Ain't Never Had A Friend Like Me

Naruto X Harry Potter Crossover


The concept of Death was stalking her, she was bound to a lamp, and for some reason, everyone thought she was a magical genie - but that wasn't even half of her issues. FemHarry.

Warnings: FemHarry, Prompt Fic (by Tsume Yuki), Butterfly Effect AU, in the process of a rewrite, MOD Fic,

Characters: Harry P., Naruto U.,

Parings: TBA., Naruto/Tenten with a side of Naruto/Shikamaru., Willow/?.

UPDATE: I haven't updated this Fic in a year on the 17/11/2019, but I am still writing it, and as of the 17th, I am in the process of rewriting this. Chapter one updated the 18th.

Please read the other prompts for this (the prompt was from the Prologue below):

1. Genies and Genin by Cute Kitty264

2. Can Your Friends Do This? By Watermelonsmellinfellon

3. As You Command by Oh My Cabbage.

They're all fantastic, I recommend reading them! If you like Harry x Kakashi I recommend Can Your Friends Do This, it's also a SasuxNaru, which is refreshing.


Naruto's Apartment

"So, so you're like a Genie?!" Staring back at the figure before him, Naruto Uzumaki took a moment to look back on the last ten minutes.

He'd been in the streets of Konoha, not the main street because that's where all the glares came from. Well, not all of them, just most. And then, and then someone had thrown a lamp at him! An old scratched up tin thing that Naruto honestly hadn't thought existed outside of the storybooks.

He'd scampered home, not really logging the fact he was clutching at the tin decoration until he was sat up to his kitchen table and staring at the dirty surface. The idea had teased him, half-remembered from a story long ago, but the more he stared at his newest, useless item, the more the thought had refused to leave.

While the vast majority of his mind had insisted that this was a stupid thing to do, a small, hesitantly hopeful, part sent his heart throbbing for reasons unknown.

So it was a great surprise when a form of mystic smoke began to gather from the tip of the lamp when he'd actually given it a little rub. Staring up at the figure with all of the wonderment a twelve-year-old orphan could possibly possess, Naruto didn't even bother to fight the grin that split across his lips. A young woman stared back at him, a bemused little smile upon her face.

Chapter One - The Lamp, The Witch, and The Ninja

Willow POV

February 19th, 1999

Creature Revolt

During her life, Willow Potter had always fought for inclusion. Even now, she thought that things had gotten a little out of hand. Around her head, there were spells flying around her head, hardly skimming across her face. There were people around her that weren't as lucky as she was, and the brightly colored spells hit them in various points of their bodies, and then they would take a tumble down to the ground.

Wars, and even protests, as this was a protest turned all-out fight, was something that she had dealt with numerous times. After the last war with the Dark Lord, it looked like things were getting better for everyone. Then, six months after it started getting better, it got infinitely worse. Now, as a sort of mother figure to a werewolf baby, she took it on herself to fix the world for him when he got older. She didn't want the baby Teddy to grow up with the same prodigious that his dad grew up with, or what Bill Weasley was currently dealing with.

That day had started as a peaceful protest, outside of the Ministry of Magic, with Willow and her best friend Hermione at the helm, and then, the new Minister seemed to find the peaceful protest threatening, and he deployed the Aurors. The fight ensured nearly immediately, Hags and Vampires and Werewolves were fighting with the Aurors, screaming and crying - on both sides, tumbling down, more than likely stunned then dead. It wasn't as if they were all dying, but a fight could have been avoided if the Minister would just listen, and if the public could just recognize that the situation was more simple then they thought it was.

Still, she got in the middle, trying to make sure that no one actually got killed, and to settle the fight. She knew that fighting would get neither side anywhere. It just worked to see both sides distrust the other, and didn't help her protect the future of her godson. To her left, what looked like a Hag got hit by a sizzling red spell that hit her square in the chest, and she fell back, nearly nicking the corner of her shoe. Frowning and dropping down to her knees, knowingly staining her jeans, she tried to make sure the Hag was well, alive.

