Author's Note: Alright, so this isn't exactly in the canon of Strangers in a Strange Land. Or if I'm going to be completely truthful about it, it isn't really in this canon at all, but it is a Harry Potter/Naruto crossover and this seemed like the best place for it. Considering I sort of doubt Orochimaru will ever show up in this story, this one-shot could be considered something of a prologue, even though it isn't. Anyway, on Twin Sun Leader's request, here is the meeting of Orochimaru and Voldemort (or more specifically, Tom Riddle). Orochimaru is fourteen and not evil yet. Tom Riddle is twenty years older and pure evil, because apparently he's been like that from day one, or something.
It was pure chance that Orochimaru was the one to see the foreigner first, during one of those rare periods of time when a new treaty had just been implemented (with the Sand, who happened to be Konoha's number one enemy of the moment) and neither village had had a chance to break it yet. Combining that with the fact that his team had just gotten back from a mission and had a few days leave meant that for the first time in over a year, Orochimaru actually had some free time. Unfortunately, free time never stayed free when he was in the village, with either Tsunade or Jiraiya dragging him off to do something or Sarutobi-sensei inviting him over for tea only to spend the entire time staring at Orochimaru in that particularly Sarutobi-sensei-esque way of his that made Orochimaru want to… well, sneak off into the forest with a book and not come back until everyone stopped looking for him.
Which was what he was doing now, actually. Or at least, that was what he had been doing until the foreigner had shown up. The day had started out so nicely, too.
Orochimaru had never seen a foreigner before, but the outlandish garb (a robe that looked even more cumbersome to walk in than Orochimaru's most formal kimono) and strangely shaped eyes didn't leave him with any doubt that this person wasn't from Japan.
Still, just because the man was a foreigner didn't mean he wasn't a threat. It just meant that he perhaps didn't know he was entering the territory of a shinobi village that had just weeks ago been involved in a very costly war and was more than a little edgy. And as Orochimaru had just yesterday returned from an assignment where he had killed quite a few people and the bloody feeling hadn't quite gone away yet, for once he was actually in a mood to give someone fair warning.
The foreigner was just passing under the tree where Orochimaru was perched when he alerted the man to his presence. "You do know this is shinobi territory, don't you?"
Orochimaru had to give him credit for his reflexes, at least, if not for his situational awareness. The foreigner had ducked behind a small outcropping of boulders just off the beaten path and had what looked like a stick in hand (but Orochimaru could only presume it to be a weapon of some kind) before Orochimaru even had time to jump down from the tree branch.
As Orochimaru landed on the forest floor and eyed the stick the man was pointing at him, he idly stuck his book into his kunai pouch and wondered if he just should have killed the foreigner right off instead of talking to him first. He didn't particularly like having a weapon aimed to hit him right between the eyes. "Put the stick away."
The man lowered the stick slightly so it was pointed at the ground instead of at Orochimaru's face, but he didn't return it to his sleeve. "This is the territory of a hidden village?" Definitely a foreigner. The accent was atrocious, though the grammar wasn't bad.
Orochimaru nodded and casually gave the man a look over. About Sarutobi-sensei's age was his best guess. Maybe a little older. Green eyes, dark brown hair. Taller than Orochimaru was, but then, that was nothing new. He stood like someone with some military training, resting his weight on the balls of his feet, but nothing like a shinobi. His legs were too close together to dodge easily and his hands were too far apart to make seals.
The foreigner was giving him the same examination, though Orochimaru thought it odd how much attention the man paid to his eyes and the snake tattoo curling around his left forearm. He absently found himself regretting that he had neglected to put on his usual arm guards this morning.
After a moment, the foreigner spoke again. "You are a shinobi of this village?"
Orochimaru nodded again, his danger instincts belatedly kicking in at the look in the man's eyes. Evaluating. Like he was trying to make an estimate of how much Orochimaru was worth. "I am. I suggest you leave. Konohagakure doesn't take well to intruders."
At that, the foreigner smiled. His green eyes glistened oddly. Orochimaru blinked. For a moment, he could have sworn the man's pupils were as slitted as his own. "Ah. So I am in the right place. Thank you very much for the information."
Before he had even finished speaking, the stick in the foreigner's hand had started to glow. Pure reflex was all that allowed Orochimaru to throw himself to the side in time, but even that wasn't enough for him to fully escape the aftershock of explosion of the ground under his feet.
It was half-stunned that Orochimaru collapsed to his knees, one hand scrambling for his kunai pouch as his other, spread-eagled in the dirt, kept him from falling on his face, though the roaring in his ears alerted him to the fact that his equilibrium was completely gone and he wouldn't be able to hit a target if he tried.
In the end, it was the foreigner and not his complete lack of balance that caused Orochimaru's hand to still with one finger through a kunai ring, the tip of the man's stick glowing green less than a foot from Orochimaru's nose.
"I suggest you stop now if you don't want me to kill you, child. Now, move you hand away from your side, if you will."
Orochimaru did, cursing himself as he did so. He knew he should have killed the man when he had the chance.
If he didn't feel like he would fall over if he shifted his weight, he might have taken his chances and grabbed at the stick (or at least gone for cover), but Orochimaru still couldn't quite see straight, so he didn't move, though his eyes remained riveted on the green glow.
"What do you want?"
