Years have passed. Naruto has grown stronger and more attractive. He walks down the streets and women swoon over him. Jiraiya being the pervert he is decided to capitalize on this. With Tsunade by his side, he's determined to see which harem will win and which girl shall get Uzumaki Naruto. Jiraiya grinned evilly as he can already picture the amount of data he can gather without even doing any spying. Now if only he can keep Naruto in the dark about this…
I do not own any of the characters of Naruto. They are owned by Masashi Kishimoto and various Companies, Productions and Corporations . I am only a fan who is writing for leisure. So please get your lawyers out of my house before I sick my dogs at them.
This is a special request by one of my friends. This is basically harem vs. harem. Both fighting to win Naruto. You can take this as either a side story of Naruto: Love Hina Style or a spin-off. In any case it's a sort of fan service. Who will win?
This is an AU.
I repeat an AU or an Alternate Universe.
So basically I'm free to curb some of the characters' characteristics into my own liking!
All hail my creative writing license!
(Please note I don't have any license what so over. The license mentioned is also fictional.)
I know, I know, the update took longer than expected but if you've read my profile you would know why. I did try my hardest to find time to write and I hope all you readers enjoy this latest update.
There are still a lot of plot holes needed to be fixed in this current story especially about the the actual tournament so please bear with me on this. But I would like to thank everyone that had left me a review and supported this story so far. Thank you very much! It's because of your continous support that I find the motivation to write.
I really appreciated all your support. Please read my Updates announcement in my profile for it has my explanation about delays in updates. But for now I hope you enjoy my latest update...
I'd like to also thank Soul of the Silver Phoenix for taking the time to pre-read and discuss this story with me, he's been a real great help and an absolute angel.
Now on to the chapter!
Italics means thoughts
Bold means kyuubi talking
Bold Italics means emphasized phrase
Naruto made a mad dash towards the Imperial Leaf Hotel, albeit a bit clumsily as he zig-zagged on Konoha's busy street to avoid colliding with the people. He ran around pretty much like a headless chicken, since panic was overriding his senses, making him momentarily forget where the Imperial Leaf Hotel was located.
"You really need to calm yourself down kit." Kyuubi advised. With all Naruto's panicking, his mind was screaming with worry, enough to disturb the sleeping fox.
"But I'm LATE!" Naruto spoke out loud, momentarily forgetting to speak in his mind.
"Yes you are. But with your mind in a jumbled mix, you're going to get even more delayed if you don't get your thoughts in order." Kyuubi replied back, and as though it was proving its point, Naruto realized he had just turned in a dead end street.
"DAMN IT!" Naruto cursed as well as many more expletives that are better off unsaid in this story.
"My kit, what colourful and descriptive language you've picked up. I bet the princesses would love to hear you sprout such words." Kyuubi replied back.
"You're not helping you know." Naruto replied back gruffly as he stared at the wall in front of him, taking the moment to try and calm down. Taking deep breaths he closed his eyes and tried to clear his mind from the panic attack he was feeling.
When he was sure that his breathing was now even and at an acceptable level, he turned around and walked out of the dead end street.
"Now where exactly did I end up?" Naruto wondered to himself, until he caught glimpse of the Yamanaka's flower shop.
"Well since I'm already late, I might as well grab something to make up for it. I'm sure they wouldn't mind if I got something for them." Naruto reasoned to himself.
Kyuubi couldn't help but feel proud of the boy's reasoning. It's a very good idea to placate the females.
Naruto made his way towards the Yamanaka's flower shop where he was greeted by a rather bored looking Yamanaka Ino behind the counter.
"Welcome to Yamanaka's." Ino greeted rather blandly not even looking up from the magazine she was currently flicking through.
"I can see why business is booming." Naruto couldn't help but sarcastically remark.
Ino irritatedly looked up from her magazine to tell off the smart mouthed sarcastic remark and was not all that surprised to be greeted by Uzumaki Naruto.
"Figures." Ino replied back as though the problem was solved. "Naruto, the ramen stand is in the next corner of the street." She helpfully pointed out. Perhaps he had entered her shop by mistake from ramen induced hunger pains or cravings?
"Huh? Yeah I knew that." Naruto replied back, having no idea why Ino would even say such a thing. He looked at her like she was the epitome of the word "dumb blonde". "The amount of flowers were a dead give away."
