Author: Moerae PM
DISCONTINUED. AU Life savers and babysitters, or Narusitters, were interchangeable in Arashi's vocabulary. And oddly enough Uchiha Itachi was also an alternative for babysitter. A collection of stories about Naruto and his Narusitters.Rated: Fiction K - English - Naruto U. & Minato N. - Chapters: 22 - Words: 39,632 - Reviews: 1,204 - Favs: 1,332 - Follows: 1,115 - Updated: 11-11-09 - Published: 12-26-05 - id: 2720644
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto or any of its characters. If I did... Sasuke would still be in Konoha, Naruto would be deflowered... and Jiraiya and Kakashi would be plotting their students' doom. Huh... sounds very much like Risque...
Right this is fluff... I swore I wouldn't write fluff again, but I was tackled by the plot bunny and... this just had to come out. Damn plot bunnies!
Author's note: This is a collection of ficlets about Naruto being baby-sat, so there's no particular link from chapter to chapter. And no particular plot either...
Scratching the back of his head in thought, Arashi stared absently at the little blur of orange circling the small living room.
What to do...?
He had to leave for the meeting soon or he would risk being late, but there was no way he was going to leave his son by himself. And even though he wanted to spend more time with Naruto, taking the boy with him was not an option. He had already done that once, and it didn't turn out good at all. He had considered getting a babysitter, but having a perfect stranger look after his son didn't exactly put him at ease.
That said, he mulled over the list of people who usually Naru-sat.
First was Jiraiya-sensei. He loved the man like a father, but lately, from the disturbing questions ('What are boobies, and what do they have to do with getting anything?') Naruto had been asking him, he was hesitant about leaving his son to his sensei's care. It seemed the man had abandoned his 'observing' ways and was now opting for interacting with the 'nubile beauties'. That was also where his cute and adorable son came into play. Naruto had become his sensei's 'chick magnet', as the sennin had so thoughtfully termed it. The man would situate himself near the entrance of the bath house (never right at the front because as Jiraiya had discovered, after several times of parking himself and Naruto there, the women had caught on), and have Naruto's cuteness work its wonders.
He had always disapproved Jiraiya-sensei's 'hobby', but there wasn't much he could do about it except for standing somewhere far, far away while the man nose-bled to death by the bath houses. But when his son was pulled into it... That was another story. He did not need to have his one and only son grow up to be another Jiraiya.
So no, maybe not Jiraiya-sensei...
Tsunade-sama? She was extremely fond of Naruto and had spoilt the boy silly. He was surprised his son didn't have any fillings from all the candy she insisted on feeding him. But from the recent winning streak that had surprised everyone in Konoha (Tsunade was named 'The Ultimate Sucker' for a reason), the endless supply of candy had included other things as well. The small mountain of toys starting to pile up in the living room was proof. Which brought him to the question he had been meaning to ask his beloved son.
The orange streak stopped instantly and enormous blue eye stared up at him.
"Why is 'Nade-neesan giving you all those toys?"
Round, guileless eyes blinked once. A huge grin appeared. "She said that Naru was being a good boy!"
"Yep!" The mop of blonde spikes bobbed in an earnest nod. "'Nade-nessan let Naru play 'pick the numbers' game, and she says Naru is very good at it!"
"'Pick the numbers'?" The older of the two blonde's brows furrowed. Oh she couldn't have... "And what does 'Nade-nessan do with the numbers you pick?"
"She goes into a shop and comes out with candy and the numbers on paper!" Naruto quipped, proudly.
And the mystery was solved. He sighed in exasperation. His son was a lucky charm on top of being a lure for women. Great, just great. He scratched Tsunade's name from his mental Naru-sitter list.
"'Tousan? Do you want me to pick numbers for you too?"
He smiled down at his son and shook his head. "No, Naru."
The chubby face pinched in thought. "You're mad."
Arashi blinked in bemusement. "I'm not mad, Naru."
