Thank you all for your wonderful reviews.

As per your questions on the differences on Kyuubi's sealing...I do allude to it on my bio, but basically, the premise of this story is that when the Kyuubi attacked and was 'defeated' by Yondaime Hokage, a newborn baby was found near his (Yondaime's) body. The baby had clearly been used in some kind of ritual, but since no one else was there, no one in the Leaf Village (at the time) knew what exactly he had done. The residue of demonic chakra all over the stuff that had been used in the ritual lead the people of the village to believe that Yondaime had drained the Kyuubi of chakra to make it weak enough to kill, and that Yondaime had put in the chakra inside the baby so that Kyuubi couldn't take it back.

See the difference? Instead of thinking of Naruto as Kyuubi, the village thinks of Naruto as a child who's had demonic chakra inside him since just after birth. Instead of being a mass murderer, they think he's a freak, and potentially a new demon in the making...not that their various abuses are helping solve the problem much...

I can't tell the rest now, of course...I don't want to spoil the fic!

Disclaimer: I do not own the original Naruto

Claimer: I own this idea for this Naruto



After the lunch break ended, Hinata found that she really didn't want to move back to her old seat. And when all the other new Genin returned, Hinata found herself holding onto that conviction (just barely) and stayed put.

No one noticed.

As soon as they laid eyes on Sasuke, the rest of the class' kunoichi fought tooth and nail for the privilege of a seat next to the black-haired prodigy. Sasuke had unfortunately chosen a seat in the middle of a desk, and when the dust settled Sakura and Ino were sitting in the seats on either side of him, happy as could be. Almost happy, anyways, since as soon as the issue of seats was settled, Sakura and Ino were insulting each other and trying to woo Sasuke through sheer force of will and death grips. Sasuke suddenly felt very happy with his other teammates, who had yet to attempt to molest him.

Almost as soon as the last new Genin was back in the classroom, the Jounin-sensei started to arrive. Squads were being lead away, one and two at a time, until at last only Squad 7 remained. It had been an hour since the break ended, and since Squad 7's leader seemed to be running a little late, the squad sat down to wait.

One hour later: the squad wondered if their new sensei was on a mission.

Two hours later: the squad wondered if their new sensei could tell time.

Two and a half hours later: Naruto thought it might be a good idea to get in some sleep. Hinata decided to study the back of her hands some more, in case she hadn't memorized every detail yet. Sasuke wondered if it worth risking Iruka-sensei's wrath by practicing Katon jutsu in the classroom.

Three hours later: there was a quiet sliding noise as the door to the classroom slid open.

The unexpected sound drew all three Genin's attention right away, as a lanky man in a Jounin uniform stuck his head inside the classroom. He had silver hair that stuck straight up, and he was wearing a cloth mask that covered his face from the nose down. His hitai-ate was on crooked, so that the only visible part of the Jounin's face was his right eye. He hadn't been here for ten seconds yet and already Squad 7 knew that this Jounin was strange.

'Is this our sensei?' Hinata and Sasuke wondered.

Naruto only made a grumbling noise to himself. Sure, he had been right, it was the same guy – but Naruto hadn't realized that this guy was even more lazy than Shikamaru. Naruto would need to see what he could do about it – Iruka-nii wouldn't want to put up with stuff like that.

The silver-haired Jounin put a hand to his chin, as if he was thinking of something. The three Genin stared at him, wondering what was going to happen now. Was this their new Jounin-sensei?

"Based on my first impression of this squad…" the Jounin drawled out, seeming almost as if he was taking enjoyment from the mere act of speaking to the three of them, "You three…"

He paused for a moment.

"…Are idiots!"

The Jounin finished his statement with a gleeful tone. Naruto, Sasuke, and Hinata nearly fell out of their seats in astonishment.

Kakashi had been given sorry excuses for Genin teams in the past, of course, but these three had managed to totally redefine 'weird' in under ten seconds. There was Icicle Boy, Demon Brat, and the Anti-Hyuuga…well, hopefully he could fail them all quickly. More time for quality reading that way.

"Alright," Kakashi said, once he had lead the squad to a nearby rooftop, "Let's all introduce ourselves to each other. Just the basics – names, likes, dislikes, dreams, hobbies, that sort of thing. Who wants to go first?"

Kakashi got two and a half stares in response to that question. Icicle Boy (nicknames equal fun!) seemed offended, Demon Brat looked bored, and the Anti-Hyuuga was studying her hands with rapt fascination. This silent team…it had to be a record of some kind. But it was no fun trying to tease them, no fun at all.

"Okay…I'll just show you how it's done, then," Kakashi said, only feeling slightly miffed, "My name is Hatake Kakashi. Let's see... My likes and dislikes are absolutely none of your business."

