, bring it up through the throat, and then expel it as a flame. Be careful not to burn your throat or mouth.”

They didn’t need to be told this, but the more chakra one uses, the more flames that are produced. Sasuke then says, “This jutsu has two varieties. One as a fireball, and the second, as a more continuous stream of flames. Do whichever you prefer.”

Sasuke then sees one of the younger children start to get down, as some of the older children are progressing better than he was. He walks up to the boy, and says, “It’s alright. Your fireball doesn’t have to be as big as theirs. You just have to be able to use the jutsu, and I think you are succeeding at that.”

The little boy beams a blinding smile at him, and goes back to practicing the jutsu. 

Shisui then appears, carrying a basket full of food. Walking up to Sasuke, the Genin has the children stop. Shisui says, “I have lunch for all of you. Mikoto-sama told me to bring it over.”

Sasuke nods. He replies, “Thanks for that. Tell Kaa-chan I said as much. I heard some of their stomach growling. So, this is right on time.”

Grabbing the basket, he leans down to the children, and says, “Mikoto-sama has made us lunch, so how about we take a break, and eat… huh?”

Some of the younger children fall on their butts, as drool falls from their mouths. Sasuke couldn’t blame them, his mother had the best cooking. And Itachi got that gene from her.

Sasuke takes a sandwich, and returns to Shisui’s side. Shisui says, “You are just as good at teaching as I am.”

Sasuke was quiet at the compliment. He didn’t know what to think about it. Sasuke then asks, “Why did you take on Naruto as an apprentice?”

Shisui says, “I saw his potential. He might have been the worst student in your class… But he just needed someone to care, and grow that potential into something usable.”

Sasuke simply nods at that. His mindset had changed rapidly since he graduated.

And while Sasuke was eating lunch, Sakura was standing in front of Tsunade. Determination was evident in her eyes. It was evident in the way she stood. Sakura says, “Please, teach me Tsunade-sama?”

Tsunade, sitting behind her desk, looks at Sakura. She could see that the Genin had the determination to come here, and ask for training. That was evident. But why did she want training? Did she have the determination to actually do the training?

Tsunade then asks, “Why should I? Why do you want my training?”

That made Sakura freeze. Why did she want this training? Her mind then wanders to Sasuke, and Naruto. How skilled they are. How powerful they are. It made her feel weak. They fought against Orochimaru, of all people, and she could do nothing but watch like a little girl watching her crush from behind a bush.

She answers, “Because… Because… Because… I want to be equal to my teammates. I don’t want to just stand there, as they fight for me! I don’t want to stand there as they are dying! I want to be right beside them.”

Tsunade smiles. That was quite a reason, and as a woman, she understood it. Tsunade was sometimes considered weaker than her former teammates just because she was a woman. And like any woman, that sentiment drove her to be better. She says, “Fine, I will teach you what I know. But be warned, this will be the toughest thing you will ever endure.”

Sakura replies, “Then I will endure it!”

Tsunade says, “We will start first thing tomorrow. Do not be late! Do you understand?”

Sakura answers, “I understand, Tsunade-shishō.”

Tsunade then says, “Your dismissed, Haruno-chan.”

Sakura bows, leaving the office of her Master, and Hokage.

 

Chapter Text

 

Naruto and Karin are walking through the outskirts of Konoha. Usually, people who are on probation can’t leave the village. Since it was a clan matter, as well as Naruto, who got permission, it was excused for the most part. 

As their was a caveat, members of the ANBU Black Ops had to follow them. It was mainly to please the council. They didn’t trust him at all. Even when he fought a Biju for Konoha. It was insane, in his mind.

Karin then asks, “So, why are we out here?”

Naruto answers, “The Uzumaki Clan has a temple somewhere around here. It’s officially called: Uzumaki Clan’s Mask Storage Temple. I’ve never been, but it was commissioned to be built by Mito Uzumaki. The wood that was used to build the temple was made by the Shodai Hokage, Hashirama Senju. They were married.”

Karin asks, “So, what are we going to do?”

Naruto answers, “From what I know, which isn’t much, it has fallen into ruin. I want to repair it. So, I figured you’d like to help, and with my clones, it shouldn’t take too long.”

Karin simply nods at that. She would like to help. This was something that remained of her, their clan. There are very little that remains. So to see something still here would be amazing.

Naruto then sighs, as Karin’s mouth drops. In front of them Is the Uzumaki Clan’s Mask Storage Temple. Naruto calls it the Uzumaki Temple, when he talked about it the day before. Though, he never mentioned that they would be visiting it.

At the entrance of the temple is a giant replica of the clan's symbol. The all wood structure was definitely in ruin. The roof over the entrance way, destroyed the pillars it sat on, making it tilt towards the left. Portion of the stair going up to the entrance was just straight up missing.

Within the temple, at the center, is a podium of sorts. Sitting on the podium are oni-masks, twenty-seven in total. Over the masks, are three connected symbols of the clan, and underneath all of which are ornate, black flames.

It was strange. The masks were still in perfect condition, if a bit dusty. But everything around them was in different levels of damage. Some of the floorboards were missing, as were portions of the walls. It was looking like it was more trouble to fix, and that they should just demolish it. 

But, Naruto didn’t want that. No, this was a part of their Clan, just as they are. Just as Uzushiogakure was. 

Karin followed him into the basement. It was designed to be used in rituals. Probably, dealing with the masks above. Naruto was kinda surprised that none of the masks had been stolen.

Returning outside, Naruto sighs. Yeah, this was going to be a big project. Though, now they could estimate the amount of wood the would need. It was going to cost a lot, Naruto just knew it. He could feel his wallet growing more sad with each waking moment.

Returning home, They then made a list of all of the materials they would need. Wood, nails, and someone to see if it will now stand the tests of time. And as Naruto comforts his toad-shaped wallet, which he named, “Gama-chan.”

From what Naruto remembers, this wallet was one of the first presents he had ever received. The Sandaime Hokage, once told him the it was from a friend of his fathers. Now, Naruto knows it was from Jiraiya. 

Since then he had gotten a few presents from the man, but he loved each and everyone of them. In fact, he still has every present given to him, which wasn’t a lot, but still just enough. It meant that someone other than the Hokage and Ichiraku Family cared about him. And that was what he cared about the most. Having people who love, and care for him.

A knock on his door, throws him from his thoughts. Karin answers the door. Naruto appears behind her to see who it was. It was Shisui, who he allowed in. Shisui was always allowed to be in his place.

Shisui sits at the table across from Naruto. He says, “I heard from the Sandaime that you wanted to fix up the old Uzumaki Temple. Would you like help? I know an ANBU member that has the Shodai’s Kekkei Genkai.”

Naruto had really wanted to do this project alone, with Karin. After all, this was the Uzumaki Temple. Not wanting to waste this gift horse, Naruto answers, “If he wants to, I’d gladly allow him to help.”

Shisui replies, “Great, I'm going to meet with him in a couple days. He owes me a favor. Might as well cash it in for my Otōto. Also don’t forget, we have some training to do, tomorrow.”

Naruto simply nods. He says, “I didn’t forget about training. Don’t worry, I’ll be on time.”

Naruto internally sighs. He totally forgot about tomorrow’s training. And as Naruto watches Shisui leave his apartment, he lets out a breath he didn’t realize that he was holding. Shit! Shisui totally knows that he forgot about the training. It’s going to be so, so much worse for him. 

