I don't own Naruto, and blah blah,,
Apology is at the end of the fic. But before that, I'm very very
also, since sine it's a bit tedious calling them "Haku's mother and Haku's father" and can't even say "Mr and Mrs" something due to a lack of last name. But now I'm gonna give em names. Shoulda done it yonks ago, but… anyway: family name Yuki (means snow)
Father Uragiri Yuki , Uragiri relating to act of betrayal (I Kee-haul you for blood!)
Mother Naina Yuki, nick named Osanaina (Osanai meaning young and childish)
Ok, so i'm not on my biggest originality streak right now
Chapter 11: Training Day.
It took Haku a long time to will herself to move. She felt extremely sick. She was so sure this was just a dream… or a nightmare… and that she didn't have a demon shark swimming around inside of her. She didn't feel different at all, and was sure any minute now she'd witness something very scary or bizarre that would make her wake up. It didn't. Haku walked through the darkening kohona streets, without a single weird thing happening. There was a very scary thing however. As she passed one house she heard an explosion, but saw no smoke or flame. She stopped and listened hard, and then realised it wasn't an explosion, but someone angry, shouting. More specifically, some woman very angry, shouting her head off. Haku looked at the house and saw a small plaque outside. She understood suddenly and kept on walking. As she drew away, the door flew open, and a man and his son were thrown bodily from the house, in to the Nara family plaque. The older nara looked sideways and sighed.
"Next time she asks how dinner was, you don't say troublesome"
"…. Gottit. But next time she asks how was your day; don't say it's too troublesome to explain"
Haku arrived home at the same time as her father, who looked absolutely shattered, but not so much so that he didn't scold Haku for being out late. As the door opened, a large blanket of black smoke poured out for almost a whole minute, leaving the two people in the doorway looking char grilled and indistinguishable from the now blackened floor. Haku's mother was obviously still in the kitchen.
When the family had first arrived in Kohona, they each designated themselves jobs. Haku wanted to become a ninja, her father wanted to get any type of well paying job, and her mother… well, she was still a kid at heart (which might explain a small ice cream addiction) and didn't like the idea of working. She did however have a natural talent for cooking… except for any food that required heat, as the family was finding out now.
"Naina-Chan?" Uragiri asked to the room in general. Haku gave a small cough and a large amount of smoke came out.
"… Kobanha!" came a very small voice from a room from which smoke was still pouring out of. Uragiri sighed and walked into the room dragging Haku in with him. Sitting innocently at the table covered in ash and twiddling her thumbs was Naina. She gave a very wide grin, and after a short pause asked:
"who's in the mood for a take out then?"
Another short pause, then each of the 3 burst out laughing. Uragiri wrapped his arms round his wife, and gave her a quick hug, calling her "baka no Onanani-Chan" and gave her a quick dig in the ribs. She squealed and bucked, pushing him away, before turning around and hugging him back, and they both laughed like small children. Haku on the other hand was standing in the doorway, trying to discretely get their attention, by tapping her foot, or clearing her throat. As her parents started goofing around she began to get slightly annoyed, and as they began hugging and kissing, she began to make retching sounds, but to no avail. Finally, almost 5 minutes later, when she asked whether they wanted her to leave, and whether they could make sure she got a baby brother (both parents stopped right away after that comment, blushing profusely), Uragiri grabbed a spare scroll, tore a bit off and began writing down what each of them wanted. After a short argument about the lack of ice cream stores in kohona, and ending up deciding on ramen, he turned to Haku and asked what type she wanted. But as she opened her mouth to reply, she felt something weird in her stomach and chest.
"Umm, I think I'll have Mis-ushi"
"nani? Mis-ushi… you mean sushi?" Uragiri blinked a few times. In all the time he'd know his daughter, she'd never touched the stuff except once, at which time she had taken one bite, gone green, cross eyed, and vomited all over the vendor who gave her it. "Are you sure?"
Haku didn't know why she had said it. She hadn't meant to, but she had a sudden craving for sushi. She nodded though, and her father left. Haku felt her stomach freeze over as she re thought the event. She didn't even like raw fish but…
"Gwahahaha! You may not, but I happen to like raw fish you stupid child! And this maybe the closest I'll get to it!"
Haku froze with fear. It was that voice… so it hadn't just been some kind of day dream caused by exhaustion. She felt a cold sweat breaking out, and the room suddenly became unstable. Haku was feeling very ill by this point, and decided her best course of action would be to go to the bathroom, before she chucked up. She hauled herself upstairs and ran into the bathroom, and stared at herself in the mirror. What she saw made her feel slightly worse. She had gone very pale, paler then usual at least, which made the cut she received fighting Sasuke show up even more. The small cut under her eye looked more curved then it should be. That wasn't the part that made her feel uneasy though, that part was the fact that the identical mark that had appeared under her other eye was just as clear. In short, they looked sort of like…
"gills?" Haku asked rubbing a finger over them. She was relieved to feel they were just deep cuts, and unluckily they would definitely scar at this point. Her stomach seemed to be forcing its way out of her though, and it kept twinging, lurching and doing backflips to the point it was almost painful. Haku swallowed hard, resigned to actually looking, and ripped off her Gi top, then slowly rolled up her turtleneck overshirt (A/N: y'know, that weird brown thing that's sorta a sweater and a skirt… and skearter…moving on ) to reveal her navel. Her eyes went wide, as she saw a large black pattern with three small lines coming off of it (second A/N, I got it wrong last chapter, Isonade is the three tailed demon, and I put it was only two tailed. I had the fin thing right though. ) . Haku had seen something mildly like this in a scroll she'd been reading the night before,about sealing and binding techniques. There was only one explanation available, and although she had suspected it, Haku didn't want to believe it. Haku's brain refused to process it all, and felt her body heave, as she vomited spectacularly into the sink, right before losing consciousness.
