Oh dear. Another story. I have a serious problem. So if you gleamed from the summary, this story is one of those Naruto trained right type things. It's always aggravating to see my man come back from his 3 year trip barely any better than when he left. Also aggravating when I read a fanfic that followed this premise and he comes back OP. This story will hit the middle of that I believe which should be more enjoyable potentially. Maybe. Guess you'll just have to read and find out. Enjoy!

Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto. Yet another story I get to continue downing myself about with the first 5 words after 'Disclaimer:'. Fanfic just loves to make me take away my own self-esteem. I'm thinking of buying everyone cupcakes because you all have to read that same sentence and realize you don't own Naruto either. Free Cupcakes for everyone, Hamp's supplying.

Chapter 1: Prologue

Empty. That was a good term for how he was feeling. Not the thought of having nothing, even though he did indeed return with nothing. It was the feeling of emptiness that seeped through his body at the moment.

"I will go to Orochimaru.."


"I will definitely bring Sasuke Back! That's the Promise of a Lifetime!"

It all seemed like ages ago to him but in reality, it was his last 24 hours. His blue eyes shifted from the slashed Konoha headband on his lap to the door of his hospital room to see a pink haired kunoichi entering.

"Sakura-chan.." said the blonde boy with blue eyes lowly as the girl just walked in and stood a ways away from the bandaged from head to toe shinobi. "I'm sorry.. I-"

"Why're you apologizing?" questioned Sakura with a laugh as the blonde just continued to look down, not even fazed by the obvious fake laughter coming from the girl.

"...I'm sorry..I" started the boy again as Sakura just walked over to his window and opened the curtains, allowing the sun to shine through and illuminate the room.

"You look just like a mummy." said Sakura as she nodded her head after opening the curtains. "It's such a beautiful day outside and the weather's been so nice. You should have kept these ope-"

"Sakura-chan! I'll definitely bring him back. It's a lifelong promise.." said Naruto urgently, causing Sakura to go quiet. "I'll keep my promise."

"Naruto..it's alright." said Sakura as she had her head down slightly, looking at the bottom of the window sill.

"I never go back on my word." said Naruto as a smile shone brightly on his face. "It's my ninja way."

Sakura just tensed her hands a bit, biting her bottom lip as she looked at Naruto. A smile found its way on Sakura's face as her green eyes stared into the blue ones of Naruto. Sakura then headed for the door as Naruto watched her leave. Just before exiting, Sakura turned her head back.

"I know you will Naruto.. and just so you know." said Sakura, confidence heavy in her voice. "I'm coming with you next time."

Naruto just nodded his head as the door closed and he was left alone in the room again. His loneliness didn't last long as he looked to the window to see a man with a mane of white hair sitting there.

"It's time to go gaki." said the man as Naruto nodded his head. "Shed those bandages and meet me at the East Gate."

Naruto just nodded his head before the man jumped off the window sill and disappeared into the village below. Naruto turned his eyes back to the slashed Konoha headband on his lap as he just gripped it with his right hand.

"Hope you get better Sasuke..I'm coming for 'ya" said Naruto with a gleam in his blue eyes.

(2 weeks later)

"Maybe this wasn't the best idea.." came the voice of the man sitting at Naruto's hospital window 2 weeks ago. The same man who'd taken Naruto on this trip. And also the man who was staring down a rather dangerous Naruto at the moment.

This man was Jiraiya. Jiriaya the Toad Sage. A man renowned and respected as one of the most powerful people on the planet. He was a tall man with spiky white hair, two bangs framing his face and the rest down his back in ponytail.

He was wearing a green short shirt kimono with matching pants; under which he wore a mesh armor that showed out of the legs and sleeves of his outfit. his outfit was completed with hand guards, a simple black belt, traditional Japanese Geta, a red haori with two yellow circles on each side, and a large scroll strapped to his back that was parallel to his waist.

Thought currently, he had a large gash in his chest as he sat slumped in a corner of a small clearing with a passed out Naruto in the middle of it, body glowing with red chakra. Though the red chakra was slowly disappearing as a piece of paper with a seal written on it was attached to his forehead.