Karin then sits down, right where Shisui was, just a few minutes ago. While she had seen the man come and go quite frequently during the last week, Karin didn’t realize that the man was Naruto’s brother. They look nothing alike!

Naruto then chuckles. He says, “We aren’t related by blood, Karin-chan. Shisui-nii just…”

Karin, interrupting her cousin, replies, “You don’t have to explain. I understand.” 

They just treated each other like siblings, and so they were. She understood that.

And as the next day rolls around, Naruto and Shisui are standing over the stream of water at the training ground they use. Shisui then says, “As you are my Otōto, I want to teach you a special Katon Jutsu. This Jutsu is called, Katon: Gōkakyū no Jutsu (Fire Release: Great Fireball Technique).”

Naruto asks, “Isn’t that the Jutsu that Sasuke uses?”

Shisui answers, “It is. In fact, it was created by the Uchiha clan, and is used by my clan to see if a child can be considered an adult. To master this Jutsu was a rite of passage, taught by the father to the son.”

Naruto blushed at this. To learn this Jutsu was an honor. Not many people outside of a clan got to learn their signature Jutsu. So again, this would be an honor.

Shisui then weaves through a set of hand seals. Snake → Ram → Monkey → Boar → Horse → Tiger. He says, “These are the hand seals for the jutsu. Snake → Ram → Monkey → Boar → Horse → Tiger.” 

Naruto then repeats what he was just taught. Watching as, Shisui expelled a pretty big fireball from his mouth. He weaves through the set of hand seals. Snake → Ram → Monkey → Boar → Horse → Tiger. From his lips, a fireball, roughly equal in size to Sasuke’s own fireball, expels from his mouth.

Shisui says, “Good job. Amazing, in fact! Keep practicing, though. By the end of the week, I want your fireball to be equal in size to mine.”

Naruto then nods. He practices for the rest of the day. And with each try, the size of his fireball got bigger and bigger. Meanwhile, a clone sat at the apartment to watch over Karin, who was practicing with Fuinjutsu. She was finally starting on how to make an explosion tag. 

Throughout the next couple, Shisui is sitting at a Dango shop. Across from him is an ANBU Black Ops member. Shisui says, “I’d like to cash in that favor you owe.”

The ANBU cringes internally. Shisui was known to have a bit of a playful attitude. And from what the ANBU member heard, favors from Shisui, almost always ended up being a prank or something. He asks, “What do you want, Shisui?

Shisui answers, “You know the old Uzumaki Temple. I’d like you to repair it for my Otōto. I’ll owe you.”

That was a pretty reasonable favor. Especially with his Mokuton Kekkei Genkai. He didn’t have the power that the Shodai had, but he most definitely had the skill to use the fabled elemental jutsu.

The ANBU member replies, “I’ll visit the temple, and see what I can do.”

The next time, Naruto and Karin visited the temple, they were shocked. It was already repaired. Naruto would have to tell Shisui to thank that ANBU member. He had seen photos from when it was first built, and it looked exactly the same.

 

Chapter Text

 

Naruto sighed. The week had flown by, as he was trying with very little success on researching what actually went on inside of the temple. 

If it was a holiday, it was a holiday that only the Uzumaki Clan celebrated. That meant he couldn’t look through the village’s registry of holidays, which meant it was a dead end. And his mother’s diary says nothing of a ritual of some kind. Then his trip to the Archives just gave him the generalized history of the clan and it’s notable members. It was another dead end, which he already knew. 

It was quite aggravating. And at times made him want to pull the hair out of his head. 

Naruto had then hoped that Karin had brought something of the clan with her, but she had nothing of the sort that would help. Though that didn’t mean that she didn’t bring the clan things with her. It just meant that the things she did bring, just wasn’t helping them.

He’d ask Sandaime-jiji, he’ll probably know something, but right now he was at the mission desk. Naruto is looking through the B-Rank missions, looking for that final mission to be promoted. He then grins as he finds the perfect mission.

Bringing it up to the Hokage’s office, Naruto knocks on the door. Waiting for the response, he then enters. And in front of him is Team Gai. Tsunade asks, “So… Do you have the mission picked out?”

Naruto nods, as he answers, “Yes I do. It’s the one to guard the Kazekage’s children back to Sunagakure no Sato.”

Tsunade sighs, “Then I picked out the right team for this. Naruto, this is team Gai, and right beside them is Might Gai, he is their Jounin-sensei. He will be tailing you, and as I am sure that you have noticed by now, all the Jounins have been watching you. They have all said glowing things about you. So don’t mess this mission up, and you will be promoted.”

Naruto, showing a bit more maturity than he usually does, bows. He replies, “This mission, like the rest, will be completed successfully. Don’t you worry, Godaime-sama.”

  Tsunade says, “That isn’t what I’m worried about, Naruto. Now, meet with your team, and discuss what you need to do. And get out of my office. I have work to do.”

Naruto nods, and says, “Let’s go. I know a great ramen stand where we can talk.”

At Ichiraku’s, Naruto finally takes a good look at Might Gai. Gai has a tall and well-muscled man. He has fair skin, a strong jawline, a somewhat large nose, and black hair. He is most noticeable for his shiny bowl-style haircut and thick eyebrows. He wears a green jumpsuit, orange striped leg warmers, and the standard Konoha flak jacket, which he normally leaves unzipped. His red hitai-ate is worn around his waist like a belt.

And as they are eating, Naruto asks, “So what are your positions when working as a guard?”

Tenten answers, “Neji is in front, due to his Doujutsu, and me and Lee guard the sides.”

  Naruto replies, “I can work the back. Though I am usually on one of the sides. I’m a Sensor-type as well, so Hyuga-san and I can be lookouts. Is their anything specific that I need to know? No! Then I will meet with the team we will be guarding, and we can then get on the road. Ramen is on me.”

Naruto then pays for the food, and leaves. Though not before inspecting Lee. He had been healed roughly a month ago. Could he complete the mission? Naruto wasn’t judging Lee’s rehab nor Tsunade’s abilities, but he was just worried. 

He wanted this mission to be completed without a hitch. After all, this was the mission that would promote him to Chunin. Lee looked good though, and he seemed to be moving well, so he wouldn’t mention his concerns and trust the team. 

Naruto had to trust Team Gai, as much as they had to trust him. It was the only way this mission would be completed successfully.

He had already eaten his bowl, and he had mission things to talk about with the clients, that being the Sand Trio. Not that they were the one’s paying for the mission, that responsibility went to Konoha, due to the new treaty between the two villages.

Naruto didn’t need to be told where they were staying. He already knew, as he had visited Temari a couple times in the past two days. They would just talk and talk for hours. Naruto was sure that those were the best days in his life.

Knocking on the door, Kankuro answers the door. He turns into the motel room, yelling, “Temari, your boyfriend is here!”

Naruto along with Temari sputters. Their cheeks are as red as the Uzumaki symbol on his back. Kankuro then lets him in the room. He asks, “So what are you here for… Well, other than my Nee-chan?”

Naruto ignores the last bit of that statement. This was for mission business, and so he answers, “I’m leading the team that will guard you on the way back to Sunagakure. So, I was wondering when you all wanted to leave, so I could tell the team.”

Everyone in the room looks towards Gaara. He was still the de facto leader of the trio. Gaara answers, “Two days from now, in the morning. It is late right now, and from what my siblings have told me, it is rude to keep someone awake.”