Haku's eyelids sprung open, and she pushed herself upwards onto her feet. She wasn't at home. Infact, she had no idea where she was. The room she was in was large, empty, and glowed an eerie blue colour. The floor was covered in ankle deep water, and the only sound other then Haku's shallow breathing was a slow steady drip. Haku turned around several times, and saw there was only one way out, through a corridor dead in front of her. She took a deep breath and cautiously splashed her way through, her eyes flicking around the room in hope of seeing something or someone. She emerged into another long corridor, and saw it lead of in several directions, but a stronger glow was coming from one up ahead, which was were the dripping sound seemed to be coming from. Haku somehow felt drawn to the place, and almost against her own will, began moving towards it the corridor twisted and swayed as Haku made her way towards the glow, until she emerged in an enormous room, with an equally huge barred wall. And behind it, the pale eyes and horrifying mouth of the shark demon.
"y…you! Where am I? what are you doing here?" was all Haku managed to say. She was greeted by the nasty laugh of Isonade, and as he opened his mouth to speak, the stench of blood and fish almost knocked Haku over
"you are inside of yourself… sort of" the demonic Shark said simply. Then he let out his usual annoyingly loud laugh. Haku stood in shock, and then slowly collapsed to her knees, staring blankly forward. She couldn't deny the fact anymore. Not lifting he blank stare, she slowly asked the shark to explain. The youkai gave a short bark like laugh.
"I guess I wouldhave to make it really simple for you to understand it kid" Haku finally stopped staring to glare at the shark"but it's not like you're going anywhere…" the shark stopped to think, and then slowly began to explain what happened after Haku blacked out at the lake.
"so… there's no way to get rid of you?" Haku asked with a groan. The shark rolled its enormous eyes.
"ungrateful brat, it should be a privilege to have me within you!" Isonade roared making Haku flinch. Haku sighed, and finally decided to try and accept her fate.
"are there any benefits to having a demonic fish inside me?" Haku asked "Other then your oh so wonderful personality" she added, voice dripping with sarcasm. The shark was deep in thought for a minute, opened his mouth, closed it, then smiled widely.
"I guess that's gonna have to be a surprise for you to find out" Isonade said finally "we don't have any more time to talk, since your mother is getting a bit worried. You've been unconscious for almost an hour" he said in a nonchalant tone. Haku's mouth dropped open, and before she could curse the shark, the whole room disappeared around her and she stood in darkness. She blinked once, twice and a third time, at which point her eyes opened to stare into the worried eyes of her mother.
"aiya… Gomen nasai Kaa-Chan, I felt really weird. Guess I overdid it in training today" Haku said coming up with an excuse as quickly as she could. Naina frowned and helped Haku to her feet, before flicking her on the nose.
"know your limits young lady" she said with a smile "I'll only clean up after you this time. Now go to the kitchen before your sushi figures out how to come back to life." chuckling at her mothers comment, Haku made her way to the kitchen, picked up the sushi from the table then quickly retreated to her room. she sat down on her bed, and began to eat, chewing the raw fish in thought, and absentmindedly stroking Zabuza when he leapt onto her lap. She'd been in Konoha for little under a month and she was already a ninja, albeit a genin, had friends, and met people she never would have as a hunter nin – and after all the good things that had happened, she'd been made into a vessel for a demonic shark. If people found out, she'd be hated, just like…just like…
"Naruto!" Haku gasped suddenly, jumping up from her bed, sending sushi and an irritated rabbit, flying. Haku stood there with a small smile on her face. Even if everyone found out, she wouldn't be left alone – Naruto was just the same. Feeling relieved that she would always have at least one friend, Haku changed into her pajamas and slipped into bed, deciding to get an early night. She fell into an uneasy slumber minutes later, her dreams filled with painful memories of her Zabuza-san.
"HiJutsu, Sensatsu Suishou!" Haku shouted, as water rose from the floor and skewered the training dummy, hitting each target placed on it dead center. He had been practising all day to perfect the technique and was starting to get the hang of it. the chakra brain was immense, and Haku could feel his body shutting down, but he needed to be sure he had it perfect. Zabuza had no need for a rubbish tool. He formed the seals with one hand, and slammed his foot down, bring water into the air. "Hijutsu, Sens-argh!" Haku began, but a huge jolt of pain passed through his body, and he collapsed, as did the water.
