Guest(s) who keep demanding I update another story in this story's review section: Stop. You have become a fucking diarrhea. I'll update what I damn please, when I damn please, IF I damn please. One more and I'm taking that story from this site, I'm not joking. Don't test me.
Zetakira - I don't particularly care about reading fics. I have, in the 6 years I've been visiting this website only come across one, maybe two reading stories that were of any actual quality. The one I know is really good is actually a reading story of another Naruto/PJ crossover. I think it's Love of a Father. The one where he basically has no memories and has daughters with Athena and Aphrodite. If someone wants to write a reading story of my work, I won't stop them. But don't expect me to ever write or endorse one. I have neither the desire nor the know-how how to even begin writing a reading story.
Anime Law #9 - Law of Dramatic Emphasis - Scenes involving extreme amounts of action are depicted with either still frames or black screens with a slash of bright color (usually red or white).
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Artemis' Mistake: Uzumaki-Style
Chapter Five: Just a Thing?
"Now, I suppose this is the time for me to say something profound...
...Nothing comes to mind."
- Lieutenant General Jonathan Jack O'Neill, Stargate SG-1
~-~-~ ஜ۩۞۩ஜ ~-~-~
Kushina questioned in a disbelieving whisper when she saw the newly appeared goddess standing frozen stiff by the entrance.
Behind the red head the rest of the Olympian Gods shifted in their massive thrones, getting comfortable so they could watch the sure-to-begin drama. It wasn't everyday that they got to see the cool and aloof Artemis squirm and fumble in front of her progeny.
Except Zeus, who was staring at his daughter with a poignant look.
"...Mom?" the younger girl repeated when Artemis refused to respond.
Closing her eyes in an effort to compose herself, the Goddess of the Moon and Childbirth faced her fellows.
"Is this... thing-" Kushina felt like someone had just kicked the wind out of her, hard, "-the reason you summoned me, Father? You as well as everyone here already know my view on the matter. That thing is no daughter of mine." Crossing her arms across her chest and leveling her progenitor a look, the goddess continued to express her opinion coolly and uncaringly, "As far as I'm concerned, it is nothing more than a blight on our society." Some of the gods murmured in between themselves while her brother shook his head. She ignored them.
In the meanwhile, Kushina could actually feel hers insides shriveling.
Blight on society?
Why was her... her mother saying these terrible things? She hadn't done anything to her!
Zeus looked entirely unbothered by her words, even as he made a show of pondering something with his hand on his beard, "Perhaps you two need sometime alone." Ignoring his daughter's rising protests before she could utter a word, he shared some unspoken words with the Gods.
In a flash of light - followed by various special effects no mortal could comprehend - the rest of Olympians vanished. Zeus then looked back at his daughter, his tone commanding and authoritative as he started to descend down the steps of his throne, his towering form shrinking with each step until he was just as tall as Kushina's dad.
"Artemis." like a soldier following orders and listening to her commanding officer, the goddess was suddenly standing more rigid then before, shoulders squared, "You will be welcomed back in these chambers if, and only if you can integrate your daughter into our society." Zeus, being the prideful deity that he was, always took pride in siring children; godly or other wise, regardless of his actions or his wife's opinion. For one of his favorites to act like that wasn't acceptable, "Besides, I can't have Astrid starting wars by accident due to your incompetence. For all his powers, your mortal lover-" Artemis winced, "Will never understand our connection to domains. Use this opportunity and be prepared for your summons in a week's passing. She's your responsibility now that he's in the Others' realms; he won't stay there forever."
Artemis looked down at Kushina with no small amount of frustration visible on her face before turning back towards Zeus.
"But Father, I-"
The god's temper flared.
"That is my final decision!"
Thunder rumbled in the background, lightning flashing in the sky - space - above them.
Zeus gave his daughter a warning look.
"Don't kill her."
His words said, the lord of Olympus walked out of the chamber and the doors slammed shut behind him, leaving Artemis and her sole offspring in an awkward silence.