Naruto replies, “Okay then, I will tell that to my team in the morning. Good night.” 

He then leaves, waving to the group. Though, even Gaara could tell that his eyes lingered on his sister's form for longer than they should.

As Naruto returned home, he sighed. Sitting in his bed, he remembered the first time he met with Gaara after the invasion. Gaara was quite nice to talk to, and Naruto has even considered him as a friend after. A good friend, at that.

The blonde even apologized about the arm, it was the nice thing to do, as they were now allies. Though Gaara said it was just water under the bridge. After all, at that point they were still enemies. And as a Shinobi, you were expected to kill your enemies.

The next day, Naruto was training with Team Gai. He would not recommend it, though. It was insanely tough, and he was sure that every muscle in his body was sore. As they took a break for lunch, Naruto says, “The mission starts tomorrow morning, after sunrise.”

The day after, started with the mission. And while this was a guard mission, it was to guard the children of a Kage, which bumped the rank up to a B-Rank. After all, the children of a Kage were high profile targets.

Naruto was expecting the enemy Shinobi, as he signed the team out with the guards. And then the team left for Sunagakure

 

Chapter Text

 

The team ran all day to get to Suna. They only stopped, as they hit the border of the Land of Fire, and the land of Rivers. Neither Suna, nor Konoha had any relations with the hidden village Tanigakure. 

So it was best just to get through the country as fast as possible. And with that in mind, they needed to restore their stamina for the night. They made camp, and fell asleep, taking shifts. Even if Naruto knew that Might Gai was out there watching them.

The next morning they woke up and blasted their way through the Land of Rivers. The country wasn’t particularly wide, and so they were able to get through it in a couple of hours.

Getting into the Land of Wind, Naruto freezes in his place, signaling the others to do the same. Appearing in front of them, is a team of what appears to be Chunin from Iwagakure. They all wore the standard uniform of Iwa, including hitai-ates, and flak jackets.

And as Naruto palmed his tant ō, the leader of the three-man cell chuckles. Their was a book in his hand. The Bingo Book. Shisui showed one to him, only a couple times.

Spinning it around in his palm, the leader shows the page for the Yondaime Hokage. He says, “Yellow-blonde hair and azure blue eyes. The main characteristics of the Yondaime Hokage. Died roughly thirteen years ago. Now tell me, who does this kid look like, with his yellow-blonde hair and blue eyes?”

Naruto sighs. He just had to open his big mouth. Wanting a peaceful mission to go on. Ah! It was too late for that. Naruto then replies, “And they sent Chunin after me? I mean sure, I am a Genin. But, like this isn’t even going to be a challenge.”

The leader then replies, “Men, kill him!”

Quickly forming a Shadow Clone, to block a killing blow, with a sword made from rock, Naruto says, “Go ahead of me. I got this!”

Sasuke then says, “You heard our leader, let’s go!”

And as they sped past the Iwa Shinobi, Temari looked back at him, as he blocked a strike with his forearm. She was worried about him. Not that she liked him, or anything, because despite not wanting to accept it, she does. 

No, Naruto was probably the only Genin other than that lazy Nara that could plan just as good as she could. Just like Shikamaru, Naruto was a rival of the mind.

Ducking under a kick, Naruto slashes his tendon with his tant ō. The other man then attacks before he could finish off the man, so he had to dodge the attack. Then Naruto consecutively dodges the next five attacks.

It was now Naruto’s turn to go on the offensive, as he flips over the man. As he stabs him in the back, literally, Naruto throws a kunai into the other man’s throat, snapping his spinal cord. Spinning around, he decapitates the man behind him.

Now only the leader was left. He appears before him, his Sharingan eye open. It was too quick. The leader couldn’t react, as Naruto knocked him out with a Genjutsu. He then stabs the leader in the head, killing him. 

Pulling out a couple scrolls, Naruto sealed the bodies up. It would be best for Konoha to find anything with their bodies, than any enemy they have. Putting the scrolls away, Gai appears. He asks, “Are you okay?”

Naruto replies, “Yeah.”

Gai then asks, “So why did they attack?”

Naruto throws the Bingo Book that was still there. Gai flips the pages until he gets to the marked page. He widens his eyes, as he sees the photo in front of him. Gai answers, “So they thought you were the son of Yondaime-sama?”

Naruto nods. He says, “In any case, we have similar features. Blonde hair, blue eyes. Anyone with half a brain would put two and two together and think that. Well, I need to catch up with my teammates. So, goodbye Gai-sensei.”

Gai watches as Naruto disappears from his view in a Shunshin. He sighs, as he closes the book. He was quite skilled to take on three Chunin that quickly. Channeling chakra into his palm, he lights the book on fire. This will be on his report. He lets the ash fall onto the ground, as he follows Naruto’s act, disappearing into a Shunshin.

As day turned to night, Naruto saw the walls of Sunagakure. It renewed their vigor, and they blitzed towards the gate. Standing there in front of the gate, waiting for them is the Sand Trio’s Sensei. He is a man named Baki.

Baki is a very tall man. He has two distinctive, red markings on the right side of his face, the only visible part of his head, with the rest being covered by his turban-like head gear and by a sheet hanging from it on the left side of his face. He dons the standard attire of a Suna-nin, complete with a hitai-ate and a flak jacket.

Baki then says, “Welcome to Sunagakure. Did you have any trouble getting here?”

Naruto replies, “Thank you, and no… We had no trouble at all.”

Baki says, “That is good. Come, let’s enter. The Council had graciously allowed you to sleep her through the night. I will take the five of you to your hotel. Please, follow me.”

And so they do. The hotel was quite nice, and the nights here were quiet, and quite cool.

The next morning, the Sand trio saw the team off. For both Naruto and Temari, this was probably the last time they would see each other for a while. Meanwhile the others were pleasantly chatting with each other.

After all, Suna needed to get their Kage back, as well as their economy. So, she and her siblings, being the last heirs of the Kazekage Clan, would need to stay in Sunagakure no Sato for a while.

Temari then smiled softly, as she watched the back of Naruto disappear over the horizon. Though, she gets thrown from the moment by Kankuro, who elbows her in the side. He asks, “You're sad that you won’t see your boyfriend for a while, right?”

Temari groans. She smacks him upside his head, replying, “One, he isn’t my boyfriend, and Two, shut up!”

Gaara then asks, “Then why did I hear you say his name in your sleep?”

Temari closed her eyes, and let out a slow breath. She would have hit him, but his sand wouldn’t allow it. That pesky automatic defense. Meanwhile, Kankuro is wheezing out a laugh, asking, “Did… You really… Say… His name… In your sleep? You… Really love him… Huh?”

And just for that comment, Temari clocked him in the head, once again. Her annoying brothers. How could they make fun of her like that? Temari was the oldest, she should be the one making fun of them, not the other way around. 

She then storms back into the village. Wanting to release some steam, Temari heads toward a training ground.

 

Chapter Text

 

Naruto sighed as he laid in bed. Looking at the time, he was supposed to meet Tsunade in a couple hours. He was nervous. Despite the fact that he did quite well leading the teams during his missions, Naruto thought that he might not get the promotion.

Naruto knows that not a lot of people like him. The civilians still think he is their worst nightmare. The council down right thinks he doesn’t deserve rights. Would those thoughts change the Godaime Hokage’s mind? Would it make Tsunade think that he didn’t deserve it?

