In the deep forests of Joharyu, the middle ground between the borders of the Fire Country and Wind country, a young man was there, swinging his crimson katana with precision. His red shirt was wet with sweat, and the dirt he has been standing on was already flat from the many steps he took. His blonde hair with purple markings at the tip makes him rather unique… if not by color then by style.
His clothes were rather odd itself, for the standards in that world. Black loose-fitting pants, red sleeveless shirt, black boots with metallic soles, and a Leaf Forehead Protector on his head, the only jewelry he wore was a necklace with three stones in it. Two smaller ones in the side of the middle big one; this necklace was given to him by the Hokage of the Leaf, acknowledging his strength.
This boy is the student of Jiraiya, and shinobi of the leaf. He ranked Genin, but he knew with his skills, he was more than that. Jiraiya once told him that he can rank chuunin already… maybe even upper chuunin. His teacher thought Naruto would celebrate at that. He'd thought it would make Naruto act a bit more like a fool. He was wrong.
Naruto was a changed lad. No… Naruto is a changed lad. Over the course of his two year training, Naruto had more heart to heart talks with his brother… well, technically, his brother with the use of the Fifth Scroll, the free scroll. He learned more on his brother's thoughts, opinions, and fighting styles. Naruto still had a lot to learn…
"Naruto, using the moves that I taught you isn't enough… How you executed them were perfect, but what you lack is experience… experience in using such moves and skill. How and when to use them… and how to make your attacks varied to suit the situation; that is the only skill you lack. " his brother, Laharl once told him.
Naruto had learned almost all moves of Hiten Mitsurugi Ryu, and Arnis Ryu thanks to the third and fourth scroll respectively. True to Naruto's promise, he practiced those two styles everyday, customizing it with his ever growing move set. His scalpel control, formation and weapon building has become top notch, and he had come to ignore the pain that he would feel calling out his scalpels. He also increased his scalpel capacity… Laharl told him that he possibly could be holding 200 bordering 250 scalpels inside him. And Naruto's Demon Eyes have also strengthened, now able to use it 3 times to weave up dreams, or use it one time for disabling a function in the body via the brain. Naruto used that disabling technique to lock up Jiraiya's legs temporarily as he was being chased by ladies covered in towels, shouting "PERVERT!". That had to be one of the best times in Naruto's life.
But probably the best thing which had happened to Naruto, in his own humble opinion is his growth spurt. Standing proud, 5'10", he was finally not a shrimp. But then again, there were more taller people out there… but to the very least he was taller than most girls out there. Last time he compared heights was with Temari, as they had passed in the Hidden Village of the Sand, and met the Kazekage there. Big surprise, it was Gaara. As much as Naruto was annoyed by the way Gaara had become a Kage before him, he was a bit happier knowing that he was now taller than Temari.
"Do Ryu Sen!" Naruto raises his sword which he used to stab the ground with, and when he raised it, he raises it with such speed that the ground suddenly gave way as rocks flew and hit a nearby tree with such strong force that some rocks embedded themselves on the trunk. Then, with his final last stroke, he sheathes his katana, the sheath is also crimson, and then unleashes a battou-jutsu.
The move was very hard to learn… the basics and movement of a battou-jutsu is basically unsheathing the sword, and then rotating your wrist with the momentum of unsheathing to slash at your opponent. When Laharl first showed it to Naruto, he couldn't even see how the unseahting went. One second, it was on the sheath, next second, it was on Laharl's hand, slashing the imaginary opponent in front of him.
Naruto had exactly 30 tries before he perfected the battou-jutsu… even his timing was quite astounding. He'd never realized but whoever made the battou-jutsu was a genious… amazing isn't even the word to describe it; a one stroke attack that takes almost less than a second to execute. If done to an enemy with a sharp blade, he or she wouldn't even feel the strike before his wounds suddenly open and blood gushes out, killing him.
