Yo what's up. Another chapter. Hope you're all doing well. I plan to get another chapter up this week. Either Thursday or Friday. I'll try my best to aim for Thursday but we'll see.
To answer your question, I promise to always have a chapter up every week. I try for more and sometimes get up to 3 in a week. But that is solely based on how things are at work. I do guarantee weekly uploads though and soon when I introduce other projects, It'll remain weekly.
I truly appreciate the support you've all shown me. It makes my day everytime I read them. If there's any way you think I could improve, please let me know as I'm striving to become a better writer. Hope you enjoy, have a good day.
Naruto Of The Uchiha
When Naruto returned to the village, he was greeted with rain and it seemed to reflect the mood that most of the shinobi carried. What happened while he'd been gone? Quickly making a look to both Hawk and Hound, they all left to the Hokage's Office.
"Jiji. Captain Fox, reporting in from Land Of Waves. Mission successful, team Kakashi should arrive in the coming days along with Zabuza and Haku of Kiri."
"Well done. Any problems?"
"None that deal with the mission."
"What do you mean, Fox?"
"Commander Wolf! I didn't know you were here." Naruto bowed from a kneeling position.
"Relax, Fox. No need to be so formal at the moment." Naruto nodded and looked up while still kneeling with the other two a foot back and a foot to the side in a triangle formation. Hinto to Naruto's right, Yumi to the left. "What's the problem?"
"Jiji, Commander...I was killed..."
"What?" Commander Wolf said
"Come again." Hiruzen said at the same time.
Naruto gave a rundown of what transpired, "I was resurrected by the Kyubi. But I'm now suffering a type of chakra illness...I'm currently now down to 80% of my strength. If I don't get the key to my seal, I'll die by 21. I was hoping you had it, Jiji."
"So you mean to tell me, you died, are still dying and you trust the fox with such claims?"
"Yes, Jiji. He gave me his name now. Its Kurama. I was visited by Hagoromo, the Sage Of Six Paths. Now Kurama fully trusts me."
"I see...well I'd like to help, but I don't have the key."
"Fox, how long were you sitting on this?" Wolf said
"Since the Genin were assigned squads...do you atleast know who has the key?"
"Fox, you've got to come to us if you learn something like this!"
"I know Commander, I'm sorry. I thought I had more time. I wasn't planning on this happening until the war..."
"I know who has it. But I don't know when he plans to return to the village."
"Who is it?"
Hiruzen looked to Wolf and the two shared an unspoken conversation. It was time Naruto learned of his Godfather, even if said man wasn't prepared. He's had 12 years to get prepared.
"Your Godfather...Minato's sensei, Jiraya." Hiruzen said.
"My...Godfather? Where th hell's he been all this time? Is he not supposed to have been there after my parents died? I am happy that Nii-san took care of me but shouldn't he have atleast helped? Couldn't he atleast visit or write? How could he abandon me and his duty that he'd sworn to my parents?"
"I know it must hurt, Naruto-kun...but he-"
"Don't give that bastard any excuses Hokage-sama. He's had many years to deal with that shit! He flat out abandoned Naruto-kun." Wolf said.
"Itachi? It can't be..." Naruto thought as Wolf's voice had changed slightly. Wolf seemed to notice and recumposed himself.
"All I'm saying is that the man should have been there. Yondaime-sama would be disappointed."
"Maybe you're right, Commander. Naruto-kun, I'll send him a message and hopefully he will return soon...I know he wanted to train you at some point but-"
"I'll just be getting the key. He had a chance to be in my life these past 12 years...he chose not to. That's on him." Naruto said. "Is there anything I need to know?"
"Maybe we should hold off...with his condition we don't know just how far it'll affect him. We need to learn all we can before he worries about it." Wolf said. Ultimately in this situation he was advising, he may have power over his subordinates and control over who enters the force, but at the end of the day, they work directly under the Hokage. Whatever he says goes.
"I would normally agree...but we'll need his skills for what is coming." Wolf conceded and nodded. It was true that Naruto's skill was second only to him but not for much longer. Ofcourse Hiruzen would still mop the floor with them but time wasn't on his side and soon that wouldn't be the case.
"What is going on?"
"The first movements of war have begun. We are now under martial law and all shinobi have been pulled to active status. War will be soon. Now its a matter of who attacks first." Hiruzen said
"I see...do we know the full scope currently?"
"Confirmations that Iwa and Kiri will be together. That means we may face 3 Jinchuriki eventually. Kumo hasn't officially announced anything yet but it's a strong likelihood that they'll join the fray. If they do, that'll be 5 Jinchuriki that all can use their tailed beasts."
"Well Jiji, what do you need from me and my squad? We are ready to deploy whenever you say."
"Right now, recuperate. I'll need you at the most strength possible for this war. The Jinchuriki will be your main targets."
"Hokage-sama...that can ruin him...he needed the Kyubi against Yagura, how is he supposed to face the tailed beasts that are stronger without his own?"
"Don't worry Commander...Naruto-kun's had a nack for pulling off the impossible. Besides, he has Hawk at his side. That'll help."
"As you wish, Jiji."
"Naruto-kun...I ask that you give Jiraya a chance...you don't need to forgive him but he can teach you a thing or two."
"We'll see Jiji. He'll have to give a really good argument. Anything else?"
"No that is all for me. Commander?"
"As you heard, take a week off. I want you to report to me tomorrow at 0500, we will talk about this illness in further detail."