Ino couldn't help but feel a slight twitch of irritation from the way Naruto looked at her. He was looking at her like she was stupid as he stood there in front of her with arms crossed against his broad and muscular chest.
"So why are you here?" She asked the blonde, wondering why on earth Naruto would be there of all places.
Naruto once again gave her that look, the look that says she's not as smart as she looked kind of look. "I'm here to get some flowers, duh!"
Ino shook in repressed rage. How dare this blonde look down on her and make her look stupid! She slammed both hands on the counter and glared at him. "So why aren't you looking around then, instead of you irritating me!"
"Well…" Naruto sweat dropped and he scratched the side of his nose feeling a bit sheepish. "I don't know much about flowers and stuff, so I was hoping you'd help me."
"After insulting me?" Ino couldn't help but incredulously reply back. That was some way to ask someone to help them. From the way she was feeling at the moment she was tempted to give him some poisonous plants and poison ivy as payback but had to restrain herself. She felt sorry for whom ever was going to receive the flowers. She couldn't take a risk. What if it was for Godaime-sama? She was the only female she knew that tolerated the blonde doofus.
Naruto scratched the back of his head. "Come on Ino, don't be like that. I'm in real deep water here. If you'd like I'll take this as a favour and I'll treat you to something. Please? I'm desperate here."
"So he screwed up again." Ino thought, but more importantly she was intrigued. If Naruto was buying flowers that means he messed up with some girl. She immediately thought of Tsuchi Kin, but Naruto as far as she knew never bought flowers for anyone. Rather just treating them to Ramen as a peace offering. How could anyone consider ramen as a peace offering anyway? Even as a treat?
Ino looked at Naruto once again. He did look desperate and he had that abandoned puppy look that was starting to melt her hardened resolve to leave him with his own devices. Besides it wouldn't hurt if Naruto owed her a favour or two.
"Fine." Ino reluctantly replied back as she left the counter to join him. "What did you have in mind?"
Naruto frowned and concentrated real hard. "How about you show me what you have first?"
Ino clucked her tongue in distaste. It seemed that she will be preoccupied for a while, well it beats doing nothing after all. "Yeah ok. Follow me then." she led him around the shop showing him various flowers.
After about 20 minutes of scrutinizing everything in the shop and looking like he was being tortured for interrogation, Ino asked Naruto what he would like.
Naruto's frown was evident and the lost look in his eyes prominent, Ino sighed. "Why don't you just buy roses like the other guys? They're very popular." Ino advised him, which made Naruto grimaced.
"What would you pick?" he asked as he turned towards Ino. He didn't want roses. Roses sounded too plain and almost had a hollow meaning to them due to their popularity.
Ino was a little taken aback by his question. She was used to customers asking her preferences, since she has more experience in flower arranging but it was still weird to hear Naruto ask the question. "I would have picked baby's breath along with the chinese chrysanthemum, iris and narcissus combination."
"I see. Then I'll go with those then." Naruto replied back. He trusted Ino's preference.
Ino on the other hand was a little taken back. Just like that? After all the trouble of showing him their entire collection of flowers, he would trust her judgement? "Wait a minute, you mean you'll just take my word for it?"
"Of course Ino-chan! Why not? You've been running this business with your parents for years! I'm pretty sure you're never wrong."
"But you didn't even tell me what type of person you're going to give the flowers to. For all you know they might be allergic to the flowers I just recommended you."
Naruto frowned in deep thought then smiled. "I trust you Ino-chan, besides I won't blame you if they are allergic to the flowers. That's my fault for not knowing."
Ino couldn't help but smile at Naruto's honesty but did a double take when she realised what he just said. "Wait a minute, did you just say they?"
Naruto nodded enthusiastically. "Yeah! I would like to buy two bouquets please."
Naruto's confirmation made Ino's eyebrows rise. She was flabbergasted. "Who would have thought Naruto would be such a ladies man?" but then again, looking at him now, she had to admit there was something undeniably charming about Naruto. Maybe it was the great body he carried or those marvellous eyes of his, or perhaps the child like innocence about him that made almost every female in the immediate vicinity swoon. Even those who doesn't like him had to admit that they don't like him simply because he possessed the very same characteristics listed.