The woman was, her breathing was even, but she wouldn't wake up, at least not for another hour or two. Distracted, she didn't notice the vampire creeping up behind her, his pale hands find his way to her neck, not realizing who she was, he tried to snap her neck. This was like a painful ache, that made her vision go black for a millisecond before everything seemed to even out, and her vision came back, but it was strange and different.

Looking around, everything seemed frozen, there were spells that had frozen in midair, people standing and cowering with a mixture of expressions on their face. Some terrified, and some were serious, across the field, she saw Hermione with wide eyes, looking directly at her, mouth froze wide open, mid shout.

Looking back, she saw the hands still hovering around her neck, and she shuffled forward a little, standing up to see the crazed, frozen eyes of the Vampire behind her. Tilting her head, she surveyed the scene, wondering what had happened to make everyone freeze. Had she died? Clearly, she had died, but she had expected to be met at Kings Cross again.

Willow walked around the bodies, trying to stumble over people, and even pulled a few people out of the way of deadly looking spells. That was when she saw it, she didn't know the exact gender of what she saw, but it looked… strange. A tall, black-clad figure, with a hood, that billowed with a sort of black-smoke, that walked towards her, seemingly walking through all the real people. At least they could have been real too, but they might have been a figment of her imagination.

They surged forward towards her, not stopping, and she stumbled backward to avoid the thing, but her hesitance didn't seem to bother them. The thing, person, didn't stop until they were right in front of her, and she could feel their eyes on her, even if she couldn't see any eyes, or a face, she was sure there was one there. They were clearly a person, maybe, she couldn't actually reach a conclusion. "Who are you?" she asked when she really wanted to ask, 'what are you?'

Her voice didn't hold a single tremble, even if she felt terrified by the nameless and faceless being. They didn't move, not a single twitch or flick of their strange cloak. "You are my Master," the being said, their voice was a sort of strangled, and raspy, coming out as a slight whisper that Willow could hardly hear.

That really didn't answer her question and raised all sorts of red flags. Willow honestly had the worst habit of tripping into the worst of situations. "Who are you?" she asked again, this time her voice was surer and demanding, her back straightening out more. "Tell me what is happening?"

There was a silence before they spoke again; "I am Death, and I am neither here, nor there, and so are you."

What on earth? Was this actually Death, and what did he mean by saying that she was neither here nor there? Then again, why on earth would Death come here for her? And belatedly, what did they mean by saying she was their Master? "W-wait, what? What's happening?"

"You are dead, Master," the deity said, in their harsh, raspy voice, "and you can not die, but you are dead. I have come to meet you, and bestow you the gift of mine."

Gift? What on earth did Death mean? She couldn't die, but she was dead? That doesn't even make sense. "What do you mean gift? And do you just say that I am dead and that I can't die?"

"Yes," was all they said, not answering a single question that she had posed.

Trying to avoid a sigh, because she certainly wasn't in a situation where she could be free with her words, she grimaced instead. "How can I be alive and dead at the same time, and why isn't anyone moving?"

"Time is frozen," they said, instead of answering all the questions she had. Quickly, Willow started to get tired of Death's riddles. "I cannot be where time is."

At that exact moment, she needed a notepad to write down all his little riddles to think about in-depth later and try to make sense of. At least, Hermione would have been able to make sense of everything. "I must depart, but know the gift is now yours," they said, "your welcome, my Master."

Death disappeared faster than they appeared, and as a snap of someone's fingers, the world around her started working again at full motion. Belatedly, she realized that she was on the other side of the battlefield, in a matter of 0.1 seconds. Grimacing again, and ducking under another spell, she hoped that no one noticed what had happened, other than Hermione who had been staring at her.

Knowing her damned Potter luck, someone would have seen something they shouldn't have.

Willow POV

February 20th, 1999

The Ministry of Magic, Level 10, Ministers Office.

"Thank you Lady Potter, please come in," the door was held open for her, and frowning, she wondered why she had been summoned by Minister Nott. He was not who she would have endorsed as Minister, but he was who the People had elected. After the mess with Voldemort, she thought the people would have been smarter, but they never were.

Entering the room, and nodding in thanks to the man who had opened the door for her, and she saw a chubby man behind the Minister's desk, with perfectly coiled black hair, and a double chin that wobbled dangerously. The man stood, "thank you for making this meeting, Lady Potter, I realize it was a rather short minute meeting," he smiled, "please sit down."

