Okay, so on my way back to Japan...I drew this pic of Naruto and Gaara all baseball stylings. And I was like..."Yay, I could try a fanfic of this."
But...I'm not a baseball fan, so my knowledge is limited to Wikipedia. And baseball is all boring. I mean...no one gets tackled, punched, or shoved!
Shuukaku: Violent, much?
Yeah, you know you like it. SO ANYWAY! Without further ado, the craptastic first chapter of
PLAYBALL!KONOHA vs SUNA
Yakyuu- n.,japanese; baseball
Tsunade returned from her visit to Sand Country filled in anger and irritation. She dropped her bags with a loud thud and stomped to her desk, sitting down with her arms crossed tightly over her large chest. Shizune and Ton-ton were right on her heels, their expressions concerned with her overreaction to the Interim Kazekage's behavior during their trip.
"Aaa, Tsunade...I think-" The Fifth Hokage whipped her head around, eye still narrowed in anger, causing Shizune to wince. "I think you should calm down. It's just a silly game."
"NO! This is a matter of honor!" She stood up from her seat, having barely sat in it a minute. " 'Oh, this is baseball, but I don't expect you guys from Konoha to understand.' HA! That pitch I threw nearly took that kid's bat apart!"
"Actually, it...nearly took him apart-BUT," she added quickly, "that's not the point. Who cares if Sand thinks they're better ballplayers? It's a boring sport anyway," Shizune closed the argument and put her own bags down on the floor.
Tsunade pouted. "Because they're still trying to snub there noses at us. 'This is a historical artifact. We have sooo many.' As if I cared..."
"I think they were just trying to impress you but you took it the wrong way. After all, you lost all that money playing their pachinko machines as soon as we arrived there." Shizune smiled kindly and sat across the desk from the ninja leader. "Besides you're always in such a rotten mood after you lose money."
"THEY WERE RIGGED!" She punched her desk with such force it shattered. Shizune picked a splinter of wood out of her hair and sweatdropped. Blushing with embarrassment, Tsunade cleared her throat. "You're right, Shizune, there's no point in getting worked up but a wise man once said Don't get mad, get even.'"
Shizune's expression melted into one of shock, horror, and disbelief "How is that wise? And how are you planning to get even?" Whatever Tsunade was planning, it probably wasn't safe, fair, or a good idea.
However, Fifth Hokage slowly sat down her chair, lacing her fingers under her chin. "Why, I'll hold a friendly game of baseball," she replied calmly. Ton-ton gave a concerned 'Buu'.
Naruto pulled the blue-trimmed, leaf green uniform out of its box. He grinned and immediately began to take his orange clothes off to try them on. "Hey, Sasuke what's my card say? What position am I playing? Pitcher? Shortstop? First Base?"
"Left Field," Sasuke answered emotionlessly. He ignored his friend's whine of discontent and checked his own card. "I'm First Base."
The spiky blonde leaned over to look at Sasuke's card. "Why do you get First base!" he accused. His reply was a noncommittal shrug from the Uchiha.
A shadow fell over them as they sat on the stairs of the Ninja Academy. They had been ordered to come there to receive their positions and uniforms for the upcoming game. Haruno Sakura was looking herself over in her new uniform and cap. "I'm Centerfield. This uniform is so cute, though! Sasuke, we would play catch to train." She knelt down before Sasuke with a smile full of hope.
"Yeah!" Naruto exclaimed. "Sakura-chan, since we're both in outfield we should practice together, too." He gave a similar smile to Sakura that she gave to Sasuke. The result was about the same.
Sakura gave him a dangerous expression that turned into a scowl. "If you think I'll train wit you then your brain's in left field, Naruto." She turned to Sasuke but he was paying her no attention staring off into the distance.
By now the other students started to gather in the schoolyard of the Academy with the members of Team 7. Most seemed excited about the impending game, the boys particularly interested, as they already began discussing strategy. Ino, of course, immediately ran over to Sasuke and attached herself to his neck. Sasuke looked harassed but said nothing.
"Sasuke! We should practice together. Would you like to show me how to hit a ball?" His expression was a blatant 'no', but love is blind and Ino didn't seem to notice.
Sakura cracked her knuckles and punched her open palm. "Why ask Sasuke, Ino-pig? I'll hit you right now." The two girls, rivals for Uchiha Sasuke's love, squared off, the tension between them all but visible.
Akamaru had a baseball lodged in his mouth as he barked behind it. Naruto reached out and took it. "What position are you playing, Kiba?"
"Ah, Akamaru and I are Third base. We're the last line of defense before home base, right, Akamaru?" The dog barked again and caught the ball as Naruto tossed it in the air.
Neji crossed his arms. "Who's our coach, I wonder?" Most of the others shrugged.