"The Kyubi's chakra is too powerful..It consumed him when he went pass two-tails and especially when he hit four." thought Jiraiya as he breathed in a out slowly from his most recent injury. "That might actually leave a scar...Wonder if the ladies will like it."

(Hours later)

"None of it huh?" questioned Jiraiya, chest wrapped heavily in bandages as he sat in the bed of his hotel room. "Not one thing about earlier huh?"

Sitting in a lotus position on the floor with his eyes closed and a concentrated expression, Naruto just shook his head.

"Nothing Ero-sensei. I can't remember a thing after you said you were going to loosen my seal." said Naruto as Jiraiya put a hand to his chin in contemplation.

"I guess it was a bit soon to try and test your Jinchuriki ability huh?" questioned Jiraiya with a small laugh that was pained toward the end as he grabbed his chest. Naruto just looked at Jiraiya before he nodded his head.

"I don't want to learn how to control my Jinchuriki powers.." said Naruto as Jiraiya merely looked toward his pupil. "At least not yet. In my fight with Sasuke..And in my fight with Gaara and even Neji. I relied too heavily on it, for actually the whole fight. I get that it's apart of me and I should use every resource but...Why not teach me how to fight without it first. Maybe by strengthening everything else, I can become more accustomed to the Kyubi chakra and learn to control it."

Jiraiya merely sat staring at Naruto for a good, long ten seconds before finally responding.

"Who the hell are you and what have you done with Naruto.." said Jiriaya as Naruto just smiled and rubbed a hand behind his head sheepishly. "When did you get so mature..and intelligent?"

"Heh..I didn't ero-sennin. I just..was thinking I guess. It just seemed smarter really." said Naruto as Jiraiya just smiled.

"I can teach you how to Ninja kid. It's what I do." said Jiriaya. "And maybe you're right. We shouldn't focus so heavily on the Kyubi. Let's work those other attributes. You are a chunin after all."

Naruto blanched at that last part.

"Chunin? What do you mean? I never got promoted." said Naruto as Jiraiya just reached over to the side of his bed before grabbing a green vest and tossing it to Naruto.

"Tsunade-hime realized she overlooked you gaki. You certainly did more than enough to earn promotion with defending the village from the Ichibi." said Jiraiya as Naruto couldn't take his eyes of the flak jacket. "Put it on. You know you want to."

Naruto just seemed to levitate into a stand as he took off the orange jacket he was wearing, leaving him in just the mesh undershirt he was wearing. Slipping into the Konoha Chunin Vest, Naruto felt good. Better than good. Naruto felt damn good. Except for one detail.

"It doesn't really match my orange huh?" questioned Naruto as Jiraiya shook his head. Naruto let out a sigh. "I might have to actually switch clothes then.."

"You really aren't Naruto are you?" questioned Jiraiya again as Naruto just laughed at bit. "But you aren't officially a chunin."

"I'm not?" questioned Naruto as he looked at Jiraiya quizzically. "Why give me the vest then?"

"Consider yourself a tokubetsu chunin, a special chunin. You're not ready to lead a team just yet but you're better than that genin rank. So...you're a tokubetsu chunin." said Jiraiya before standing up abruptly, seemingly unaffected by the near death blow he took earlier from Naruto apparently. "But like you requested. I'm going to teach you how to be a ninja. We'll whip you into shape quick, fast, and in a hurry."

Naruto just smiled before turning back to the mirror and staring at his reflection.

"I'm coming Sasuke..I won't break my promise to Sakura-chan."

(1 year later)

"It's already been a year. Wow. The time is flying." came the voice of a woman with short black hair and black eyes. "I can't believe he's been gone for a year now."

The woman was talking to another woman, a busty blonde who sat at the desk in her office. Her office that was dead center in the village she governed as its top ninja. That village being the peaceful Konoha, or Hidden Leaf Village.

Konoha was a shinobi village, one of the world's strongest shinobi village and member of the Great 5. Though appearance wise, Konoha looked more like a civilian village. Even with the village appearing pedestrian, the world, begrudgingly in some cases, respected Konoha as the strongest village in the world.