He knew his skill. He knew who his family was. He knew how to control the Kyuubi. He knew how to lead a team. It was evident in his reports. Though, he hoped that was evident in the Jounin’s reports.

A knock rang through his bedroom door, It was Karin. She had made breakfast, which he was appreciative of. 

His cousin had yet to move out of his apartment. And despite being a Genin, she had yet to get a team of her own. So she had to take missions that had missing teammates. This meant that Karin couldn’t go on a lot of missions. It wasn’t that he wanted her out of the apartment, or anything. 

It was nothing of the sort, it was just the fact that he had a small apartment. It was just meant for one person. One bedroom. One kitchen. One bathroom. For the past month, Karin was sleeping on his couch, which she was fine with.

Naruto didn’t want that for his cousin. It was like an orphanage that didn’t have enough beds. Not that he remembered any of his little time at the place, as he was only a couple months to a year old at that point. He really couldn’t remember. Though from what he had heard, after the Kyuubi Attack, the orphanage was jam-packed full of kids.

After breakfast, Naruto oversaw Karin’s Fuinjutsu training. She had already gotten the explosive tags down, and was starting on storage seals. Seals that stored things in them. From weapons to food, and even dead bodies. Depending on how you made them, they could store anything you wanted, really.

A couple hours later, and their was a knock at his door. Asking Karin to continue training, he answered the door. It was an ANBU member. She says, “Godaime-sama has called for your presence.”

Naruto simply nods, watching the ANBU member disappearing in a Shunshin. And right after, so does he, appearing in front of the administration building. Entering it, he made his way towards the Hokage’s office. 

Knocking on the door, he waited for a reply, before he entered. And once he did, Naruto saw Tsunade, and behind her was Shizune, along with the Sandaime. Tsunade stood up, and asks, “Do you know why you are here, Naruto?”

Naruto answers, “To know if I will get promoted or not.”

Tsunade nods. She replies, “That is true. Now, let’s not waste any time here. So, Naruto Uzumaki, with the power I hold as the Hokage of Konohagakure no Sato, I promote you to the rank of Chunin, along with all the power that comes with it. Congratulations, Chunin Uzumaki.”

Tsunade then moves from behind her desk, to in front of Naruto. In her hands is Konoha's standard flak jacket. Naruto raises his arms, as tears fall from his eyes, taking the vest in his hands. It was surreal. He was now a Chunin. One more step to his goal to become Hokage. To protect Konoha, with all of his strength.

He bows. And in return, so does Tsunade. Hiruzen asks, “So, how does it feel, Naruto-kun?”

Naruto answers, “Like I graduated all over again, Sandaime-jiji. After this, I  need to ask you about something?”

Hiruzen replies, “Is it about the Temple?”

Naruto nods, as Hiruzen then says, “Follow me, I will tell you all I know, which sadly isn’t much.”

Tsunade then sits down behind the desk, as Naruto walks out behind her Sensei. And as the door shuts, Shizune puts down a stack of papers right in front of her. Damn! She wanted a drink.

Sitting in his office, at his home in the Sarutobi compound, Hiruzen takes out a book from his personal library. In front of him is Naruto. He says, “This book has everything you need to know what goes on in the temple. You should read through it, but I will tell you a small bit right now.”

Naruto says, “Thank you, Sandaime-jiji.”

Hiruzen replies, “It’s no problem. The Uzumaki believed in the God of Death, the Shinigami. In the temple they celebrated the dead members of the Clan. You can read more, but it's a day of coming together and remembering all of the people you lost.”

Naruto then says, “Thank you again. I have been looking for this information since the temple was repaired. Their was nothing in the Holiday catalogs. Nothing in the Archives. And while Karin brought some things from Kusa, none of them helped in my search.”

Hiruzen says, “That must have been annoying.”

Naruto answers, “ It was.”

Hiruzen then says, “Now I won’t keep you here any longer. You are always welcome here if you need any sort of advice.”

Naruto nods, and then leaves the compound, as Konohamaru enters the compound. He looked really tired, and from what Naruto has heard, Kono has been taking his training really seriously. He even saw him training with those weird knives that Asuma had during the invasion. Better than what he was doing at his age. In fact, Naruto was doing jack shit.

Returning home, all of the lights were out. That was strange. The living room light was pretty much always on. Karin then jumps into his view, scaring him. Then his team appears, as well as Kakashi, Shisui, and even Jiraiya. All of them scared him, as they yelled, “Congratulations!”

Shisui then says, “Put it on, Otōto. See how it fits.”

Taking off his coat, Naruto hands it to Shisui. Unzipping the flak jacket, he slips it on. As he zips it back up, Shisui gives him his coat back. He asks, “So, how does it feel?”

Naruto answers, “Like… I made it. Like I’m finally getting the recognition that I wanted when I was in the Academy.”

Shisui nods, as he says, “Well, then let’s celebrate. I got a reservation for all of us at Yakiniku Q.”

The restaurant is large with wide windows, multiple green-seated booths, though some tables allow customers to sit down on the floor with green cushions as their seats, and menus plastered on the walls. 

Due to their Gyū-Kaku-style, each table has a charcoal brazier built in the center and is equipped with tongs for cooking, since the Gyū-Kaku form of dining is one in which the customers cook their own food after ordering it.

And that is what they did. They ate. They laughed. And they talked. And as Naruto returned home, he wondered something. Was this what having a family was like? It was a question that put a smile on his face as he fell asleep from the night.

 

Chapter Text

 

Naruto sighed. He had read that book three times already. Uzushio’s Day of the Dead. Casually referred to as Death Day. 

It was a day-long celebration for all of the Uzumaki that has ever died. Religiously, it was the day that the Shinigami took off, a yearly day-long vacation of sorts. With that day off, the souls of the dead were left to wander. And usually they wandered the land of the living. 

Now comes the mask into the equation. Twenty-seven masks, with each mask having a different ability. From being able to see the dead, to speaking with the Shinigami itself. 

This was a more personal portion of the celebration, as it allowed for an Uzumaki Clan member to speak with one that they lost. The masks allowed for closure better than anything else.

And then their was the rituals meant for the basement. The Clan Elder would lead the clan throughout the rituals. They were meant for a multitude of things. Such as good luck throughout the next year, prolonged life, and to keep in the good graces of the Shinigami. Though these were just the most common of the things they asked for in the rituals.

Then their was the day to worry about. It was at the end  of the month. The last day of October. A day in which it was night longer than it was day out. 

It was also his birthday, in ten days. His birthday wasn't a good day in particular, as more people tended to ignore him on that day. It was also a day to remember Yondaime's sacrifice. Their was a village wide thirty second long moment of silence that was held at noon.

 It wasn't really a holiday, or a festival, as it wasn’t listed on their catalog of Holidays. And sure, some civilians tried to make the day a holiday, but Hiruzen struck it down every time it was mentioned. He already knew the people tended to hate Naruto more on his birthday. And so to add a celebration, with alcohol to the mix, well it would be disastrous.  

As disastrous as another Kyuubi Attack. That was something that the village couldn’t recover from. Especially only a year after the original attack. And they came back four more years after that. At least, that is what he had heard through the grape vines, if you will. 

Naruto thought that if they had asked maybe like a decade after the attack, then maybe his answer would have been different. But they didn’t. 

He obviously knew why they wanted to have a holiday. His father was the strongest Kage of his generation. Minato was loved by all of the populus of Konoha. He was known as the fastest man alive, and the Yellow Flash of Konoha.