For all her spiteful words, Kushina always wanted to know where she came from. "So... um, how did you meet my-" Kushina started (the fact she never expected to have this chance did little to help her), but her supposed mother's deadly glare silenced her.
"Silence, creature!" Kushina's breath hitched, "You will not talk to me. You will not walk by my side, but behind me and out of my sight. I order you and you follow without comment or question. If you don't, I'm sure I can find a way around my father's command. And by that, I mean I'll find a way to erase your blightful existence in a way that not even your father could conceive." the woman threatened, pure frost dripping from every syllable before she started pacing back and forth, muttering to herself in a language that certainly wasn't English.
Kushina stared at her, dumbfounded.
She almost felt like she was having an out of body experience, really.
This was her mother? The goddess that gave birth to her? The woman her father loved - adored - so much?
Probably still did?
Oh HELL NO!
"Just what is your problem? I haven't done anything to you! It's not my fault the other gods and goddesses don't like you! But from what I've seen, I don't really blame them. If you treat them like garbage too then it's a wonder you ever found someone as nice as my dad!" Kushina yelled as loud as her lungs allowed her to after getting in the goddess' face. When the woman's face made a good impression of a fish, she turned around and began walking towards the door, intent on getting as far away from the bitch as possible.
She almost got away with it too.
Artemis shouted something in Greek - it certainly wasn't English - and suddenly Kushina couldn't move. Rays of silver and green light engulfed her and the young Uzumaki rose into the air like some invisible giant had plucked her right from the floor.
Then the screaming began.
It felt as if some massive ghastly hand was tearing through her insides, like the whole of the world's pressure was crushing her organs into pinprick paste, forcing them to explode inside her chest. Her brain felt like it was chopped into ribbons inside her skull. Her blood boiled in her veins as if it was replaced by molten metal. It felt like all the cells in her body were being torn apart. Kushina could think of nothing other than PAIN.
Then finally, mercifully, after what seemed like an eternity it stopped leaving Kushina to collapse on the floor in a heap of bruises and moans and something felt so horribly wrong. Blearily, weakened from the divine 'punishment' her mother inflicted upon her, Kushina opened her eyes, her throat far too hoarse to scream anymore.
Everything was different.
Her eyesight spread almost in all four directions, the depth perception was way off and the colors were different, with reds and blues being more prominent while the rest faded into dull tones and greys.
Kushina tried to stand up.
Then she realized with mounting horror that she was already standing and that her muscles were arranged completely different from before.
Artemis turned her into some small, insignificant woodland creature.
Terror gripped at her soul as the ground rumbled beneath her; vibrations that she'd have thought insignificant as a human. Slowly, shakily, she turned to look at Artemis who was approaching her while drawing an object from her back. Panic gripped at Kushina and refused to let go.
So she did the natural thing human beings - any beings - did when put into such extremely dangerous situation without preparations, when they let their instincts take hold.
She fled like a coward.
And by running, she meant stumbling over her feet with the occasional successful hop launching her forward.
She made such a terrible rabbit, the cynical part of her mind deducted.
And then Kushina froze abruptly. A glowing silver arrow tip floated not even an inch away from one of her eyes. Following the arrow's long profile her eyes landed on Artemis, standing in a some odd sideways crouch right in front of Kushina with a bow in her hands, arrow strung back, ready to shoot.
"Hmmm..." the goddes hummed in interest, looking down at her with a smirk, "Maybe you aren't a complete and total idiot after all, Astrid. Yes, this is a bow, and that is an arrow that will tear into that tiny body of yours and cut through all of your major organs."
Her smirk was sly, confidant and even gleeful.
For the live of her, which was in grave danger at the moment, Kushina could never understand what her kind and caring father saw in a creature as despicable as Artemis.
"You can't." Kushina squeaked, surprised her voice worked at all; or maybe she spoke bunny tongue.
The Huntress' grin quickly turned into a threatening leer, "That's true. Father never said anything about maiming."
A flash of blue and white streaked past her odd sense of vision and Kushina experienced an entire new level of hurt in her left leg.