Though the leader of the village cared not for it at the moment as her mind was indeed on the other blonde who'd left the village a year ago to become stronger.

"It has become quiet hasn't it Shizune." said the woman. Shizune merely nodded her head.

"It has Tsunade-sama. What do you think they're up to? Or where they are at currently?" questioned Shizune as Tsunade merely stood up and walked to the mirror in her office. Tsunade gave herself a once over as she checked her appearance.

Tsunade was a beautiful woman, appearing to look in her early twenties despite being over 50 years old. She has fair skin with brown eyes and straight, blonde hair tied back into two loose ponytails with bangs framing either side of her face. She wore a grass-green haori with the kanji for gamble on the back written in black that sat inside a red circle. Underneath she wears a grey, kimono-style blouse with no sleeves, held closed by a broad, dark blueish-grey obi that matches her pants. Finishing off her attire were strappy, opened toed sandals with high heels, red polish on her nails, and a violet mark in the middle of her forehead shaped like a diamond.

"I don't want to speculate Shizune. I just pray Jiraiya is actually teaching the gaki something." said Tsunade as she began to walk to her door. "And not perving around. Now let's get to another one of these meetings."

Shizune just nodded her head as she followed after her sensei and leader.

(With Naruto and Jiraiya)

"How was this supposed to help me again ero-sensei?" questioned Naruto as he sat in a mountaintop overlooking a village with his sensei for the past year in Jiraiya. Jiraiya was sitting next to Naruto as he had a telescope out that he was peering at the village below them through.

"Working on your patience. Scouting abilities. And stealth." said Jiraiya as Naruto mouthed the same words his sensei did, already knowing the answer. Jiriaya noticed his apprentice mock him before turning his sight back to the village below them. "I'm still kind of glad you changed your clothes. You sucked as a wing man when you were that orange eyesore."

"Oi! That jumpsuit was fashion." said Naruto, who'd indeed switched his attire from the orange jumpsuit he used to wear. "It just didn't match my flak jacket."

Naruto currently was donning his Konoha flak jacket, with just the mesh shirt on underneath like when he first put it on. Black pants and black shinobi sandals went with it as he also changed his forehead protector from blue to black to match the rest of his attire.

"Eh. You looked like an idiot back then. Especially since you were shorter too." said Jiraiya whipping out another telescope and handing it to Naruto. "At least you're finally as tall as you should be. And still growing, good on ya."

"I knew I'd hit a growth spurt..everyone in the Academy can suck it for calling me short. Bet I'm taller than them now." said Naruto before extending the telescope and taking a peek at the village for the first time. Naruto's face turned bright red before he put the telescope down and looked at Jiraiya. "Where are we and why does that village have so many..so many.."

"Beautiful Kunoichis?" questioned Jiraiya with a smile on his face. "This is a village I've come across once before and finally I'm back. This is the wonderful kunoichi village, Na-"

"Nadeshiko." came the voice of a new arrival behind the master and student. "And I'll have to wonder why you're both spying on us."

Naruto and Jiriaya both looked back as they came across a group of kunoichi from Nadeshiko, though the one talking to them caught Naruto's attention.

She was a fair-skinned girl of average height for her age, looking the same age as Naruto. She has green eyes and waist-length black hair in a hime-style cut tied in a high ponytail with short bangs and chin-length strands framing her face. She had on a black forehead protector and was wearing the same form-fitting outfit as all of the other Nadeshiko kunoichis. A grey-colored uniform with a right shoulder-guard, grey gloves, and an opening in her shirt which revealed some cleavage that she seemed to be blessed with, even at her teenage age.

"Naruto.." said Jiraiya lowly as he realized Naruto was already a step ahead of him.

"Kuchiyose (Summoning)" said Naruto as he slammed a palm to the ground. The kunoichis of Nadeshiko watched as a poof of smoke covered both Jiraiya and Naruto before a slightly bigger than human-sized toad appeared with Naruto standing atop his head.

"Really Naruto? You couldn't summon a toad big enough for the both of us?" questioned Jiraiya.