With that, he sat down with a brief gesture, and to be polite, she followed suit, no matter how uneasy she was feeling in Minister Nott's presence. "What is this about, Minister?" she asked, as politely as she could, however, she felt like she came off as rather blunt. "The protest, yesterday, I assume?"

The man now frowning, tilted his head, one of his chins bubbled, "a little bit, yes. First I would like to make sure you are alright, Lady Potter, yesterday there were records that you sustained grave injuries."

"Oh, no, just a few cuts and bruises," she lied, cheerfully, "nothing I wouldn't get from a quick game of Quidditch."

Nott smiled at that, but it seemed rather hollow: "that's great to hear," he said in a voice that didn't sound very pleased at all, "would you like some tea, Lady Potter?"

Surprised by the sudden change of pace, she nodded in a brief agreement and watched as he played around with his teapot, and poured her some tea, and placed a pretty china cup in front of her. The man also made himself some tea, and loaded it with three cubes of sugar, before he took a generous gulp, and settling the cup back down. He stared at her for a few moments, before she took a sip of her own, just to be polite, trying not to grimace at the bitter taste, she put it down, not wanting to bother him for sugar. She didn't even want the tea anyway. "It was just, Lady potter, that there were eye-witnesses saying that you got your neck snapped," he didn't even try to ease into the conversation, "and that you in a matter of seconds, disappeared and reappeared with no injuries."

Ah, shit. "Must have been a mistake," she said smoothly, "with my red hair, I'm often mistaken as a Weasley, you know. As you can see, I'm not injured, and luckily, I seemed to have missed getting hit by any spells."

Minister Nott smiled, but paused, not saying anything. In an attempt to smooth things over, she tried to open her mouth, but no words seemed to come out. Instead, the only noise she managed was a strange gurgling noise, eyes widening, she tried to move her body, but her limbs felt like stone. Blinking, she even tried to scream but failed. "Lady Potter, please don't struggle, this will only make things worse," he said, in a hard, cold voice. "I can verify my findings and to be frank; we can't handle another Dark Lady right now. This is for the best, Lady Potter."

Things again, went black for a moment, before things righted themselves again; and Nott froze, mid-word, his nose scrunched in a strange way. Willow waited a few moments, and like expected, Death appeared, like a bad omen, standing to the side of Minister Nott, still, she couldn't see their face. All she could make out was billowing blackness in a hood. "You have again died," the billowy voice said like he was talking about the weather. "And yet you are alive."

Sighing loudly, not bothering to be subtle about it at all, she said in a sarcastic voice; "Hi Death, how are you today?"

How on earth had she managed to be poisoned by Minister Nott? Willow had been watching him the whole time! "Time is a concept," they said in a raspy, emotionless voice, "days are not real."

Tilting her head, her hair spilling over her shoulder, like a red river. "Why are you here, am I actually dead this time?"

"You are already dead," they said, "so you cannot die."

How annoying. "And you are here because?"

"I am busy, I shall come to you, to explain my gifts," they said, "you can always call on me - I will respond when I have time - which is never."

What on earth was this Being talking about? A mix of riddles and confusing sentences strung together that often seemed to contradict the other. A raised eyebrow was the only way she could respond, before they hastily said, "I must go, I have been called."

Standing up, in an attempt to lunge over the Minister's desk, and grab Death, and even attempt to restrain him, and force him to answer something with a straight answer. He disappeared too fast, however, and she didn't get the change to settle back down in the chair and started again. Minister Nott blinked fast, and repeatedly, launching into action fast then she thought the chubby man could.

"Lady Potter!" he nearly yelled, in a panicked voice; "Aurors, subdue her!"

Not having enough time to string together a plan, she had been restrained by two burly Aurors that she couldn't recognize, both with blank, serious expressions on their faces. Her wand was strapped to her chest, and certainly out of reach to her at that moment. "How!?" Minister Nott demanded, still standing, he slammed two palms onto her desk, his beady little eyes digging into her skin. "You died, I saw you die. You have done what the Dark Lord did, and you can't die either! You have taken to dark magic."

