Author's note: Konichii-wa Minna-san! Here's another chapter.
I've made some changes in the background story for my convenience. First thing is that pain has not attacked Konoha yet, and Hinata was captured when she was 3 years old ...well that's all!
Thoughts or words with emphasis.
Chapter three: The break-in.
*drag* *drag* *drag*
He was slightly pouting (it could be detected only with a byakugan) AND dragging his feet.
No. His legs weren't tired yet (he hadn't gone to mission for ages!)
No. He wasn't the lazy kind of guy (like Shikamaru).
But he was dreading this journey and maybe... (subconsciously)...he was doing it to irritate Sakura.
Yes. He was acting exactly like a sulking kid demanding his mother's attention
Oblivious to all this (unfortunately), Sakura had her arms linked to his and was humming cheerfully. And was bright as a Sunday morning. Total opposite.
He pushed aside that thought. Scratch that! He flung it off. Really far off. Right now he had things to do, people to get angry at, certain things to dread at...
Where are we going?
"Where are we going?" he had meant to say it out loud but something ate up his words...and turned them into a sulky, under-the-breath grumbling. He felt a part of his pride chip off...
The Kunoichi hummed a question. He wasn't sure whether she'd turned deaf voluntarily to irk him or she hadn't heard him for real. Those wide innocent eyes made him believe in the latter. He couldn't be sure but. He had recently observed that Sakura was no longer the 'crazy fan girl'. She'd (in his absence) grown into a 'confident, strong and sly woman'.
"Where are we going?" he asked again. He knew the answer obviously. The path beneath his feet were screaming it to him.
"Naruto's place." The answer. The dread which had been halfway, hit him in full swing. His opposed to the idea; his feet going slow the instant the word was out.
"Don't complain. Hokage-sama's orders." she said with such gleam in her eyes that he wouldn't have complained even if it weren't Hokage's order...
"Hn." But he totally despised it.
"And also you've been avoiding Naruto for days."
Things weren't too well between him and Naruto after the Orochimaru shit. Well things weren't good even before that...
They stood before the gate. The name plate beside it said 'Namikaze'. After his eighteenth birthday Naruto had legally become the heir of the Namikaze and Uzumaki estates. Rich fella...
However the couple was unaware of the ongoing battle inside the four walls of Naruto's bedroom...
He didn't know why he was even bothered. He could, and most definitely he should plant a kunai in the boy's head or heart and end all this...all this nonsense. But no! His heart had decided to beat a different tune during his mission and he'd let a prisoner escape. And now karma slapped hard in his face; the bastard had followed him to Konoha. Is this what he got for a good deed?
And how the had he even got past the guards?
He had decided not to use chakra. And his choice came with a price. His opponent was quiet athletic (contrary to his previous estimation) and highly flexible. And as a result he had received various elbow jabs, punches and pokes in the eye. And now he was on the floor because apparently, the young teen before him had decided that his knee needed to say hello to the older one's groin in violent, sadistic ways. He was an ANBU for Kami's sake! But then being an ANBU didn't mean that he had steel balls. Guts of steel...yes. Balls of steel ...no.
He stood up after his 'situation' was over. Standard 'knee-to-groin'? Pathetic! (It was painful and very useful, but he would never admit it). He overwrote his decision to not to use chakra.
"Kage bushin no jutsu." He sent four of them to catch the limbs. Coz he was no way going near that savage.
He watched in amusement as one clone flew to the wall. One exploded.
Why was this happening?
Let's reel back...
So the boy forms some attachment to him as he freed him. Then follows him to his home. Then why attack? Was the boy so repulsed at the one moment of kindness he had shown that he'd come here to repay him?
Of course! The boy didn't recognize his presence. His ANBU nature was entirely different than his normal one. What a genius answer after struggling about half an hour with the peanut called his brain. And he was supposed to be a fuckin' ANBU!
Then after sacrificing some twelve clones, he finally settled the raging beast.
He took a moment to evaluate the damage done.
His poor room.
Curtains torn, pillows sliced, floorboard scratched.
He walked to his prisoner with some hint of anger. This was his family's estate! Not some cluttered flat...
He hovered over his prisoner, who was spread like a star on his bed, each limb held neatly, securely by a clone.
"Look what you did." he said sighing. His prisoner's thin lips tightened over ultra-white teeth. Then came a rude threatening hiss. Less like a snake. More like a cat.
