Standard disclaimers apply.

WARNING: SPOILERS for books 14 and above. Wild speculations. Insane character portrayals. Melodramatic crap. Random beyond compare. Please don't read if you don't even know what the Fourth Hokage vaguely looks like except for a face carved in stone! O.Ox You have been warned.


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Behind the Scenes — Behind the Seal
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"The Shiki Fuujin seal," Sarutobi coughed raspily, struggling to keep his consciousness, as he told Orochimaru, "binds the lifeforce of the sealer and the sealed together in the depths of the shinigami's stomach; an abyss between death and immortality." There was questioning in the protege's eyes, so the Third continued between gasps of breath. "There, they will engage in a battle of bitter hatred against each other...

"For all eternity!"

Orochimaru's eyes widened at the new knowledge. He had known it had taken a powerful, self-sacrificing jutsu for the Fourth Hokage to seal the Kyuubi into the navel of a newborn child. But this!

A bitter battle against each other for all eternity?!


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The large entity prowled his prison, sniffing periodically at the air. He had been doing this for the past decade or so of his life - he couldn't really remember. That was a preposterous thought, for he was a powerful youma. The strongest one out there - or anywhere. With a sweep of just one of his nine flailing tails he could level mountains and empty seas. He possessed a near limitless amount of chakra, and even without his chakra he could rip any opponent apart with his sharp teeth. He was immortal! Dynamic! Powerful! Peerless!

And!

And he was stuck.

Kyuubi whimpered, and pawed the bars of his seal sadly. Damn humans and their fancy jutsus. The bars wouldn't show a hairline crack no matter what he did.

But frankly speaking, that was not the worst part of the deal.

"OOH!!" An excited, trigger-happy voice echoed from somewhere in the bowels of the prison.

/Being sealed together with that thing,/ thought the Kyuubi sadly, /is./

Footsteps could be heard coming closer and closer to where Kyuubi hung out at the threshold of the prison, and the fox resisted the urge to cry. Why?? What had he done to deserve this fate? Yes, he was evil, and tried to destroy a village. But everyday somebody tried to destroy a village. You don't see /them/ getting sealed up with this abomination, do you?!

From the darkness, the 'abomination,' a spikey-headed, sunshine-blond Leaf shinobi waddled into view. In his hands he cradled a bowl like it was a chest of precious treasure. He stopped in front of the large demon fox and brandished it with one hand.

"Behold!" The Fourth Hokage pointed with his free hand. "The all new... Ramen no Jutsu!"

Kyuubi howled and banged his head against the bars. The Fourth had been trying to perfect the Ramen no Jutsu since they both got sealed into Naruto's being by the Shinigami - who, despite his otherwise malignant outlook, had a sense of humour twisted beyond imagination. After their imprisonment, the blond's reasoning was that since they were stuck here, they might as well do something productive - besides pick fights with each other every five seconds. And even though they were now essentially in an immortal realm of psyche with no need for material sustenance, the first thing the Fourth did was to announce that he would invent the jutsu he had always wanted to invent.

The Ramen no Jutsu.

"I don't believe it!" The golden-haired leader conjured a pair of chopsticks out from some of his excess chakra and began slurping noisily on his bowl of ramen. "There's actually a Kuchiyose that binds you to ramen summoning! Now I'll never have to worry about having no ramen to eat!"

Kyuubi made a whimpering sound, his back turned against the Fourth. He feared that if he stared at the blond any longer, he would be tempted to do something drastic. Like kill himself. Nevermind he couldn't even if he tried.

At his silence, Yondaime's slurping abruptly stopped. And the fox could feel the Hokage suddenly very near him.

"Kyuubi!" The Fourth had latched himself onto one of the massive fox's front paws and now sobbed in a perfect imitation of a damsel in distress. "I'm sorry! I forgot to summon you a bowl of ramen too! You must be so hungry after... twelve years of eating nothing but air! After all, we have nobody but each other now! I promise I'll summon you a bowl of ramen next time!"

The demon fox howled - very much louder this time, and tossed the Fourth somewhere back into the darkness behind him, trying to swipe the man's head off while he was at it. The ninja had nimbly flipped out of the way and now hung upside down on the dark, invisible ceiling, waving a finger at his fellow prisonmate.

"Now, now, Kyuubi," the blond was saying, "I thought we came to a truce just three days ago!"