"So who are the lucky ladies?" Ino inquired, curious who Naruto would be giving flowers to. A couple of girls entered her mind. It could probably Sakura or Kin, or perhaps Ayame, Shizune or the Godaime herself. The possibilities were endless.
Naruto merely scratched the back of his head, unsure if he should tell Ino. She might say something to Sakura. "Oh no one you know." He grinned sheepishly.
"Try me." Ino challenged as she handed him the two arranged bouquets.
"Oh jeez, I would really like to Ino-chan but I'm running late as it is!" Naruto replied back as he took the flowers and paid for them, not caring how much money he gave Ino.
He was rushing towards the door when Ino's call stopped him. "HEY Naruto! This is too much! What about your change?"
"Don't worry about it!" Naruto called out but before he could step out of the door, he spotted some white Calla Lilies. On impulse, he grabbed one of the flowers, walked back quickly to Ino and handed it to the stunned blonde. "Thanks for helping me out Ino-chan! You're the greatest." He gave her one of his foxy grins and a quick hug before high tailing it out of her shop.
Ino on the other hand was too shock to respond. She looked at the white lily in her hand and the rapidly retreating blonde.
She couldn't help but get touched by the gesture, when something else occurred to her. "Naruto couldn't have possibly known that the flower in my hand is my favourite flower, could he?" She asked herself. She couldn't stop the smile that formed on her face, nor how her day seemed to have gotten a lot brighter.
Naruto dashed maniacally through the streets of Konoha. Earning him the attention of another well known shinobi.
"Ohayo Naruto-kun!" Lee happily trotted beside him. "You are full of youth today!"
"Sorry Lee, can't really talk to you right now! I'm late!" Naruto replied back to his companion.
"I see, well may the power of youth guide you!" Lee replied back with a slight disappointment in his tone. He was looking forward to some training and Naruto was always a great person to train with.
"See you later man!" Naruto replied back as he left Lee. It took Lee a few more seconds to realise that his friend was running at full speed while carrying a handful of flowers.
Lee's eyes glazed over as he held a fist before his face. "Naruto-kun is expressing his youthful love!" The spring time love has definitely touched his friend. "Good luck Naruto-kun!" He yelled after him.
Finally after what seemed like hours of running around aimlessly, Naruto finally managed to reach the Imperial Leaf Hotel. It was already a couple of minutes after 2:00 in the afternoon but he hoped that the flowers he bought would soothe both princesses.
He walked towards the concierge desk and asked if he could inform both Yuki and Haruna that he was in the hotel lobby waiting for them.
The concierge merely lifted one snobbish eyebrow and looked at him from head to toe, as if he didn't deserve to set foot on their prestigious hotel but did as he was told. After all both princesses has been ringing him up every 10 minutes to see if he was there.
The moment the concierge informed both princesses, the hotel shook mildly as though there was a stampede taking place. Not even two minutes to spare, both princesses; Haruna and Yuki appeared before him, followed closely by Yuki's two out of breath personal bodyguards and Yurinojou.
"NARUTO!" both princesses cried out in unison, surprising everyone in the lobby.
Naruto merely sweatdropped as he gave the two dignitaries his best foxy grin, scratching the back of is head sheepishly. "I'm sorry I'm late." He apologised.
He then remembered his consolatory offerings and presented them to the two princesses. Haruna, Yuki and everyone who was in the immediate area who could see them stared dumbstruck at the beautifully wrapped stems in Naruto's hands.
"Damn it!" Naruto swore. All the running around he did, wilted the flowers petals, leaving their stems, a few petals and leaves in the supposed to be bouquet.
"…?" Yurinojou wanted nothing more but to laugh out loud at Naruto's poor attempt but was amazed when his young charge accepted his poor offering.
"They're lovely Naruto." Haruna said as she accepted the bouquet, prompting Yuki to accept hers as well.
"It's a very thoughtful offer." Yuki agreed and handed the bouquet to one of her body guards.
The immediate males in the vicinity didn't know how the blonde could pull off such a response from the two princesses. They were sure that the princesses would be offended at such poor quality gifts.
"Shall we go Naruto? I'm interested in touring the sites Konohagakure has to offer." Prompted Haruna as she tugged at Naruto's arm, attaching herself against him.