"Hai." With a final bow the three left and were in the locker room.
They changed and went their separate ways. Naruto was in his training field in the backyard meditating. He needed to cut down the chakra cost on his jutsus now. Normally it didn't affect him but with this illness, he felt the drawbacks to the high chakra cost now.
"Seems like the days of throwing around Jutsus are no more. What does that mean to my fighting style?" Standing up and performing a few few fire jutsus, he got a guage on how it felt.
"So, no more using firedragons for now...that sucks. Same could be said with lightning but those require more chakra in general. Maybe I can do exercises that would build your reserves?"
Naruto spent the entirety of the day on chakra exercises meant to build one's reserves. There felt like there was no difference aside from being tired. "Dammit! This can't be! Come on..."
"Kit. Relax, you will burn yourself out this way. There is currently nothing you can do."
"Nothing at all?"
"I said currently. Right now you don't possess the means for it though. Just be patient. No longer are you going to be a chakra powerhouse. You'll need to be more strategic in your uses of chakra. On top of that, long fights will be your true enemy, if you can't end a fight quick, I'd advise you do what you can and retreat."
"That can't be done, Kurama. I can't just pack up and leave a battlefield. They're counting on me...I need to be as strong as I can. How can I defeat any Jinchuriki without my full strength?"
"Strength isn't what always decides an outcome. For as long as you have been a ninja, you're used to being the strongest, fastest, and the least worried of chakra. Things are different now. You won't be as fast, you won't be as strong, you won't have such endless chakra."
"What good am I without those?"
"A ninja is to persevere correct?" Naruto nodded "Then you must go on and find a way. It won't be easy and you may find yourself losing now...but still remember, that even your 80% is better than most's 100%. Hell maybe even worth double. Right now you need to keep your head and be focused. You're not going to be bailed out by your reserves."
Naruto sighed in defeat. No matter how he looked at it, this was the reality now. He'd continue to get weaker unless that key was given to him.
"You're still faster than everyone...not by as much now but still, no one should be able to compete with that."
Being hopeful was all he could do now. The next morning, Sasuki had yet to return so he just went to ANBU Hq without worry. It would be an annoying talk since he withheld important information.
"Morning, Commander..." Naruto bowed to Wolf who reciprocated.
"Captain Fox, take a seat. Go ahead and remove your mask." Naruto obliged and did as told. "Now, before we begin, tell me why you hadn't atleast told me. You know I would help in any way since I've got resources that others don't."
"I know Commander. I just felt that I could handle it alone without help."
"Naruto, no one can take everything on all on their own. It isn't weakness to ask for help."
"I get that...just felt like it would be something that caused everyone to see me differently...I'm weaker now and can't use high ranked jutsu anymore without severely fatiguing myself."
"This is exactly why you should have come to me! I swear, for as smart as you are, you're really good at making stupid choices." Wolf shook his head. "You know something Naruto? You're a lot like the little brother I never had...just come to me next time. Ok?"
"Hai. I'll come next time I learn anything important."
"Good. Now its time for your level 2 torture-i mean training."
"Shiiit..." Naruto tried to get away but was caught and shunshined to the new training ground of his.
For the rest of the day, Naruto was grinded to the ground. Wolf made sure Naruto learned how to fight through his fatigue since now he would need to, unlike before. They fine-tuned his jutsu for how he'd have to fight from now on and all in all, he still remained extremely deadly, just not so much of a widespread fighter anymore.
No more being careless, everything had to have a purpose. He couldn't afford to waste any chakra since it wouldn't replenish mid-fight anymore. Its still a hard adjustment and it would take time to get used to it, but he was on the right track.
Naruto kneeled breathing heavily. "So much for a week off." he said in between breaths.
"We need to make sure you won't make yourself pass out in combat by trying to fight like you normally would. Come to me in two days where we'll spar more."
"Why two days?"
"You won't be able to tomorrow."
"Oh yeah? Wat-" Naruto didn't finish as he passed out from chakra exhaustion.
Wolf shook his head and laughed. "Trust me...becoming a normal shinobi will be a hard reality for you...try to stay positive Naruto-kun."
Wolf carried Naruto to his house and surprisingly, Sasuki had just arrived back. She was walking up the steps to the patio when she saw Wolf with Naruto.
"Damn...he's still trying to be the same huh?"
"Yeah...I know it must be pretty hard for him to accept that he can't be the same shinobi. He'll need all the support he can get. Even if he tries to push you away, keep by his side."
"Always." Sasuki said with a smile. Wolf nodded and took him to their room to rest. He left immediately after laying Naruto down. There was business he had to attend to.
"He's about to become a target...I won't let that happen." Wolf said and disappeared from view.
Sasuki looked at the sleeping Naruto. He looked so peaceful for once. Maybe now that he was practically a normal shinobi in terms of chakra replenishing and recovery, he'd sleep more. Atleast there was a good thing to this she thought.
She was going to change him so that he'd be in fresh clothes rather than ones of sweat and dirt, but felt she may cross a boundary and decided to instead just remove the armor. Atleast he'd be more comfortable this way.
"What am I going to do with you?" she said shaking her head. Naruto pushed himself beyond human limits everyday, how the hell would he be normal?
The next morning he woke up groaning in pain. He was...sore...that wasn't normal. Trying to even get out of bed proved too difficult so he just laid there.
"Remember, you don't recover fast anymore. Give it a few more hours and you'll be able to get up."
"That's all I'll be able to do?"