"d-damnit…" Haku muttered as he pushed himself back up, but he didn't even have the strength to do that. Suddenly he felt himself being pulled upwards by the arm, and saw Zabuza had arrived. He hoisted Haku into the air, then threw him over one shoulder and began to carry him home. Haku felt ashamed, an wanted to say something, but couldn't think of anything to say. He wasn't even sure if his jaw could still move –nothing else seemed to be able to. Zabuza arrived at the small house they currently lived in, and lay Haku on a futon and covered him with a sheet, then walked to the door. Without looking at Haku, he said "I have no need for a broken tool." Haku felt his entire being begin to crumble; he was no longer needed. If he could move, he would have taken the nearest sharp object and ended his life there, but he was glad he couldn't, for Zabuza hadn't finished "so know your limit., It would be impossible to find a tool as good as you" Haku blushed deep red and felt himself smile. Zabuza turned and gave a nod –the nod that meant everything to Haku. And Haku fell into the warm comfort of sleep
as her memory ended, her consciousness returned, and she sat up in bed. It was early morning already, and a bird sat on a branch outside screeching as the top of its voice. Haku sighed and slipped out of bed, careful not to disturb the ball of white fur that was Zabuza, and changed into her gii. Since she was up so early, she might as well get some extra training done. Grabbing a piece of fruit on her way out, Haku set off to the training grounds where Neji, Lee and Ten-Ten were usually found. She was surprised when she arrived though – Lee was already there, and was furiously punching away at a training pole. Haku watched him for a while in admiration. She could see his lips moving, but was unable to hear what he was saying to himself. She decided to leave him to his training, and focusing chakra to her feet once more, walked out onto the lake. It seemed a lot easier then last time, but Haku shrugged it off, wrongly assuming she had forgotten the basics last time and was re-gaining her experience. She performed rapid seals with one hand, and a large amount of water flew from the surface. She tried to remember how to maintain the needle shape she used in her Sensatsu suishou, but only managed to make triangular shapes out of the water that had risen from the lake's surface. She noticed how easy it was again, and how little strain it put on her as apposed to the last time she'd tried controlling the water, where the initial strain on lifting the water had been almost painful. She chose to remain ignorant and blame it on inexperience but she knew deep down what must be causing it. but if that was the case…
Haku allowed the water to splash back onto the lake, and redid some seals, causing the water to rise back up. This time they were slightly longer triangles, with elongated ends. She allowed it to plash down, and changed a few of her seals, and concentrated on forming needles. When the water rose this time, there were definitely needles this time, except there was about 30 giant needles, instead of hundreds of normal sized needles as it normally was. By this point Haku felt a little bit tired, but she'd passed out straight away after using the technique once last time… this brought her first fight with Sasuke back into mind, and she recalled creating the needles almost perfectly, though unable to hold them as the flew at the target. Then she thought about her most recent fight with the Uchiha, and she felt her muscles tense as she recalled her defeat. Gritting her teeth, she slammed her foot onto the water, causing it to spray upwards. She performed the seals extremely quickly with one hand, and shouted " Hijutsu! Sensatsu suishou!. The water froze high above her head, hundreds of perfect needle shapes, and stayed there, waiting for Haku to activate the last part of her technique and send them flying. She decided to attempt a defensive technique she'd thought of but never attempted while in Zabuza's company. She took a gamble by assuming it would work, and activated the final part of the technique, causing the needles to rain downwards at her, travelling at an alarming rate towards her. She acted quickly, and stuck her hands into the water, and brought them upwards, performing a seal at the same time and freezing the water as it rose. Pulling up a huge wave of water over her head and freezing it, she had created a huge icy shield, and she watched as the icy needles slammed into the thick ice, leaving very small cracks in it. her new technique seemed to have worked, but as this thought crossed her mind, larger cracks began to appear and the large ice shield began to crack and crumble all over. The sheer volume of needles had created hundreds of smaller cracks and they had begun to link up. Large shards fell from the frozen wave, and dropped into the lake, each missing piece leaving Haku a bit more defenceless. she saw there were still at least one hundred needles still raining down onto the shield, and by the looks of it, it would only take 2 or 3 more until it shattered completely. Haku quickly reached for her holsters and hip bag to withdraw a kunai or senbon to defend her, but to her despair, found she had left both at home. She gave an exasperated wail, lifted up her arms in front of her face covering her vital points, and knelt down in an attempt to defend herself from the incoming needle barrage, when she heard a loud cry and whooshing sound in the air.
She saw a green spandex whirlwind pass straight overhead, knocking all of the incoming needles away, and then saw the whirlwind land flawlessly next to her. She flicked the icy shield weakly, and it shattered – she swallowed hard; she would have been skewered. She looked over at her savior.
An open mouth, a ping of shining teeth, and a thumbs up pose revealed her knight in spandex armour to be the beautiful beast of Konoha.
"Gomen Haku-kun, but you looked like you were in trouble" he said, offering her a hand. She took it and he helped her to her feet and wish a small tug on her arm lifted her with him as he jumped back to the land.
"s-sugoi" Haku stuttered as she looked at Lee again, unaware she was blushing. He was definitely strong, and incredibly fast, maybe even more so then herself. Her opinion of him had changed in less than a minute. Lee blushed a little at her comment and rubbed the back of his head.
"I finished my morning training and saw you on the water and decided to watch – you really are amazing Haku-kun. One handed seals… I don't think Jounin can do those!" he said, enthusiasm ever evident in his voice. Haku smiled.
"I was just trying to do some practise as well. I wish I hadn't rushed out of the house though" Haku said. She was referring to leaving her ningu behind, but her stomach chose that moment to growl. Lee laughed as Haku blushed again and quickly put a hand on her stomach.
"looks like something else wishes you hadn't rushed out as well" Lee said, smiling slightly. Haku rubbed the back of her head, and felt inside her pockets. Feeling a few coins and notes, she grinned.
"How about some Ramen for saving me?" she asked smiling at Lee. Lee nodded enthusiastically, as his stomach had been eating itself since he woke in the morning. Making small talk they strolled along with one another to the Ichiruka ramen stand.
"Nani!?" Haku said, almost spraying out the noodles she'd been eating at the time, "1000 one handed press ups because you couldn't land your 500 punches? Your rules will end up killing you" Haku said, shaking her head in bemusement. Lee smiled, almost used to the reaction by now.