"Yes you are," Naruto insisted. "Even Tsune thinks you're mad." The young boy held out a small fox plushie to get the point across.
Looking at the orange-red soft toy, Arashi wondered if it was because of having the Kyuubi sealed within him that Naruto liked foxes so much. It had begun innocently enough. Naruto had insisted on having a fox shaped birthday cake for his third birthday, and from there fox plushies and fox print pajamas were among a few of the things the child had wanted. Foxes to Naruto were like kittens or puppies to other children. His son adored them to the point of being able to open a small museum dedicated to the animal.
And it seemed this adoration was not one-sided. Two years ago, Naruto had gotten himself lost in the woods and Arashi nearly went mad with worry. When they had finally located the boy, the most bizarre and frightening sight greeted them. Bizarre because the sleeping blonde was surrounded by half a dozen foxes. Frightening because there were half a dozen foxes that could tear the small child apart.
A few were curled up near the child, seeming to offer their warmth and comfort, while others were alert and stood on guard. As soon as Arashi himself made a move to go near his son, pointed ears flattened against furred skulls and a low warning growl was issued. He had tried talking to the small gathering in a gentle and soothing voice, he even tried offering food so they would move away from his son, but it was no use. He was sure they would've bitten his hand clean off if he so much as looked at them wrong. In the end, it took a half-awake Naruto making his shaky way to his father before the foxes were convinced the man meant no harm.
Ever since then, they were occasionally visited by wandering foxes.
Others who knew about this strange development thought it unnatural and dangerous, but if it meant that Naruto was going to be able to build some kind of bond with the demon inside him, then by all means he wasn't going to stop it.
The concern laced in that one word shook him out of his thoughts. Scooping his son into his arms, he ruffled sun-coloured hair in affection.
"I'm not mad, Naru. But promise me you won't play 'pick the numbers' game with Nade-neesan again, hm?"
Not understanding, but wanting to please his 'tousan', Naruto nodded his head in agreement. "Okay."
"Good." He smiled at his son. Then it occurred to him that maybe it would be better if Naruto chose where he went for the next few hours. "Naru, who do you want to stay with while 'tousan does something important?"
"'Tousan can't stay with you, Naru."
The delighted expression on the boy's face fell several notches. Arashi hugged his child close and gave him a peck on the forehead.
"How about I take you to Ichiraku's after the meeting, hm?"
"Yep!" His neck was hugged in thanks. "So do you want to go with jiji?"
The blonde head shook in a quick 'no', and he breathed out a sigh of relief. His son was not going to be used as bait today.
The same response.
He knew Naruto loved to play with Kakashi's nin-dogs, and Kakashi didn't seem to mind having an energetic child run around in his apartment. It also did his student a load of good to have some company once in a while.
Another shake of the head.
"Then where, Naru?"
"'Tachi and 'Suke! I want to show them Tsune!"
He should have known. It seemed the Uchihas were always the first to be informed of the toys Naruto received, and this was, of course, no different. Despite how quiet and stoic Itachi was, the teen had a knack with taking care of children. Maybe because the young Anbu had a younger brother to look after as well, but Uchiha Sasuke was a saint compared to his Naruto -- not that he didn't think his son was angelic. However, Itachi had taken a liking to the rambunctious ball of energy almost instantly, and the same could be said for his son.
"All right. 'Tachi's and 'Suke's it is."
His son cheered.
"But!" Arashi held up a finger to shush Naruto. "If they're busy then we'll go to 'Kashi's, okay?"
The teen turned at the excited cry and watched as an orange ball of energy launch itself at his legs. He blinked in surprise. It wasn't as if he didn't know what would happen when he opened the front door – the chakra signatures already told him who it was and what to expect, but he just never got used to having his legs hugged.
A pair of large, exuberant blue eyes stared up at him and the corners of his lips twitched. He picked the over zealous child up and almost immediately, warm arms wrapped themselves around his neck. The small blonde giggled and nuzzled his chubby face into the crook of his neck -- a hello gesture typical of Naruto.