Somehow, the goddess had managed to hit her back leg so she couldn't get it out or even attempt to move. Tears of agony glistened down Kushina's fur as her squeaky howls echoed her pain throughout the large chamber.
"I believe I told you not to speak to me."
For several minutes Kushina writhed and whimpered in agony on the floor of the Olympian chambers while her godly parent watched on cold-heartedly.
That's when the lunar goddess noticed something a glint of something small lying on the floor behind the rabbit and moved to pick it up. An ugly scowl took up residence across her face when she recognized the object, her head twisting to glare down at Astrid with disgust before turning her attention back to the necklace, "That buffoon, infusing an artifact like that with his own essence. And giving something like that to you." she growled dangerously, tightening her hold on the crystal in her hands.
Astrid's bunny ears could clearly hear the goddess' hand muscles strain before there was a muffled crunch.
Artemis shook her hand, allowing the green ground dust that was once a chakra crystal to float through the air like a brief mist.
"Naruto, you idiot!"
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"What are you doing over there?" Artemis inquired as she walked up to a grown man of blond hair that was perhaps even more annoying than her younger twin brother. The same man she'd found lying near lifeless at the base of Mount Olympus, near one of her personal hunting grounds and subsequently brought to her brother to heal.
Leaning over his shoulder she took a glance at his constipated looking face before looking at his clasped hands, where some sort of golden glow was... glowing.
The same man who, ever since then, refused to get out of her hair.
Putting up a barrier around her camps that kept males out accomplished nothing towards keeping him away, not when the supposedly mortal male could turn into a woman at whim. Cursing him, turning him into a jackal-ope to be hunted down shared similar results, leaving the man giggling as he transformed from a jackalope into a toad, fox or some other animal before reverting back to human form. Subsequently, all of her arrows failed to land no matter how hard she tried. He could always dodge them. Teleporting? Sure, he simply followed after her somehow, finding her in about a day or two.
After a while she and her hunters grew tolerant - even accustomed to the strange blond's presence. He insisted on paying back his debt, and to do that he claimed he would follow her around wherever she went until the debt was repaid.
Him never leering, staring, lusting or otherwise showing desire for any of the large gaggle of beautiful maidens and their goddess was a welcome change.
"Hm?" the blond her thoughts had been churning over opened his eyes, a startling shade of blue that she found herself staring into for a moment before him blinking broke the trance. He looked at her with a raised eyebrow, "Oh, this?" he asked as he held up several shards of some crystal, "I'm trying to repair the jewel. It really means a lot to me and I'd love to have it back in one piece, a friend of mine broke it back home for giving him trouble, but he's cool now." he grinned, smiling radiantly before grabbing her hands.
"Here, wanna help? I'm sure a goddess like you could do this no problem." the way he casually said goddess - as if mocking the tittle; the existence - made her temper rise. Even if he swore he would settle the debt he supposedly owned her for saving his life, he wasn't above prodding, taunting and annoying her. Sometimes he could be the most infuriating man in the world.
"Fine then! Give it here!" she snapped, taking the shards grand and small from his palms and focused her divine power, "How hard can repairing a simple precious stone be? Men, so incapable."
She would, after some time realize she'd never been angry at him for daring to grab her like that, even if she did get frustrated to learn that repairing a necklace like that proved out of her league and subsequently took out her frustration on him by shooting a hundred or so arrows in his direction. Laughing loudly, Naruto dodged them before challenging her to catch him.
Red faced, Artemis pulled out her knives and raced after him.
Aphrodite's subsequent giggling once some of the passing gods saw their squabble lasted for weeks!
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Biting her lips (...erm, rabbit fur-chin?) when she felt the celestial arrow being jerked out of her leg, Kushina flinched. Though she managed to keep from yelling in pain.
Her mother wasn't being gentle that's for sure.
When she was done Artemis stood up, discarded the arrow to the side and pulled another one from her quiver (which had mysteriously appeared on her back). She then aimed it down at Kushina who's leg was bleeding profusely. Trying to walk only ended up with Kushina falling down in a heap of terrified, bleeding rabbit.