"Yup. You realize that without your Uzumaki blood, you'd be passed out for two more days...right?"
Naruto sighed. "Looks like being part Uzumaki is my saving grace."
Naruto looked around and for the second time, Sasuki woke up before him. "This won't become a habit."
"What won't?" She said walking in with her hair still a little wet from a shower.
"This...I'm not going to be this way for too long. Nor will I be sleeping all morning."
"Hmmm. You really could use the sleep though."
"Yeah, sure...regardless, I have a few hours before I'll be able to get up apparently."
"Oh?" She had a mischievous look in her eyes and Naruto raised an eyebrow. "Is that so?" He nodded and the next moment she was on him.
Finally being recovered, there were a few things that had to be done before going to Wolf. As he was leaving Sasuki grabbed him from behind.
"Where are you going?"
"Oh, hey Sasuki-chan. I'm going to go see Jiji before training. By the way, thats messed yesterday. Taking advantage of the fact that I can't get away."
"I don't get why you'd want to. I know you enjoy it as well."
"That's besides the point."
"Then what's the point?" She said crossing her arms.
"Eh...Nothing...I'll see you later." Naruto shunshined before she could say anything and was about halfway to Hiruzen's office when he noticed Yugao.
She came over to him and greeted him. For a second Naruto kind of ignored her, well not necessarily, he was just trying to figure out what to say exactly.
"Naruto, what's wrong?"
"What's wrong? Well how about the fact you're betraying Nii-san! You know damn well how he felt about you!"
"You're mad about that? I never knew you'd have a problem..."
"He loved you..."
"I did too. It hurt like hell when he was gone and I couldn't even go see you because it was like going through it all again! I couldn't go anywhere near where memories had been that involved him. Hayate...he helped me through it...made me feel better and forget the pain..."
"So your answer was to forget him? W-"
"No! I can never forget him. Naruto...I would have liked nothing more than to have been with Shisui...fate decided otherwise however...Through it, it brought me Hayate who understood the pain of loss and helped me not lose myself in constant sadness..."
"He...makes you happy?"
Yugao nodded, smiled slightly with teary eyes. Naruto and Shisui had been two of the mist important people in her life at one point. One was gone and she didn't want the other to resent her.
"Naruto...sometimes the thing we want, isn't what we get...sometimes, you'll just have what you need."
"The hell's that supposed to mean?"
She ruffled his hair and chuckled lightly. "You'll understand one day. I'm sorry if you feel betrayed, that was never my intentions...I was scared to introduce you to him because I didn't know how you would react...then I thought you were perfectly fine with it when you met."
"Well I couldn't just blow up in front of everyone! Had it just been us three, I may have gotten angry but it wasn't so I kept calm...ever since then I've had time to relax and I'm not that mad...I just thought you traded Nii-san in for someone else."
"I'd never do such a thing. You two were the most important pieces of my life. I should have been around more for you back then...and I'm sorry about that..."
"It's ok...I overreacted and jumped to the wrong conclusion. That's my fault...I'm going to fight him though, and see if he measures up."
"Haha ok. Are you feeling ok though? You're carrying yourself differently, sorta like you're tired. You're never tired."
"I'm fine. Everything's good. I have to go meet with Jiji. I'll see you around." Naruto waved bye and left towards Hiruzen's office once more.
The mansion had all kinds of things going on. Papers were frantically passed around and spread everywhere. The secretaries, assistants, and every worker were all in the middle of chaos it seemed. Going closer to Hiruzen's office, the shinobi workers were all around maps drawing up plans and discussions about how the enemy's been moving lately were depicted.
He noticed Shikaku Nara in the middle of it all directing the movements and plans. Every idea went through him and every plan set, was approved by him. If it wasn't approved, it got tossed. He was carrying some serious weight as the lead strategist.
Just where would Naruto fit into this? Were they taking into account his Chakra illness or were they banking on his full strength? That thought scared Naruto as if they were depending on him, he wouldn't want to let them down. But he was different now and wasn't at full capacity. No matter what, they'd get his all. Success is the only option, failure's not.
Naruto knocked on the door and heard Hiruzen call for him to enter. "Ah Naruto-kun, what brings you by today?"
"First off...its hectic out there. Does Shikaku-sama know of my condition?"
"No...he is thinking that you're at full strength. Naruto...this war will be on your shoulders...Depending on how you are, will sway the results of war."
"I hope I can deliver...I'll do the best I can...no matter the cost. Which is why I'm here...is there any-"
"No! You will not be taking any drugs for this. It may only worsen your illness."
"No! That is an order. You'll have to wait until Jiraya arrives."
"WELL TELL THAT FUCKING BASTARD TO HURRY UP! WE'RE RUNNING OUT OF TIME!"
"Naruto-kun...calm down. He'll-"
"GET PEOPLE KILLED BECAUSE I WON'T BE STRONG ENOUGH TO SAVE THEM! IF SASUKI IS HURT BECAUSE I WASN'T AT FULL STRENGTH BECAUSE OF THAT FOOL...I'LL KILL HIM!" Naruto's Eternal Mangekyo flared to life and began spinning rapidly and his Chakra was flaring up to form a flame-like aura around him.
The ANBU in the room came down and were going to try to calm him down but with one glance from him, they all dropped to the floor unconscious. He looked back to Hiruzen who still looked as calm as ever.
"Are you done?"
