An American Ninja in Konohagakure
A Naruto fanfiction by Andrew Joshua Talon
Disclaimer: This is a non-profit fan based parody. Naruto is the property of Shonen Jump, Viz and Masashi Kishimoto. Please support the official release.
It wasn't the best solution. It might not even have counted as a solution, persay. Kushina had certainly not been happy with the little addition to their rapidly cobbled together plan. That was his wife: Never afraid to speak her mind or put him in his place, even while in labor and dying from chakra exhaustion. Minato Namikaze though? He knew his mind, and he knew he was panicking. He knew he was fearful of how their village had turned from peaceful refuge to chaotic battlefield. From secure, to a place where the shadows had spinning red tomoe eyes.
He didn't know if the Uchiha could be trusted. Right now, he didn't know if anyone could be trusted. All he knew was that the tiny bundle, squalling against his chest, wasn't safe here. And if his son wasn't safe here, he could not be safe... Anywhere.
The Fox howled, tails waving like serpents. The chakra chains subduing it were weakening, he felt his wife's chakra fading, fading... He had to do this.
He had finished the seal on his son's stomach, less than ten minutes ago. But it left just enough time for him to pen a note. He didn't know if anyone there could read it. He didn't know if his son would be found. But before the Nine Tailed Fox, the very power of Life and Death screaming through the walls of reality... Namikaze Minato made his choice.
The Fox vanished, howling in rage. Minato Namikaze fell, his soul gone. His beloved wife Kushina lay dead nearby, her long red hair fanned out like the tails of the furious beast she had held so long.
But when Hatake Kakashi came across the body of his mentor, he didn't find an orphaned baby. All he found was a red orb, floating above the ground, that through his Sharingan made him feel uneasy.
That feeling got worse when he reviewed the frantically scrabbled notes his sensei had written, explaining his reasoning, and showing the way to bring his son back. This was way beyond him.
In this though, Kakashi knew, he was not alone. And no matter what it took... He would get sensei's son back.
Firestone, Colorado, United States of America, Earth
Mary Nelson sighed as she looked up from her laptop screen, to her son as he wandered near the fence of the horse paddock. Summer vacation was a pain for her, and for him too: His father was away on deployment, and she had to manage both him and their little farm. The seven year old hadn't abandoned his troublemaking from his early toddler years, it seemed-He just got more inventive, and more daring.
"Nathan, sweetie, away," she warned him. He pouted at her, still holding onto the wooden bars of the fence. Their studding horse, Ripley, was peacefully grazing a few meters away. He might have started his rut, he might not have, but Mary wasn't keen on letting Nathan too near him until she knew for sure.
"Mom," he whined, "I wanna ride!"
"We can ride later, sweetie," Mary said calmly. "Mommy's working."
"Is Daddy coming home soon?" He asked.
"Not for another few hours," she said, checking her spreadsheet. Everything seemed in order, but she was keen to do the math herself a second time. It was a habit drilled into her by her accountant mother-Trust machines less the more complicated they got. She personally felt her mom had just seen Terminator and taken it too seriously, but habit was habit.
Still better than her complaining about how violent everything had gotten. She didn't know a thing about violent movies-
Thunder broke over the ranch, and Mary looked up in shock at the clear blue sky. Ripley nearly shrieked in a panic, and began galloping around the paddock. She'd heard fireworks go off before, and sonic booms from the jets her husband flew at his base, but this was-
"MOMMY! MOM!" Nathan shouted, pointing frantically into the paddock. She followed his gaze and gasped-A white, struggling bundle was laying in the center of the dirt covered enclosure, as Ripley whinnied and galloped frantically. She vaguely heard her computer beep in protest as it slid off her lap, but didn't break her stride. She leaped over the wooden fence, sprinting for the bundle as Ripley barreled for it. She was closer, but the horses's clopping hooves were faster, so fast...!
She scooped up the bundle and kept running, the thunder of hooves and the heat of the horse's breath hitting her hair and neck as she flew. She got to the other side of the fence and vaulted over it, landing harshly on the lip of the drainage ditch running along the road. She lost her balance, but at the cry of the bundle in her arms she wrapped herself around it and slammed her foot into the grass. Mary sucked in deep breaths, her whole body shaking. She heard a baby crying loudly, and even as her heart beat like a piston engine in her chest... She felt a no less frantic heartbeat against her breast.