"You're a shadow clone ero-sensei. You'll be fine." said Naruto as he looked down at his toad. "C'mon Gamakichi, let's get out of here. Higi: Sanjuurokei no Jutsu (Secret Art: Technique of the 36 strategies)"

Gamakichi got the message before jumping high into the air and away from the group of Nadeshiko kunoichi.

"Hmm. Just like I did back in the day.." thought Jiraiya as he looked at the kunoichis in front of him, mainly noticing the leader of the group apparently with a look of recollection on her face. "Seems she must know who I am after seeing the gaki do that. Wonder if she'll.."

Jiraiya watched as the girl took off in a dead sprint after Naruto causing a smile to grace his face.

"This shall be interesting. Wonder what Naruto will do." thought Jiraiya before looking at the bevy of women in front of him. "Now ladies. There's 4 of you to just one of me. Unfair odds if I say. You'll need at least 7 if you think you can keep up with the Gallant Jiraiya in the bedroom."

A kunai dispelled the Jiraiya clone in a poof of smoke as the other Nadeshiko Kunoichis looked to where their leader disappeared to, not seeing a trace of her or Naruto.

(With Naruto)

A river bank greeted the blonde shinobi as he walked over to it after his escape from the village. Just before he could reach down and grab some water, Naruto's head picked up and he turned to see the girl who'd spoken to him and Jiraiya.

"Wow. Persistent." said Naruto as the girl appeared to study him with her green eyes. "I guess I should introduce myself. Uzumaki Naruto, a pleasure to meet you.."

The girl just brought her eyes back up to match Naruto's as she stared at him for a few seconds.

"Shizuka." said the girl as Naruto merely nodded his head.

"I'm not here to fight. Me and my sensei were just passing through the area." said Naruto as Shizuka's eyebrows lowered a bit to form a mild glare.

"And you both happened to stop at our village and spy on us?" questioned Shizuka as she looked ready to pounce on Naruto.

"I didn't want to spy on you all. It's my pervert of a sensei that did." said Naruto. "Even though you're beautiful, I still wouldn't be perched up on a mountain peeping on you. Just not my style."

"Beautiful.." thought Shizuka before she steeled herself. Shizuka then sprinted at Naruto as the Uzumaki just groaned a bit.

"I really didn't want to fight." said Naruto before shifting his body backwards into a defensive stance. "At least I can test my skills."

A flurry of punches and kicks came sauntering at Naruto from the Nadeshiko Kunoichi as Naruto blocked and parried them all with little to no effort it seemed.

"You have to come harder than that if you want to hit me." said Naruto blocking Shizuka's kick before pushing it away with force, sending the girl skidding back. Shizuka's eyebrows raised at that before she blurred to Naruto, kipping up the intensity as requested. "Oh shit.."

Shizuka came at Naruto with more speed and ferocity as she lashed out with a speedy set of punches followed by a sharp kick that connected to Naruto's stomach after he blocked her jabs.

Naruto didn't seem fazed by the strong kick as he only smiled at the girl before him. Shizuka was confused by the smile but nevertheless continued as she put her hand in a half ram seal.

"Ressenpu (Violent Whirlwind)" said Shizuka before she let loose a strong gust of wind at Naruto. Naruto jumped left to dodge the jutsu as he held his hands in a unique seal.

"Kage Bunshin no Jutsu (Shadow Clone Technique)" said Naruto before a dozen copies of himself spawned to life in between him and Shizuka. Shizuka looked impressed by the massive number before all the Narutos came charging in at her.

Whipping out a set of kunai in each hand, Shizuka let loose a barrage of deadly accurate projectiles.

"Nadeshiko-Ryu Shinku Enbu (Nadeshiko Style Deep Crimson Dance Performance)" said Shizuka as each thrown kunai began to dispel the Narutos in poofs of smoke on contact. Once the smoke cleared from the Narutos dispelling, Shizuka realized she was alone. Or so she thought.

"Rasengan" came the voice of Naruto behind Shizuka. Shizuka was in the process of turning around before she saw Naruto's hand begin to form a ball of chakra. Shizuka watched as the chakra swirled into Naruto's palm as he brought the chakra directly into her midsection.