"Rrrg...you better hope nothing happens to her! Or so help me god...my wrath will be felt by all..." Naruto was gone in a flash to his squad's training ground where Wolf was waiting. Hiruzen just leaned back in his chair and hoped that Jiraya would show up already. Things were getting dangerous.
Wolf was seated on a crate in the clearing and looked up when Naruto had appeared. "You're late."
"Yes...went longer than exoected..."
Wolf just nodded as he knew what happened. Not many things transpire that he isn't aware of. Plus, it doesn't hurt when you've got eyes everywhere. "Well I have the thing we talked about a while back. Took a while for them to be made. All that's left is for you to put your seal."
Naruto went to the crate that Wolf got off of and opened it. He smiled and thanked him "This will help me be more effective with it."
"Good. Now, onto training..."
The week would go by and Naruto's frustrations would grow more. Being forced to change his style so much wasn't easy and being so tired constantly was getting to him. Now though, he had to step up as Captain again and start taking missions once more. Kakashi's squad was currently inactive as he was taking high ranked missions under ANBU and was busy.
All Genin in fact were rather inactive currently. They were either training on their own...which most weren't...or just lounging around like they're on vacation. They were so foolish and didn't even realise the error in their decisions...
"Captain Fox, we need your squad to head to the borders between Fire and Earth. We've gotten reports that Iwa is beginning a small push inland...assert our presence."
"Hai." Naruto shunshined to the squad meeting room. "Listen up. We deploy in 40 minutes. Gear up, we're headed to Earth Country."
"Are we invading?" Hippo asked
"No. We are...responding." Fox said with slight amusement in his tone. Frustration was building to bloodlust to prove that he still had his strength.
No one aside from Hiruzen, Kakashi and his squad, Wolf, Hinto, Yumi, Zabuza, and Haku knew of his Chakra illness...yet he still felt that he had to prove his strength to everyone. On top of that, they were depending on him during this war. The Jinchuriki were his targets and he'd also be in some of the major battlefields.
"Captain, has the general shinobi been notified of war?" Hound said
"No. They've all been put into active duty, however war has yet to be announced. I'm not sure when that'll be. Anything else?"
No one spoke up for about a minute. "Well you heard the Captain! Gear up, we head out in 35 minutes." Hinto said and everyone quickly left.
"Are you ready my friend?"
"You know I always am Naruto. So, you get that shipment yet?"
"Yeah. The Commander brought it to me during training a week ago. Its time to show it's return."
"Do you think it's wise to keep your Sharingan always active? Given your illness." Hinto said in a serious tone. The playful voice gone now.
"I've been doing this since I was 5...I have no problems. The Mangekyo...that's a different story. I can't use it's abilities much, it takes too much from me."
"I see. Try not to overdo it."
Naruto nodded and the two left the room towards the rendezvous point outside the village. This would be a rather some set of mission parameters. Their sole objective was to eliminate all enemy shinobi. The simplest mission type you could get...aside from patrol.
After the allotted time, the rest of the squad arrived. Snake and Hippo still held apprehension towards Naruto but Hound was trying to sway them. They'd been surprised by his sacrificial actually, but still feared his power...and maybe rightfully so. His power at its fullest is unmatched, once he reaches his prime and gains even more techniques, just what kind of monster would he be?
Although he's shown no sign of ever turning on them...atleast to their knowledge, he was still feared and seen as a threat by them. If they'd heard his warning and threat to Hiruzen, what would they do? What could they do? That was probably the scariest thing, the fact that they knew, they stood no chance.
"Rules of engagement Captain?" Hippo said
"Eliminate all enemies...no survivors."
They were coming up to the location that the Iwa Nins were spotted. It looked like they'd camped out here but recently left. By the looks of things, they'd left an hour ago.
"Should we head back then?"
"No Hound. They just crossed into our land, they'll die." Naruto said and took off towards the trail.
"What if it's a trap to ambush us?"
"If they tried to ambush the Captain, they'd regret it dearly Hippo. Let's go before he takes all the fun." Hawk said and chuckled a bit at their tilting heads.
Hinto caught up and was running at Naruto's side now. "So, why so eager for combat? You weren't this way before..."
"I'm...just...look, everyone is counting on me for this war. If I can't even take on an obvious ambush, how will I ever take on 5 Jinchuriki?"
"Naruto...you need to relax. You're giving yourself too much pressure. It's not like you'll face multiple Jinchuriki at once. Besides, we've got quite a while before you have to face one."
"Maybe you're right...I'm not used to being..."
"Normal. Listen, the Kyubi is not what makes Naruto Uchiha deadly, or feared by enemies. It is the kenjutsu, teleporting master that has them nervous to face you. Add Genjutsu and you're of the deadliest shinobi out there. Never forget that it is your hardwork that's gotten you as strong as you are. The Kyubi helped yes, but it isn't all that makes you."
"Thanks...Hinto. This war is going to be rough on the village. That alliance outnumbers us greatly. It isn't impossible to pull an upset but it won't be easy. I wonder if a drawn out war is more beneficial vs us trying to end it quickly."
"Only time will tell. Now, where are our ambushers?" Hinto said to mock the enemy as they entered a clearing.
They were on the low ground and the enemy would have the tree line, bushes, and the high ground. The two had deliberately been ahead of the others so that when the fighting started, the enemy would be surprised by the 3 newcomers...well 4 counting the dog.
Naruto's Sharingan glowed although it was day so it wasn't as prominent, but it was still visible. Hinto's Byakugan activated and he took note of their numbers. Through sign he said "10, Jonin calibre." They might have been lower ranked but they had chakra levels of a Jonin.