"Me too!" Yuki chimed in as she grabbed hold of his other arm. Both princesses then began to exchange evil glares as they half dragged Naruto out of the hotel and into the street.
"This is going to be a long day." Yurinojou sighed in defeat as he followed his charge along with Yuki's personal bodyguards.
Sasame of the Fuma clan, walked aimlessly around the street of Konoha. She had reached the village the day before and was curious as to what had happened to the blonde since they have last seen each other.
Sasame couldn't help but blush remembering her first encounter with one Uzumaki Naruto. Sure it could have been under better circumstances but their meeting was one of the most memorable memories of her life. He was also the first guy to ever openly grope her, sure he didn't know she was a female at the time but having his arms around her protectively made her shiver in response. The memory still gives her shivers of delight until now.
She was walking around Konoha not only to get to know her environment but to also leave herself in an open chance to maybe bump into the blonde once again. She was sure she had made an impression on the blonde by the way he looked at her during that time to rescue her cousin Arashi.
Speaking of the blonde, she couldn't help but overhear a very enthusiastic and overly confident voice from nearby. She was amused by the masculine's voice and couldn't help but mutter "tourists," from under her breath, until she realised the significance of the conversation.
"And that's the Hokage Mountain, where Konohagakure's previous hokage's faces are engraved to remind the citizens of Konoha of their greatness!" The masculine voice lectured as it continued in the most enthusiastic introduction. "One day my face will be carved in that mountain! If not sooner! You got to believe it!"
That last statement got Sasame's attention, she whirled around eager to find the speaker's voice. Her eyes grew in recognition as she saw spiky, unruly and wild blonde hair. At first, she was unsure who the speaker was since his back was facing her. Add another fact that the speaker wasn't wearing any noticeable colour like orange. But her curiosity coupled by her rapidly beating heart couldn't resist but to approached the blonde male's back and try and gain his attention. She only wanted to confirm her suspicion and was unprepared for being right.
Naruto turned around when he felt someone tap his shoulder. He was slightly annoyed, since the person has interrupted his tour for the princesses and his speech. He suddenly realised that the person may have overheard his announcement and he would now be arguing with the person about the ridiculousness of his speech and how a demon like him would never amount to anything. So he prepared himself for the oncoming berating he sure would follow and was surprised to be greeted by a familiar looking person and a female no less!
Naruto's eyes grew wide, when he saw a cute orange haired female greeted him and was left speechless, she looked shocked as well by the way she looked at him.
"Naruto? Uzumaki Naruto?" he could hear the disbelief in her voice, as though she couldn't believe it was him standing before her.
He gave her one of his foxy grins as he scratched the back of his head that caused many females to become endeared to him. "Yeah that's me."
The two princesses narrowed their eyes against the newcomer who dared to interrupt their quality time with Naruto. Yuki had managed to talk to her bodyguards to return to the Imperial Leaf Hotel, assuring them that they can have a day off as she was with Naruto, a notable shinobi of Konoha and no harm will befall on her as long as she was in his company.
Haruna on the other hand only needed to exchange a few words with Yurinojou to leave her alone so that she can spend some time alone with Naruto, which Yurinojou obliged. Since their keepers have left them alone, it was just a matter of who gets most of the blonde's attention. They had not let go of the Naruto's arms until he passionately began to introduce the Hokage Mountain.
They should have known that the moment they let go of him, some trollop would try and gain their Naruto's attention and they were right.
The orange haired female gave Naruto a bright and brilliant smile and looked like she would have glomped him if they weren't out in public. That is until Naruto opened his mouth once again.
"I'm sorry but do I know you?" Naruto asked in puzzlement.
Sasame's spirits seemed to have decreased as she heard him ask the question. He doesn't remember her! "It's me Naruto, Sasame from the Fuma clan." She answered slightly bittered that he could forget someone like her when he had remained in her thoughts for a long time since their encounter.
Naruto's eyes grew in recognition as he looked at the girl before him in a completely different light. No wonder he couldn't recognise her!
Sasame has gotten taller and certainly filled in certain places. She no longer had her orange fringe or that side burn thing. Her long orange hair was smoothed back and was held by a silver rose pin. She was clothed in feminine clothing designed so that it shows off her curves unlike the boyish clothes that had him fooled during their encounter, making sure no one would ever make that mistake again.