This was new.
Could he not talk?
His suspicion grew with the number of hisses his captor was giving. His skin was grey, or was it the darkness of his room?
Was he even human? His thought didn't seem so far off.
Was Orochimaru a semi-biologist?
Was he crazy?
Yes, yes and yes!
Could this boy be some sort of bizarre hybrid?
Then the hisses turned into something rough. Harsh. Something glowed on the boy's sternum. A seal? He would've recognized it anywhere. It was his favorite. Apparently he wasn't the only one keeping up appearances...
(Author's note: and dear readers did I tell you that transformation seals go on self-destruct if the wielder overuses his/her chakra (isn't it true for all seals?). BTW, 'transformation seals' are of my own making ;)
Transformation seals are made on paper and embed themselves beneath the skin. Its power depends on the maker. It can transform face, hair, height, age, and if the creator is sly enough...even smell)
The palm sized paper was now out of his skin. The older teen took hold of the burning piece of paper. Thennnnn...
Then he came to know how wrong he was!
The limbs lengthened. And changed shape. The hips...widened? The hair was growing at a tremendous rate. And and and..!
Sakura didn't know what was wrong with her blonde team mate lately. He seemed so...different? Distant? Cold? Worry chewed bits of her mind as she thought about his 'tenant'. Was the demon finally getting to Naruto?
So with a head full of worry, she pressed the buzzer...or that's what she was about to do when the door was flung wide open by the resident.
And she came face to face with a very shocked and frightened Naruto. He was slack-jawed, with wild hair and his black tee torn in many parts. And finally, a huge blush on his face.
His lips moved and he made some attempt to speak out words. But all she heard was some mumbling.
"Naruto?" she was somewhat worried.
"Oi dobe, you alright?"
"B-br-br-!" Sakura saw him getting himself together, then after a huge sigh, he said with some firmness, "Bra."
"What was that for, Sakura!?"
"You just said 'bra' to my face!"
"I meant that I need it!"
"That's more perverted!"
"Not for me...it's the stalker..."
"Stalker?" she said with some excitement. She caught her tongue too late. Naruto's eyes had already narrowed down in suspicion. What up with him lately? Slight irritation tugged her brain. She brushed it aside. Yup first things first.
"What's up, dobe?"
The environment was entirely different. She could feel the air charged with chakra.
"What are YOU doing here Teme?!" it was more of a growl.
"We are here to heal you, dobe" Though Sasuke sounded calm, she could see the back of his neck reddening.
"I don't need help..."
They were always at each others throats...and they were supposed to be 'best friends'!
"What happened?" she asked, and finally Naruto yielded some answers.
"I had a break-in. Upstairs. There's a girl in my bedro-" he stopped mid-sentence. Maybe it was the grin her face had that made him stop. Maybe it was the perverse turn his thoughts had taken as soon as he'd spoken those words. Or both.
As Sakura ascended the steps, the signs of battle were obvious. There were some scrapes and pieces of burnt clothing on the floorboard. She looked questioningly at Naruto, who was following silently. Behind him Sasuke walked in the same demeanor (Why was his sharingan active?!).
So what had happened exactly?
They walked till his bedroom door.
She could hear the war going inside...
Shouts and struggles, screams and thuds.
Then something hit the door from inside. She watched Naruto rub his forehead in distaste at his clone's memory. One of the clones inside shouted 'Kage bushin no jutsu'. And after minutes of some snarling, thuds and poofs there was silence. Which was not really complete. It was constantly penetrated by sounds which sounded something like frustrated hisses.
She touched the door knob and was slightly pissed by the fact that her hands were sweating. She looked at Naruto for signal. He nodded.
"Sasuke...I'm going to be fine."
He looked at her sternly, unyielding. After some staring competition, he sighed.
She wiped her hand and proceeded.
The room was lighted by the only surviving light bulb; others had been furiously smashed. And the bed contained the prisoner. Even she reddened at the size of the breasts. Nearly close to Tsunade-sama...
Going back to professionalism:-
"What's the blindfold doing there?"
"She had it on." That was. Strange. Before she could take another step toward the intruder her arm was grabbed by her team mate's firm arm. He shook his head.
"You shouldn't get near her." Both of them said and as a proof the girl hissed at her.
"Wait" he releases her arm and his hand became limp at his sides. "I'll try something."