"Gai-sensei!" Lee answered. He put his cap on and clenched his fist. His eyes were full of the burning passion so typical of him and the jounin. "He has to be our coach. Only he can really charge up our team with spirit and the power of the youth explosion! With him as our coach, there is no way that we can lose."
"Gai? Are you kidding? So he can make us hit a thousand balls, run six hundred laps, and catch a thousand more balls?" Neji retorted. Lee's expression was one that told Neji that his companion completely failed to see the exaggeration in his words and probably would perform those very actions on his own. With a sigh, he answered, "... Never mind."
"Gai as coach. Hmmm, close but," a calm voice began. Kakashi walked up holding a bat and clipboard. "I'm coach. Gai is assistant coach." The latter gave a grin and 'V' sign. "So I take it you all got your uniforms and positions?" They nodded. "Great. So let's go through them. Shikamaru, Hinata, you guys are our pitchers. Sasuke is first base. Neji is second, and Kiba and Akamaru are third. Shino is short stop. Chouji is catcher. That's all of infield. Naruto is Left Field, Sakura is Center, and Ino is right field. Ten-Ten and Lee will be our substitutes."
Naruto seemed to be thoughtful. "Hey, since we're going up against sand...is Gaara going to be playing?" Kakashi nodded. "And his family too?" Shikamaru choked on his spit but pretended to be bored and uninterested. Chouji nudged him in the ribs and gave a knowing smile. Temari would be playing.
"They probably will be. You guys should take extra care though... This isn't going to be normal baseball. It's going to be ninja baseball." The students gazed at him with questions in their eyes, namely, "What the hell is ninja baseball?"
Gai cleared his throat, trying to hide a smile. "You see, in ninja baseball, anything goes. So... Lee can use his lotus moves to get to base faster. The only real rule is that you cannot hurt another player."
Sasuke smirked. "I'm starting think I'll like this game."
The day of the game arrived and the temporary stadium constructed in a field outside of Konoha was packed with villagers from both Sand. Leaf and also baseball fans from beyond that. The Sand uniforms were tan and red and they were easily distinguishable from the green Leaf fans. The sounds of the crowd could be heard for miles even before the game had begun. The aides checked everyone to make sure no troublemakers got in. It would be a perfect event for Orochimaru to crash.
Shizune could hardly believe the crowds. She and Tsunade were perched in their box seats watching the stands fill. "Wow, I don't know if we'll have enough seats. He might have to pull some televisions out for everyone that doesn't get in."
Tsunade chuckled and hugged Ton-ton close. "No matter, I'll be pleased when we humiliate Sand on live TV. Heheh, maybe then they'll fix their pachinko machines." The medical ninja gave here a dubious look but was ignored.
In the announcer's box, Genma and Baki were seated and busying themselves with adjusting the mics. Genma leaned into a microphone. "Testing...1, 2, 3." The roar from the crowd below told him that they heard him loud and clear. He grinned, giving Baki the thumbs up.
"Sand can you hear me?" Again more roaring, as the half of the stands filled with Suna fans waved their merchandise in the air.
Genma adjusted his toothpick. "Konoha, are you ready to rock!" Green and blue banners, balloons, foam fingers and any other manner of symbols were waved as the stadium went mad.
Naruto slurped up a cup of ramen from Ichiraku. The store had temporarily relocated to the stadium just for the event and he had to go see them. As he walked back to the dug out, he caught sight of a few familiar faces. "Inari? Tsunami? Tazuna?" He ran over to the people of his first mission. They were all sporting Konoha's colors.
"Naruto, what position are you?" Inari asked eagerly.
"Uuuuh...left field," he answered unsure of himself.
"GREAT! Our seats are there. I'll catch a fly ball for sure!" Naruto scowled and put him in a headlock.
"I'm not going to let a ball get past me! Don't think you'll get a fly ball from my side of the field!" Naruto gave him a noogie, leaving the boys hair disheveled. "Just you watch. We're going to beat Sand and send them crying back home."
Tazuna laughed. "I got a few ryo on your team, kid. Make sure you win and I'll treat you to dinner!"
Before Naruto could comment, Sakura ran up to them. She was shocked to see them and equally happy but she remembered something "Sorry, we gotta run! Naruto come on! We'll be hitting the field soon." She grabbed him by the back of his collar and began to drag him away. Naruto gave a final wave.
"I STILL WANT THAT FLY BALL!" Inari yelled at him. He backed away and bumped a tall man. "Uh, sorry!" The red-eyed man nodded and walked towards the concession stands. He had a Konoha megaphone around his neck and a jersey with Sasuke's number. He thought for a second that the man looked like an older Sasuke. Perhaps it was his brother, he wondered.