All of a sudden, Naruto reddened as he remembered unconsciously groping her too back then.
"It's great to see you Sasame-chan!" Naruto energetically greeted her as he engulfed her into a friendly hug which made Sasame blush in crimson. The fierceness of Naruto's hug also made Sasame's chest crush against his.
Naruto was slightly startled when he felt dark and angry auras from behind him, emanating from the temporarily ignored princesses.
"Mind introducing us to your friend, Naruto?" Yuki asked sweetly while glaring daggers at the orange haired wench.
"Yes, Naruto-kun, please introduce us to your friend." Haruna smiled disturbingly and a slight menace in her voice.
The other girls' dark aura and the glares Sasame received made her cower slightly and hid behind Naruto's comforting presence.
Naruto wasn't sure why the princesses were angry and came to the conclusion that perhaps it's because they have not eaten yet. He cursed himself for being clueless to the princesses' needs and decided to try and placate them for now.
"Haruna-hime, Yuki-hime, I'd like you to meet a friend of mine," He smiled at them disarmingly as he stepped aside so they can better see the other girl. "This is Sasame-chan from the Fuma clan from the Country of Rice fields. Sasame-chan, I'd like you to meet Haruna-hime from Green Country and Yuki-hime from Snow Country."
Sasame swallowed the lump in her throat as she bowed to the princesses respectfully. "How do you do?"
Hearing the word "friend" seemed to have placated the two princesses but eyed Sasame warily. There were too many females after their Naruto. Present company included.
Naruto decided to break the heavy tension that seemed to have lingered in the air. "All the walking we did, probably made you princesses hungry. Why don't we take a break and have a late lunch?" then turned his attention towards Sasame. "Why don't you join us too Sasame-chan! The more the better!"
The two princesses were about to protest when they're stomachs began to growl. They were so intent on keeping Naruto's attention that they have ignored how hungry they were from all the sight-seeing they were doing.
Sasame hesitated to accept Naruto's offer, on the other it will give her a chance to spend some time with him and perhaps find out where he lives. In the end, she accepted the offer as if she's just going to let the opportunity to pass to spend time with him.
"That's great! I know just the place!"
Ayame felt her jaw ache as she smiled at the customers. Her smile didn't reach her eyes.
Naruto was late.
Not that the blonde knows he's late. But ever since her father had initiated the whole promotion, she had grown used to Naruto's presence. She felt jilted that she had not seen him since the lunch rush. When her father asked what was wrong she waved off his concern telling him that she was not happy washing the pile of dishes that was on the sink.
Washing dishes now doesn't seem as fun anymore not when Naruto wasn't around to make it more fun and lively or even help her.
Another sigh escaped her lips catching the attention of the kunoichi currently dining in front of her.
"What seems to be the matter? You've been sighing since I got here." Tenten asked curiously. Normally she wouldn't pry into other people's business but the waitress' constant sighing is slightly putting her off her meal.
"Nothing really," Ayame brushed off the kunoichi's question. The kunoichi before her is one of Hyuuga Hinata's friends. Ayame had become great friends with Hinata since she also frequented their business unknown to her that the reason for her frequenting the place was getting to know Naruto's love of ramen or hoping to subtly bump into him and eat with the blonde herself.
"Sorry to pry into your business, but you have that far away look in your eyes as though you miss something important to you." Tenten explained. She was known as a weapon specialist not only for her skills but because of her keen eye and right now she couldn't help but study Ayame's melancholy mood.
"Am I really that easy to read?" Ayame blushed at Tenten's sharp assessment; she must look like a love struck teenager which wasn't really that far from the truth.
Tenten merely nodded her head in affirmation then gave her a sympathetic smile. "Don't worry about it." Tenten returned her attention to her meal when a boisterous voice interrupted the whole diner, surprising her slightly.
"OHAYO OLD MAN! AYAME-CHAN!" Naruto greeted as he entered the diner in his most energetic self. Behind him were three gorgeous women, all exchanging evil looks against each other.
"Naruto-kun!" Ayame, couldn't help but her heart soar as she saw Naruto. A reaction not missed by Tenten.
"Three extra large beef ramen please and whatever the girls want." Naruto ordered as he sat down beside Tenten, much to his other companions' chagrins.