"so your taijutsu alone is good enough to take out any other genin then" Haku concluded. "what on earth do you do to train your Gen and Ninjutsu then?" she asked before slurping a few more noodles from her chopsticks.
"ahaha… I don't" Lee said wiping under his nose with a single finger in an embarrassed manner "I can't do either of them". Haku almost slipped off her stool in shock
"you can't do… wow… but your Taijutsu makes up for it,ne?" Haku said, unsure of what to say.
"I hope so. I want to prove to everyone a ninja can become great with taijutsu alone!" his eyes lit up with fire and he clenched his fist "and I will show hard work can surpass genius!" Haku couldn't help but smile widely. His enthusiasm was contagious. She finished her ramen and put some money down on the counter as Lee finished. She sat in thought for a second, then looked at Lee.
"Care to prove hard work can surpass me at least?" Haku asked. Lee choked on the soup he was swallowing, and looked over at Haku.
"how about a friendly spar? Winner buys lunch?" Haku asked. Lee smiled, and rose from the stool.
"I was hoping you'd ask! I accept! Time to put the springtime of youth into action!" he cried, becoming hyperactive as he usually was. The two set off to the training ground at full speed, eager to face one another.
Haku stood a few meters away from Lee, at the edge of the lake. Their eyes were locked, and both seemed deadly serious.
"Ready?" Haku asked.
"Ready" lee replied, tightening the bandages on his arms.
"o.k…and no holding back because I'm a girl!" Haku added. She was finally getting used to saying she was a girl instead of saying she's not. This also meant less awkward questions if she decided to wear her pink kimonos…
"Hai, Ikuze!" Lee yelled, and by the time these words left his mouth he had almost closed the distance between himself and Haku. He drew his hand back, and Haku raised her hands to defend herself. Lee allowed himself a small smile, and dropped to the floor, sweeping her feet away from her, and swiftly delivering a kick with his other leg that sent Haku flying towards the lake. She focused chakra to her feet and hands, and only just managed to keep herself from falling through the waters surface. A large spray of water appeared as she skidded backwards across the water. She quickly assessed the situation as she attempted to stop herself completely.
"kuso… I'll becrushed at close range. I'll just have to keep him at a distance. There's nothing he can do then" she thought, and quickly froze the spray of water behind her with a one handed seal. She flung her other hand forward, and sent a barrage of tiny ice senbon at Lee, who had placed one hand behind his back, and stood up straight with his other arm in front of him. He saw the needles while Haku was practising, and instantly dodged to one side before running towards Haku at full speed, passing the needles as he ran. Haku performed another seal and stopped the needles in mid-air, and sent them hurtling towards Lee's back. Unfortunately, for Haku at least, Lee heard the whoosh of the needles as they flew at him, and so turning on his heel, he turned to face them. in the same motion, he pulled a kunai from the pouch on his hip, and quickly began slashing all of the needles that were going to hit him. Haku grimaced at her failed attempt, and began doing rapid two handed seals, deciding to use another un-used idea for a technique. She began creating seals, hoping they would cause the desired effect, and slammed her hands onto the water. It began to bubble and froth in a large circular area around her. If Haku had not been so focused on the fight, she would have realised that, not only did she not have enough chakra to perform her water needles until today, but she definetly shouldn't have had enough chakra to perform this kind of technique, even more-so after performing another Sensatsu suishou just seconds beforehand. Even if she had thought about it, she wouldn't have cared at this point – she was eager to see if her technique would work. Two small cylinders of water rose from the water, and suddenly hurtled towards Lee in a stream. The looked almost like tentacles trying to snatch something off the water – Haku witnessed the same thing while with Zabuza, which gave her inspiration for this technique. As she inspected the tentacle-like water, she grimaced and let out a growl of frustration. The ends were just normal water – and she had been banking on them being spear headed, or spiked. Right now they wouldn't be the least bit damaging since they were so small. She cursed under her breath as she recalled all the times she could have asked Zabuza to teach her the Suiryuudan no Jutsu but chose instead to focus on her own techniques. She steered the jets of water straight at Lee, thinking quickly, she figured she could try to freeze his legs in place then force him to forfeit. Lee had other plans however, and once again he ran towards Haku's attack. He leapt high into the air, and suddenly charged down with one leg aiming near the source of one of the water streams. His leg passed through the water, but it cut off the chakra flowing to the rest of the stream, which promptly fell back into the lake. He shook his head in disappointment at Haku, and ran towards the second stream. Haku denied Lee the satisfaction or severing the second stream, and cancelled the jutsu as it was eating through her chakra needlessly. She suddenly received an enormous holt of pain and burning in both arms – she had wasted to much chakra. She'd have to rely on taijutsu now, and use her remaining chakra to stop herself slipping into the water. She reached for a kunai, and for the second time that morning, felt nothing. She cursed again and slapped the sides of her head, but after doing so, felt a white hot pain in one of her fingers. Lee began to slowly, and almost patronizingly, walking towards Haku, each step leading towards her doom (of buying lunch … ). Haku quickly examined her hand, and saw a small circular cut in her finger, almost as if it had come from…
"A needle!" Haku quickly realised, and felt for the Bun in her hair. She usually tied it properly, but had been in a little bit of a rush this morning, and had instead stuck two Senbon into the bun to keep her hair in place. She also realised the two metal cylinders she used to keep her side ponytails (A/N: I can't come up with a better description of em – if you can please tell me, side ponytails sounds stupid ¬¬) could easily fit over two of her fingers, giving her an edge to the point. She smiled to herself slightly – her hair unintentionally provided her with weapons. She was a genius. Lee saw the smile on her face, and assumed it was bad. He quickly increased his speed, and jumped at her, drawing a fist back.