Mary slowly sat up, still gasping hard for breath, sweat dripping down her forehead. She gently arranged the squirming bundle in her hands, and pulled the white sheets clear. A small, fussy blonde head of hair greeted her, as a wrinkled newborn cried his eyes out. Mary studied the screaming baby, and rested a hand on a chubby cheek. A cheek with whisker-like marks across it.
She held the little boy tightly, muttering calming words and nonsense to try and comfort the infant. He began to quiet down, just a bit, when Nathan ran up and threw his arms around her neck, sobbing in relief.
"Mommy! Mommy! Mommy!" Nathan cried, and Mary adjusted her arm to hug her frightened son and the baby at the same time. Her heartbeat slowed, as the messy brown hair of her son mingled with the fuzzy blonde of the little child. She kissed Nathan on the top of his head, stroking his back.
"It's okay, I'm okay... We're okay..." She murmured. It wasn't long before the neighbors arrived, worried about the loud boom that had gone off. Mary composed herself as best she could, and dutifully made the report of what she'd heard. Fireworks set off by kids, probably. It happened a lot.
When it came to the baby in her arms though... She found she couldn't quite muster up the whole truth.
It was like the first day she'd met Nathan, tiny and helpless in her arms at the hospital-She'd fallen in love with the child. And she wanted to keep him for herself.
"Found him this morning," she said calmly. She squeezed Nathan's hand, as her other arm held the baby against her breast. He'd quieted down, sleeping softly. The police officers sat across from her on the swing bench on their porch, looking a bit dubious.
"Way out here?" One, named Hernandez, asked incredulously. Mary shrugged.
"Maybe some college student wanted to drop him off, give him a good home," she said calmly. "You know, panicking..."
"He does look Asian," said the other officer, named Phillips, who was sipping a glass of lemonade Mary had thoughtfully provided. "Though... Blonde? And those birthmarks!"
"Maybe some frat boy... Made an exchange student pregnant. She couldn't bare the shame," Mary continued with a shrug. Nathan shyly held up a piece of paper, and Mary looked down. "Nathan? What-"
"It... It was with him when we... When we found him," Nathan said, sounding unsure but trying to follow his mother's lead. She smiled at him, and squeezed his hand. He was a bright boy, a very bright boy.
Hernandez took the paper and frown. "Huh... Looks like Kanji... Japanese," he explained to his partner. Phillips snorted.
"When did you learn Japanese?"
"I wanted a minor that had plenty of cute girls in it," Hernandez said with a smirk. He cleared his throat and looked it over. "Well... Been a while, but it looks like it says... 'Please take care of him... His name is...'" He squinted. "Fishcake?"
"Fishcake?" Nathan asked dubiously. "Who names a kid Fishcake?"
"Oh, sorry," Hernandez apologized. "It's 'Naruto'. Too literal."
"Still, naming a baby 'Fishcake'," Mary sighed with a shake of her head. Phillips chuckled.
"Eh, weirder things to name kids. My sister was named 'Dorkus'. Hated her parents forever," he said. Mary looked down at the sleeping face of the baby, felt his beating heart. She smiled down at him.
"Naruto," Mary said softly. She looked up at the officers. "Do... Do you think I could... Adopt him?"
"It's a little more complicated than that, ma'am," Hernandez said. "I mean, a lot of forms to fill, your husband needs to be involved..." He saw the look on the woman's face, and smiled. "But... I think we can work it out."
"Thank you," Mary said gratefully. Nathan looked up at his mother, concerned. She smiled at him, eyes filled with love, and bent over so he could see the baby's face.
"Nathan...? This is Naruto," she said softly. "I know... It's sudden, but... But I want you to be a good big brother to him. All right?"
Nathan studied the baby, and reached out to rub one of his chubby cheeks. The baby sighed, and Nathan smiled.
"All right," he said.
"Promise?" Mary asked.
Night had fallen, quickly thanks to the mountains' tendency to blot out the sun as it set here. Mary paced anxiously in front of the front door, the cellphone she'd used to text her husband tightly gripped in her hands.
She knew it was impulsive. God knew, she hadn't been herself for a time, but... She steeled herself. She knew it was a lot to ask. She knew it was. But she just...
Car headlamps shone through the windows, and a motor came to a stop. She heard familiar feet clomping up the gravel driveway, and a form block some of the light from the porch lamps out. The door turned, and her husband stepped in.