As soon as the girls saw where Naruto sat, it became a vicious battle of who would be sitting next to the empty stool beside Naruto since Tenten already occupied his right side. They were too preoccupied in fighting who would sit next to Naruto that they never noticed another person's arrival. Unfortunately or fortunately however you wished to look at it, their dilemma was solved when a green clad male occupied the empty seat next to Naruto. Leaving the three girls flabbergasted.
"Ohayo Naruto-kun!" Lee enthusiastically greeted Naruto. "How did your youthful quest go?"
"Huh?" was Naruto's response, not really sure what Lee was talking about nor did he care. All he wanted was the sweet scent of his ramen being prepared by a now more cheerful Ayame.
Tenten watched the whole scene in wry amusement. The moment the blonde dynamite entered the diner, the diner became immersed with such vitality. She also couldn't help but giggle at how cute Naruto looked, unaware of the three girls now sullen expression of not being able to sit next to him.
"OOOHHHH! That's such a cool and hip response, as expected from one of my rivals!" Lee exclaimed.
"Whatever fuzzy eye brows," Naruto replied back as he turned his attention to the girl beside him. "What's up Tenten?" he'd rather have a normal conversation with Tenten than his green clad friend for now and what the hell was taking his ramen so damn long?
Tenten giggled, "Nothing much Naruto, just grabbing something to eat after training so hard this morning."
At the word training, Naruto's ears perked up in interest. "You're in the kunoichi tournament too right?"
As soon as Naruto's three companions overheard Naruto talking to the other kunoichi and expressed his interest, they began to listen to their conversation. It wouldn't hurt to be aware of another potential rival.
Naruto whistled in amazement. "Wow! Virtually every girl I know is involved in the tournament." Then Naruto remembered his manners. "Oh that reminds me!" He quickly turned around and began to introduce his other companions.
"Tenten, Lee, I'd like you to meet a few friends of mine." Naruto introduced brightly as he gestured at the three women that accompanied him.
At the words "friends" Tenten and Lee could have sworn the temperature in the diner dropped considerably.
"I'd like you to meet Princess Yuki from Snow Country, Princess Haruna from Green Country and Sasame of the Fuma clan from Rice Country. Sasame is also in the tournament. Ladies I'd like you to meet Tenten and Rock Lee." Naruto smiled brightly.
Lee gave the girls his best ever twinkling and shiny smile that always seemed to be too bright and too white, while Tenten gave the girls an awkward smile since they were all looking at her as if sizing her up for a fight. Which was weird since she had only met them.
"It's nice to meet you all." Tenten greeted Naruto's companions trying to diffuse the very tense atmosphere she felt.
If Naruto was more perceptive he would have noticed that his companions' eyes narrowed at Tenten and at each other, but sadly Naruto was still as clueless as ever and so he missed the silent exchanges of jealousy and animosity between the girls.
"I know! Why don't we all sit at the booths? That way we can all get to know each other!" Lee enthusiastically suggested which Naruto happily agreed to.
"Great idea Fuzzy eye brows!" Naruto grinned as he gave Lee a thumbs up which Lee enthusiastically replied with his own thumbs up plus gleaming row of shiny white teeth.
Tenten couldn't help but sweat drop as she silently cursed the males with her with their cluelessness. The girls in front of her had no desire to get to know one another other than rip each other to shreds by the looks they gave each other.
The moment they sat at one of the much bigger booths to accommodate them, Ayame and one of her father's assistants headed over them to serve them.
Ayame accompanied Nishi to Naruto's table while Nishi carried the tray of Naruto's ramen order. Nishi didn't understand why Ayame was going through the trouble of accompanying him when she was supposed to be greeting customers, but decided to let it pass. He was more curious to see what Ayame was up to anyway.
"Here's your order, Naruto-kun," Ayame enthusiastically informed Naruto as Nishi placed his ramen order before the blonde male being extra careful not spill anything on him since he had a feeling that Ayame wouldn't be very happy with him if he did so.
"Thanks, Ayame-chan!" Naruto enthusiastically thanked Ayame, giving her one of his huge grins in the process, which made the females he was with stare in star-struck awe.
Witnessing the effect of his smile to the opposite sex, Lee's eyes began to brim in admiration and fire as once again he was inspired by Naruto's radiant youth.
