AN: This will probably end up being NaruIno, if there is to be any major pairing. Other pairs may be mentioned, but only in passing. I don't think they will play any major part in this fic. I began writing this because the story just came to me. I plan for it to be very long. This story will be deviating from the original plot from the manga, though only a bit at first, getting further from it as the story progresses. Thus, there will be spoilers, until... I don't when. I don't know enough Japanese to write techniques in that language, and I am too lazy to learn. (Shikamaru! My hero!) I may be slow to update, either from lack of inspiration, or because of my terrible typing skill. I'll try to keep notes to a minimum. Hope you like the story. -demonicnargles

For future reference:


thought / talking in mind

"Demon speech"

Demon thought / talking in mind


The boy in question jerked his head up from the desk and quickly wiped the drool from the corner of his mouth.


"Sorry, Iruka-sensei. I'm just tired today."


"Maybe I'm tired every day..."

Iruka decided to ignore that last remark, and continued with the lecture on genjutsu. Some of the students snickered at the blonde boy. Iruka wasn't kidding when he said Naruto did this every day. In fact, Naruto seemed to sleep in class more and more often. Iruka's screeching only kept him awake for about five minutes this time.


Naruto looked up upon hearing his name. "What," he asked wearily, rubbing the sleep from his eyes. He glanced around. Iruka and he were alone.

"Is it time for recess?" Naruto asked, still only half-awake.

"School's out."

"...Oh." Standing up and stretching, Naruto began to gather his things.

"Is there something you want to talk about?"


"Alright, but how do you expect to graduate in the exam tomorrow? I don't think you've been awake for more than ten minutes at a time. Have you been practicing your ninjutsu at home?"

Naruto didn't seem to hear anything. "Goodbye, Iruka sensei..." He slowly walked out the door, dragging his bag behind him.

No one really cares, thought Naruto. Iruka might, but everyone else hates me. I don't know why I go to school, really. I guess it's a habit by now... I hear people talk about suicide, but that would hurt. Maybe not as much as the pai of being alone, but...

Naruto arrived at his run-down apartment and opened the door. He never bothered to lock it. Anything he had of value had already been stolen or destroyed by kids, and sometimes even adults, who hated him for reasons he couldn't think of. He had stopped his pranking a year ago. All it did was get him in more trouble, and incite more people to break into his apartment.

I don't know if I want to go to the exam tomorrow. Iruka-sensei's right. I haven't paid any attention. But I guess it doesn't really matter... It's not like I've ever been able to do any ninjutsu right, and no one will practive taijutsu with me, and I don't understand genjutsu at all...

Naruto dropped his stuff by the door, closed it, and fell onto the nearby couch, which the previous owner's had left. Probably because it wasn't worth hauling it to the landfill.

Naruto knew why he slept so often. Nothing hurts when you're asleep. Everything is calm...

He was asleep before he hit the couch.

Naruto woke up. He hated waking up. He had to come back to reality, where almost everyone he knew, and many he didn't know, hated him with a passion. He glanced at the analog clock hanging lopsided on the wall.

Eight o-clock. I guess I might as well try the exam, since I'm already awake. And even if I don't pass, which I probably won't, I can at least use enough energy to get tired enough to sleep...

Naruto arrived at the school around 9:00, having taken his time eating in breakfast and getting there. He looked at the camera as the man took his picture. He waited. When it was his turn, he stepped into the room. He saw three men sitting at the far end of the rectangular room, behind a table, each with clipboards, paper, and pencils. He recognized Iruka in the middle, but knew only that the other two were staff somewhere at the Academy.

"Stand over there," said the one on the right, gesturing toward an "X" marked about ten feet in front of the table. Naruto did as he was told.

"Now, I want you to make at least three clones of yourself using the Replication Technique," the man continued. "You will be graded on their likeness to yourself, their transparency can malformed clones be transparent? I think so, and, of course, on whether you get at least three. You may proceed when you are ready."

Naruto formed the seal and molded his chakra. Two clones appeared. One was non-transparent, but it's face was a bit off. The second was pale white and was barely visible because it was so transparent.

The three men frowned. The man on the right, who apparently did all the talking, said, "I'm sorry. Better luck next year." Naruto slowly walked out of the second door of the room, going outside. He began to walk to his house.

I remember the guy on the right, now, Naruto thought whimsically. He was the guy who moved here from another village. No wonder he was so polite... Because there's no way any of the teacher's other than Iruka would be that nice, since they grew up here. But why do all the adults who grew up here hate me? That guy moved here before I quit doing pranks, but he doesn't hate me. Maybe something else I did... but what? Oh well, it doesn't matter...

As he was walking home, a man in an alley just to the side of the road whispered, "Hey kid, come here. I want to talk to you."

Naruto glanced at the man. The guy had white hair, a chuunin outfit and huge shuriken on his back. He seemed about Iruka's age. Naruto didn't recognize him from anywhere. "Why would I want to do that?"

"I know that your teachers are all hard on you, and that no one will practice with you. Without anyone to help you, you haven't been able to get any better. I'm willing to train you, if you want."

Naruto tried to suppress it, but he still felt a little hope. Maybe this guy isn't like the others. Maybe he saw how they treated me, and sees how I haven't done anything to deserve it. Maybe... "Okay. "

The man grinned. "Alright! By the way, my name is Mizuki. I know you're Naruto. Any way since you're a bit behind, we're going to have to do some advanced training. I need you to get a scroll from this place for me. They won't let us have it if we ask, because they all hate you, but if you can get it, I can use it to teach you more quickly," Mizuki quickly explained which scroll he needed and where to get it. "Meet me north of here at the abandoned shack in the forest at, say, nine o-clock tonight. Sound good?"

Naruto nodded.

"Great! See you then!" Mizuki walked off, pleased with the success of his plan so far. Because of the way the villagers treated the boy, this was almost too easy...

Naruto couldn't believe it. Someone cares enough to offer to train me! And to do so when it could get him in trouble! There's no way I can pass this up, Naruto thought as he snuck into the guarded building. If there was one thing he was good at, it was staying hidden. He had learned this from countless times of running from others, either because of some prank he pulled, or because of the unknown reason everyone hated him. Got it! Now all I have to do is meet Mizuki-sensei at the shack, in, let's see, an hour. I think I'll just head there now and read it for a bit before he shows up.

End of chapter. Please review!