"Damn. Still haven't gotten it down with making it with only one hand." thought Naruto as his Rasengan destabilized a few inches from Shizuka's stomach. "Though I wasn't going to hit her with a Rasengan anyway.."

Shizuka merely stood frozen as she looked at Naruto.

"He beat me.." thought Shizuka thinking Naruto ended his jutsu prematurely as to not hurt her, which he would have done anyway.

"Man. I still got to get that down." said Naruto as he stood back up straight. Naruto then looked up to see Jiraiya waving at him. "I'm coming, I'm coming. Maybe I'll see you around Shizuka, probably not though. Sorry about the whole peeping thing. I won't do it next time, if there is a next time."

Shizuka shook her head at Naruto's statement before she cleared her throat.

"If you do, I'll just come find you again." said Shizuka as Naruto just smiled.

"That doesn't sound like a bad thing to me." said Naruto before leaves began to swirl around him. "Until next time..Ja ne."

Shizuka watched Naruto disappear in a swirl of leaves as she just smiled at bit.

"Uzumaki Naruto. You will see me again."

(2 weeks later)

"Faster gaki. Faster." said Jiraiya as he was defending against the assault from his apprentice. Jiraiya just shook his head before palm striking Naruto directly in the face, dispelling him into a poof smoke. "You're doing it wrong gaki. Next."

A long line of Narutos were standing, waiting to jump in at Jiraiya as they had a look of scrutiny on their face.

"Yeah. You saw it right? He was off a few degrees with his block." said one of the Narutos.

"What? Degrees? What do you mean. That doesn't even make sense." said another Naruto. "Stop trying to sound smart. Just say he was late or off by a few inches."

"Oi! I'm the smart clone. We all know it." said that Naruto as one of the others just laughed.

"Ha! Get over yourself." said the laughing clone.

"I'll Kill all of you punks if one of you don't step up here and stop wasting your time." said Jiraiya. "I'm still going researching in 20 minutes. Better get while the getting is good."

The Naruto clones just nodded their heads before one of them took off to face Jiraiya again. Sitting in a tree, hanging upside down with his legs hooked was a shirtless Naruto.

"Clones are so stupid.." said Naruto as he continued his crunches. "But they are so worth it. How'd I never notice that before?"

One of the special things about Narutos' Shadow Clones, and all shadow clones, was that upon death, their memories and experiences were shifted back to the user. And when it came to training, they sped up the process tremendously in that regard. Thus allowing Naruto himself to focus on the more physical aspects of training and let his clones handle the mental aspects, like Taijutsu katas, chakra control, and elemental training.

Naruto was basically cutting training time in half, a lot more as creating Shadow clones was easy when you could make 1,000 and still feel fine. Naruto stopped his hanging crunches as he felt something was off in the area.

"1,346." said Naruto doing another crunch, followed by another. "1,347."

"You've only done 187." came the voice of the 'disturbance' Naruto felt.

"So you've been watching me for that long." said Naruto, continuing his crunches even as he talked with the new arrival. "2 weeks eh. 2 weeks and you find me. To what do I owe the pleasure Shizuka."

Standing under the tree next to Naruto was indeed Shizuka, draped in a tan cloak that had a hood on it. Shizuka removed the hood as her green eyes followed Naruto as he continued his crunches.

"I guess your sensei hasn't told you about my village.." said Shizuka. "Or even about your relationship to me as his student."

"Two hundred and 1." said Naruto, dropping from the tree in a back flip as he landed next to Shizuka. Naruto noticed Shizuka look at him quizzically. "That extra 1 is for the ladies."

Shizuka just nodded her head as Naruto pulled his mesh shirt back on.

"There was really no need to put a shirt back on." said Shizuka as Naruto rose an eyebrow. Internally Naruto was beaming. It was good to know that his training was paying off and that the abs he saw were really there.

But Jiraiya had beaten into his head, along with his training, that you never let the woman have the upper hand in an argument.

"I agree. But I couldn't let you get all hot and bothered." said Naruto as Shizuka's own eyebrow rose. Naruto picked up placating hands because Jiraiya also told him it was nigh impossible to beat a woman in an argument, you just had to stop them before they could beat you. "No need to remove the cloak. I remember vividly how good you look."