"The burning passion of youth is strong within you, Naruto-kun!" Lee announced enthusiastically. "I also must strive to brighten and burn with passion as well!" Lee then stood up with his fist pumping in the air, full of determination.
"What that?" Naruto asked in between mouthfuls of ramen.
"OOOHHH! What a cool response! As expected from the student of Gai-sensei's rival!" Lee seemed unaware that his enthusiasm and strange gestures were beginning to draw questioning stares from some of the other people in the diner.
"I will strive to be on the same level as you Naruto-kun!" And with that last parting speech Lee ran out of the diner, determined to train and beat Naruto's "power of youth."
Naruto though was too engrossed in his food to pay much attention to the green clad shinobi and merely gave a thumbs up as a response to his rants.
With the exception of Tenten, already immune to Lee's and Gai's outbursts, and Naruto who really paid more attention to his food above all else, everyone watched the departing green clad shinobi with questioning stares.
"So, Naruto, how is your ramen?" Ayame asked the blonde male, earning glares from his other companions while Tenten just watched in amusement.
"It's great as always, Ayame-chan!" Naruto smiled brightly at the young woman. "Hey, why don't you have a seat and hang out with us for a while?" Naruto said invitingly, oblivious to his other companion's sudden shift in mood. Tenten, however, wasn't as lucky. She could feel her skin begin to prickle as the room temperature began to drop due to the frigid auras the girls across from her were exuding.
Ayame, who's whole attention was solely on Naruto, was just as oblivious to her surroundings as the object of her affections and sat on Naruto's right side in the spot Lee previously occupied, making it so Naruto was sitting in between her and Tenten.
"Don't mind if I do, Naruto-kun!" Ayame gladly replied back.
"Excuse us but aren't you supposed to be working?" Haruna questioned, trying to keep the annoyance from her voice.
"Yes, we don't want you to get in trouble or anything," Yuki seconded, finding herself agreeing with the other dignitary for once.
Nishi, who was still standing by and waiting for the rest of the table's orders, decided to answer for his employer.
"There's nothing to worry about. Ayame-san is the co-owner of this stand and daughter of Ichiraku Teuchi. She can't get in trouble. Besides, she deserves a break from greeting the customers for awhile." This response earned Nishi a beaming smile from Ayame and cold angry glares from the other three females, namely Haruna, Yuki and Sasame. Nishi tried to suppress the shiver running down his spine and silently retreated from the table, making an excuse of coming back when they were ready to order.
Tenten, who was by now getting really uncomfortable with the whole situation, decided that maybe starting a conversation could lighten up the mood. Too bad that the other girls at the table seemed to be more interested in either ogling the male seated near her or glaring at each other to make any decent conversation. Tenten sighed in dismay, catching Naruto's attention.
"What's wrong, Ten-chan? Are you feeling sick or something?" Naruto asked in a concerned tone. Then without warning he placed his hand upon Tenten's forehead to check her temperature.
Tenten could feel her cheeks begin to flush at Naruto's sudden gesture.
"I-I'm fine Naruto!" Tenten replied back in a slightly husky voice, probably due to Naruto's proximity. Tenten wasn't really used to such intimate contact since her teammates were not very touchy feely people. Sure, Neji would ask about her health and so would Lee, but they would never actually have the guts to check her temperature in such a way. To have someone to show their concern for her as boldly like this wasn't something Tenten was used to, but she was touched by it nonetheless. She was so surprised that she completely overlooked the women around them, all of whom had cheeks flushed with jealously wishing that Naruto would also dote them with the same kind of concern.
Naruto's simple gesture caused her to see him in a new light. For someone so brash and outspoken, he could really be so sweet and endearing. Now she understood why almost all the girls she knew fell for him.
"Ten-chan, you're burning up! Do you want me to walk you to Baa-chan or look for Shizune-neechan to check up on you?" Naruto asked concernedly. "We can even try and look for Sakura-chan! I'm sure she'll know what's wrong!"
"No, really, Naruto, I'm fine!" Tenten continued to proclaim as she struggled to suppress the raging blush on her face, which she knew was only making things worse. However, every time she tried she could feel herself being hypnotized by his blue eyes and his handsome features which was way too close. Close enough that she could feel the warmth of his breath as it tickled her skin making her temperature rise up even more. She tried to distract herself from the sensations she felt and tried to focus on his eyes instead but every time she gazed into those cerulean depths she felt like the whole world zoned out, leaving the two of them alone in a motionless world.