"I have a good immune system?" she said in a questioning tone, not knowing how to respond to the questions she was being asked. "I never died, unless you're admitting to trying to kill me?"

"You've taken to Dark Magic," was all he said, in a strong resolute voice. "That's all the public needs to know."

Willow tried to shrug but failed with her heavy restraints on both sides. "Please, it will come out in my Trail," she said airly, "and attempted murder is much worse. Attempted Murder of a Lady will land you in Azkaban for at least the rest of your life, Minister Nott."

"That's why you aren't getting a trail," she tried to interrupt but the man held up a hand, so she quieted down, allowing him to finish. "I will simply get rid of you, which won't be easy seeing as you can't seem to die."

Willow rolled her eyes, but the man continued; "I'm going to seal you into this lamp," he gestured to a lamp, that she had failed to notice previously. It was old looking, with a thin layer of grime. "And we will lock you up, and throw you away."

This was the last thing she remembered hearing before she felt a sucking and a slight distortion of her body. Where she felt was a twisting and pinching sensation; before her vision went completely blank. It was like she was trapped in a little vial, with her body pushed up on the edges, not being able to see, and not able to move at all. Willow could still breath, but it was only in short bursts, not being able to relax or move a single muscle.

It was too small for her, and she couldn't breathe properly, she couldn't move - she couldn't see.

It was like she was trapped in a little box, an endless box, with no way out, and no mysterious being to help her out because she wasn't dead. However, she wasn't alive, apparently.

March 19th, 2000.

The Ministry of Magic

Minister Therodories Nott POV

The Minister of Magic had been elected by a landslide in 1997 and had fought to keep Wizarding Britain in check. It wasn't as easy as he had originally thought it would be, with the demise of the Dark Lord, the first year of his control, had been rather easy. It wasn't until 1999 when the annoying Lady Willow Potter had started to partition for the rights of dirty half-breeds.

It was his luck, that the girl had clearly dipped into dark magic, and he had as safely as he could, disposed of the problem. It had been great for the first few months after she had been trapped, he had no one questioning the status quo. There was only one issue that seemed to be a constant thorn in his side.

Lady Potter's best friend, the annoying mudblood, Granger. The girl had been to his office every week, asking about the location of the missing girl, and after a year, she was now in his office every second day, pressing him for more information.

Eventually, he decided on a perfectly lined up excuse, he said that the girl had gotten involved in a riot between Vampires and Werewolves, in the North of America, and had gotten killed - which sounded like something the girl would have done.

He had thought the excuse was airtight, but the annoying Granger girl asked several questions that would have poked too many holes in his story. Her voice had been sharp and poked too many holes in his story. Eventually, he managed to get the suspicious witch from his office and contemplated a way to get the annoying mudblood out of his plans.

Killing her, and getting rid of her the same way that he had Willow Potter, occurred to him, but he quickly scratched the idea. Two of the most famed war heroes couldn't disappear just like that. However, he certainly couldn't keep Lady Potter as a keepsake any longer, it was bringing too many questions.

He needed to get rid of the lamp he had sealed her in, but where? He didn't know. But what he didn't know was that there was a particular artifact in the Department of Mysteries, that killed anything it touched, and maybe if he throws the lamp into the Veil of Death, maybe it would solve at least one of his problems.

Then, he would deal with the annoying mudblood.

Willow POV

Three Hours Later

Naruto's Apartment, Konoha.

"So, so, you're like a genie?" a little boy, directly across from her had said in a shrill tone, that made her wince with the sheer loudness of it. Willow had no idea what was going on, one moment she had been trapped in a lamp, in eternal damnation, and the next, she was in a tiny, run-down apartment, across from a little boy with blonde hair, and a shocked, excited expression on his face.

"Ah," she agreed, her eyes not focusing on the little kid, and not very sure what she had agreed to. Instead, her eyes were focused on the small, desolate apartment, it was dirty, with piles of clothes in strange places, and she was assaulted with an unusual smell, that she wasn't sure she wanted to know the origin of. The boy, as soon as she responded, jumped up for joy, a loud, excited expression on his face - his expression was nearly as loud as the blinding orange jumper he was wearing.