But there was one disadvantage in battou-jutsu. The quickness of attack steals the user's momentum, so he or she would be a sitting duck when he or she uses the attack and misses. That's why all of the Hiten Mitsurugi battoujutsu are always two steps, which leave no opening if the initial strike misses or is blocked.
Naruto unsheathes the sword, and flicked his wrist, rotating the sword to perform his battou-jutsu, and without a second wasted, he also used his sheath to strike the imaginary opponent in front of him, performing a double slash battou-jutsu that Laharl called Sou Ryu Sen. Naruto stayed on his pose, breathing deeply. He had done some good time today… Time for him to rest.
Sheathing his sword, Naruto called back all the scalpels he had been using to form the sword, and walked towards a tall tree where he had dropped his coat. Grabbing the black trench coat given to him by Jiraiya's seamstress friend, he put it on himself, and strapped the neckline collar closed with the belt that was located there. He checked himself again. He slowly arranged his hair with his right hand, which was still covered with Nitemare Scarf, so the blonde strands of his head wouldn't go to his eyes, obscuring his vision.
He had 1 more year before he could get home… hopefully, the Akatsuki wont attack him as much as last year. Most of the ninjas that Akatsuki sent were almost insults. Missing nins class Cs and Bs trying to tackle a sennin; if that wasn't an insult, Naruto didn't know what is. And it wasn't only Jiraiya which the ninjas had to fight. They also had to fight the new improved Naruto, who was more than capable enough to tackle most of the B to some A class missing nins.
But now, Naruto had something more important thing to do today. Yup… today was the day he had to prove to the frog boss that he was a man. He was finally going to do it… yes. He and Jiraiya were going to do something no one has done in years. Drink sake with the frog boss.
Inside a tall mighty tree that been standing for centuries, a young woman roams around the hollowed and reconstructed halls of the tree. The one who had reconstructed the inside of the tree knew what he was doing. The parts cleared were parts not really needed by the tree, and therefore the tree was kept alive to house the noble and royal family.
"Mother…?" the young woman called from the throne room. She had been summoned a few minutes earlier, and she made haste. When she saw the woman she was looking for sitting in the throne, she bowed down to one knee. "Mother… you called for me?"
"Stand up my daughter," the queen called. "I have a task for you."
"Go ahead, mother," the young woman replied. "I shall do what you bid me to do."
"We've heard distressing rumors. The Mine Officers has been reporting unrest with some of the slaves," the queen stated. "I am suspecting that the MFL Movement has influenced the slave. I want you to asses the situation and give me your judgment."
"Yes mother… when do I leave?"
"Today, right now. I have prepared the royal carriage for you ride," the queen suddenly looked at something at the young woman's back. "How are your wings? I was given a report from Pamela… she said you strained your new wings as you gave it a test flight."
The young woman spread her wings. "It's… still sore. I can fly with it, mother… just not in long distances."
"Ah… then I'm glad I had prepared the carriage for you. Take care out there, daughter…"
"I will, mother. Thank you."
The girl stood up, and without turning her back on the queen, she slowly exited the room. Making her way down, she saw indeed that the royal carriage was being readied. The dragonflies were already set up, and only the silk chamber was needed to complete it. She looked at the woman preparing the carriage, and smiled.
"Princess! Good afternoon," Karen bowed. "It will just take a while, Princess, and then everything will be set. Please wait just a few moments."
"Eh, eh, it's okay Karen," the young woman replied. "It's been a while since I had to go to the outskirts of the kingdom."
"Where are you going, princess?" Karen asked.
"The Mines. I'm supposed to see how the slaves are, and if they are planning revolts. I think my mother is a bit over reactive, but she really can't help it, can't she?"
"Ah… the queen is only worried about our safety," Karen replied in a knowing tone. "We are all safe and alive all thanks to her. She takes every precaution, just to make sure that our family won't die from those barbaric MLA's. Do be careful with your trip, okay princess? And watch out for those slaves."
"Don't worry Karen, everything's fine. It's just a routine check, nothing bad would happen. Seriously."
Someone with experience would suspect that the last comment was true. Seriously… something wrong will and is going to happen.