"Hello to you too, Naruto-kun," he murmured into downy hair.
More giggles were pressed into his neck and he found himself being watched by a grinning Fourth Hokage. Before the man could voice his request, Itachi nodded and watched in amusement as Arashi's shoulder slumped in relief.
"You're a life-saver, Itachi-kun."
"What's a life-saver?"
Naruto's head surfaced and cast a curious glance to his father. Finding no answer from his father, the boy turned to the teen holding him and asked again. "What's a life-saver, 'Tachi?"
"It's a kind of candy," the Uchiha replied matter-of-factly.
Perking up at the mention of candy and the like, Naruto straightened in Itachi's arms and turned to his father. "Is it nice? Can I have some?" Brows furrowing. "'Tousan, why did you call 'Tachi a candy?"
There was a moment of puzzled silence, before Arashi burst into laughter. Not liking being laughed at, especially by his 'tousan', Naruto's whiskered cheeks puffed out and the bottom of the boy's pink lips jutted out in a pout. When the chuckles didn't cease, the boy whined and once more buried his face into the crook of the Uchiha's neck.
It was also then that Naruto remembered why he was so excited about coming here. Ignoring his 'tousan', he resurfaced once more and tugged at the important thing he had wanted to show Itachi.
"Look, 'Tachi!" Naruto cried, shoving the small orange-red plushie into Itachi's face. "Isn't Tsune pretty? 'Tousan got it for me yesterday!"
Gently pushing the toy away from his face, Itachi examined the little fox, noting the nine bushy tails, and nodded. "Very pretty."
Overjoyed that Tsune got Itachi's approval, Naruto mashed the toy against the side of the Uchiha's face in a semblance of a kiss and declared the two friends. That established, the happy child embraced the plushie and Itachi's neck. A fresh wave of giggles erupted.
"'Niisan? Who --?" Sasuke's inquiring face peered from around the corner, and the boy smiled when he caught sight of the orange bundle in his brother's arms.
Itachi put the blonde down and watched the child scamper to his brother.
"Look what 'Tousan got me!" The process of Tsune being mashed into the younger Uchiha's face was repeated.
Arashi grinned at the sight. It was always amusing to see his son interact with children his age. They either became friends straight away or they slowly and very reluctantly at times, because Naruto was a determined little thing when the boy wanted to be, form some sort of truce. For Sasuke, it was the latter. He still remembered how much Naruto had complained about said dark-haired boy until finally his son went up to Itachi and demanded the teen make his little brother nicer so they could be friends. It was a crack up when he thought back to that day, and he was going to bug Naruto about it when he was older.
Turning back to the older sibling, he gave a grateful smile. "It'll only be a few hours."
The teen nodded.
"Naru," Arashi called, interrupting the loud chatter, and stared in puzzled amusement at Sasuke's indignant squawk. It seemed Tsune was in the process of being stuffed into the boy's top. "What are you doing to Sasuke?"
Taking advantage of his blonde-haired friend's distraction, Sasuke quickly plucked the plushie out and held it away from his friend.
"No, he's not!"
"Yes, he is!"
Itachi's brows rose, and Arashi shook his head. "Never mind. You be good, Naru!" His face was stern, but that quickly faltered when Naruto grabbed for his fox and returned to keeping Tsune warm.
"I'm always good, 'Tousan!"
"Of course you are," Arashi breathed, turned to leave but found himself stuck.
He looked down and found the chubby face of his son staring up at him.
"I'll be really good," Naruto said with unblinking eyes.
Stunned and touched by his son's behaviour, he picked him up and nuzzled whiskered cheeks.
"I know you will." Planting sloppy, wet kisses on both cheeks, he grinned and let the boy down. "Have fun."
A quick nod, Naruto ran back to Sasuke, only to stop half way and ran back to his father.
"What's wrong, Naru?" Confused, Arashi let insistent hands pull him down and blinked as Naruto gave his nose a quick peck followed by a face mash from Tsune.
"Be back soon."