Haku pulled both metal cylinders off her hair and slipped them over two fingers, ignoring her hair suddenly losing its shape, then withdrew the senbon from the bun, causing the hair stored inside to cascade down her back while she slipped the needles between the fingers of her other hand. The effect was nothing less then beautiful – Haku's chocolate brown hair swayed slightly as she drew back her hand with the cylinders over the fingers, and once more as she thrust her hand forward. Lee had frozen completely when Haku's hair had been unleashed. His face was stuck in a goofy smile, and a small drip of blood hung from his nose. He didn't even defend himself when Haku's metal enforced punch caught him in the face. At least he had an excuse for the blood now. He snapped out of it a second afterwards however, and flung his arms up to defend himself from the slash Haku attempted. She managed to connect with his bandaged arm as he moved it, and split the bandages all across his arm. She watched as the bandages fluttered and left his arm in the wind, but was shocked when she saw his skin – if you could even call it skin. There were cuts, scars, fresh bruises and blood – it was a terrible sight. Both ninja became self conscious as the other stared, until Haku broke the silence between them by putting both hands up.
"I surrender – I guess I need a lot more training" Haku said and smiled.
"Yosh! A graceful surrender, and a good fight! This is what youth is all about!" Lee exclaimed, and his eyes lit ablaze once more. He didn't want to hurt Haku's feelings by revealing he had barely broken a sweat. Unluckily though, Haku was as sharp as the senbon she held.
"oh please, you were holding back and toying with me. I'd hate to have to fight you for real – I have a feeling you're holding something else back as well" Haku said. Lee looked as if he'd been hit by lightning, and quickly tried to think of someway to spare Haku's feelings, but Haku simply waved her hand, as if waving the concern away.
"I do have a question though Lee-kun… anou…your arm…" Haku began and trailed off as she looked at his arm once again. Lee rubbed the back of his head out of embarrassment, and also to get his arm out of view. He was spared having to explain by the voice of another kunoichi ringing through the training area.
"Oi Lee! Are you here? Lee? LE- oh there you are"
Ten-ten strolled to the side of the lake and yelled over at them
"what are you two doing?"
"Ohayo Ten-ten-Chan, me and Lee-kun were just training" Haku yelled back. Lee quickly covered up his arm as best he could with his tattered bandages, before walking over to Ten-ten. He was followed shakily by Haku, who felt as if her Chakra had to be in the minus by now, and was surprised she was able to stay on top of the water still.
"Haku, you look exhausted" Ten-ten said in a worried voice, before turning to Lee and punching him across the back of the head and scolding him. Haku collapsed to her knee's and felt a distinct burning near her stomach. She ignored this as she had with everything else that morning, but she knew she'd have to accept that "something" was different since yesterday. Ten-ten continued to punch Lee across the back of the head each time he raised it in an attempt to explain. Finally after catching her breath, Haku stood and grabbed Ten-tens arm before Lee's head had to bear the wrath of another Ten-ten punch.
"I asked Lee-kun for a spar, not the other way round" Haku explained hurriedly. Lee was wobbling and looking on the verge of a concussion…
"Well he could have gone easier on you…your hair looks amazing by the way" she added while inspecting Haku for injury.
"He was going easy on me" Haku said with a sigh and looked dejectedly at the ground. Ten-ten laughed and patted Haku on the back.
"well he has a years advantage over you. plus with a teacher like Gai…ah! That reminds me" she said, turning to Lee "not that you'll take any notice of it, but training has been cancelled today. Gai sensei has challenged Kakashi again. Probably to a race around the world…" Ten-ten trailed off, shaking her head at the idiocy of her teacher. Lee clutched his fist, fire in the eyes, and began a speech about rivalry that neither kunoichi paid attention to. Haku searched her pockets once more and found what money she had, then looked over at Ten-ten.
"Fancy joining us for Lunch? I lost so I'm buying" She said. Ten-ten smiled and accepted, before elbowing Lee in the stomach to stop his long winded speech. It had taken 2 and a half minutes and he wasn't even half way done. Haku smiled and stretched. She felt a lot better now, and, whereas a few minutes ago she felt she couldn't even mold chakra, she felt just as she had when she awoke that morning. It was impossible to deny now – well, it had been impossible to deny the whole day, but Haku had run out of excuses and was unable to feign ignorance once again. She decided it was best to keep it a secret. She didn't want to be considered crazy, or worse…to be treated the way Naruto had…
"Haku? You still alive?" Ten-ten asked smiling, and waving a hand in front of her face. Haku blinked in confusion then noticed she must have been lost in thought again. She smiled apologetically, and looked at them before grinning.
"where to?" she asked, beginning to gather chakra to her feet. Lee shrugged, saying he didn't mind, and Ten-ten looked a bit embarrassed, obviously not wanting to be the decisive person.
"as long as it isn't a 5 star restaurant, I'm paying, go ahead and chose Ten-ten-Chan" Haku said, and continued focusing her chakra. Ten-ten decided on a small Barbeque restaurant that was near her house. Lee's face lit up, recalling visiting the place, and before his mouth could water, Haku interrupted.