"Rob, I-" She started, before her tall husband took her into his arms and kissed her fervently. She returned the favor, after a surprised squeal. She gripped his uniform tunic and sighed through her nostrils, enjoying the warmth.
Then they broke, and she smiled warmly up at him. He returned the gesture, his teeth shining gently.
"So... Orphan on the door step?" He asked. "That... That happens still?"
"I... Well..." Mary worked her jaw. "It was... A little more involved than that. You might think I'm crazy."
"Try me," he said.
So she told him about the mysterious boom. About how the baby had appeared in the center of the paddock. She led him over to it, as Ripley was in the stable for the night. They hopped the fence, and by the light of their cellphones they found the spot Naruto had shown up in.
Surprisingly, it was very easy to find. Grooves were torn into the ground, slightly marred by Ripley's hooves but still recognizable. Rob stared in disbelief, as Mary knelt down to trace the marks with her finger.
"A... Spiral?" Rob asked in disbelief. "And it just-"
"Showed up when he did? Yes," Mary said. She sighed and rubbed her face. "I didn't tell the cops... About it, or..."
"Or...?" Rob prompted his wife. She rummaged in her windbreaker, and pulled out a small, three pronged knife. Rob took it, and turned it over in his hands. There was paper wrapped around it, covered in marks. His frown grew, and he shook his head in disbelief.
"What... Some kind of... Cult?" His eyes widened. "Were they trying to sacrifice their baby or something?"
"I don't know," Mary admitted. "It's just... It doesn't make sense. But... Well..." She looked away.
He could imagine what she was thinking about. A night they'd shared, some months back. He'd woken up to a bed full of blood, and his wife pale and sobbing. He'd rushed her to the hospital, having to drop a confused Nathan off at their neighbor's so he'd be all right. Grim faced doctors, and a sonogram that showed that what had been a second child... Wasn't. Anymore.
Having to explain to Nathan he wouldn't be getting a little sister.
Rob reached out, and took his wife's hand. He squeezed it, and she slowly looked back at him. He gave her a warm, understanding smile.
"I still... I still feel horrible about it, too," he said. Mary slowly nodded, and smiled back.
"Can... Can we keep him?" She asked softly.
"Let me see him first," He said. "Don't I get to see him... First?"
Mary bit back tears, and hugged her husband tightly. It was answer enough.
Rob walked into the nursery for the first time in months. After... That night, they hadn't been able to go in. Nathan had sensed his parents' discomfort, and had tried to avoid it himself. But now the seven year old was standing at the crib, watching the tiny form of the blonde baby. He turned, and his face brightened despite his fatigue.
"Daddy!" He cried happily, charging to hug him.
"Shhh!" Rob hissed, hugging his son back with a little laugh. "Don't wake him!"
Nathan made a face. "I know, I know," he said with a scowl. "He's loud. And he smells bad."
"You were the same way too, once upon a time," Rob reminded his son, tickling him. The seven year old giggled, and batted his dad's hands away. With a final ruffling of his hair, Rob rose and walked to the crib. He looked down on the sleeping boy, dressed in just a diaper. He sucked in a breath, and very carefully reached down.
He picked up the baby, and held him tight. He continued to sleep peacefully, and his chubby fists gripped into the material of his uniform. He smiled, and stroked the baby... Hisbaby's hair. It felt like fur, strangely enough.
"... So do we get to keep him?" Nathan asked. Rob nodded.
"We do," he said. "We do."
"... Why would his parents give him away, anyway?" Nathan asked, confused. "Who does that?"
Rob sighed, and sat down in the nearby rocking chair. His oldest son crawled up into his lap-Man, he was getting big.
"I don't know," Nathan said. "I don't think they wanted to give him away... But they had to. For whatever reason." He looked down on the sleeping baby, and chuckled. "But... That just means we get to take care of him."
Nathan nodded. "So... Can I teach him football?"
Rob chuckled. "Let's start slow... After all... He just got to this planet. We might as well let him get used to it."
Out in the paddock, the spiral pattern shined briefly with energy that humanity on this world had never thought possible. The very fabric of spacetime bent, splintered…
In the house, the sleeping child's stomach glowed red. A spiral burned, surrounded by dozens of smaller symbols and markings.
It then receded. Whatever inspired the outburst, it wasn't able to break through.
Why? Why not?