And for the past week, Naruto has been repeatedly doing D-Rank missions with his team. This time, he was leading them, as he was a Chunin. Even with the invasion, these missions needed to be done, and so his team did them. Helping the morale of the civilians. 

And as one week turned to two, It was now his birthday. Yay! Though he couldn’t complain too much. He got a free bowl of ramen at Ichiraku’s. And his party was just  fine, Shisui came, as did Jiraiya, and even Kono. 

It was everything he wanted. They all gave him gifts. It was quite nice. Naruto thinks that he is finally getting what family is all about. And now that he had it, he would never let it go.

After his birthday, they returned to doing several D-Rank missions, as well as two C-Ranks. It was now getting close to the day that they would experience Death Day. The Uzumaki Clan’s Day of the Dead. Karin, as is he, was too excited. It will be the first time that either of them will have ever experienced an Uzumaki Holiday.

For Naruto, he would get to see his mother. He wanted to see her face to face. He also wants to talk to her, ask her what happened on the night of his birth. Sadly, he didn’t know what he would do with that information, though. 

While Karin also wanted to see her mother, it was for a different reason. To tell her that she had found another Uzumaki. To tell her that she was free of Kusagakure. It was what the both of them dreamed of, for so long.

You had to wear a specific kimono. A pure white Kimono with a red Uzumaki Swirl on the back. It was the same attire that, from what he knows, every member of the Uzumaki Clan were buried in. 

The Uzumaki Clan doesn’t believe in a fire burning of any sort as a final passing, as the soul won't be whole, it won’t be pure, for the Shinigami to take you where you deserve to be taken.

The dead preferred to speak only with the dead, even while they were in the land of the living. At least that is what the book had said, so Naruto believes it. So, if you look like you are dead, then the dead you are contacting will make it easier to communicate. 

And while Naruto really didn’t believe in this as it seemed a bit ridiculous. This was something that all Uzumaki had shared at one point in their history. So he would participate. 

This was something his clan believed in. It was something that he could pass on to his children. Then his children could pass it on to their children. And so on, and so forth.

The holiday was tomorrow, and Karin is older than him. So, she would be leading them through the rituals in the basement. For the last couple of days, Naruto had been making sure she practiced the rituals, and how to do them. If Karin messed up any line, the book said that the Shinigami would appear and eat her soul.

He couldn’t dare to lose Karin, especially so soon after finding her. He wouldn’t be able to bear it. 

And as today turned into tomorrow, they celebrated until nightfall. Honoring their dead. Saging the apartment, clearing it of unwanted souls that meant harm. Getting dressed in their Kimonos, as they do. So, as the clock struck eleven the made their way to the temple. It was an hour-long journey. 

They entered the temple. Naruto went in first, and Karin went in after him. As the youngest of the clan got their turns first with the masks. Remembering which mask to grab, he put it on his face.

In an instant, he saw so many dead Uzumaki Clan members. Spinning around, with tears in his eyes, Naruto only wanted to see one. He only needed to speak with one.

He finds her. His mother. Kushina Uzumaki. 

Kushina was well-known for her beauty. She was a fair-skinned and slender woman of feminine build with violet eyes, and the common Uzumaki red hair. Her hair was straight and reached her thighs with shoulder-length strands that framed both sides of her face and a black clip that parts her hair to the left.

She wears traditional sandals, much like the pair Jiraiya wears, along with a p ure white Kimono with a red Uzumaki Swirl on the back.

Naruto runs up to her, his voice cracking as he asks, “Kaa-chan?”

Kushina spins around, a small loving smile on her face. He hands raises to cup his cheek. She asks, “Naru-chan? What are you doing here?”

Naruto answers, “I found your name on the memorial stone. I then found your diary, under my bed. I had the temple repaired. I then found out about this… I… I had to see you. Speak to you. Kaa-chan! I miss you!”

She kneels down to get eye level with her son. Hugging her son, Kushina replies, “I’m sorry. I am so sorry. I have wished to be by your side, my son. I am sorry that your Tou-san sealed the Kyuubi inside of you. I want you to know… That no matter what, we love you. Me and your Tou-san both, we will always love you.”

Naruto then breaks down. He couldn’t hold the tears any longer. He says, “I know, Kaa-chan. I know.”

Kushina then wipes the tears from her eyes. She then says, “Before you give this mask to that other Uzumaki girl, let me tell you something, okay?”

Naruto asks, “What is it, Kaa-chan?”

Kushina answers, “It was what I told you as a baby, before I had died. Naruto… you're going to experience a lot of pain and suffering. Remember who you are! Find a goal… a dream… and don't stop trying until it comes true. There's… there's so much more that I want to say… to teach you… I want to stay with you… I love you.”

With more tears than he ever shed falling down his face, Naruto replies, “I love you too, Kaa-chan.”

As he stands there in the embrace of his mother, she stands up, and tells him goodbye, for the final time. Naruto then slips the mask off of his face. Making his way towards Karin, he hands it to her. He then walks to a wall and sits down, sliding his back down it.

Naruto sighed. He needed to calm himself. And as he breathed in and out, he could hear Karin crying, just as he was. He didn’t know how much he needed that. How much he had truly needed it.

Naruto then watched as Karin replaced the mask on the podium. He watched as he came towards him at a crawling pace. He watched as she too slid down the wall. Naruto didn’t know what to say, so he placed his hand on her shoulder, to help comfort her.

They could afford to sit their for a couple more minutes. The ritual wasn’t supposed to start until one. And if he remembers correctly, it is only twelve-thirty.

Naruto then stands up, helping Karin do the same thing. He says, “It’s time. We need to cleanse the basement for the rituals, whatever we wish to do.”

And so they saged the basement in preparation for the ritual. Naruto listened, and repeated Karin, as she went through the ritual. And then once that was done, they went through another. 

By that time, it was already close to four o’ clock in the morning. The two retreated back to their home, taking off their clothes, and they fell asleep. Their time in the temple was too emotionally draining. They needed their sleep. 

And it was a good thing. After the rituals was a time for peace. Serenity. Calmness. Letting the mind, and body be one with each other. Allowing them to process what had just happened.

 

Chapter Text

 

Shisui stood blocking a forearm strike from Naruto. He then ducks under a roundhouse kick. Shisui watches as Naruto kicks off his chest, in a back flip weaving through hand seals. Snake → Ram → Monkey → Boar → Horse → Tiger. A medium-sized fireball expels from his mouth.

Shisui then dodges the attack, with a Kawarimi. Appearing in front of his little brother, in all but blood, he says, “This will be the end of the spar. I have some other things to teach you.”

Naruto asks, “What is it?”

Shisui answers, “It has to do with the Sharingan. What I didn’t tell you, is that the Sharingan can evolve two more times. It is called the Mangekyo Sharingan, and the Eternal Mangekyo Sharingan. Though the last evolution can be done by the Uchiha, as it involves two sets of Sharingan eyes.”

Naruto then asks, “What does this Mangekyo Sharingan do?”

Shisui answers, “A Mangekyo Sharingan can do everything a standard three-tomoe Sharingan can do, but better. On top of this, the Mangekyo grants powerful abilities that differ between each eye, though abilities may be similar in nature. From what I know, I am the only Uchiha with the same Mangekyo ability in both eyes.”

Naruto tilts his head, asking, “What is your ability?”