"So, so, do I get three wishes," he asked, his voice on the verge of a shout. It was so loud that she winced, wishing that he would tone down his voice at least three notches. And what on earth was the little kid on about? The kid (she really needed to know what his name was), was bouncing on the heels of his feat, a joyful look on his face - one that she didn't really want to crush. She wasn't a monster.

"Right, yes, sure," she agreed in a nervous, confused tone, that didn't seem to bother the kid. "I cannot grant eternal life, or riches. I also can't produce food or alter your body in any way."

"Oh," he said, frowning, his feet settling down for a second, a thoughtful expression settled on his face - something that looked a little abnormal on the kids faces like it was an expression he didn't normally have. The boy rubbed his chin for several long moments, allowing her eyes to wander again, this time focusing on the pile of dirty dishes in the sink, and the overflowing bin in the corner. "Can ya make me a ninja? I need ta pass my exam and then I'll become the best Hokage ever, believe it!"

Willow hadn't understood half of what the boy said, and for a moment, contemplated where on earth the Minister had sent her… this, she knew, was not England. England didn't have a Hokage or a ninja, and she had no idea how to make the boy a ninja. Did he need a sword? Did he need a new set of clothes? A certificate? "I can't… alter your body," she said hesitantly, not knowing what she needed to do.

"No, no," the boy protested, creating an x with his arms. "I am a good ninja already, I just can't pass the written exam, I suck at tests!"

Did he want to cheat on his test? To be a ninja? Well, it wouldn't be the first time someone cheated on a test, in her world or this one. In fact, there were so many cheating quills in Hogwarts, that it didn't bother her that he was requesting she helped him cheat. Surely, it wouldn't be such a bad thing, after all, what harm could it do? "When's the test then?"

"Tomorrow morning," he said brightly, "how lucky that I got a genie right before the exam!"

Now, how did a genie agree? "Your wish is my command," Willow answered brightly. "Tomorrow when you go to your exam, you just need to hold your pen, and you will write anything correctly. Now, what else would you like?"

"Uh, I…. I dunno, can I have Ramen?"

One, she didn't know what Ramen was, but she was sure it was a type of food. "I can't conjure food," she said, "it's against the laws of magic."

"Oh," he said, a little disappointed, "that's okay, I guess."

"You can take as long as you like, don't worry," Willow said, smiling down at him, brightly. The boy instantly brightened. The kid was like a miniature sun, all bright, and smiling happily. "Now that's sorted, how about you tell me your name?"

Looking down, she had a quick look at the dining room table and released it was covered in empty cups and plates, but she took a seat on there anyway. Her hands playing with an empty plate, too many crumbs had fallen from the plate and littered the ground near her seat. The boy quickly joined her, not bothered by the mess; "I'm Uzumaki Naruto!" he said in a too-loud voice, "are ya gonna stay here with me? That's so cool, Genie-chan!"

"I suppose I am," she said with a small smile, trying to ignore the mess around her, she had never been in a room with so much mess before. At least, she'd be here until she had figured out what was going on, where she was, and how she got home.

Stupid Minister Nott. "So, what is a ninja, and how do you become one? I've never met a ninja before."

"Whaaa? Like never met a single ninja ever? Like not even the amazing Lord Fourth Hogake!?" the boy asked, buzzed out eyes, and she understood about three of the words he uttered, and certainly not in the context it was spoken in. "I've always wanted to be a ninja, I've been training since I was eight!"

"No, what's a Hokage?"

The boy gasped, eyes wide, and then he stood, smiling, a wide grin on his face; "let me show you!"

Before she knew what was happening, she was dragged outside by the little blonde boy, and into the cool night air. The neighborhood around her wasn't like anything she'd ever seen before. Naruto grabbed her hand and was quickly pulling her behind him, not stopping to let her see any of the new things she'd never seen.

There were a number of hut-like houses, and strange apartment complexes, and stands that looked like it would sell some sort of food but was closed due to the lateness of the night. She had only seen one other person on the streets, a man who looked like he was twice her age, and glared at Naruto and shot her a strange look.