The foreigner chuckled, though the sound came out dry and rasping. "From you? Nothing beyond what you've already given me. Normally I'd kill you know and leave your body for scavengers to eat, but despite your slight naivety you don't seem as foolish as all that, and I hate to waste potential.
"What I want from your village… well." The man laughed again, softly. "You'll find that out soon enough."
It was then that the man's expression turned thoughtful. "Still, even if I don't kill you, I can hardly have you following me. That would cause no end of trouble." Then he smiled. His green (and they were slitted, Orochimaru had no doubt of that now, though it was hard to see in the poor lighting) eyes were cold. "But there's an easy solution for that." The glow abruptly shifted to a paler color. "Petrificus Totalus."
It was shortly after the flash that followed that Orochimaru realized he couldn't move. At all. Breathing alone was an effort, and he couldn't even grit his teeth when the man lowered his stick and ran his free hand through Orochimaru's hair. "So young… but I suppose that won't last long."
Orochimaru wasn't able to shift his gaze, so he couldn't watch the man leave, but he was still able to hear the foreigner walking away, his heavy shoes making a distinctive crunch as they fell on the recently fallen leaves. "Until we meet again, boy."
In truth, when Orochimaru struggled to his feet four hours later, he wasn't sure if the foreigner's jutsu had just worn off or he had finally managed to break it, but either way he still found it difficult to move properly, almost stumbling into a tree during his first attempt at walking. The trip back to Konohagakure, which would have normally taken less than fifteen minutes, this time took four times that, and it was already dark by the time he made it to the village's main gates.
He arrived to find the Leaf in an uproar. Despite the late hour, all the lanterns in the village were lit, and he saw at least three ANBU squads flash by him. On top of that, the guards at the gate actually started to pat him down before he pulled out his identification and shoved it at them.
He was escorted to the Hokage's office immediately (which was odd), the words of the guard who took him there only giving him a vague idea of what had happened. Something had been stolen. Something important.
But that wasn't the worst of it.
The stark relief in his teacher's eyes when Orochimaru walked into his office, the gate guard close behind him, was what first alerted Orochimaru that something else was going on. It was far out of proportion to what it should have been. The only time Orochimaru had seen his teacher look at him like that before was a year ago when he, Tsunade, and Jiraiya had come back to Konoha a week late after an A-class mission had gone sour only to be informed that they had been reported MIA.
"Orochimaru… oh thank the gods."
Orochimaru couldn't help but stiffen slightly as his teacher put his hands on Orochimaru's shoulders, the closest the Sandaime Hokage ever got to a hug. Something really was wrong. "Sensei? What is it?"
At Orochimaru's question, the older shinobi's relief passed, and it was as he stepped back, putting some distance between them again, that he returned to being the Hokage. "A scroll detailing one path to immortality was stolen this afternoon from the forbidden section of the main vault. The only person reported having entered the vault in the time period the scroll was stolen was you, Orochimaru."
Orochimaru felt his eyes widen. "But… I was gone all day."
His teacher nodded. "I know. But the seals that detect henge didn't go off, and so when the scroll disappeared and you didn't show yourself immediately, many feared the worst."
The Hokage didn't bother spelling out what 'the worst' was. Stealing a forbidden scroll and running from the village. Going missing-nin with an A-class offense on his record. It was something he would have never recovered from, professionally or otherwise.
Orochimaru felt something within him go hard. The foreigner. It had to have been. Only a foreigner could use techniques that were unusual enough to evade the seals, and the green-eyed man had not only seen him, but spoken to him, so he could imitate Orochimaru's voice patterns with a good enough illusion. He had used Orochimaru's image to get into the vault, and then…
But how could he have…
"Sensei. The… person who disguised himself as me to enter the vault. How did he escape with the scroll?"
His teacher sighed. "We don't know. The Inuzuka tracker we're using for this investigation was able to follow the man's scent up until the shelf where the scroll was being stored, but beyond that the trail stops cold." At that, he smiled crookedly. "In retrospect, we probably should have used an Inuzuka who knew you and would have been able to differentiate your scent from someone who was just imitating you, but I fear we were all somewhat in a rush."
Orochimaru nodded absently in agreement, his mind racing. He should tell his teacher about the foreigner he had encountered this afternoon, but… it wouldn't really help the investigation much, he reasoned. And if it did… and the ANBU found the man before he did… Orochimaru's felt the nails of his left hand bite into his palm. No. That wouldn't happen. It was him that the foreigner had tricked, humiliated. He would get his due.
"Orochimaru? Are you alright?"
Orochimaru forced himself to relax, and moved his eyes to meet his teacher's concerned gaze. "Yes, Sarutobi-sensei. I'm fine." He had to leave. The Sandaime Hokage knew him far too well not to suspect that something was up if they talked any longer, so it was with a conscious effort that Orochimaru let his shoulders slump just a little bit more. "This is… a lot, though. Can I go home? I'm a little tired."
At that, his teacher smiled sympathetically, his expression softening. "Of course. I'm so sorry about all this, Orochimaru. We can finish talking about it tomorrow."
So Orochimaru went home, back to his apartment. Sarutobi-sensei never did get around to talking about the thief again, and as far as Orochimaru knew, Jiraiya and Tsunade never found out. Which was just as well. He didn't them to know. Working together on missions was one thing, but this… this was personal.
The foreigner would pay, if it was the last thing Orochimaru ever did. No one made a fool of him like that and got away with it.