Disclaimer: I don't own Naruto and this English translation, although the original Chinese fan fiction is mine.
Thank my brilliant, brilliant kanoven for translating it! Such a work of high quality and I really appreciate that!
BTW it's a three-shot story. Hope you all enjoy!
The scarlet moon hung high in the sky. Bloodied water seeped around his feet. All around, stark, black Mokuton spears stood erect, as if piercing the heavens. Bodies lay skewered on the dark wooden spires, twisted into grotesque shapes.
This world is hell.
The brown-haired girl lay prone in his lap, deathly silent. Her pulse and breathing had stopped. Her body was growing colder by the second, remnant warmth trickling away, along with the blood from her gaping chest. It soaked his shirt, chilling his entire being to the core.
I am in hell.
Uchiha Obito thought, hugging the corpse of Nohara Rin.
Open your eyes to reality… Not everything can be as you wish. The longer you live, the clearer it becomes. Reality is just despair, pain and hollowness. The words of the ancient, self-proclaimed Uchiha Madara, from deep down in the twisting, winding caves, echoed in his ears. Listen up… In this world, wherever there is light, shadows follow. Ripples of cause and effect cannot be severed. This is reality.
Abandon the ugliness of reality, it argued, escape to the world of dreams! There, everything can bend at your beck and call. You can accomplish anything… even the dead can be revived. The words of White Zetsu, that had sounded beyond absurd, was now full of deadly temptation.
A world with only victors; only peace; only love. I want to create that world.
"Rin…" carefully setting the girl down, Obito gazed into her pale, bloodied face. "I will create a world where you exist. For it, I will…"
His eyes trailed down to her chest. His best – and only – friend, whom he entrusted his Sharingan and the promise of protecting Rin, had pierced that chest with his hand, shrouded in lethal lightning.
I will cut ties with this world.
As he rose slowly, Obito turned his head, wanting to have one last glimpse of the teen lying in the pool of blood––
Obito's eyes snapped open as he caught sight of a distinctively different figure.
From a moment he couldn't pinpoint, it was no longer the thirteen-year-old Hatake Kakashi. The man lying slumped on the ground was an adult, and the unconscious visage was as foreign as it was familiar. The trademark scar ran vertically down his face, cutting through his left eye. The silver hair, mask, and white haori were all stained with blood.
Bright red kanji was inscribed on the back of the robes.
In the darkness of the night, the words 'Rokudaime Hokage' seemed to glow especially bright.
Obito's breath hitched. His sharingan blazed, as though blood would leak through any second. An unstoppable and fathomless rage scorched within him, threatening to burn him alive.
Rin died, just like this. I'm consumed with despair and grief… while you – you who ended her life, destroyed my hope – not only lived another twenty sound years, but became fucking Hokage?
On what grounds!
Sharp wooden splinters shot out from his sleeves, twisting and crackling under his palm. Obito's fingers twitched, curling and uncurling. The Mokuton spikes jerked with the action, time and time again on the vergeof piercing the unconscious body, tearing it apart and reducing it to shreds of blood and flesh. Ultimately, unknowing why, he wasn't able to act upon the roiling killing intent.
Instead, two wooden bands rose from the the ground, curling around the adult Kakashi's wrists and suspending him in mid-air.
"Obito?" He heard the swirl patterned White Zetsu, Guruguru, ask, puzzled.
Obito didn't answer. He reached out towards Kakashi. This time, Mokuton spikes plunged deep into the latter's shoulder without hesitation.
"Argh…" Fresh blood instantly gushed out, dyeing the white robes. Kakashi grunted, struggling subconsciously.
"Don't move." Obito warned, voice rasping, "Move again and I'll kill you."
Kakashi's eyes – black eyes – slowly opened. The moment they focused on him, any guarded or hostile barriers dissipated, rapidly transforming into unbelievable shock, bordering on delirious joy; but the next moment, as the gaze passed beyond Obito's shoulder to take in the crumpled form of Rin, it froze. Kakashi's face instantly drained of colour.
"…Rin…" Beneath the mask, the voice whimpered, trembling. It wasn't entirely the same sound as Obito remembered, but he could faintly make out the tone of a silver haired teen. Though, that wasn't all Obito focused on. He glared at Kakashi's whole, ordinary eye and felt the flames of rage sweep again through his chest.
First you betray our promise to protect Rin; then, even the sharingan that was a token of our promise, the sharingan that was my gift to you at the brink of death – have you betrayed that as well? Thrown it away as well?
The tearing of cloth and flesh resounded as Mokuton spikes dug deeper into Kakashi's left shoulder, penetrating it. The burning agony finally regained the silver-haired man's attention. He gave a muffled grunt, lowering his head, and began to shudder violently.
"Obito? What are you doing? Who are you talking to?" Obito ignored Guruguru.
"…Obito." Kakashi's body finally relaxed again. His lifted gaze bore into Obito, cold sweat slid down his forehead, past the pair of black orbs that had regained clarity but was brimming with sadness, and fell from the corner of those eyes.
"Shut up, you trash." Obito replied coldly. He was staring at Kakashi with hate. "I sacrificed everything to save you, gave you eye, and this is how you repay me? Stepping on the bodies comrades, feeling justified and stepping up to the position of Hokage? You betraying, backstabbing cold blooded killer!"
"I should never have saved you, should have left you to that wretched rock!"
Against all Obito's expectations, upon hearing those words, Kakashi neither flew into a rage nor curled up in shame – instead, he crinkled his eyes into a smile.
An unbearably bitter smile.