"How 'bout a race? Last one there pays for drinks!" Haku said, her competitive side taking over once again, and without waiting for a reply, she released the chakra she had stored, and leapt to a nearby tree and setting off full speed toward Konoha. Lee laughed, and shouted "forwards, to the springtime of our youth" before setting off almost as fast leaving Ten-ten standing in the training area, shaking her head with a small smile on her face.
"almost as bad as each other….OI! Wait up!" she cried suddenly realising she would end up paying unless she hurried.
"Unbelievable, I had a head start and everything" Haku groaned as she emptied her pockets of money completely. Ten-ten and Lee laughed as they drank their free drinks. They chose a table near the back, back, as Haku kept receiving looks due to her hair, and she was becoming more and more embarrassed. Grumbling, Haku broke apart her chop-sticks, and grabbed a small bit of everything. She still wasn't used to Konoha cuisine, having only eaten smaller dishes, usually cold ones at that, in the village she grew up in. Lee broke the silence, after shoving a small piece of pork into his mouth.
"Ne, Haku-Chan, how long have you been training anyway? Most Genin don't have enough chakra to perform smaller jutsu but you…" He trailed off, remembering the water attacks he'd dodged. He wouldn't admit it to her, but it was a lot more effort then he'd expected. Haku thought for a second, and decided to answer as truthfully as she could without bringing up her time with Zabuza. The demon residing inside of her was unbelievable enough, but Naruto was also a container. To her knowledge, there hadn't been any ninja claiming to come back from the dead, or at least, No SANE ninja claiming it.
"since I came to Konoha actually… It all kind of comes naturally to me" She said, and watched Lee and Ten-tens stunned expressions. "I've always been able to manipulate water, and I always wanted to be something more. I guess they fitted together when I got here" she finished with a shrug.
It was Ten-tens turn to ask a question now, and after swallowing her mouthful, she tilted her head to one side.
"so if you're not originally from here, where did ya come from?" she asked curiously.
"I used to live in a small village…well a tiny one compared to here, in the wave country." She recalled, trying not to think about what was left of the village she had lost control before.
"that would explain all of your water techniques then" Lee said "Most Konoha shinobi use fire oriented techniques. You've got an advantage then " He concluded. He ate the last of what was on his plate, and laid his chopsticks down.
"Gomen-nasai, but I still have training to do. In fact, I must do double, for Gai sensei!" he announced in a loud voice that made several customers give him odd looks. "Arigatou for lunch Haku-Chan, I shall see you again, that's a promise!" he said again, and gave the 'nice guy' pose, before walking out of the restaurant leaving Haku and Ten-ten alone.
"it must be a handful to train with someone like Lee" Haku commented as she drained her glass of water. Ten-ten giggled.
"Well Neji-kun balances it out nicely. Lee's over the top energetic, and Neji's serene and calm" she said, and lifting her glass up to drink, but mostly to cover up the blush that had appeared on her face when she mentioned Neji. Haku was far to observant to miss that however, and with a sly smile on her face, deliberately turned the subject onto him.
"Aha. Neji 'kun' seems to be very cold as well though. Did something happen to him?" Ten-ten's cheeks turned pink as Haku mimicked her, but thought for a second.
"he… had a hard time as a kid, although that's the same with most of the genin now" Ten-ten sighed "Ever since the demons took away the majority of the Konoha Jounin, which meant most of us grew up without parents" she finished sadly. Haku felt very bad about bringing it up, and Ten-ten sensed this.
"you couldn't have known, so don't worry about it. Besides, most of us are used to it by now. It's sort of a driving inspiration y'know" she said. "which reminds me, you seem like you really want to be a great Kunoichi – I mean you've fought Sasuke and won, and fought with Lee, possibly the best Taijutsu user in Konoha. You have a lot of ambition to say the least" Haku blushed heavily as Ten-ten complimented her achievements "I reckon with a bit of training you could easily beat them both. Tell you what; I'll help you out with your training if you want, and I'll get Lee to give you some lessons in Taijutsu. You could be a great Kunoichi just like Tsunade-sama" Ten-ten said, and at the last part of her mini speech, her eyes turned sparkly as she talked of her Idol.
"Domo Arigatou Ten-ten-Chan, I really appreciate it" Haku said with a large smile. It felt really good to have someone saying that they'd help her out. "In return I could ask Hinata-Chan to find out how Neji feels about his team-mates" Haku added, the sly grin back on her face as she say Ten-ten choke on water and turn red as a tomato. She waved her hands in front of her face, saying "no no it's not like that" and other protests, and Haku simply sat there grinning. Both Kunoichi stood up after finishing off their meals, and left the restaurant. Just before they set off, Haku for training, and Ten-ten for weapon sharpening, Ten-ten grabbed Haku's shoulder suddenly.
"umm…Haku… if you…if Hinata… I was thinking that…" Ten-ten began, ending up completely tongue tied. Haku smiled and nodded her head.
"If Hinata-Chan just happens to hear something about you from Neji, you'll be the first to know." Haku said, with a smile, and Ten-ten smiled gratefully, before jumping on top of the restaurant then leaping away. Haku shook her head, and made her way to her own training area, where she saw a certain Hyuuga absentmindedly observing flowers. Haku crept up behind her, before poking her just above her hips. Hinata squeaked, and turned around ultra wide-eyed.
"o-oh, it's j-just you Haku… y-you scared me h-h-half to death!" Hinata said with a sigh and a hand on her chest. Haku giggled, and apologised.