She had to assume it was because of the way she was dressed compared to him. Sooner than she expected, Naruto stopped; and she ran right into him, but she didn't knock him over, and he bounced a little, before pointing up to a mountain.

On there, there were four large faces, all with a strange headband on, and distinctive markings. "Those are the Hokage's," Naruto said, "they're the leaders of the Village and the strongest ninja in the whole land!"

Willow nodded, not really understanding, but the boy had gone silent looking up at the monument, and she found it rude to interrupt him. "And that's what you want? For your face to be up there?"

Naruto nodded, eagerly, "yep! I will protect everyone, and earn everyone's respect, believe it!"

Smiling at the plan, she smiled at him, before looking back up at the faces, before her eyes slid to the stand next to her, piled high with sticks, and wondered what it would sell. What a strange little town, it was like a blast into the past, or at Diagon Alley. "If you work for respect, I'm sure you can earn it," Willow said brightly, "that's a strange goal, is there a reason you want to get respect from the village?"

Naruto frowned for the briefest moment, before shaking his head; "no reason."

He was lying, but she wasn't going to call him out on it. "Okay, so let's go home, it's cold out and you're shivering," the boy nodded before turning back around, and Willow followed him. "Now how about you tell me more about ninja - what about the Lord Fourth Hokage? You seem to love him…"

The Academy, Classroom 12A, Konoha

8 AM

Willow POV

The next morning, Willow woke up early enough to clean most of the kid's apartment. It was a small one-bedroomed thing, with a combined kitchen and living room. And a tiny little bathroom, that could hardly fit more than one person in it. There was enough mess in it, however, to have been home to seven men. It wasn't very difficult to clean it either, because, with the kid asleep and a single wave of her wand, the house basically cleaned herself.

Closer to eight, she woke the little kid up, with a bright smile, and he bounced the second he awoke. A cheerful and happy expression on his face. "Whoa, what happened to my house?"

Willow smiled at the boy, winking at him, as he went to grab some milk from his tiny-fridge; "don't drink that!" she called, and he froze. "It's expired, leave it there."

She could fix it, of course, there was a charm for it; however, she couldn't in front of Naruto. He was still a muggle, and she couldn't break the statue of secrecy. The boy put it back down on one of the benches, forgetting about it. "Then I can't have cereal… should I eat Ramen?"

It turned out that he was referring to a cup of instant noodles, which she never would have let Teddy eat noodles for breakfast. How old was Teddy now? And who was taking care of her godson now, without her there? Was he okay? Grudgingly, she let him have noodles for breakfast before bundling him up and following him to the Academy to help with his exam.

She walked behind him silently, before casting a disillusionment charm on herself; assuring Naruto she was still there, even if he couldn't see her. Despite everything that occurred that morning and the previous day, he seemed like a normal, energetic, happy-go-lucky kid. He seemed to completely ignore the looks that more of the villagers that screamed negativity. Willow wondered what this kid had done to get such negativity… It reminded her of the time in her second year and fourth year, when everyone was glaring at her, for something clearly out of her control.

Honestly, she didn't believe that the boy had done anything wrong. He was so cheerful, and good-natured, that she couldn't believe him being capable of anything negative. Following him, she silently took mental notes about the village she was in, until they hit a medium-sized building, with a sign on the front, that simply said, 'the Academy'.

It was a boring building, with nothing but a single swing off to one side, surrounded by a number of tall trees. Before she could examine everything around her, she was forced to follow the short boy into one of the classrooms, and sat down in the middle, right behind a girl with pink hair, and next to a boy with brown hair, and red markings on his face. Leaning forward on his desk, he called; "good morning Sakura-chan!"

"Shut up Naruto," she said, already angry, turning only slightly to bear a fist at him, shaking angrily. The boy's face fell, and Willow winced, that must have stung a little… the boy's crush obviously didn't like him very much. But the look of determination on the kid's face was absolutely adorable.

"Quiet down, quiet down everyone," a loud voice called, followed by a loud banging over a door slamming shut. The man was tall, with brown hair atop his head, and a nasty scar across his nose, and an armful of papers. He smiled at the kids, in a warm, yet exasperated way, before walking around putting a few sheets of paper in front of each student. "This is the day; your exam. Now, remember, you need to score above eighty percent to pass, and then we will call you to the adjoining room for the second part of your exam. Now, no talking, and no cheating. Are we all ready? Ok, now go!"