"Truce bedamned," Kyuubi snorted, hackling his fur and readying a fire elemental attack. "I'm /not/ going to just sit here and watch my destiny laugh at me by forcing me to look, EVERYDAY, at the one man who was ever good enough to defeat me - only to realise that he's nothing but a ramen-loving, good-for-nothing jutsu inventor, sad excuse for the name of Hokage!" The ball of fire energy grew larger as he talked. When he decided it was big enough, he threw it towards his opponent, who - no surprise here, ducked it with ease, still with a reprimanding finger on his lip.

"Bad fox!" The Fourth shook his head, landing lightly on the ground, entirely unconcerned that the youma had just tried to burn him into crispy cinders. "No TV for you tonight!"

That effectively stopped the fox, who was in the middle of combining a water and wind jutsu. He blinked once, and stopped baring the fangs he hadn't known he'd started baring. The Fourth had dragged a TV in some five years after the seal (the fox had never figured out where he found it) and used it as a constant tool to taunt the Kyuubi when he found out that the fox was addicted to the programs.

And the sad thing was that the demon fox always caved in.

The words of the Fourth echoed in his mind. No TV?! NO!! That would mean he wouldn't be able to catch the continuation of the tragedic love affair between that Mist ninja and that Grass ninja; whose names he could never remember, with their two nin-dogs in between - directed by the author of that Icha Icha Paradise thing! Tonight was supposed to be a two-hour special too! The pure agony!! But no! He could resist this! He only had to try! No one, not even the Fourth Hokage, had the right to swing him around by his tails like this!

He breathed.

"I don't care!" Kyuubi was proud of how nonchalant he sounded. He was getting good at this!

"Oh?" The Fourth replied in an equally nonchalant tone. "Then I guess you won't want me to file your nails for you anymore either, hm?"

Kyuubi gulped audibly.

"No brushing of your fur..." Yondaime continued, clasping both his hands behind his head in a laid-back pose not unlike the way a certain fox-whiskered boy often did. "No need for my Daibakufu no Jutsu for your daily shower..." He did not seem to notice the demon fox cringing more and more visibly. "Oh! And no more tickles under the chin before bedtime every night!"

Kyuubi finally collapsed. "No!" He whined like a lost puppy. "Anything but that! Noo!!" How cruel can a man get? How could he think of depriving a poor, trapped animal of his most simple comforts? What depravity humanity has sunken into from times past!

While he was busy evaluation the level of human morality, the Fourth had climbed onto his head, sat there, and pat him squarely. "There, there! I'm glad you learnt your lesson. Now, now! Our fighting must have left a bad aftertaste in Naruto's sleep. How about a nice little chakra flare to make things all good again?"

Kyuubi stopped whining.

"You pamper this child far too much for my own good," he snarled, just for the sake of snarling. It was true, though, that Naruto's chakra control could be stunted if the fox didn't periodically give out some of his chakra to try to get the boy used to his presence. And since the boy was to become a shinobi, having stunted chakra contributed to a fast death - and a fast death meant the fox would have no more hope of being eventually freed from his prison with this... this /thing/ they called a Hokage! Never may that happen!

The fox was also aware that Yondaime frequently prompted him to dispense and merge his chakra with Naruto's. It would ultimately be beneficial to Naruto, of course, especially since it would help him stay alive - and since the fox had too much chakra to spare anyway, though Kyuubi did not see why the Fourth cared so much. After only a slight moment of hesitation, though, the fox's warm chakra began to ripple through the shallowly water-filled prison. "Why do you care?" The fox snorted. "It's not like you're related."

There was a pause. Then the blond atop the fox's head replied easily, "I guess."

An awkward silence ensued.

Only to be broken a little later by:

"Hey! I know! I'll teach you the Ramen no Jutsu! With your amount of chakra, we'll get a lifetime supply!!"


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That night, Naruto dreamt of howling foxes and being drowned in ramen.


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19/3/2004
xd@tougenkyou.net


A/N
I know it's impossible for the Fourth to be there! XD XD XD But this is why this is fanfiction, isn't it? XD I always envision the Fourth to be pretty Naruto-ish himself, with ramen, crazy stints, and terribly good animal charisma. After all, some habits are genetic. ^_~x Can you just see it? The Fourth cheering Naruto on as the boy lives through his life? Just think of what crazy things he could be spouting when Naruto graffiti'ed his face on the monument. XD I truly pity the Kyuubi.

m(_ _)m thank you for reading this insanity!