"where are Anko-sensei and Kiba-kun?" Haku asked. Hinata sighed.
"Akamaru g-got sick so Ki-Kiba-kun is looking a-after him" Hinata said with a soft smile, "And A-A-Anko-sensei is with K-Kakashi… I th-think it's s-something to do w-with a race around the w-world" Hinata continued uncertainly. Haku sweatdropped then looked around the area.
"looks like it's just you and me then. Do you feel like training, or would you prefer to flower gaze?" Haku asked. Hinata smiled softly, then suddenly her face cleared of expression.
"Ac-actually Haku, c-could you assist me w-with my g-gentle fist training?" Hinata asked, putting on a serious expression.
Haku had no idea what gentle fist was but agreed. As Hinata took up the stance her Byakugan activated, and Haku wondered why. Hinata charged forward, and threw her palm forward. Haku blocked with her elbows, but saw a small spray of chakra and felt one of her elbows go a bit numb.
"nani?" Haku spluttered as she took a few steps backwards. Hinata's soft smile returned as her Byakugan disappeared.
"G-Gomen…gentle fi-fist damages the charka system and internal organs… I-I can use it, b-but I can't s-seem to close the tenketsu." Hinata said. Haku was shocked. She had learned all about the inner coils that control chakra, and that there were tenketsu from which chakra escape when she had become a hunter-nin. But to think there was a way of controlling and altering them with a single hit… it was scary.
They both took up a stance once more, and Hinata's Byakugan activated once more. Haku made the first move this time, and dropped to the floor attempting to sweep Hinata's legs away from underneath her. Hinata hopped over them with ease, and raised two fingers into the air. She looked as if she was concentrating to her breaking point, and thrust them forward, just as Haku's arm came to block. Haku gave a yelp of pain and she felt her entire arm go numb. Hinata immediately de-activated her Doujutsu, and rolled up Haku's sleeve. There was no damage visible, and Hinata sighed in depression, before applying some ointment she had withdrawn from her jacket.
"Gomen … i-it's hopeless, I c-can't see the o-opening points" Hinata said sadly and sat down, drawing her knees up to her chest and resting her head on her legs. Haku put an arm around her shoulders, and smiled at her.
"Now, what would Naruto-kun think if you gave up now?" Haku said with a smile, as Hinata went pink. Haku pushed herself up with her good arm, then held out a hand to help Hinata up.
"Once more Hinata"
With renewed determination, Hinata nodded, and activated her byakugan. The viens around her eyes seemed to throb with chakra, and her thoughts focused on Naruto as she rushed forward. She saw all of the chakra veins, but couldn't see the openings. She focused more, and began to trade blows with Haku, only defending not attacking. She kept concentrating, but saw nothing… maybe everyone was right, she was useless and should just give –
"Hinata, if you are thinking what I think you are, I will have to hurt you!" Haku said semi-seriously, as she threw another punch at Hinata. Haku wasn't putting everything into her attacks, but she was getting frustrated at how badly she was missing Hinata with each blow. Hinata blushed. Haku was right. She felt her body shaking as she struggled to concentrate, and she forced all of the chakra she could to her eyes. And then, suddenly, amongst all of the coils and chakra veins, two white spots on Haku's arms appeared – two tenketsu. Hinata struggled to keep them in view, and they faded momentarily, but they were still visible. Hinata stuck two fingers together, forming the needle point or chakra, and plunged it at one of the chakra points. It hit, dead on, and Haku grit her teeth in pain. Hinata fell to her knee's, her byakugan receding, and attempted to catch her breath. She could see 2 of the 361 tenketsu. It was a start.
"Arigatou H-Haku… anou, c-can you try and m-mold chakra with that a-arm please?" Hinata asked, eager to see if her attack had succeeded. Haku put her hand into a seal and concentrated, but felt absolutely nothing. She rolled up her sleeve and an angry red spot had appeared.
"That was incredible Hinata! I knew you could do it!" Haku said, and helped Hinata to her feet again. Hinata was shaking, and Haku saw tears in her eyes.
"H-Haku…Arigatou f-f-for believing in m-me" Hinata said, wiping her eyes. Haku smiled and looked at the sky. The training had taken a lot longer then it seemed – the sky was already red.
"how about we call it a day? You look exhausted. Hinata nodded and began to walk with Haku. They made their way to the Hyuuga estate, making small talk, and as they arrived at the gates, Haku was struck by inspiration.
"Ne, Hinata? I need to ask you a small favour" Haku said just as Hinata was about to bid her farewell.
"s-sure, what is it?" Hinata asked
"If you're around Neji at all… can you shift any conversation to Ten-Ten?" Haku asked with a smile. Hinata giggled, immediately realizing why. She nodded, and waved goodbye to Haku.
"O-oh Haku!" Hinata said, just as they turned away from one another Haku looked back curiously.
"your h-hair looks very ni-nice l-long."
Blushing at Hinata's last comment, Haku made her way back home. she chose a more scenic route to avoid anymore stares. Had letting her hair out really made that much of a difference?