Shizuka just smiled at that before she looked at Naruto again.

"I know about the thing between my sensei and yours. How their apprentices would fight and settle their fight over two decades ago." said Naruto. "And he told me how your village works when it comes to your ways. Lose a fight, take him back to your village and marry the guy. But I'm not marrying you because I beat you in a fight."

"But it's my vi-"

"Sorry. I won't." said Naruto as Shizuka just couldn't help but stare at him. "But I can go get lunch. I like lunch. You like lunch?"

Shizuka just stared at the feral face of Naruto's as she only nodded her head.

"Sure. I can eat lunch." said Shizuka as Naruto just smiled and turned to lead the way. "I'm still going to make you marry me you know that right? I'm not going to give up just because you said no."

Naruto just continued to lead Shizuka to the small town they were next to.

"I'm certain you will. But only if you're a good lunch partner." said Naruto. "That's one of the requirements."

"Oh I'm the best lunch partner. You may just fall in love with me.." said Shizuka with a smirk forming on her face. Naruto simply made an 'O' with his mouth.

"Oh my..." said Naruto turning his head to see Shizuka's face. "You do realize that I've already got you wanting/having to marry me right? Meaning you do have some catching up to do."

Shizuka only smiled as the two of them walked out of the clearing.

"Go gaki." said Jiraiya, punching another clone in the face for another mishap in their training.

"Why can't I go with the pretty girl?" questioned one of the clones. Most of the other clones nodded their heads before another was punched in the face by Jiraiya.

"Look alive chumps. Poppa Bear's going on a spree." said Jiraiya before he began dispatching the clones with the swiftness.

(4 months later - Konoha)

"What's wrong forehead? Shouldn't you be happy right now?" came the voice of Yamanaka Ino, a pretty blonde and daughter of Yamanaka Inoichi, the leader of the Yamanaka clan. And she was currently speaking to the pink-haired girl walking with her down a path in Konoha.

"Yeah. I am happy Ino-buta." said Sakura in reply without looking up from the ground. "We're Chunin now but I can't help but think about Naruto you know."

Ino merely had a smirk on her face.

"You miss the boy who always wanted your attention and affection." said Ino. "And now that he's gone you're in love with him. They do say absence makes the heart grow fonder."

Sakura merely deadpanned at Ino. "No. I'll never feel that way for Naruto." said Sakura. "But it just feels weird. He's out training with the Toad Sage, I'm training with Tsunade-sama, and Sasuke is being trained by Orochimaru.."

"I'd really not like to talk about Sasuke-kun." said Ino as she went back to admiring the chunin vest in her hands. "But that is weird I guess, is that what you're all down about?"

"No. That's not it." said Sakura. "I think Naruto doesn't..I mean it just feels like the universe shifted. Like Naruto has another-"

"What forehead? No way. Naruto is Sakura-chan all the way." said Ino, mocking Naruto's voice when she said Sakura-chan. "You know that. He's totally hooked on phonics."

"Phonics? I'm phonics?" questioned Sakura as Ino merely nodded. "What if he finds a better alphabet learning system?"

Ino merely rose an eyebrow at that.

"You took that analogy too far." said Ino. "Let's just get to this celebration for our Chunin promotions. We'll worry about Naruto when he comes back. That's what, 18 months from now?"

"Yeah. Wonder how good he'll be." said Sakura as she looked up into the sky.

(Land of Water with Naruto - Age 15)

"Hmm. I see she was serious about staying with us." said Jiraiya, munching on a large roasted fish he just cooked. Naruto was sitting beside him, also eating a fish as he just nodded his head.

"Yeah. It's cool though. She definitely pulls her own weight." said Naruto, taking another bite.

"Pulls her own weight?" questioned Jiraiya.

"Yeah. Of course." said Naruto. "She's a great sparring partner. She doesn't ask us for anything because she already has her own money being the princess of her village. She's quiet and unobtrusive when necessary. And well..she looks so good."

Jiraiya just looked at Naruto before nodding his head.