A shadowy figure made its way towards the heart of the woods. He held on to a bottle on his right hand, which he would be using at any moment. He was silent, very silent. He had the reputation of being one of the most silent ninjas in the world… a proud product of the Hidden Village of the Mist.
But, unlike other ninjas in that village, he's reputation was more known in being able to hide into the surroundings without the use of the Hidden Mist Jutsu, unlike Zabusa, who if had only one weakness, was his overdependence on the mist to confuse his enemies. The ninja had heard that the Devil had been beaten twice by the Copy Ninja. He didn't care. He found it amusing for a few minutes, but didn't care in the end. Zabusa had a mission. He failed. That's all to it.
He followed the light and fire source. He knew his target was there… Akatsuki had large sources which were quite useful in searching for people. The Kyubi container and his sannin teacher… he wouldn't be able to beat them head on, but it wouldn't matter. His mission was to capture the Kyubi container, not fight a sannin and his gennin student.
Without disturbing any creature, he made his way… Akatsuki was going to get its demon container, and the power it has to offer. It was all for the good cause of their organization. It was for the glory and reputation of his whole being as a ninja. And of course, it was all for the money he is going to get after he succeeds this job. He's got 5 mouths to feed after all.
A sudden surge of chakra suddenly stopped him to his tracks. Was he discovered? Did something go wrong on his stalking steps? Did he somehow set a silent trap that he didn't detect? The shinobi didn't say anything… a common trait of Mist Ninjas… analyze everything logically… see if there is any detail you missed… most of all, don't panic.
He stayed as still as a petrified statue, waiting for an attack… a jutsu… maybe even a shuriken… anything. When nothing came, the ninja moved a bit. Not because he wanted too… but because the ground suddenly shook.
"WHATS THE MEANING OF THIS, JIRAIYA!" a loud booming voice shouted and echoed through the trees.
The ninja looked surprised to hear such a loud voice. Whose voice was that? From the source and volume of the sound, the one who spoke was a giant… very big. The ninja jumped up higher and higher in the tree he was in until he got to the top, and looked at where the fire was. His eyes widened. There is a large… no, gigantic frog in the middle of the forest.
"… Frog Summon…" he muttered under his breath. Looks like things became complicated.
In the campsite, Jiraiya is a shivering fit… he didn't want to deal with his impudent frog boss, but he didn't voice that out either. After all… one holds his mouth when you're going to insult a big ass frog that can easily squash you with its pinky.
Thankfully, the frog's attention wasn't on him anymore, but on Naruto. Jiraiya couldn't really understand how well they clicked… First, Yondaime had a much better relationship with the frog than the frog with Jiraiya himself! Then comes Naruto, a kid… and he is also stealing the heart of the Frog Boss… its really weird, considering the nature of Naruto's bloodline and family.
Jiraiya heard the boss laugh in amusement.
"So… you think you're up to it, kid, eh?" the frog boss asked. "This will be a very big step. Once you pass through that line… there is no going back."
"I'm ready when you are," Naruto replies strongly. The frog boss nods and looks at Jiraiya, who took out a few bottles of alcohol.
"Alright, you are now officially my 'real' subordinate. Let's drink to close our deal, and let the merry times begin!"
The three spent the whole afternoon drinking up, and getting to a drunken stupor.
While three males were drinking, five females were traveling fast. Three female guards, in armor and had pikes as weapons, were riding in three green colored dragonflies. The other two were riding in a leaf-made carriage being pulled by three dragonflies.
Karen was the one driving the coach, and took some sneak peeks at the Princess who was silently contemplating on something, and looking quite blank. Then she'd look at where she was going, as not to cause an accident by hitting a tree or a branch.
If all went well, they would be back at the castle before the night falls. With that in mind, Karen drove faster, as to go to their destination without losing time. The guards followed suit, adjusting with the speed Karen was reaching.