She shrugged and leapt into a tree. She'd decided to take a shortcut through the memorial area to save time, and saw an amazing thing. Hundreds of Naruto's were in the training area – almost a thousand by Haku's reckoning. She smiled. Everyone seemed to be training today. She decided to startle him a bit, and, seeing the lake nearby began making seals. The Naruto's were busy celebrating below, due to the original mastering a larger scale kage buushin. They didn't notice a large transparent sheet of water rising from the lake or over their heads – none were looking up and had their backs to the lake. She surveyed the Naruto's critically to find the original, and sweat dropped when she saw him, being tossed into the air by his clones. Making sure to aim for everything but that general area, Haku performed one last seal, and the enormous blanket of water began to rain down needles on the area, save the small square where the original Naruto was. The sounds of destroyed buushins rung through the area for several minutes. When the technique had finally finished, Haku jumped down and, with one of the senbon she'd used to keep up her hair at the beginning of the day in each hand, she charged the remaining hundred or so. The stunned Naruto's could barely make a counter attack as she tore through them, large clouds of white smoke showed her trail as the Narutos attempted defence. Haku finally lodged the senbon in two clones and relied solely on taijutsu to get towards the original. Only around 20 clones remained, and she was making short work of them. she lashed out with both arms, catching 2 Narutos in the chest and causing them to disappear. She kneed a third in the stomach, and when it was bent double, slammed an elbow into its neck. She back flipped over five clones attempting to attack her from behind, and launched herself forward, but was caught by the arms, and ended up being dragged forward to the main Naruto. He stood in front of her, smiling.
"that was cool Haku-Chan! But looks like I'm too good for ya!" Naruto proclaimed. Haku pouted and attempted to shake the Naruto's off of her. Naruto waved a finger.
"just admit it and I'll let you go. Simple, ne?" he smiled the foxy grin that he usually did. Haku 'hump'ed and turned her head to the side.
"And if I refuse? You know full well I'm stronger then you. plus I can just rain some more needles down on you if I manage to move my hand a bit more." At her words, another Naruto seized each of her hands. She would have slapped her head if she could.
"aww c'mon Haku, you'll admit it one way or another, and I don't want to have to use your weakness against you again" Naruto said, the sly grin that Haku had worn earlier in the day was now on Naruto's face.
"what weakness" Haku asked raising an eyebrow, and regretting it immediately. Naruto clicked his fingers and grinned, sticking his tongue out at the same time, and two Naruto's began to tickle up and down Haku's sides. She bit her lip, and shot him a death glare, but was unable to hold in her laughter.
"I'd say it now, or it gets worse" Naruto sung in a smug tone.
"Nehehehe..Never!hehe" Haku managed between her giggles. Naruto grinned again and with another snap of his fingers two Naruto's appeared, and began tickling her under the arms. Haku's laughter intensified. She hated this feeling of no control, and struggled as hard as she could. She'd never remembered being ticklish before, or maybe she had been and nothing had ever tickled her. She tried to take her mind off of it, as thinking about it made the sensations seem worse.
"just say "Naruto is much better then me in every way" and I'll stop" Naruto said, enjoying every moment of it. he knew full well he was going to be slapped so hard afterwards that he would probably lose the power of speech, so he was making the most of it.
"Bite mehehehe!" Haku said, and attempted to break free one more. Naruto laughed, and grabbed her ankle, bringing it forward and forcing Haku to stand on one leg. He stopped the other Naruto's, and took of her sandal and placed a fingertip just over her foot.
"are you suuuuure?" he said and lightly poked her foot. Haku yelped, and decided to give in.
"O.k o.k! Naruto is much better then me in every single way, now lemme go" Haku said pouting and turning on the puppy dog eyes. The Naruto's released her in unison, and she immediately swung her leg back, then straight forward, right into the crotch of the original Naruto. There was silence, then all of the clones winced and disappeared as the Original fell, a look of incomprehensible pain on his face. Haku laid her head on the floor so she was looking eye to eye with Naruto.
"try that again Naruto-kun, and you'll be my human pincushion for a year, o.k? good" Haku said in a sweet, yet entirely EVIL tone. 5 minutes later when Naruto had regained the will to live, they both sat together watching the now setting sun above them.
"so was it worth is, whiskers?" Haku asked. Naruto frowned at his new nickname, then grinned and stared at the sun once more.
"more then you could believe, Gill girl" He replied. Haku was quite surprised. For one, she had forgotten about the two cuts she had on her face, but mostly because Naruto had made a non idiotic come back. Then suddenly she re-called her thoughts of the previous evening. Naruto was a container as well. Haku turned to him.
"I… well, you know yesterday after you left me by the lake?"
"yeah" Naruto answered looking puzzled.
Haku took a deep breath, and began to explain about everything that had happened on that day, and how she had felt so different today. Naruto looked interested but around half way through the story he looked very hurt. When Haku finally finished, the sun had set, and Naruto stood up.
"I know we were joking around earlier" Naruto said in a voice that matched the one he had used when he first told her about finding out he was the kyuubi's container. "but to joke about something so serious…you were the only person I told…I thought you were nice as well" Haku felt a cold shiver run through her body. He thought she was joking?
"Naruto-kun, I-" Haku started, but was interrupted.
"Save it" Naruto replied coolly, and leapt into the tree Haku had originally been in. she could see there were a few tears sliding down his face even from a distance. He shook his head, and gave her a hurt look before leaping away. It was just a misunderstanding, but he was already gone before Haku could explain.
Haku sat there for several minutes, and then pulled her knees up to her chest and she began to cry silently. The sky above Konoha began to get cloudy, and as Haku began to make her way home, snow flakes began to fall.
A/N: I'm really really sorry for forgetting about this fic. My old comp died long ago, and I was computerless for a few months, so I wasn't able to continue.by the time I got my new one, I had forgotten about my fic. I hope to get another chapter up this month since I have my easter hols soon. Once again sorry, and as always, R&R