"Have you learned your lesson, or do you need another demonstration?" Artemis asked, mock politeness in her voice.
Kushina quaked in fear, probably for the first time in her entire life. Her leg burned and she knew Artemis wouldn't hesitate to hurt her again. When the halfling didn't say anything sassy in response the Huntress nodded and snapped her fingers. Again, a weird light issued from the deity's fingers and wrapped around Kushina. Again, her terrified rabbit form rose into the air. Again, her cells felt like they were trying to kill themselves. Again, the agony overcame her mind, so that all she could think about is how she wanted to die. Anything to stop the burning.
Finally, she was thrown back to the ground.
Kushina had been hoping that her leg would be healed when she was turned back to human (half-human) but no such luck. Just below her knee there was a bloody splotch that showed through her pants, but at least it didn't go through her entire leg like before.
Still, there was no way that Zeus or one of the other Olympians wouldn't notice that she'd been hurt. Maybe then Artemis would be kicked out of Olympus again and she would be free to return to camp until her father returned or her Aunt found her. Of course that would mean that she would have to think about or interact with Ward-the-murdering-scumbag and Adonis-the-prat.
Glancing over her shoulder, she realized she wouldn't mind.
Anything would be better than sitting here with Mrs. Psychopath.
The young red head slowly got tried to get up on her feet. Unfortunately it was proving very difficult as she couldn't keep any pressure on one of her legs. Thankfully her dad taught her how to move when injured, and put a good emphasis on leg injuries and how to work around them. Something about mobility being crucial for survival.
"When you get to camp it will be pretty late. You will go straight to the cabin dedicated to me. You will only go outside at nighttime and you will not speak to any other demigods. At all. You will be isolated. However, that's your problem, not mine. And if I find you disobeying me, you'll wish you were dead." Artemis spoke disinterestedly, not even looking at her.
"Okay, mom." Kushina said, before she was thrown down to the floor by some unseen force.
'Mom's' eyes flashed dangerously (and quite literally) before she started to blur around the edges like someone was zooming out but no one was moving. Before anything else could happen Hermes suddenly burst into the room, moving like Flash from those animated comics she'd seen in school, waving his hands around as he stooped between Artemis and Kushina.
"No no NO! Zeus said NO KILLING! Do you want to be punished again for disobeying him?" he said urgently, making the goddess pause.
Kushina realized that he was protecting her from something weird.
Maybe something terrible would happen when Artemis blurred.
It shall now be refereed to as "The Blurring of Doom".
Artemis managed to calm down and glared at Kushina who glared back, however meekly.
And then she was gone.
Hermes let out a sigh of relief.
"Whew. That was close. So, how bad are you hurt? Any broken bones, missing organs, mental scars?" he asked jokingly, still managing to look concerned somehow. Kushina just shrugged, not sure what to say. Now that there was actually a possibility of Artemis getting in trouble and ergo getting even angrier at her, she didn't want to test the limits the mad woman's patience could reach.
She liked breathing, thank you very much!
Hermes noticed her knee.
"Apollo! Get in here!" he yelled.
The teenager from the ostentatious golden throne walked in not even half a minute later, his earphones around his neck and his hair newly slicked back with gel. His hands were stuffed in the pockets of his newly dressed jeans.
"What's up, Herms?" he asked, using a lame nickname.
Hermes gestured to her knee.
Apollo didn't look surprised.
"Did my sis shoot you? She has this nasty habit of doing that to people that are close to her." at Kushina's dry look, he scratched his cheeks before shrugging, "Well then, let me see your leg. I suppose you know basic medical procedures?" he said, turning serious and professional all of a sudden. His headphones even turned into a stethoscope. Kushina reluctantly pushed out her leg when Apollo crouched down and rolled up her pants' leg, remembering that he's the god of medicine.
Kushina winced. The wound was open and still bleeding.
Contradicting her earlier thoughts she could actually see parts of the bone and torn muscles where the arrow had gone through her rabbit leg, which almost made her throw up.