"AHEM!" The other four girls at the table, namely Yuki, Haruna, Sasame and Ayame coughed all at once, trying to get Naruto's attention away from the dark haired kunoichi.
"Are you all sick too?" Naruto asked in wonderment as he turned his attention to the rest of the girls who were all currently flustered with jealousy.
They all sweat dropped.
He briefly wondered if there was a virus going around. Then after much thought, he came to the conclusion that perhaps all of them just needed the goodness of ramen in their system.
In as boisterous a voice as he could muster, he called Nishi over and declared a round of chicken ramen for the whole table. If he was right which he knew he was, chicken ramen was always good for anything that ails the body. Beef too actually, and seafood ramen, and as a later alternative, vegetable ramen.
As soon as the food orders arrived, everyone immediately began to eat in silence. There was no reason for conversation, since everyone was more interested in the blonde than each other, so Naruto found himself the main speaker for the table.
Naruto was in a state of bliss and was completely oblivious to the envious stares he was getting from both male and female diners at the restaurant.
Outside Ichiraku Ramen bar, a dark haired female walking by noticed the blonde's spiky hair as well as the company of women he was surrounded with, since they were seated near the window of the diner. She had to do a double take to make sure it was the blonde object of her affections.
She felt uneasy as she saw each girl was beautiful as the other and they certainly had the blonde's attention. She looked down at her plain clothes as mentally began to compare herself against the women that surrounded him and then to her own reflection reflected in the window.
"Naruto-kun…" She sighed wistfully, wishing she could also join him but felt that she wasn't good enough to sit with them, since she felt she wasn't nearly as pretty as the other girls or dressed as nice. So she settled in just watching him from afar. She sighed once again when she saw him laugh. He looked so happy in their company and she was torn from being happy for him and wishing that she could share his happiness too.
As though the blond heard her wistful sigh, Naruto turned around and saw her.
His eyes widened in surprise as a massive smile graced his handsome features. She wanted to run away but for some reason, seeing him catch her off guard made her paralyzed. She was rooted on the spot. She saw him get up from his seat and excuse himself from the company of those gorgeous girls, and watched as he approached her.
"Oh no!" She gasped. She didn't know what to do or what to say. She turned around and was ready to run away from him but hearing her name stopped her from her tracks.
"Isaribi-chan!" Naruto called out.
Isaribi slowly turned around, her heart racing wildly. "Naruto-kun…"
Well that's all I have so far, I hope you readers liked it. It's really hard to write a lot of characters in one whole setting and giving them equal amounts of attention.
Like I said in my pre-author's notes, this story will take a longer time to be updated than my other Naruto story since this story still has a lot of plot gaps, and I respect everyone that has read and supported this story too much so I try my hardest to present clear and entertaining chapters and not just throw in whatever story I can come up with which has no sense or relation to the flow of the story line I'm trying to create.
Now for a couple of Facts:
Sasame of the Fuma Clan - She is shown in episodes 137-141 in the filler arc, and the very first girl that I have seen Naruto accidentally grope. If You want to see the scene, it's on youtube and the episode is 137 (you should see Naruto's face when he realises that Sasame was a girl! since she was in disguise at the time).
Isaribi - Is first seen in episodes 169-173 in the filler arc. Again you can see her in youtube. She used to be from Sea Country who migrated to Konohagakure in the hopes of getting a cure for herself. I don't want to spoil anything if other people haven't seen this episode so I'll just leave it as that.
Nishi - I found this character through wikipedia. According to wikipedia Nishi is one of the less-than competent cooks (the other one being Matsu) who works in the Ichiraku Ramen Bar. They are rather clumsy and apparently Nishi is accident prone. Both Matsu and Nishi bear resemblance to two characters from the third Naruto Movie which I have yet to watch.
Well thats all for now. I hope you enojoyed my latest update. As always feel free to suggest what ever you would like to see in the next chapter since it helps me to inspire to write a lot faster and dodge any writer's block that I encounter when I write or update stories.
Please review, your reviews to me are like what Ramen are to Naruto-kun.