aww, crap. Serious or silly? Serious or silly? I can't decide, so forgive me if it seems to bounce between the two.

takes place during the filler arc


Tsunade walked into the hospital room, taking in the sight of the genin crammed into the large room, several showing the marks of a fight. Their sensei looked up at her when she entered, and across from them all, a single bed, the figure shifting underneath the sheets, blonde hair all that was visible.

"Kakashi-sensei, Kurenai-sensei, what happened?"

"Our teams had just finished the mission when we were caught in a battle between a group of missing-nins from the hidden grass and the jounin sent to eliminate them. They weren't that strong, but…"


"You'd better…see it for yourself."

Stepping forward, Tsunade pulled the sheet away. The cloth dropped from nerveless fingers when she saw what was underneath. Naruto's human ears were gone, and in their place, two large, fuzzy fox ears stuck out from the sides of his head. Looking down, Tsunade saw he had also sprouted a red, furry tail, also foxlike.

"It's not the kyuubi." Kakashi whispered to her from across the room. "Just a henge."

Raising his voice to normal levels, he now addressed everyone in the room.

"The hunter-nins from the hidden grass told me the men they were chasing had…issues…with women."

"Issues? What do you mean?"

"Apparently, they had the nasty habit of not doing whatever they said. So, their leader worked to design a jutsu that combines a sort of seal along with forcing a partial transformation. For some time, nobody had given any thought to his dislike of strong women aside from not putting any young girls under his command, until several girls from nearby villages went missing. They were tracked a few days later to another village…tending…to some men who shared his beliefs. Their intelligence had been reduced to almost the level of an animal's, and all were marked with animal traits, furry ears, tails and such."

"How disgusting…Naruto was affected by this…jutsu?"


Tsunade turned as Hinata walked forward, head bowed.

"I was attacked when I went to help Kiba-kun, and when we were knocked down, he tried to put the seal on me, and Naruto-kun jumped in front to protect me…it's all my fault…"

"No, it's not." Kurenai laid a reassuring hand on Hinata's shoulder, offering a smile. "Naruto will be back to normal before you know it."

On cue, the boy on the bed stirred and sat up, blinking at the people in front of him before mewing quietly.

"Hey there, little guy…"

Kiba walked up slowly, extending a hand, his body relaxed. Naruto shrunk away for a moment before leaning forward and sniffing in Kiba's direction, relaxing. Kiba reached out and began lightly scratching him behind one ear, and Naruto began to yip his appreciation, grinning and leaning into the attention. While he was distracted, Kiba pointed with his other hand to a mark on Naruto's chest, six tomoe in two rings over his heart.

"That's the seal itself. The Grass nin said they'll send a messenger with information on how to remove it as soon as they can."

Tsunade leaned over for a better look, and Naruto growled at her.

"I don't think he likes you…"

Tsunade gave Kiba a frightening glare before switching to an even more disturbing grin.

"Oh, Kiba, since you have experience with this sort of thing, why don't you take care of him?"

"Huh? Me?"

"Consider it a mission."


Stepping away, Kakashi joined her in the doorway while the rest of the genin took their turns approaching Naruto.

"You're sure…"

"As far as I can tell, it's not disrupting the kyuubi's seal in any way. But needless to say, if any of the villagers catch him like this…"

They looked back to see the girls cooing over Naruto. Ino was giving him a tummy rub.

"The genin seem fine with it."


"Alright. Kiba! Shino! Hinata!"

They turned in unison, and Tsunade stepped back into the room and stopped in front of them.

"As of right now, your mission is to look after Naruto until the seal is removed and he is returned to normal. Kiba, is his condition, I don't think it would be wise to let him wander in public. Is there room at your clan's complex for him?"

"Umm…sure, if you think that's necessary."

"I do. The rest of you are returning to your normal duties."

Once Kurenai and her team were the only ones left in the room, they grabbed Naruto's belongings and tried to decide who would have what duties in regards to Naruto's care. Kiba, however, knew what the first, and most important order of business was: remembering where he put his camcorder. If he had to take care of fox-Naruto, he wouldn't come out of it empty-handed.