The later events were… boring to say the least. If there are people out there who wants a written description on how Naruto barfed after his first bottle of sake, or how Jiraiya was now seemingly in his skivvies, clearly drunk, and the Frog Boss laughing out of amusement, also seemingly hit with alcohol, then don't look at me. Use your own imagination… thank you. No… no matter how you beg. I ain't describing it… I mean… I shudder the fact that Ero-sennin is in his skivvies.
Oh… but you're curious of that Mist Missing-nin following Naruto, right? Well… he's watching. He actually couldn't believe his luck… no one, so far, detected him, and his quarry was there, slowly softening himself for the capture. Even the sennin was stupid enough to get himself drunk… and the frog looked a bit toasted himself. After a few bottles, the three wont pose a threat, and his mission's difficulty would go down significantly. All he had to do was wait and wait.
Oh… but you're curious about the Princess right? No? What do you mean you don't care about the princess? She's an important part of our story! What…? You don't want to hear how the Princess and her guards arrived at their destination, investigated and found nothing? And after a nice cup of tea and biscuits from the Head Slave Driver, aren't you curious of the sudden attack happening? Or even curious that the attack on the Mine coincidentally timed the attack of the Missing Nin towards Naruto and the sannin?
Oh… you are? Cool. Fast forward to the attacks!
Naruto coughed as he burped. The air around him smelled like sake. And he hadn't felt so lightheaded ever since Jiraiya's Endurance training, where the boy had to be thrown head first to a tree multiple times. You know the feeling of slamming the tree headfirst 50 times? Yup… he was feeling that now.
Jiraiya wasn't faring well himself. He was slowly singing some song Naruto recognized as the main theme of Icha Icha Paradise the Movie. Imagine that… a singing Jiraiya, on his underwear, badly, I might add, and on the verge of fainting. Not really an image of a teacher, or even one of the Legendary Ninjas of Konoha. Hell, not even an image of a decent man… but then again, are men decent really decent unless they want to be?
Naruto gave a kick to Jiraiya to stop his awful singing, and for good measure, wanted to add another kick in the face, but thought against it. He might have had a reason for an accidental kick ("I was drunk! What do you expect?") but for other heavier "accidents" it would amount to a somewhat "accidental" rigorous training regime.
As much as Naruto hated some of the regimes that the pervert would implement on him, he had to say they were quite effective. Had Kakashi started training them like this, he'd be a Jounin before supper. Or… maybe even Hokage after a year? Well… the training he had didn't help much of his drunken state. Maybe he'd request that training from Jiraiya…
Naruto yawned. His eyes began to close. Without even taking off his coat, he slumped on the ground, near the base of the tree, and began to snore. Jiraiya looked up from his fallen form, and saw in a glaze, three Naruto's spinning from his vision, slumped in the tree. "Heh… drank too much eh….?" And with that, his head too, fell flat on the ground.
Jiraiya closed his eyes only for a few minutes (he swears) but when he opened his eyes, he suddenly saw a shadow standing over Naruto's fallen form. Jiraiya took a few seconds to realize that he didn't know that shadow. He also noticed a movement with the shadow's hand… it took him another few seconds to realize that those were hand seals. It took another few seconds to put them together.
"… Oh shit… NARUTO! WAKE UP!"
The shadow's head suddenly realized that one of was awake. He knew he should have killed Jiraiya when he had the chance… but he lost his nerve. After all… even with his state of undress, he was still one of the Legendary Ninjas of the Leaf. It seems the 'leave Jiraiya alone and go for the target' had dire consequences. How Jiraiya was able to wake up through his stupor, yet even find the correct words to shout (correctly pronounced) was beyond him.
The Mist Missing-nin didn't curse. It wasn't part of his being, trained to remain silent forever. He did make a seal, and muttered "Pause…"
His seal did as he had muttered. It paused the sequence of seals he had been doing to Naruto. Quite a useful jutsu, especially for Mist nins who had the longest seals possible. It pauses the process of chakra production on the last seal before the pause seal, and until un-paused, the chakra would remain active until it slowly runs out of the chakra.