Willow had been listening to the man so far, with rapt attention. When the man said to go, there was the sound of rustling papers, and pens hitting those papers, with loud scratching. The man with a scar, sat down at the front desk, his eyes glued at each of his students, clearly watching for someone to cheat - like Naruto was about to.

While the other students began to scribble furiously, Naruto on the other hand just languidly turned the paper over and placed his pencil in the blank spot under the question. Willow rolled her eyes, he was a cheeky little brat, wasn't he? As quietly as possible, she muttered an answering spell, which would know the correct answer.

The pencil righted itself, and Naruto struggled to get a proper grip on the pen. Willow leaned over his shoulder, her eyes focusing on the pen, and tried to read the answers to the questions written, The boy's handwriting was so bad, however, that it was nearly too difficult to read. Giving up, she went to the pink-haired girl and read some of her answers. She learned a little more, she'd admit to that, like, what kind of country she was in.

And a little about the other hidden villages, and a shocking amount about how to throw knives.

It only took another hour for the exam to be over, and she took the liberty of reading a few other exams, and craved reading one of the books on the teacher's desk, but didn't bother trying to touch them. She didn't need him to know she was there and invisibly helping one of his students cheat.

"Pens down," the man called the second she started contemplating raising hell and reading the books to figure out where she was. The students around her placed their pens down, and the man went down and collected each paper, sorting them in a way she didn't understand, but he certainly did.

The man then proceeded to the next room, and began calling up students one by one, she nearly questioned if he had enough time to grade the paper, before whatever the second part of the test was. And after the first student came back out with a headband, which Naruto had told her made someone a valid ninja, she assumed they had already graded the paper. Or maybe he was grading papers in between tests?

Silently, she watched the other students chatting amongst themselves, and she watched as Naruto seemed to not be included in any of the conversations. He tried his hardest to insert himself into the conversations around him, but seemed to fail - the other kids didn't seem to like him very much and she couldn't fathom as to why. He was clearly a happy, and relaxed sort of kid, however, she noticed that he didn't know what to do when people touched him, or even paid attention to him in the slightest.

He didn't seem to have parents, so she couldn't possibly blame them, and there were no other discernible relatives that she could see. Naruto was lucky to not have an Aunt Petunia, however, and that she knew for sure. There was something about this kid, being shunned by everyone around him, made her feel like she needed to help him get his life right - at least a little.

Maybe teach him about to take care of himself, while she figured out a way to go home, of course. There could have been worse ways to use her time while she was stuck. And she would, of course, get home, she had to. Teddy needed her, and she needed Teddy.

She would not let him be alone like she had been - she had vowed to take care of the baby, and that she would. "Uzumaki Naruto," the previous student that had been called, a little blonde girl, with big blue eyes called, she proudly had the silly headband on her head and didn't spare Naruto a second glance.

A little bounce in his step, the little boy got up, grinning brightly; he gave the blonde girl with the headband a thumbs up, and she smiled back at him, hesitantly. Naruto didn't seem to mind, because he made his way back to the room without a second glance. Willow followed behind the boy closer, squeezing his shoulder as he passed through the door, in support.

The room they led him into was small, with a long desk, with scar-face and another ninja with grey hair, sitting behind it. A paper was in front of the scar-face, to the man's right, sat at a table with a few headbands still sitting there, nice and sharp-shiny. "Okay, we've marked your exam Naruto," scar-face said, with a badly concealed grin. "Now, all we need from you is to make a perfect clone and you pass, okay?"

Naruto nodded, looking down, clearly conflicted, and slightly terrified by the request. Gulping, he nervously twisting his fingers into a strange shape before muttering a few words, which created a white poof of smoke. What it created was sort of like a type of magic, and she could see a pale mutated copy of himself. It was… pitiful to see.