Naruto nodded in confirmation and cracked his neck. "So...how shall we do this? You or me first?" No one spoke so he shrugged "Alright then. Me first." It seemed that either the enemy was waiting for the others, or were just not ready. Regardless, they wanted to occupy the enemy before the others arrived.
Naruto took out the tanto and lowered his stance, "Teleportation Jutsu." he whispered and 5 other Naruto's appeared around him. Hinto made 2 shadowclones and they leapt into the tree line. Once they reached the trees though, the got repelled by some force.
"What the?" Naruto said as he was flung back into the clearing
"No way...how was it not visible to my eyes until then?" Hinto said looking around them.
"What is it, Hawk?"
"They've got a barrier up...but it was invisible, even to my Byakugan until we made contact."
"But, that shouldn't be possible right? It's made up of chakra so you should still see it." Naruto looked around and he noticed it now too. "Perhaps they put it up the moment we went to strike...I'm not sure."
"Well well well...looks like we've caught the mighty Fox...we were expecting ANBU of the Leaf, how kind of them to send you. That lets us kill two birds with one stone." An unknown man said from the treeline.
"Fox, his chakra...it's changing..." Hinto whispered
"So. To whom do we owe the pleasure of meeting. You know of me, I'm guessing you guys still aren't too happy about what happened back then."
"Hmm. I have to say, I was impressed by that showing...however I could have easily done the same."
"Yeah? You know that how?"
"Fox...his chakra is like yours...not as potent and strong...but it's building more and more."
"I'm getting the sneaking suspicion that you've jinxed me earlier." Naruto said looking at Hinto shaking his head.
"Really? You choose now to make jokes."
"Look man, we're stuck in this barrier, the hell else am I gonna do? Cry for salvation?" Naruto shook his head "Right now we need to find a way out, and learn all we can about this guy. Longer we can stall, the better. I'm guessing that this barrier takes a few shinobi to hold, hopefully the other 3 can do something about it."
"What are you two whispering about over there? Do you want to know why we've come?" The unnamed man said.
"Sure. If you plan to actually tell us, please enlighten us." Naruto said looking to the general direction of the voice.
"Let's get something straight, you two will be dying here today. Aside from that, several of your patrols will be hit in the next hour...now, it's time for you to meet your end."
"So, if today we are to die...I'd like to know the name of my would be killer." Naruto said
"Roshi. Now, die..." Roshi charged up his Chakra and Naruto instantly realized what it was.
"Shiiit. Hope this works..."
Suddenly a bijuu bomb was formed and was launched into the barrier. Naruto flashed through a couple hand signs, and held out a kunai, however it was different now. It was a tri-pronged blade modeled after Minato's, however it had a black handle as a difference.
A large seal appeared in front of Naruto and Hinto as the bijuu bomb came at them, it got absorbed into the seal. "I wish I had a marker in Earth Country...oh well, Kiri it is." The bijuu bomb disappeared fully and was sent to a kunai that was outside Kiri.
Naruto dropped to a knee panting heavily. Hinto went down to check on him and noticed a bead of sweat drop down the side of Naruto's face. "Damn...that took a lot. How did my father do it like it was nothing? And to Kurama's at that!"
"Well it is your first time using the Hiraishin in that manner...are you going to be ok? Speaking of which, why don't you teleport us out of here?"
"You're probably right. I should be fine, just give me a second...but I'd love to teleport us...I can't though."
"I guess it has something to do with that barrier. It had to be opened for them to launch that attack, that was my window to send it away. It takes them a while to close it back up but I can't teleport it away and us at the same time." Naruto said as he stood up and regained composure.
"Now that's new. Our reports never said anything about you possessing a jutsu to absorb jutsu."
"That's the wrong assumption of what I did...but it doesn't matter. Is this your plan though? Keep us in a barrier and launch bijuu bombs all day?" Naruto said.
"I think I found a way out of the barrier, I need time though."Hinto said and began to build chakra. Naruto nodded and tried to analyze the situation more.
Currently trapped in a barrier that wouldn't allow him to teleport out. The good thing was that it wasn't draining their chakra. If that was the case, this would only be a waiting game for the enemy. If they couldn't break the barrier by force, they'd just have to try to outlast the enemy, it had to take a substantial amount of chakra to have the barrier up, it was only a matter of time before it dropped.
The issue with that plan was how much they'd be attacked during that time. Surely the attacks would escalate as the time ran out. If Hinto's plan didn't work, then he could try timing the opening of the barrier and teleport them out, it would just mean that this area would face whatever destruction that would come at it.
"You wouldn't want me to come in there." Roshi said with extreme confidence, almost begging for Naruto to challenge...which he would gladly oblige.
"Tough talk from outside the barrier." Naruto said with a smirk under his mask.
Immediately Roshi came in. Hinto realised last second and was looked at Naruto but he wasn't paying attention anymore. He was just looking at Roshi. The man was tall, had a red orange beard and hair. Naruto just gave him a once over and shrugged. Could be worse, no clear weapon and nothing really stood out as threatening aside from the fact that apparently his chakra was similar to Naruto's.
This meant Roshi was a Jinchuriki. They currently didn't know of which tailed beast yet, either it was the 4 tails or the 5 tails.
"Kurama. Can you tell me which of your siblings we are dealing with?"
"That'd be the 4 tails, Son Gokū. You should still be able to take him...if he uses my brother, you will have trouble...good thing is that you have some pretty strong abilities that can practically win you this fight if pulled off."