Hah! Their little heads had whipped up at that! Icicle Boy needed to work on his death glares, though, Kakashi had never felt healthier in his life.

"Ah, and my dreams for the future are…hmm. I don't think I've ever really thought about that. Oh, and as for my hobbies…eh, let's just say they aren't meant for the ears of sweet, innocent little children."

This was a slight improvement from before. All three were staring at him now, the boys in annoyance and the girl with confusion. But still…

'These kids are so damn solemn…just watching them is making me feel depressed,' Kakashi sighed to himself.

Pointing to Icicle Boy, Kakashi said, "Okay, you can start first."

"…My name is Uchiha Sasuke," said the boy, "…I don't like many things. I don't have time for hobbies. My goal is to restore my clan and find the truth of the massacre."

'Hmm,' Kakashi frowned under his mask, 'No wonder he's so stiff. The Uchiha Massacre, eh?'

It was an open secret in Konoha that the Uchiha Clan, one of the top two Bloodline Clans in the village, had been mysteriously wiped out six years ago. The only known survivors were Sasuke and his older brother, Itachi. Uchiha Itachi had vanished from the village at that time, either during or just after the massacre. This was taken by most of the villagers as a sign of guilt, though the only ones to actually witness the massacre itself were the victims...

Now Itachi was a missing-nin…but Sasuke didn't seem to support the 'Guilty Missing-nin' theory that the rest of the village had.

'Interesting,' Kakashi decided, and pointed at the next one in line.

"Now for the young lady," Kakashi said.

Nervously, the girl said, "My name is Hyuuga Hinata. Um…I like…I like it when it snows. I don't…really have any…hobbies. Um…I don't like it when…if…when people are cruel. And…my dream is…my dream is to be…a good ninja, I guess."

'A good ninja, she guesses…it figures I get the only Hyuuga with no self-esteem whatsoever,' thought Kakashi, pointing to the last one.

"And you?"

The other boy (Naruto) looked up – and how the hell did he see with both eyes closed like that, anyway? – seemingly thinking about what he would say.

"Naruto is Uzumaki Naruto," said Naruto, "Naruto likes ramen and something else. What Naruto doesn't like is stupid work. Ah…and Naruto's hobbies…they're secret!"

Naruto looked very happy with his answers. Kakashi just felt slightly creeped out. It looked like he was re-redefining weird here…

"What, no dreams?" Kakashi prodded.

"Can't say."

Naruto held up a hand, pointing upwards as if he was giving a lecture. His tone was completely serious.

"Top secret. World will end. Sensei gets it."

Sasuke and Hinata were both staring at the blonde now, annoyance and confusion on their faces. You couldn't blame them - whatever the hell the boy had grown into, it was definitely strange.

"All right. You're each different, with your own interesting ideas. That's excellent," Kakashi said, drawing the attention back his way, "The squad will start its first mission tomorrow."

The three just stared, waiting for more information. Kakashi was going to be glad to dump them back in the Academy (assuming they had any skill worth improving) because honestly, the three of them were simply no fun at all.

"Um…what sort of mission will it be, sensei?" Hinata asked a moment later, glancing nervously at her teammates as she spoke.

'Egad! She speaks!' Kakashi thought to himself, even as he prepared his usual terror-to-the-new-Genin spiel.

"It's a task that will only involve the four of us," Kakashi said.

There was a long pause. Then Hinata said, "Um…"

"We will be performing survival exercises," Kakashi said, deciding to take pity on the poor girl.

There was a very faint, very contemptuous-sounding snort from Sasuke.

"This will be different from any previous survival training you may have undergone," Kakashi replied calmly.

"…How will it be different?" Hinata asked.

"You'll need to survive against me," Kakashi said, smiling under the mask even though none of them could see it, "And anyone who doesn't gets sent back to the Academy for more training."

"Hn?"

"Huh?"

"Eh?"

Finally, there was something approaching a conversation going on here.

"This is a test to see who amongst you new graduates will become actual Genin. The test happens to have a minimum failure rate of sixty-six percent. Only the best will become Genin, though the Academy exam should have weeded out the completely hopeless from your ranks…"

'This sounds promising,' thought Sasuke.

'Academy, here I come,' thought Hinata.

'Nobody's taking this away from me,' thought Naruto, putting a hand to his hitai-ate.

"This lists the meeting place for tomorrow's test," Kakashi concluded, handing out the notes with the information out, "Meet out there at six a.m., and bring your ninja gear."

Kakashi stood up, stretched, and turned to leave. Before actually leaving, though, he added the last thing.

"By the way, a word of advice."

Three alert gazes fixed themselves to the back of his head. Kakashi turned to look at them.

"Don't eat breakfast…unless you like puking."

The sound of nervous swallowing and fidgeting was almost music to his ears.