Shisui answers, “It’s called Kotoamatsukami. It is a powerful yet subtle mind-controlling genjutsu. Kotoamatsukami allows you or me to enter the mind of any individual within our field of view, and manipulate them by giving them false experiences, making it seem as if they were doing things of their own free will.” 

Naruto is in shock. That was quite a powerful jutsu.

Shisui replies, “It is, and with it being such a powerful jutsu, I can probably only use it once every five years. I don’t know about you, though. So only use it when you absolutely have to. Now before we begin practicing to let you use the Mangekyo Sharingan, I want you to promise to only use it as a last defense.”

Naruto nods, but asks, “Why is that?”

Shisui answers, “Overuse of the Mangekyo Sharingan will cause blindness. And the chakra cost is quite steep, as well.”

As Naruto nods, Shisui says, “Let’s get started then.”

That night, Naruto went to bed more tired than he has ever felt. But, he felt like he had achieved something great.

The next day, Team 7 meets at their training ground. Kakashi has called them for something. Sakura asks, “Naruto, do you know why Kakashi wants to meet with us?”

Naruto shrugs. He answers, “The last time we met like this was for the Chunin Exams. So, it must be important.”

Sasuke then says, “It must be a high ranking mission, like a B-Rank. That is my guess.”

Kakashi then appears. He says, “Sasuke is correct. But first I have bought you three tickets to the new Princess Gale movie. I’d like you to watch it.”

Naruto replies, “So, we must be guarding Yuki Fujikaze. The actress who plays Princess Gale.”

Sakura, and Sasuke just look at Naruto. Yuki Fujikaze was a well known name in the acting world. Though, they didn’t expect Naruto to know who she was.

Naruto defensively says, “What? It’s my favorite movie series. I own every movie in the series. Karin got me tickets for it, for my birthday. And they were pre-ordered. It is a really good movie.”

Kakashi replies, “You are correct. We are to escort her to Yuki no Kuni (Land of Snow). It is a B-Rank mission, as her manager expects shinobi as enemies, due to how famous she is.”

Naruto then says, “We’ll see the movie, Kakashi-sensei. While you go talk with the client. Let’s go, Sasuke… Sakura.”

Kakashi watches them leave, as he disappears in a Shunshin. 

Meanwhile, Yuki Fujikaze is staring down her manager, Sandayu Asama. She has long black hair with bangs that is swept on each side of her face and violet-blue eyes. She wears a green blouse over a pink jacket with brown gloves.

A look of righteous fury settled on her face. She yells, “I will tell you right now, you old piece of… I will not now, nor will I ever go to Yuki no Kuni!”

She then storms out of the hotel room that her manager was staying in.

Sandayu has short gray hair with a beard and mustache along with small black eyes. For the most part, he wears small glasses, and a baby blue long-sleeve shirt with a navy blue blazer on top.

He sighs. That was quite tense. Sandayu understood, he truly did. But, he needed to avenge the death of the former Daimyo, his master.

Kakashi then enters the room. He says, “I’m guessing that was her?”

Sandayu answers, “It was.”

Kakashi replies, “She has grown up, hasn’t she? In any case, I will get her back.”

Sandayu shakes his head. He says, “I can’t let you do that. You’ve done too much for us, as it is. I will get her back. Hopefully, we can leave by tomorrow morning. Now, if you will excuse me, Hatake-san. I have a Princess to catch. Lucky me!”

Kakashi chuckles. He replies, “Lucky for you, that is good for me. I will tell my team.”

Kakashi then thinks for a moment. Yeah, the movie should be ending soon anyway. Perfect timing; not that he ever had such a thing. All though, he does have such a thing, but trauma, and well… He had to honor a friendship that started way too late. It was the least he could do. His left eye never forgets.

Back with Team 7, Naruto sighs. They had just finished watching the movie. He says, “It was just as good as when I first saw it.”

Sakura replies, “It was alright. Not my favorite though.”

Sasuke just sighs. He would have only watched the movie for the mission. Well, maybe he’d watch it again if Sakura asked, but that's besides the point. 

Sakura had really been growing as a Kunoichi. Both Naruto and him could see it. She was being trained by the Hokage of all people, and the last known relative of the Hashirama Senju. 

His whole team was getting taught by strong people. Naruto has Shisui and Jiraiya. He has his brother, Itachi. And if his plan worked, well… Sasuke would speak to the Hokage about that, in due time. 

They all had Kakashi. He led them through missions. Teaching them how to work together, and complete them. Though, Kakashi focused more on Sakura, as he didn’t really have anything to teach him, or Naruto for that fact. After all, they were already being taught things that they needed to know.

Kakashi was the only living student of the Yondaime Hokage. He graduated from the Academy at the age of five. He is a prodigy in every sense of the word. And Itachi had mentioned something about their Sensei’s father, Sakumo Hatake. Apparently he was stronger than the whole of the Legendary Sannin combined.

Naruto then says, “Be quiet! Someone is coming, and they are scared. They are angry. So many emotions. It just almost overwhelmed me.”

A horse then jumps into their view. On it is the one and only Yuki Fujikaze. And as she gallops away from them, men in black samurai armor follow after her. Naruto commands, “Sakura, Sasuke. You know what to do!”

They stand up, and disappear in a Shunshin. Naruto does the same. 

Another Yuki, on horseback, then appears at Yuki’s side. She says, “Go now! I’ll distract them!”

Yuki nods, turning down an alley, before the men following her found out. These men then follow after the fake Yuki Fujikaze. Meanwhile Sasuke appears beside Yuki. He says, “Flak jacket, yellow hair, and orange clothes. You won’t miss him.”

Sasuke then disappears in a Shunshin, he had to help Sakura tie up the men. Though when he gets to the spot, Sasuke sees what appears to be the main man, who was following Yuki Fujikaze. He appears behind him, on his horse, and knocks him out with a chop to the back of the neck.

As the two are tying them up, Kakashi appears. He asks, “Uh, what are you two doing?”

Sasuke answers, “Our mission.”

Kakashi then nods. He replies, “Then why is Yuki Fujikaze’s manager tied in rope?”

Sasuke’s eyes grew, and he sighed. All of the rope then falls from the men. He watches as Kakashi stands the main man up. Kakashi then says, “I’m sorry about my team, Asama-san.”

Sandayu chuckles. He replies, “That’s quite alright, Hatake-san. At least I know that they are skilled now.”

Kakashi then says, “This is Sandayu Asama. And like I just said, he is Yuki Fujikaze’s manager. He is the one who requested our mission. Now Sasuke, where are Naruto and Fujikaze-san?”

Sakura groans, as Sasuke sighed again. He tells their Sensei where they are.

Kakashi says, “The mission will begin tomorrow morning. Now go home, you two. I will tell Naruto, when I see him. And don’t worry about this. It was just a misunderstanding.”

Kakashi then disappears from them in a Shunshin.

 

Chapter Text

 

In a field, sits Naruto on the single tree. Under it sits Yuki, along with her horse, who is drinking from the river right in front of them. Naruto asks, “Why were those Samurai chasing you?”

Yuki answers, “Because I don’t want to return to Yuki no Kuni. So, why did you help me?”

Naruto answers, “Because, my Sensei accept the mission to protect you on the way to Yuki. Basically, I’m just doing my job.”

Yuki then asks, “And you are?”

Naruto answers, “Naruto Uzumaki, at your service. I am a Chunin from Konohagakure. Also, could I have an autograph? Please!?” 

Yuki replies, “You look a bit young to be a Chunin, and no autographs. I don’t do them, especially for brats like you.”