She couldn't sense anything, but apparently the girl could. She calmed down and became limp. A second later she could feel what she was feeling. Sage mode.
"Why did you follow me?"
There were no answers. She tried to sit up and Naruto let her; the clones disappeared. He walked near with confidence. The girl cocked her head towards him expecting something. He put a hand on her shoulder and the girl flinched.
"Are you alright?"
The girl nodded.
"Now," he said facing them, "why the hell are you here?"
Two cups of instant ramen. That's all he offered. But since it was Naruto, it was surprising that he'd offered anything at all.
And they sat at an impasse.
"I'm not" the blonde said. Smug face. Two minutes had passed already...
"Naruto...we are trying to HELP you."
"I'm not –"
"I KNOW THAT YOU ARE INJURED! SO SHUT UP AND LET ME HELP!"
"I DON'T NEED-!"
"Sasuke! Get him!"
There was a flurry of activity in the dining room then. Sasuke lunged towards the fleeing blonde. Naruto, anticipating Sasuke's attack, threw a round-about kick at his face. Something must've broken, because there was a sickening crunch. Sasuke caught Naruto's retreating ankle. And electricity paralyzed Naruto to the floor.
10 minutes later...
"Does it hurt?" The pink haired kunoichi asked Sasuke.
His nose had been pulverized by Naruto's heel some minutes ago! How could it not pain?! But his pain was gradually fading as Sakura's chakra flooded his tissues. He could feel them envelope every damaged fiber. He could feel them healing. It was unlike Kabuto's harsh chakra .It was a strange sensation. Feeling her chakra on his body...the cozy, humming feel...the same way you feel in a nicely tucked bed.
Sakura removed her hand. The loss of warmth was a little too sudden for him. The loss pained. But he didn't let regret show on his face. He was too proud for that...
She looked at him keenly with the eye of a medic.
"That's done. Now Naruto..."she said turning to the blonde, who at the moment was bound, gagged and had his chakra temporarily sealed.
"YOU mister! Are in trouble!" she stomped her way to the couch, beside which Naruto lay.
She rolled up his tee. A huge round scar showed chakra burn. It was just above his navel. The fourth's seal was visible.
He muffled something which sounded like 'I can do it myself'. His doctor's vein bulged.
"It's chakra poisoning. Your 'other' chakra can't heal this." She poked and pried here and there a little. The wound was sensitive. That was a huge amount of chakra burn.
"How the hell did you get this?" she pulled out the gag.
Blood pumped to her head. She shouldn't be angry when her body was in such condition...
"Not 'where'. 'How'" the kunoichi demanded. Naruto thought a little.
He scowled a bit and sighed.
"I'm not telling."
"You must be losing your edge, Naruto. For someone to attack you at close range..."mocked the Uchiha.
"Teme..."the blonde said, the word sounded more of a growl.
"Boys? Would you calm down? And let me work?"
She brought a bowl of water, carefully moulded it into a large globule in the palm of her hand. She placed it carefully over Naruto wound. And pushed it inside gradually.
"This is chakra poisoning Naruto. There is foreign chakra lodged inside your wound interfering with the working of you natural chakra. It works the same way as poisoning. So I'm using the same method to take it out. Just pray that this chakra has affinity to water."
She pushed it until only a small part of the globule remained out. And slowly pulled it out. The globule of water now contained a sphere of chakra. Sakura took out a scroll.
"What are you doing?" he may have sounded calm. but he wasn't.
"I'm taking this chakra for analysis. I wanna know the person who was quick enough to hurt you."
"It was her." He snapped the remaining bonds, "Why are you guys here anyway?"
"To heal you, of course."
"You've done that. Now let yourself out."
"Behave, dobe!" Sasuke growled. "She came here even with her condition."
"Touché" grinned Naruto. Kami! The growling and glaring thing was starting again.
"Calm down! Now what the hell are we gonna do with her!" she pointed to the dark-haired girl sitting on the couch. The girl sat staring straight ahead, her knees folded between her arms and her head resting in her knees...the very picture of insecurity. She'd checked up on all the girl's vitals. Everything was alright but wrong at the same time. The girl was around fifteen or sixteen, in perfect physical condition...but her mind...her first concern was that the girl couldn't talk.
"I've already reported it to baa-Chan."
A/n: So how was it? please review!