Scar-face looked a little letdown, which was in stark contrast to granny-hair who looked beyond elated at his failure. Thinking on her feet, and doing something she probably shouldn't have done, she stood behind both men and muttered lowly a confundus charm. "That is the best clone you have ever seen," she muttered in between the men so lowly, that she couldn't even hear herself. "A perfect score."

"That…" scar-face hesitated for a moment, almost like he was fighting off her curse, before he failed, "was the best clone I have ever seen. I'm impressed."

"Yes, I agree," granny-hair agreed, he didn't even try to fight off her spell. "Take a Headband, Uzumaki."

Scar-face was still smiling at Naruto, a bright and careful look, that showed a measure of affection. Scar-face seemed okay, she thought, he was the only adult who ever seemed to treat Naruto like a normal little boy. "Yes!" Naruto cheered, snaking forward and nabbing a headband, before running from the room at high speed. "One step closer to becoming Hokage!"

His voice trailed from the room, and back to the classroom, his loud voice now annoying the rest of the students. "Wait, where did Naruto go?" scar-face said after three long pauses, where Willow should have left. He was blinking like he was confused, looking down as his scorecard with a bemused expression. "Looks like we passed him, with… a perfect score?"

Scar-face seemed utterly bemused and grampa-hair looked rather annoyed by the turn of events. "I guess we zoned out," granny-hair said, frowning like he found this utterly suspicious. "I'll get Sakura, then."

Smiling, she left the room right behind granny-hair, and found Naruto playing outside by the swing, he was looking around like a loon, clearly trying to figure out where she had gotten off to. Smiling a little bigger, she left out of the open door, walking towards the kid on the swing. Willow had no idea that at the very moment that she approached the kid, and tapped him on the shoulder; the world tilted on an axis, and irreversibly changed the future.

The Hokage's Office, Konoha.

Sarbutori POV

"Are you telling me," the Third Hokage asked, taking a long drag from his pipe, his eyes looking down at the Chunin Instructor in front of him. "That Uzumaki Naruto, who managed to fail every single class, scored perfectly on his written exam, and performed a Jutsu he couldn't do yesterday?"

"Yes, Hokage-sama, he could have cheated, but I didn't notice anything odd," Iruka said, a frown on his face, trying to recall the exam, but was only able to remember thought a haze, not being able to think in particulars at all. "Now, as I was saying, because of the mark distributions, Naruto has become the second-highest scoring shinobi."

Sabutori sighed, leave it to Minato's son to ruin his best-laid plans, and managing to cheat without raising any alarms. Wasn't that a hallmark trait of any good ninja though? The ability to cheat, and not get caught? It's a talent that shouldn't be ignored but celebrated. The Hokage knew, however, that Iruka would come by simply to tell him that Naruto had managed to successfully cheat his way into being a ninja - leaving no evidence. "The projected teams are going to need to change," the Hokage said, knowing this is what Iruka wanted to discuss.

How annoying, he wanted Kakashi assigned to two of those students for good reasons. It was unconventional to have two of the highest-scoring boys on the same team, it wasn't a fair distribution. "Naruto and Sasuke can't be moved," the Hokage all but commanded Iruka, who seemed surprised by the hardness of his voice. "They have been assigned to a specific Jounin Instructor, and it is necessary that this remains the same."

"Understood sir," Iruka said, in his normal clipped and prompt manner. Everyone was like this with him, and he didn't mind. It made this go smoother, and more efficiently. "I recommend Yamanaka Ino, as the third," he said, "I realize that she is set to be part of the Ino-Shika-Cho team, but she might be able to develop better with these boys to encourage her."

"That team has been in the works for years," Sabutori disagreed, he didn't want to be the one to dissolve the perfect future team. "Do you have any other recommendations, Iruka?"

Iruka sighed, clearly not happy with being dismissed; "I understand, Sir, there is also Hyuuga Hinata or Hirohito Akemi," he hesitated again, "Hyuuga-chan would be the better option of the two."

"Why not Hirohito-san?"

Iruka frowned, clearly trying to figure out the best way of wording his response. "There might be a conflict with Naruto, and… she might just kill Sasuke."

"Hm," the Hokage looked outside his wide window, his eyes on the heads of the previous Hokage's before, and after him, "I see."

Leave it to an Uzumaki to keep him on his toes.