Naruto just shrugs. At least she didn’t say anything about his height, not that he gets angry about it. He says, “That was harsh. Anyway, I was just promoted. Now, why don’t you want to go to Yuki no Kuni?”

Yuki curtly answers, “It’s none of your business, brat!”

Naruto replies, “Fine. Kakashi-sensei will be here soon though?”

Yuki asks, “Kakashi? As in Kakashi Hatake? He is your Sensei!?”

Naruto answers, “One of them. Why?”

Yuki just grunts in response. She just couldn’t go back, especially after the death of her father. Her Uncle made it very clear. Then a slight smile formed on her features. Maybe, just maybe, she could go to Yuki. At least Kakashi would be their with her. 

NO! She would never return to that frozen wasteland that she once called home.

NO! 

NO! 

NO! 

Just because of the fact that he was the one to get her out of the country in the first place. Just because she has a crush on the man, it doesn’t mean that she wanted to go back. It doesn’t mean that the Daimyo wouldn’t kill her.

Her Uncle said as such, right before she left. Right before Kakashi saved her from that grizzly fate of death she held as a child. Right before Sandayu took her, and ran from the palace.

Kakashi then appears, “Hello Naruto, Fujikaze-san. How are you today, Yuki? Asama-san has called for your return. Do not make this harder than it already is.”

Yuki stands up, and jabs her finger in his chest. As a look of anger fills up her features, she stomps her feet. She yells, “I do not care what that old man of a manager says! You will leave me alone! And you will never take me to Yuki no Kuni! Do you understand me, Kakashi Hatake!”

Kakashi just sighs, as a shadow clone appears behind her. He knew that she was going to be difficult. He remembers when he saved her, when he was just getting started in the ANBU Black Ops. That scared little girl, not that he was that much older, though. 

He sighs once again. The clone then chops her in the back of the neck, knocking her out. 

Naruto then asks,”So, Kakashi-sensei, who were those men?”

Kakashi lifts the knocked out actress on his shoulder, and stares at his student. A blank look in his eye. He answers, “Stuntmen. Asama-san, Yuki’s manager, had hired them to bring her back to the hotel. And Sasuke happened to knock him out. You three! What am I going to do with you?”

Naruto replies, “I should apologize then. It was my plan, after all.”

Kakashi then says, “You do that, if you really want to. Though, he did say that it was fine. So, if you have to, think of it as him testing you or something… I don’t know. We leave in the morning, Naruto. So get your sleep.”

Naruto simply nods, and disappears in a Shunshin.

The next day, Naruto appears at the gate. next to the carriage. Inside it, lay the still unconscious Yuki Fukikaze. Beside him stood Sasuke, and Sakura. In front of them stood Kakashi and Sandayu Asama.

They were talking. Going over plans for how their team should guard him as well as Yuki. With a nod, Kakashi turns around and faces his students. He says, “Asama-san wants us out of sight, as much as possible. He thinks that we will scare Fujikaze-san’s fans.”

Naruto says, “So this will be a covert operation.”

Kakashi nods. He replies, “That is correct. When the carriage is moving we will be in the trees and bushes if we have to. We will be on a different floor of the hotel. If their are any enemies, take them out silently. Do you three understand?”

The three shinobi under his command nod. They completely understood.

Kakashi says, “Good. I’ll tell Asama-san that we are ready. Then we can leave.”  

They watch as Kakashi signs them out for the mission, telling Sandayu that they are ready to move out. Sandayu then nods, telling the carriage driver to start moving. Then he enters the carriage, locking the doors. 

It would be better that way, especially when Yuki will be awake. The first thing she would do will be to try and escape. Other than the fear of getting attacked by the Snow Daimyo’s men, the main purpose of hiring the Shinobi was to keep Yuki from escaping. 

And that fear grew more and more as they continued their journey. 

As the team of Konoha Shinobi move through the trees, Kakashi says, “Remember we are to guard, and escort Yuki Fujikaze to Yuki no Kuni. There, they will be making the first Princess Gale movie outside of Hi no Kuni. While there, we are to guard her whenever she is not on set.”

Sakura asks, “And why is that?”

Kakashi answers, “Because Asama-san believes that Yukigakure Shinobi will be after her, as well as the Daimyo’s personal army.”

Sasuke frowns. He understood Yukigakure coming after the actress… But the Daimyo? He couldn’t understand? He asks, “Why the Daimyo?”

Kakashi answers, “The current Daimyo Doto Kazahana, is illegitimate. His brother was the true Daimyo, and he was jealous, and wanted some form of treasure. So Doto killed him, and was going to kill his daughter too.”

Naruto replies, “The daughter must be Yuki Fujikaze, right? It is the only conclusion that seems logical.”

Kakashi nods, as he answers, “I fended Doto off, while I was an ANBU Black Ops member. It allowed both Fujikaze-san and Asama-san to escape from Yuki no Kuni.”

Sakura then asks, “So, if Fujikaze-san is in that much danger, why aren’t we also guarding the movie crew?”

Kakashi answers, “Because they are already in Yuki no Kuni. They have been there for weeks, making sure production of the movie will be smooth. Now, no more questions. We need to focus here, or else this mission will be a failure.”

And so, Team 7 asks no more questions, as they travel through the Land of Fire, towards the Land of Iron and finally to the Land of Snow.

 

Chapter Text

 

As they board a boat, a man is watching a movie. He is sitting on a throne, and behind him are his personal team of Shinobi. He is a tall muscular man, with long brown hair, and gray eyes. He wears the official garb of the Daimyo. 

The screen is paused on a frame of Yuki Fujikaze’s face. He says, “Roga? Who does that look like to you?”

Roga answers, “Other than Yuki Fujikaze… I’d say that Princess Gale is your missing niece, Koyuki Kazahana. Do you need anything else, Doto-dono?”

The man, now known as Doto Kazahana replies, “No, that is all…”

As the three shinobi go to leave, Doto brings his hand up, motioning them to wait. He says, “Yesterday, I got some information. Apparently, our dear Yuki Fujikaze is coming to our great nation. I’d like for you to take her out. As well as the Shinobi guarding her.”

Another member of the three-man team, a Kunoichi, asks, “Who are the Shinobi guarding her?”

Doto answers, “A team of two Genin, a Chunin. They are led by a man with a single eye, gray hair, and a Konoha hitai-ate covers the other one. I’m sure that I don’t need to tell you who that is?”

The final member scoffs. He says, “While we have this armor, Kakashi Hatake can not hurt us. Roga, Kakuyoku, come… It’s time to get our revenge!”

Doto then orders, “Make sure the treasure is unharmed!” 

Meanwhile, Yuki sits in a bed. Clutched in her hands is a hexagona l, purple crystalline stick with an indent at the bottom. It is a necklace, and she wears it wherever she goes. It was the last present that her father had given her.

Sandayu then enters the room. He says, “Your awake, Fujikaze-san. Would you like something to drink?”

Yuki replies, “Some water, please. Sandayu… I might be imagining things, but is our hotel rocking?”

Sandayu answers, “Of course, I’ll get you your water. You are not imagining things, and we are not in a hotel.”

Yuki snaps, as she throws herself onto her feet. She yells, “What do you mean!? Where are we!?”

Sandayu answers, “We are on a boat, in the waters in between Tetsu no Kuni (Land of Iron) and Yuki no Kuni.”