"If I was into that pedophilia, I'd agree with you." said Jiraiya. "But she could have at least brought a friend. Told you you suck as wing man."

"Shhh. Let me just enjoy this." said Naruto as he went back to watching the spar in front of them. The Real Naruto was currently engaged in a heated spar with the Nadeshiko princess as the two were trading blows in Taijutsu.

"So the shorts and only training bra isn't to distract me at all?" questioned Naruto, facing against a barely clothed Shizuka. "Because if it is, it still works even after all this time."

Lashing out with a kick that was blocked, Shizuka merely smiled.

"No better than you going shirtless." said Shizuka before putting her leg back down and whipping into a spinning roundhouse that was also blocked. "I'm just trying to even the playing field."

"Uh huh. I just think you're trying to show off." said Naruto, stepping into Shizuka as he lifted her up and tossed her above and behind him.

Shizuka landed gracefully before turning and charging back at Naruto.

"I believe it was you and your sensei that said 'flaunt it if you got it'." said Shizuka rearing a hand back.

"Damn right. And you definitely got it." said Naruto, moving his own hand back to counter Shizuka.

"Nadeshiko-Ryu Koha Reppuken (Nadeshiko Style Hardliner Fist)" said Shizuka as her hand got coated by layer of wind chakra.

"Rasengan." said Naruto in reply as in his palm, a ball of chakra swirled to life. Naruto brought his Rasengan forward just as Shizuka brought her Hardliner Fist.

Though Shizuka didn't ram her fist into Naruto's Rasengan like he thought she would, she rammed it into him straight through his shoulder. Shizuka's eyes widened at that as she thought Naruto would move when he saw her not trying to hit his Rasengan.

"Nar-Naruto-kun...I'm so sorry." said Shizuka.

"I'm fine.." came the voice of the Real Naruto standing behind her as he talked into her ear. A kunai was pressed into her back, not enough to draw blood but enough to let her know it was there. "I switched with a clone after I tossed you in the air."

Shizuka felt a chill run through her body at Naruto's voice in her ear as the Naruto in front of her indeed dispelled in a poof of smoke. Shizuka didn't move her head from right next to Naruto's though as the two stood there for a bit.

"Even after all of these months. You can still get my back.." said Shizuka, slightly miffed at that. "And no matter how many times I see that Shadow Clone jutsu, I can never tell the real one from the fake."

"Oh that slightly hurts my heart Shizuka-chan." said Naruto, his cheek nearly touching Shizuka's at this point. "That means I could have sent a clone to marry you and you've have been none the wiser."

Shizuka merely smiled at that.

"No. I'd have noticed when it was time to consummate the wedding." said Shizuka, causing Naruto to falter a bit. "The clone wouldn't last and I'd have to find you again so I could finish what I started."

"Mhmm. I see your point." said Naruto. "Let me know if you ever want to practice though...you know for your future husband. Not saying it won't be me, it still could, but if you ever want to go through a trial run. I don't mind helping."

"Oh thank goodness. I was wondering when you'd say that." said Shizuka. "Do you mind doing the trial run now?"

Naruto never answered Shizuka as he had fainted on the ground with a stupid look on his face and blood trailing from his nose. Shizuka merely turned to him with a smile on her face as she walked out of the clearing. She couldn't beat Naruto in their spars but she'd be damned if she let him win their verbal jousting.

"Damn. Knocked us out cold. Again." said the Naruto clone sitting beside Jiraiya. Jiraiya merely nodded his head before realizing he was indeed sitting with a clone.

"Why is a clone eating? You know that doesn't revert back to Naruto right?" questioned Jiraiya as the clone only continued eating.

"Eh. Us clones have dreams that maybe we're the real one." said the clone. "It's never true but a clone can dream right?"

Jiraiya just seemed to shrug.

"Oh well. It's the gaki's piece anyway. He won't be happy that you ate it but you'll dispel anyway." said Jiraiya, biting down into his own fish. Jiraiya just continued to eat with the Naruto clone as they waited for the Real Naruto to eventually wake up. "We still got a whole year and some change left. Wonder how good you'll be kid."

Boom. Prologue.