"Right...if...anything I need to know about what Son can give him?"
"Hmm, refers to them by name...The others will appreciate that, but I wonder if he'd like being on such level terms to him..." Kurama thought as he Naruto said Son rather than the full name. Son Gokū always expected a long title...reduced to Son may not be very appealing to the monkey. "He'll have access to Lava release. His taijutsu should be stronger."
"Ok. That is an interesting one. Thank you."
Naruto looked to Hinto who wasn't too pleased but nonetheless, they were in it together. The two gave a nod and looked back to Roshi who was smiling in anticipation. He must have felt Naruto's aura and felt the similarity...could he also tell which tailed beast he held? Was his tailed beast on good terms with him or not, if so is it possible to know of the illness?
"Well I'm here, Fox. I can tell we are the same...which do you hold." Roshi said as he lowered slightly into a stance that didn't look normal to Naruto or Hinto. Almost apelike.
"Well monkey, that is for me to know and you to figure out. By the way, if you're on speaking terms with him, tell Son I said hello." Naruto smirked at Roshi's headache that seemed to come at him. Roshi was clutching his head and was nearly brought to his knees.
Good. He wasn't on good terms with the 4 tails and apparently he struck a nerve to the tailed beast. Kurama was laughing and knew Son Gokū wouldn't appreciate a short title.
"You're gonna die first, FOX!" Roshi charged Naruto and pounced on him beginning to beat the hell out of Naruto.
Hinto threw him off and they began to exchange in a taijutsu bout that Hinto dominated at first. His speed was too fast for Roshi and all that fighting against Naruto really helped his skill multiply. He noticed though that the Juuken was somewhat useless since there seemed to be a layer of chakra surrounding his body.
Roshi seemed to have fought a Hyuga before and realised a way to render the Juuken somewhat useless. It still does damage but it isn't as effective. Hinto went for the heart but out of nowhere Roshi increased his speed and dodged, as he did, he grabbed Hinto around the neck and squeezed until there was a sickening crack, and he fell limp to the ground.
Naruto had just gotten up and saw this, Roshi laughed before charging him and doing the same but slowly so he could watch Naruto flail helplessly. Once he heard the crack he laughed loudly and boasted. Until something stopped it all.
"What an interesting imagination you have..." Naruto said as a voice that seemed to surround Roshi.
In front of Roshi, a ghostly looking Sharingan appeared in front of him spinning and faded away. Once that happened the world around him shattered and when he opened his eyes, he breathed heavily on his knees. When he looked up, Naruto stood there, Hinto at his side. Now though, the Sharingan was completely visible through the mask.
"What? What was that?" Roshi said between breaths.
"The difference in our power..." Naruto was trying as hard as he could to look nowhere near worried of anything in terms of his own strength. "Now, shall we begin?"
Naruto blurred out of sight and kicked him in the face sending him flying. Hinto came behind him and delivered a Juuken strike to the spine and a pop was heard. Roshi fell to the ground and couldn't move.
"That was simpler than I thought..." Hinto said as he deactivated his Byakugan.
"BACK AWAY NOW!" Naruto said and immediately Hinto jumped way from a red chakra covered arm and shunshined to Naruto.
"Well, I guess that is one way to solve what the Juuken did."
"Hawk, he's a Jinchuriki remember. The Juuken won't keep us down long...and it looks like we've pissed him off."
"Well, Genjutsu should still be a viable option since Son didn't help him out of the first one...Hiraishin would be great but I'd have to mark him, won't be easy at the moment and I'm not sure if that chakra around him would even be a place where the marker would be since everything I've ever marked has been solid, chakra isn't..."
"Right...and Mangekyo isn't an option since you'd be rendered pretty injured after...Damn...I actually kinda miss the unsick you."
"Really, asshole. I don't see you giving any ideas."
"Well bozo, the guy just ate a paralyzing strike. My ninjutsu was never to your scale and he's practically rendered me near useless." Hinto said shaking his head. He wasn't a great match against Jinchuriki but anyone else, he would be able to take on nearly anyone.
Naruto scowled. He really wished he was at full strength. Yagura was a match against Naruto when using his tailed beast, so Naruto not at full power against an opponent with a stronger tailed beast? This wasn't going to be fun to him.
"Where the hell are the others?" Naruto said as the realization hit them. They should have done something by now.
"Not sure...but right now, we better find a way to fight this guy since he's getting up now."
Roshi stood up with a single tail and was shaking angrily at them. He charged Hinto which he dodged to the left, immediately, Roshi's new acrobatic ability showed off as he was able to immediately land and pounce at Hinto before he even landed. Naruto jumped between and reached out to place the Hiraishin mark on Roshi.
Quickly Roshi spun and knocked them both away with his tail. "Does he know of my Hiraishin?" Naruto thought as they both landed.
Naruto got taken from his thoughts when Roshi jumped at them again, he sent chakra to his sharingan and looked Roshi in eyes. He grabbed Hinto and shunshined to the opposite side of the barrier.
"What did you do?"
"I put him in a Genjutsu that will keep him occupied a little while." Naruto began to pant and clutched at his chest as he dropped to a knee coughing.
"What's wrong?" Hinto looked and saw Naruto's chakra was acting up again.
"I guess it took way more chakra to use a Genjutsu on him in that state...I thought that I could still handle Genjutsu of that level..." Naruto said in between breaths. He hadn't tested what Genjutsu he could and couldn't do after the illness. Only Ninjutsu.