In short, a nin can make a series of seals, and when he is about to be interrupted, pauses it, and can resume the series of seal after a while. But it has problems, the pausing and unpausing sequence. In nin techniques that require only a small amount of chakra would immediately lose all its accumulating chakra seconds after the pausing. And there is also a small case of a person forgetting the last seal of the sequence, and thus, when he un-pauses it, and does the seal sequence wrong, it would either explode back on his face, or nothing would happen.
The latter would be worst, because it would show the person's stupidity, and make him the laughing stock of the whole ninja community. One very good example was the last Kage of the Mist… he was battling a Kage from another village, and was about to use his ultimate technique… He even bragged, silently, that with that jutsu, he would finish the other Kage off. But because of the long sequence of seals done for the jutsu, he had to pause it three times because his enemy, quite frankly, wasn't stupid to wait for the seals to be finished.
The battle spectacularly ended with when the Kage of the Mist, when he messed up the seals after the second pause. And that's how it ended… Mist Kage was blushing bright red, and his enemy Kage was rolling on the floor, laughing himself to death. The Mist Kage won, after his enemy suffered affixation due to laughing, but people still considered the winning Kage as the 'loser'.
Anyway, back to the story. With the pause seal in place, the mist missing-nin began to make new seals to use to fight against Jiraiya, maybe distracting him enough to finish the jutsu he was placing on Naruto.
Speaking of the boy… he opened his eyes, and whispered… "What a weird dream…" and went back to sleep.
A few minutes before Jiraiya's shout, the Princess was having a nice evening tea. Tea, was, one of the most mundane drinks of the fairy world. Wait… that didn't sound right. Tea, is, the most worldly drink in the fairy world. There was no champagne… no alchohol… no softdrinks. Everything was made of tea, because, tea leaves are one of the most affordable raw materials there is. One tea leaf can serve up to a thousand fairy cups.
Of course, due to sheer proportionality, so will a leaf of tobacco, marijuana, and a flower of poppies would most likely wipe out the whole population. Which is why, thank god, it has never been discovered… yet.
"So… what of news from the kingdom, Princess?" the Head Slave Driver asked. She's a gossipy person, really. Most of the time, she spends whipping slaves, and basically abusing them, everyday, 24/7. Really boring. She'd rather stay in the big city… probably play dominatrix or something… or maybe executioner. She always liked the sight of blood… not hers, but still… blood. Good.
The Princess never really liked the Head Slave Driver. She thinks the woman has a barbaric side to her… and being around slaves means that she is bound to get barbaric. After all, the slaves are nothing but barbaric, brutal, uneducated, and quite ugly fairies. If possible, she didn't want to have anything to do with them.
But the slaves were also a vital part of the survival of the Kingdom. They dig out metals, which then will be fashioned to weapons like steel whips and others. Raw materials used for weapons to be used against the MLA.
The MLA… how strange their enemy is. They are described as the ugliest creatures to exist. They rape women, cut open their bellies, and eat the unborn child inside. They have no emotions… they have no qualms in getting what they want, and will do any means necessary to achieve it. They are the most feared creatures of the Fairy Kingdom.
"Well… the city is fine… still immaculate," the Princess began. As much as she didn't like the Head Slave Driver, she still kept civil. "The Queen gives commendations to you, as you have been the Slave Driver for almost 4 years, and yet, still, we hear no word of delays nor even attacks from the MLA to this particular Mine."
"Ah… but we do get attacks," the Head Slave Driver replied. "Only we were able to stop their initial charges. And you know how MLA works… stop their first barrage, you have a good chance that the others won't be coming."
"Of course… that's how mother defended the kingdom," the Princess nodded. "How many barrages have you stopped?"
"I executed the survivors myself," the Head Slave Driver said smugly.
At that precise moment… the alarms sounded.
Jiraiya was a good ninja… when sober. When drunk though… well… lets say Rock Lee would do better using a wet noodle. He was utterly unfocused, unoriented, and can't even do hand seals correctly. By these reasons alone, the Missing Mist Nin was able to overpower Jiraiya and stun him for a few moments, by throwing him against a tree.