Her eyes widen in shock, as she pushes past her manager/assistant. Running out of her room, Yuki rushes onto the deck of the boat. She rushes to the side of the boat, and looks past the infinite water they were sailing on. Yuki feels sick, as her eyes settle with the realization that she was returning to her home, in little over a decade. 

This might be her last movie. Her uncle will find her. He has control of Yukigakure. If they can’t kill her, his personal team will. After all, they already tried.

Yuki then spins around. Spotting the movie crew, she slides her back down the railing of the boat. The Director then says, “Now that Yuki-san has graced us with her presence, get her in costume and make up. This movie will not make itself, after all.” 

Yuki sighs, as the costume department rushes towards her. 

And as the movie is being made, Kakashi and Team 7 patrol around the boat. It was unlikely that an enemy made it onto the boat, but that percentage wasn’t zero. So someone that shouldn’t be on the boat, could actually be on the boat.

Soon night fell, and it was time for them to sleep. As the days continued, their path was blocked. A large landmass of floating ice. The director says, “This is a perfect spot. This location must be god given, by the Movie God, himself. Let’s film! Get everyone off this boat.” 

With the movie being made, the shinobi were on guard. This spot seemed too fishy. If anyone were to attack, they would do it here. It was pretty isolated, and desolate. 

Kakashi moves in front of Yuki Fujikaze, as an explosion goes off. On a cliff stood a three-man team. The Jounin recognized them. Nadare Roga, Mizore Fuyukuma, and Fubuki Kakuyoku. 

Nadare Roga has long purple hair held in a long ponytail running down his back, along with a long, thin strand of purple hair hanging over the right-side of his face. He also has small diagonal purple marks below both of his eyes, which are teal. Around his head, he wears a happuri-style hitai-ate. He also wears chakra armor. 

Mizore Fuyukuma is a rather large man with a short crop of purple hair and dark eyes. He wore the standard uniform of his team which consisted of a blue and white outfit with Chakra Armor. He also had small circular shaped purple eyebrows.

Fubuki Kakuyoku has green eyes and pink spiky hair that stuck out of two holes at the top of her gray helmet, reminiscent of pig-tails. She has small circular dark pink eyebrows. Like her team-mates, she wore Chakra Armor.

Throwing a volley of kunai and shuriken, Kakashi yells, “Get back to the boat, NOW! Naruto, protect Yuki Fujikaze!”

Roga chuckles as he hears the name. He says, “Hatake… Give us Koyuki Kazahana. I’d rather not have to kill your “precious” students.”

Kakashi’s eyes widened at the name. Sure, he already knew who Yuki was, but to have their enemy know as well was a bad thing. Kakashi took a guarding mission for Princess Gale two years ago, and while drunk, Yuki let slip who she was to him.

Roga jumps down to face Kakashi, while he moves to meet him. They clash in the middle with kunai. And as they move up the cliffside, Mizore moves to face Naruto, who was standing in front of Yuki.

Naruto blocks the first strike, and the second. He then blocks the third. Yuki was frozen in shock, and fear. They recognized, and found her. She was going to be killed. She was going to die. 

Naruto then lands in front of her. He yells, “Snap out of it, Hime. I’ll protect you!”

The clothing, well… Armor, it was weird. He was making contact with his tantō for sure, but it was like the armor was deflecting any chakra that he was flowing through his blade.

The man in front of him chuckles. He replies, “Ha, what could you do against this armor?”

Naruto smirks, as he answers, “A lot.” 

Naruto’s hair then becomes more spiky, as his whiskers thicken. His single eye turns crimson, as his pupil slitted. His canines sharpened to a point. The nails on his hands and feet became claws.

That made Mizore pause. What was this aura? Where did this brat hide this strength? He then gasped, as Naruto appeared right in front of him. His clawed hand gripping his neck, as red-tinted chakra spins around in his free hand, forming an orb that was pretty decent in size. It was bigger than what it usually was, when he used the jutsu.

Everyone freezes, as Naruto slams the orb into Mizore’s stomach. They watched as it went through the barrier, shredding the armor as it went through part of it. Naruto then lets go, and kicks Mizore in the stomach. As he flies away from the blonde, the armor explodes, killing him.

As the confusion freezes everyone, Sasuke moves, attacking the girl. She stares directly into his eyes, and drops to the ground. He then stabs her in the back of the neck, paralyzing and thus killing her.

This was his first kill. The first death on his hand. While he was conditioned for this exact moment… At that moment he felt kind of sick. Was this what his brother and Shisui felt when they had killed the enemy shinobi? Was this what they felt when they had to kill in order to stop the coup from occurring?

Sasuke did not know. He would ask his brother when they got back. He flinched when someone touched his shoulder. He sighed a calming breath when it was only Sakura. She smiled at him. Sasuke smiled back. He should talk to her more. 

It was… Kakashi then sighs, as Roga disappears. The Jounin then picks Yuki up, and takes her to the boat. His students follow after him.

Finally in the Land of Snow, Kakashi watches as they unload the boat. In the hotel, he asks, “So, Asama-san… You knew this would happen right? Who suggested that the movie be made in Yuki no Kuni?”

The Director answers,”It was Sandayu. He suggested it. Though, when I saw the geography, I knew it was a perfect location to film the next Princess Gale film. So I accepted the suggestion.”

Kakashi nods, as he turns to Sandayu. He asks, “You knew this was going to happen, yet you still suggested Yuki no Kuni, how dare you!? Isn’t it your job to protect Koyuki-sama?”

Sandayu nods. He answers, “You are right, Hatake-san. She might not remember, but I do. I remember what it was like before Doto. I remember the hope that her Tou-san had for his country. Eternal Spring. Her necklace is the key, but we can talk about that later. I am doing my job to protect her… Why do you think I asked for the mission? Why do you think I asked for you specifically?”

Kakashi sighed. He then says, “My team and I should return to Konoha… This is gross misconduct of a mission contract. However, we are already here. Be thankful that I am merciful, Asama-san.” 

Yuki then appears at the door. She says, “I remember, just fine old man. I should have just died.”

Asama replies, “Do not say that. You and that necklace, is Yuki’s only hope.”

Yuki says, “I might have not died, but my heart did. And with the death of my heart, my tears dried up, as well. The people of this country get no sympathy from me.”

She then throws the necklace onto the ground, and leaves. Asama scurries to get the necklace. With the eye of a jeweler, he checks to see if it was broken. He thanked god, it wasn’t. 

Kakashi then walks up to him. Even if she won’t help, his team will. He places his hand out for Sandayu to place the necklace into it. Kakashi says, “I will keep it safe for you. Don’t worry, Asama-san.”

Sandayu looks worried for a moment, but places the necklace in Kakashi’s hand anyway. It would be much safer in his hands, than his own.

A crewman then walks up to Sandayu, he says, “So… So… You were just using us?”

Sandayu answers, “I was… And I am sorry for doing so. But it was for the people of this country. Doto Kazahana needs to be stopped, and the only one who can do that is Koyuki Kazahana. I will gladly give up my life for this goal.”

The director then chuckles. He says, “The dreams for the future’s peace. A perfect theme for this movie.”

Then Kakashi says, “Their will be no escape after this point, Asama-san. Doto will come after us. Me and my team will have to fight. If you understand this, then we will continue.”

Sandayu then bows before Kakashi. WIth his forehead touching the floor, he says, “I understand.”

Kakashi simply nods in return. This will be a fun mission.