"Inari," his mother called. He dismissed the thought and ran to catch up with his grandfather and mother.
In the announcer's box, Genma was munching on nachos and Baki was slaying an Uber-Gulpzilla from the concession stands. "Looks like it's going to be quite a game, eh, Baki? The fans are real hyped."
"Yes, Genma. The weather is clear and the stands are overflowing with fans of these two teams. It should be quite a game." Genma took a sip of his own drink and exchanged the secret 'we have the best jobs' look with Baki. They toasted their two drinks together.
Neji and Hinata stood before Hiashi and Hinabi, receiving a 'pep talk'. "...And in short, don't lose."
"I-I'll do my best," Hinata answered with a bow. Neji bowed too but said nothing. With that, Hiashi put on a giant foam head band and slung a plastic bat over his shoulder before he left. Hinabi was armed with sign that read. "HOMERUN HYUUGAS! HINATA & NEJI KICK BUTT!" With her own renditions of an angry Neji and Hinata on either side. She waved and followed her father.
The Sand siblings were outside of their dug out. Kankurou and Temari regarded Gaara intently. The younger sibling had just been informed that he'd be batting after his siblings and he had just informed his family that he couldn't hit.
"What kind of freaking ninja are you?" Kankurou said with a scowl.
"One that doesn't use a stick of wood to hit small round balls." Gaara replied equally disgusted with Kankurou.
Temari sighed and put her hands on his shoulder. "Well, here's a crash course. Keep your eye on the ball, legs apart, swing, turn your body, drop the bat, run like hell. Remember these things and you can't miss."
"Run? To first base?" Gaara asked, looking at Sasuke. His former opponent was tossing a ball back and forth to his teammates.
"No, stand like an idiot and wait until the ball tags you," his brother snapped. "Yes, to first base!"
Gaara peered around Temari to give Kankurou a piece of his mind. "Go to hell. At least I don't have a fat head to slow me down."
"Keep talking and I'll give you a fat lip."
"Try it, pissface."
"Come 'ere, midget."
Temari held them both apart. "THIS IS BASEBALL, DAMMIT. Not hockey! Show a little team spirit and try to get along." The two boys quieted down though they still shot each other displeased glances.
The Sand Mascot, a tanuki in uniform, walked past the dug out waving to the players. It was nearly giving Gaara a heart attack. "What... the...hell?" He looked at the fuzzy Shuukaku-like mascot, wide-eyed.
Kankurou laughed in spite of himself and almost fell on the floor. "Oh my god! That is so lame!"
"It's our mascot. Yakyuukaku," Temari explained. Gaara and Kankurou looked at her in disbelief. "What?"
"That is ...the single...DUMBEST thing...ever." Kankurou stated bluntly.
"Did any ask me if it was okay to use my demon as a mascot?" Gaara asked in a huff. "I know the Shuukaku and that," he pointed. "Is not Shuukaku."
Temari rolled her eyes. "You're right. It's Yakyuukaku. And you do not have rights to your demon, so don't get offended. Could be worse... I mean look at Konoha's mascot."
Across the field, throwing imaginary punches at Sand's Mascot was a nine-tailed fox in Konoha's uniform. "LAAAAAAAAAAAMEEEEEE!" Kankurou screamed at the animal. "KONOHA SUCKS MY BALLS! GO SUNA!" He leaned back and looked at his siblings. His goofy childishness was appalling at times. "What? You said have team spirit." Gaara sat down and looked down the bench, muttering, "Idiot" as he did so.
Yakyuukaku? Came a voice inside Gaara. What the hell is that? Gaara didn't respond. I demand you let me out to kill that thing before it ruins my reputation!
Calm down. It's just a game. He ignored any further complaints.
Naruto was having similar problems on his end. The Kyuubi was not pleased at the similarly named Yakyuubi. Apparently creativity was short when they named the mascots.
Rasengan. Rasengan that piece of shit into oblivion!
IT'S EMBARRASSING! ... ... Did it...Did it just skip across the field? KILL IT! KILL IT NOW! DO IT!
Shut up! I'm trying to find Inari in the stands.
IT DID A CARTWHEEL! Naruto wiggled his finger in his ear and ignored the demon within him.
Hinata approached her secret crush and handed him a sports tumbler full of water. "Good luck, Naruto-kun. I won't be pitching yet, so .. So... I'll be cheering for you." She blushed and pressed her index fingers together.
Naruto gulped down some of the water and wiped his brow with his arm. His blue eyes always sparkled with indomitable spirit, Hinata thought to herself. "Thanks, Hinata-chan, but don't just cheer for me. You have to cheer for all of us because we're on the same team now. So let's cheer for each other and everyone." She nodded and smiled at his wisdom.