He wasted no time. Jiraiya was coming back for him, and he only had a few seconds. Using the Unpausing Seal, he continued the series of seals he was using on Naruto…
"Ninpo: Shrink-Size no Jutsu!"
Jiraiya's eyes opened as he heard. He recognized the Jutsu name. He realized what the nin's plan was… "NARUTO!" Jiraiya shouted, and seemingly, he began to sober as he ran towards the Mist-nin.
The ninja was opening his bottle, seemingly trying to catch something inside it when Jiraiya tackled him hard with a shoulder block. The mist-nin fell down, his eyes going wide. Jiraiya was too worried to notice that Naruto was gone.
A strong gust of wind blew, blinding the two ninjas… the missing-nin used that to escape, and groan at his failure of the mission. When the dust cleared, and the wind died down… he was alone.
Jiraiya's fist closed. He began to see red. "Damnit…"
Somewhere in the shadows, a cloaked figure had a small amused smile on his face. He then disappeared without a trace.
"LET ME GO!" a feminine voice called.
"Heh… you and your kingdom have taken so much away from us!" a masculine voice called.
"You will pay it… double… no triple to what you deserve!" another masculine voice called.
"We'll make you regret messing with us!"
"Take her boys! One at a time! She got no one to escape to… and nowhere to fly!"
Naruto's eyes twitched. His eyes opened. The scream woke him from his peaceful slumber… the sun burned his eyes. His head.
"Dammit, Ero-sennin… can't you just…"
Wait a minute… the voice was female… the scream was definitely female… and it sounded like…
"Trouble!" Naruto suddenly stood up. "OOOOOWWWWW! Shit… that is the last time I'm drinking that much…. Ugh… I feel sick…."
"EEEEKKKK! KEEP AWAY FROM ME!"
Naruto held in his own barf, and went towards the source of the scream. He didn't notice much of his surroundings, and may have jumped a few meters until he finally saw what was causing a commotion. A girl, in her underwear, ripped, and surrounded by very scary looking guys.
"KEEP AWAY FROM ME! SOMEONE! HELP ME!" she screamed.
"Take her men…" the tallest one said silently.
Naruto suddenly gritted his teeth, and jumped suddenly, calling a Kage Bunshin in mid-air to throw him towards the first guy approaching the girl, and gave him a hard kick in the side, making the approaching guy fly.
"NANI!" one of the men shouted.
Naruto landed in front of the men, and behind him was the shivering girl. He looked at her, and gave her the good guy pose and looked back at the guys, and his eyes narrowed.
"Who are you!" one of them demanded.
"Uzumaki Naruto. Ninja of Konoha, student of Laharl, and Ero-sennin. All around menace to perverts everywhere!" he struck a pose. "And… the one who's going to kick your ass!"
The tallest guy looked at him, and gave a nod. "You're going to take us on, eh? Don't you think you're overestimating yourself. We outnumber you, 5 to 1."
"Heh… why don't you… ugh…" Naruto suddenly went green and his cheeks went green. The enxt thing he did shocked all the guys that they had to back away. He threw up.
"Eeewww…" the guys said with disgust and mixed pity.
"Ugh… damnit… sorry about that…" Naruto replied, wiping his mouth with the sleeve of his jacket. "I drank too much yesterday…"
"I helps when you don't drink too much?" one of the guys suggested helpfully.
"Yeah, yeah," Naruto coughed a bit. "Eew… I got barf taste in my mouth…" he began to spit. After spitting enough to drive away the taste, he looked back at the guys. "Anyway… I'm Uzumaki Naruto! Prepare to get you're ass whooped!"
Kyuubi the Nine-Tailed Fox Woman
Pamela and Pfil
And Aaron Saotome
The Uzumaki Naruto Ninja Chronicles Side Story: Fairy Odd Adventure
Size doesn't matter… Proportionality does…