"What rank was that?"
"High 'B'. Borderline 'A'. It's the same as I did the first time, however I did it a little differently, it would last us a few minutes to strategize...but I made a grave mistake. I didn't know my limits and now..."
"You're below 50% chakra...so this illness...it makes your chakra deplete fast when using higher ranked jutsu?"
"Yes and no...it depletes faster in general, just becomes really apparent when I push myself. I thought Genjutsu would be the least of my worries since it works differently than normal jutsu...that's why I never bothered to test it. Hinto...I'm sorry."
"Don't be. It's not your fault."
"It is. Had I been more diligent, this wouldn't be an issue. Now I'm not sure of a viable strategy to win."
"Then what about surviving. I know you can think of one." Hinto picked Naruto up and the two stood, watching Roshi still frozen in place as he was still trapped in the Genjutsu.
"Kill him now...I didn't recommend it because the moment we touch him, the Genjutsu will break because our chakra will break it due to his tailed beast chakra is constantly changing, it would become too unstable...it has to be to the head, that's the only true way to kill him."
Hinto nodded and ran with a kunai in hand to deliver the killing blow. Right as he got there, he heard Naruto groan and looked back to see Naruto drop to a knee. In his lapse of focus he looked back to Roshi and was instantly punched in the ribs with a crack. He was sent flying back to Naruto, when he landed grunted in pain from breaking a rib.
Roshi was finally able to break free of the Genjutsu and that must have been what caused Naruto's pain.
Naruto looked down at Hinto and noticed that he'd broken a rib. This complicates things. "Where the hell are the others!"
Roshi charged to the helpless Hinto and Naruto quickly shunshined in the path and took out his tanto. He poured lightning charkra through the blade except unlike Sasuki, he had lightning dancing around the blade which also came off the tip about a foot, adding to the length. In a slash he hit Roshi with the blade and pushed against him, it took his full strength to finally throw him back but was pleased when the lightning launched from the blade and into Roshi.
Roshi screamed in agony as the lightning was shocking him and burning him further since the chakra cloak was already burning his skin. In even more anger, he sprouted two more tails. Now the chakra burnt his skin off and he was now red and black with white eyes. He looked more like his tailed beast and was on all fours.
"Great...just what I needed." Naruto closed his eyes and tried to think of a way to beat this guy at this point. His power now surpassed Yagura's in his tailed beast state and now he wouldn't be able to use Kurama's chakra to overpower the enemy this time.
With under 50% chakra remaining, and an enemy who's chakra was still rising, it would only be a matter of time before Naruto would succumb to his enemy.
The Kyubi is not what makes Naruto Uchiha deadly...
He heard Hinto's voice in the back of his head as they were coming to this point. "That's right...I'm Naruto Uchiha, son of the Yondaime, cousin to Shisui Uchiha...I will not lose here." Naruto opened his eyes and his Sharingan glowed even more.
He began walking to Roshi and held out his tanto, Lightning charged through it and the two charged eachother.
"Guys, I don't think we should follow this path. It sounds like an easy ambush." Snake said
"Then why would the Captain and Hawk go then?"
"I'm not sure Hound. But it wouldn't be wise to follow so closely. We would be better as a second wave."
"Do you think they know it's a trap?" Hippo said
"I don't believe they're stupid enough to not know...Captain Fox destroyed us without even trying. He's no fool. Him and Hawk will be fine. We'll follow from a distance and once they take the enemy's attention, we go in."
The three nodded and began to continue going. They followed but something seemed off, for some reason it felt as though they had crossed here already. Something was definitely wrong so they flared their chakra and realized it had been a Genjutsu. Looking around they had been surrounded.
Naruto and Hinto vs Roshi
Naruto was thrown back and was panting heavily. There were burns on his arm and his armor chest plate and back plate was off in a small puddle of lava. Roshi looked the same as before but he was getting tired and was in constant pain from the chakra and Naruto's lightning infused tanto strikes.
The barrier still remained but it wouldn't be up much longer. It was up for quite a long while and they'd have to be tired by now.
Roshi charged at Naruto who remained in place and just brought his hand to his mouth. "Fireball Jutsu" he whispered and blew out a large fireball directly at Roshi who was hit due to the proximity and was sent back with flames burning him. Annoyed he charged up a bijuu bomb.
"Again...really?" Naruto frowned and looked back to Hinto. The two shared a look and Naruto got worried. "I don't think I can send it away this time..."
Naruto shunshined beside Hinto and grabbed his shoulder. "No, Naruto don't...you've never used it without the Kyubi's aid. Who knows how much more painful it'll be for you now!"
"There's no other choice. I don't think I can send it away a second time right now. Maybe if I hadn't used that second Genjutsu I would be able, but not now." Naruto looked to Roshi who just finished forming the bijuu bomb. "Atleast this will officially take down the barrier."
Hinto nodded as he too suspected that it wouldn't be long before it came down. This would be too much for the ones keeping it up to handle.
Naruto closed his eyes as the bijuu bomb came at them, opening them last second, his Eternal Mangekyo came to life. "Susanoo." his black armored Susanoo came to life. The pain was twice as much as it normally was and he grunted in the pain before getting used to it. The bijuu bomb collided and exploded, it's power threw Roshi back and broke the barrier.