Unseen to her, Apollo's eyes narrowed fractionally. Just like with her father years ago, the girl's body was slowly regenerating on its own, flesh and sinew sewing together while that unique life-force of theirs even went so far as to prevent infection. Muttering a chant under his breath, Apollo waved his hands slowly over the wound, directing the healing process and encouraging cell division. Faster than Kushina could comprehend the hole closed up and the pain stopped.
The God put on a smile and looked up.
"Yeah! I feel way better! Thank you… ummm… Lord Apollo and Lord Hermes." Kushina finished awkwardly, unsure about how to address them. They were Gods!
"You can just call me Apollo, it's cool." the godly doctor interjected.
"And you can call me Hermes. Us two aren't real big on formalities." said the jogger.
"Umm... okay?" Kushina responded unsurely, before looking at them in curiosity, "So then, why does Artemis hate me so much?"
Both of them winced.
They sat in silence for several minutes before Apollo sighs and spoke up.
"Well, it's a long story." He ran a hand through his slick hair, "I guess I'll start way back at the beginning. After Artemis and I were born (we're twins you see), Zeus granted us our domains. Artemis became the Goddess of the Moon and Hunt, and I got all the cool titles. Anyway, when she was still really little, my dad granted her a couple wishes. One of them was that she could remain single and childless her entire life. Zeus granted her that wish, but he also said that she could retract it anytime she wanted. For thousands of years, she kept to it. She even inspired Athena and Hestia to follow it too. Together, they were the three maiden goddesses. Now, since she had you, they have turned away from her. Her followers weren't all too happy about it either."
Hermes chose this moment to pipe in, a frown on his face, "Which is kinda dumb when you think about it. Hestia was always about family sticking together, I mean she even gave up her seat to stop a serious argument from tearing Olympus into two and Athena has almost as many kids as Zeus. All of them are brain children, she doesn't birth them like other goddesses and can make them pretty much on the spot, but that's regardless."
Apollo looked like he wanted to add something in, before he shook his head and helped her stand up, "Anyway, I heard her command about not talking to demigods. I think you know someone who isn't a demi-GOD. Just saying. The kid ain't bad, he was just handed a bad hand in life. You can't choose your parents, as I think you've just experienced."
Kushina blinked up at him, since he was still taller than her.
"You... you sound much more reasonable than the stories made you out to be."
Apollo winked and tousled her head, much to the red head's chagrin, "There's this thing called growing up and taking responsibility kid. My sister hasn't reached that point, sadly. It's why I call her Lil Sis. Just don't tell that to anyone." the last part was said in a whisper, somehow making her giggle. Letting go of her hand, the Sun God took a step back, "In any case you should be going. Lil' Sis probably placed some wards on your cabin. I'm really sorry but there's nothing I can do about that. Hermes, if you could..."
Nodding, Hermes placed a hand on her shoulder.
"Bye, you're definitely my favorite niece, Kushina. Actually, you are my first niece. It was fun meeting you." Apollo said, chuckling, "And tell your pops I said hello. It's been a long time since we talked."
Before Kushina could say anything in response (and ask how come he used her name when every other god so far called her by that not-her-name) the sensation of going through a vacuum came over her again. When Kushina opened her eyes next, she was standing in the middle of Halfblood Camp. Turning towards Hermes, she saw the god's smile falter before he stepped back.
"Well, here you are. Try not to get into trouble. Olympus can't afford to rebuild itself one more time." With those mysterious words said he disappeared in a blur of movement leaving Kushina stuck in the camp, alone, with an express command not to talk with anyone there.
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DUN DUN DUN! And the mystery thickens.. or does it? This chapter was shorter, but I felt like this was a good place to close it, or else you'd have to wait a couple more weeks. And to make things clear, Naruto's blood is red, not ichor. And seriously, stop asking why she hadn't used that necklace. She grew up in a supernatural-free environment for reasons that had been touched on in this chapter, or was her strange reaction to his words not a clue enough? Also, FYI, she did call her dad. Y'know, ComWrist? Chapter 2? Anyone?