"Yeah." He answered, voice soft, "You're right. Maybe that would be for the best."
The overwhelming sincerity of pain and regret in the man's voice took Obito by surprise. He was at a loss for words.
A short silence. Moments later, it was Kakashi that spoke first.
"Not going to kill me? It's not too late to avenge Rin. I won't resist… vent your hate on me to your heart's content, Obito."
"Your enemy is me… only me."
"You think I won't dare?" Obito narrowed his eyes dangerously. The Mokuton spike was pulled back and instantly, a wealth of blood spurted out of the jagged wound, dyeing half of Kakashi's body in bright red. It left streaks of colour on the white Hokage robes, trailing the hem of the fabric and finally dripping down into the puddles that littered the battlefield.
Kakashi shuddered with a suppressed gasp of pain. Kakashi closed his eyes calmly in the face of the Mokuton spike, this time pointed at his heart.
Obito hesitated at the invitation and acceptance of death written across the man's face.
"…You want to die that much?" He couldn't help but ask after a prolonged silence.
"Of course I want to live. But if I die here and now, at your hand, maybe there's more meaning to that than being alive."
"I know the current me doesn't have the right to ask anything of you." Kakashi opened his eyes, staring into him with an unexpected, silent plea. "But I hope you can remember what I say next."
"After I die, destroy my body. Don't tell anyone what transpired here. Take Rin back to Konoha, oversee her burial – walk with her on this last leg of the journey. As to where my thirteen-year-old self went… died, ran away, say whatever you want. Look after Minato-sensei, you're his only student now. Finally, and the most important…"
"Never come into contact with Uchiha Madara or any of his underlings ever again."
Obito jerked up in surprise, "You know about Madara?"
"Of course. I'm from the future, I know everything that happens from here onwards." Kakashi stared at him, his expression a tangle of inscrutable emotions Obito couldn't comprehend.
Obito was about to ask for more when a shout cut him off. The White Zetsu that lead him here stalked towards him. "What are you doing, standing here? Where is the Hatake?" It frowned, looking around. His gaze glanced over the Rokudaime Hokage without pause or reaction
"…What?" Obito gaped; this time, even Kakashi appeared stunned.
"I wanted to ask that from a while ago, too." Guruguru, who was attached to him, began, "The Kakashi that was there a moment ago just disappeared, and you looked like you've gone crazy, stabbing and cursing at air."
"You guys… Kakashi…" Obito gawked at both of the White Zetsu. Snapping out of his daze, he hurriedly slapped both hands together into a seal, "Kai!"
Nothing changed. The silver-haired man dressed in Hokage robes still hung in midair from the Mokuton bindings.
Not a genjutsu, then. Though it appeared that only Obito could sense Kakashi's presence, see him, talk to him.
What the hell is going on?
"Probably broke under the mental strain, sent himself over the edge." White Zetsu slapped his forehead and mumbled in exasperation. "Whatever," He glanced back at Obito, "Konoha backup is going to arrive soon, we gotta get out of here, back to Madara. Come on!"
That was Obito's plan; go back to those caves, question Madara about the perfect world and create it himself. A place with only peace and love. At least, that was the plan before he turned around and saw Kakashi from twenty years in the future.
Now, a strange hesitation clawed at him. The appearance of an adult Kakashi and the 'future' he spoke about tugged at Obito's heart like a hook, making him want to know more, uncover the mystery.
"I…" Obito lowered his head and hesitated. He had no idea what to say.
It was that one moment of a mental slack, but it gave a certain someone the perfect opportunity—
Cackling lightning pierced the air, illuminating the dim forest with a blinding blue-tinted white light. It exploded from the silver-haired man's palm, roaring and shrieking, easily shredding the mokuton bands holding its owner's wrists, returning him freedom.
"…You!" Realisation dawned as Obito, startled and furious, watched Kakashi's feet touch the ground. Mokuton spikes shot out beneath his sleeves subconsciously, darting forward like deadly vipers.
The white figure was immediately riddled with holes — then ripped apart, torn into shreds and reduced to tatters of cloth that drifted towards the sodden ground.
It was the Hokage robes. The future Hokage himself had disappeared into the surrounding forest, perfectly concealing his scent.
"Where did you go? Get out!" Obito roared, swerving around blindly.
"I don't care what hallucinations you're having, we have to go now!" White Zetsu grabbed his wrist with crushing force, "Konoha's team is going to arrive any time now, the Yellow Flash is leading them… you know what would happen if you guys meet, right?"
Obito ceased struggling at its words, conflict fleeting across his face. Giving the pitch-black surroundings one last survey, and a lingering glance at Rin's body, he grit his teeth and let White Zetsu pull him away. Following the creature, they fled towards the direction of their arrival.
Though, it was clear they wouldn't be allowed to leave so easily.
A handful of shuriken flew towards them from every direction. Obito half-twisted, blocking all of it with Mokuton before realising that it was a distraction; the moment before the understanding dawned, sharp pain had already flared in his calf.
Obito's heart dropped as he saw the strangely shaped, three-pronged kunai embedded in his leg.
Almost in the same moment, a gust of soft breeze rustled behind him, wind mixed with the scent of fresh blood. Obito didn't even get the chance to turn before a strike landed on his neck, knocking him out of consciousness.
"It's over, Obito…" Before everything could plummet into darkness, Obito heard Kakashi's voice murmur beside his ear.
A/N：Here is the translator's ao3 page: /works/17573288/chapters/41417531#workskin (the first part of the URL is block by FF, but I bet you all know what it is)
Thank you for R&R!