Naruto swung the sword down and hit Roshi, incapacitating him at the moment. Quickly he performed lightning jytsu through the Susanoo and struck everyone that was around them giving them heart attacks. He deactivated the Susanoo and fell to a knee breathing heavily.
"One more thing to do..." Naruto's finger tips glowed and the symbols of each element appeared. He shunshined to Roshi, "Five Pronged Elemental Seal." he slammed his hand into Roshi's abdomen and he was knocked out with all his chakra quieting then fading away.
Naruto was about to fall over from exhaustion when someone caught him. It was Snake. "You look like shit Captain." Snake said laughing. Hound and Hippo went to help Hawk.
"Where the hell were you guys?"
"We followed from a distance since I figured you knew of the ambush...turns out it was two separate ones and we were surrounded. Just got free when we heard a large explosion, came and saw you place some seal on this guy."
"I see. He's the 4 tailed Jinchuriki. I put a seal that is blocking the tailed beast chakra from being used." Naruto said and was on the verge of passing out.
"Can it be broken?"
"Everything...can be...broken..." Naruto then passed out from chakra exhaustion and they immediately left to go recover. Surprisingly to everyone, Snake actually carried Naruto the whole way. Some kindness coming from the guy who resented Naruto the most.
"Hawk...how is the Captain this affected? While you guys went to the land of waves, I asked around the force about him...he's had some ridiculous feats, so how was one man able to do this?" Snake said as they were nearing the village.
"Hmm. It is true, he has faced 100 but he was passed out for 3 days after. He did face the Mizukage and wasn't this affected...but there were different circumstances involved. If you wish to know, ask him yourself. Maybe he'll trust you more than you trust him."
This showed Snake that Hawk knew full well that he was always planning something against Naruto. "Look, I'll admit that I'm wary of him...but he has proven on multiple occasions his loyalty to the village and those around him...I can't deny that. His power, his strength...its all just scary and overwhelming...add the kyubi..."
"I understand Snake. But when he's never done anything to earn these fears and suspicions, treating him as if he has may one day drive him to becoming what everyone fears."
Snake just nodded and they continued to the village. Upon arriving they reported to Hiruzen's office. When they got there, Commander Wolf was already there and the two had been awaiting their return. They were surprised to see Naruto's state and immediately wanted answers.
"Hokage-sama, we went to the area where the enemy was suspected. It was clear that they'd moved position so we followed. Me and Fox went ahead and were placed in a barrier. We faced the 4 tailed Jinchuriki and I ended up breaking a rib, he fought him alone most of the time and eventually beat him when he was forced to use the Susanoo. Fox took out the enemies that had put the barrier up when it fell, and placed a 'Five Pronged Elemental Seal' on the Jinchuriki." Hawk said and winced slightly at the pain in his rib.
"What about the rest of you?" Hiruzen said looking at the three.
"We followed from a distance to come as a second wave to a distracted enemy. We were in a Genjutsu and when we broke it, we were surrounded. It took us a while to finally beat them all. When we did, we heard an explosion and went as fast as possible. We only caught the part where the Captain placed the seal on the Jinchuriki. He passed out shortly after." Snake said and placed Naruto down gently.
"I can't believe the Captain was pushed to this state...is their Jinchuriki this strong?" Hippo said.
It wasn't that Roshi was stronger than Naruto, it was just that Naruto was still trying to learn how to fight at his weakened state. He still didn't know the limits to what he could do and until that was known, they couldn't predict all the variables. As Naruto had said during the fight, had he not used the second Genjutsu, things wouldn't have been so bad.
Once Naruto learned how to adapt to his weakened state, there wouldn't be another issue as this. Wolf was going to make sure that this didn't happen again.
Still, Iwa sending one of their Jinchuriki to Fire Country was a true act of war...this meant that it has now begun.
"Thank you. Now, Fox has brought us time. They won't be able to use one of their Jinchuriki for a while. It takes a seal master to break that seal but Iwa doesn't possess one. So it will take them a while to break ite. Anything to add Commander?" Hiruzen said
"You guys go rest. I will take care of your Captain. You are to train and rest up, you won't be taking any missions. I need you guys to get as strong as possible. Naruto's role in the war is to take on the Jinchuriki...you are his squad...You'll need to get stronger so as not to be caught in the cross fire."
"Hai!" they all bowed and vanished in a puff of smoke.
Wolf looked at Naruto and was worried for what this kid would have to face in the war. Especially since he couldn't use his full strength, let alone the Kyubi's since it would only weaken him. He needed some sort of new power that can strengthen him but not cause his illness to worsen...but what kind would that be?
"Sandaime-sama, Jiraiya-sama needs to hurry up and bring that key."
"I know, Wolf...I fear what may happen to Naruto-kun with this illness holding him back...you also have other worries."
"This war may force your identity to come known...how will we handle that? We haven't been able to fully get a plan in place." Hiruzen said looking to the ANBU Commander...the youngest there ever was at such position...
"I understand...but if it comes to that, it won't matter...besides, it was already a risk back when he had the transplant. Slowly the secrets are falling apart over time. Soon, he'll have to worry of the organization Akatsuki. They will start to strike once this war is over and weakens the 5 great nations."
"You've still kept tabs on them?"
"Ofcourse...you know I've got eyes everywhere..." A black bird flew in and landed in front of Hiruzen.
"That you do...still I don't think they're ready for the truth."
"They may never be...but that isn't something that we can control. I'm ready if I must reveal my identity to protect the village. It matters more than who I am."
With that Wolf picked Naruto up and they disappeared.