Genma swallowed a bite of hotdog. "It looks like the teams are ready to take the field. Konoha will be playing the field with Sand at bat."
"Our first hitter is Sabakuno Kankurou. I have the pleasure of being this young lad's teacher. He shows a lot of promise as a ninja," Baki explained.
"Indeed. He may use puppets but he's no dummy," Genma joked. "The Sabakuno family is teaming with talent."
Kankurou swung his bat a few times then paused when he heard Genma's jest. "I'm going to kick that guy in the nuts," he grumbled. He heard that joke more times than he could count, and just as many faces found contact with his fist. He spread his legs apart and gripped the bat tightly. "HEY SHIKAMARU! LET ME WALK AND YOU CAN BANG MY SISTER!" he called to the mound.
Temari glared at her moron brother from the dug out. "I'm going to kick him in the nuts."
Poor Shikamaru blushed under his hat and groaned. He looked around to his teammates, each of them gave him a secret okay. Chouji signaled for a fast ball. Ibiki, the umpire, stood by patiently. Holding the ball tightly, the genius of Konoha wound up and pitched a swift one to home.
Kankurou smirked and twisted his body as he swung. The only thing he heard was a big 'whoosh' and "STRIKE ONE!"
Kankurou growled and returned to batting position. Chouji tossed the ball back to the pitcher. Shikamaru pitched again, the ball curving slightly. "STRIKE TWO!"
"That was a ball! It was over there! Gaara could have hit that!" Ibiki held up two fingers and crossed his arms. His judgment was final. "Is that how you wanna play...well, I got a trick of my own." He secretly attached a string of chakra to the ball before Chouji tossed it back. The final pitch was thrown, another curve, however, the ball suddenly changed its course and headed right for Kankurou's bat. There was a loud crack as it went into right field.
Ino was busy waving at her friends when the ball almost hit her in the head. "Nami! Take a picture of me-ACK!" She looked at the offending for split second until she heard Sasuke screaming at her to throw the ball. She pick it up and launched it at second base. Kankurou slid in and looked up. Neji had the ball on Kankurou's ankle. They both looked at Shizune for the call.
"Safe!" she cried. The stands went wild, the Suna fans waving their banners and the Konoha fans booing deeply. Kankurou stood up and grinned. Neji and Sasuke both gave Ino a look to melt a glacier. She felt as small as an ant.
"Tough break for Konoha!" Baki exclaimed. "Next up is Sabakuno Temari, and I predict a home run."
"Temari defeated our Ten-ten in the last Chuunin exam but she's going up against Shikamaru, will she have revenge?" Genma continued to play poker with Baki.
"That's me." She began to pull her shorts up, making them seductively short. She unbuttoned a few buttons on her jersey and picked up her fan.
Gaara blinked. "I can almost see your butt and your bra," he scolded. She winked and headed out to field. Whistles were mingled in with the cheers as she jogged across the field.
She took the plate and spread her legs, placing a hand on her backside. "Go easy on me, Shikamaru." She winked and readied her fan.
On the pitchers mound, Shikamaru's brain had stopped all calculations and focused on her finer points. "Dammit,"he cursed at himself. He shook his head and looked at Chouji's signal. "Slow ball...slow ball." He pitched and almost hit Ibiki.
"BALL ONE! WATCH IT, NARA!"
"Dammit, concentrate. She's just a stupid girl trying to distract me." He pitched again this time she hit it straight across the field. Sakura watched the ball go over her head, it was going to be home run until the ball stopped, caught by a glove made of small black bugs. Kiba glowered as Kankurou practically skipped past him to third base. Shino pushed his glasses up, undisturbed thus far.
"YOU'RE OUT!" yelled Shizune as Temari approached second. Shikamaru let out a sigh of relief. Kankurou however was planted firmly on third base with Kiba. He would have to get him out.
Temari sighed and straightened her clothing as she approached the dug out. "Okay, Gaara... remember what I told you. Eye, legs, swing, twist, run."
"I got it." He grabbed a bat and headed for the plate.
Naruto cupped his hands. "GOOD LUCK, GAARA BUT WE'RE STILL GOING TO WIN!"
The sand ninja didn't seem stirred by the cheer, he was concentrating on hitting the ball. "Keep your eye on the ball, legs apart." He fixed his stance. The pitch. "Swing, turn your body.." CRACK! He watched the ball go sailing... ... "I hit it...Wait...I'm supposed to- "
"RUN, GOD DAMMIT, GAARA, RUN!" Kankurou said, as he was headed toward base. The younger boy ran for first, touching it before the ball returned to Sasuke.
Kankurou did a little dance before returning to the dug out. The first point of the game belonged to Sand.