Disclaimer: I don't own Naruto, Inuyasha or Harry Potter. Woe.
A/N: Alright people, this is the sequel to Millennium. However, since there may just be Naruto fans here who just don't trust crossovers I tried to make it so you wouldn't have to read the stories before this. Just give it a try, ok?
A steady dripping was what first coaxed his mind back into consciousness. He was aware that the monotonous sound was not far from his head and it was a cold hard surface that lay beneath his body. Bitter air washed over a bare strip down his torso causing goose bumps to climb across the exposed skin. He tried to move in order to shield himself from the cold but found his activities restrained.
Why couldn't he move his arms? Or his legs?
His eyelids cracked apart, allowing brilliant sapphire to shine through.
The young man could only manage turn his head to get a glimpse of his surroundings. He was in a cavern of sorts; the deep ceiling above him was made of cool unhewn rocks, as were the walls. He raised his head from the ground and managed to look over his body. He was lying at the bottom of two raised hands of a statue—one of a large, humanoid monster. His arms and legs were pulled spread-eagled and bound by what looked like ropes of thick beads. His jacket and mesh shirt had been cut down the center to the very ends of their threads to expose his navel, leaving the necklace of the First uncovered. Giving the strange bindings a curious look, he experimentally tugged at one.
"Ah!" he hissed as the beads gave off a purple glow from the small movement and burned into his wrists. Whatever they were, they left him good and stuck.
What the hell had happened?
He thought back to what he last remembered. Baa-chan and Ero-sennin managed to defeat that snake bastard while Kakashi-sensei kept Kabuto occupied. He and Sakura-chan dealt with Sasuke-teme. Man, that was a battle if he ever was in one; those drugs sure did the misled bastard wonders. But it was a happy ending for all; he and Sakura-chan used flawless teamwork to take out their lost teammate, they could hear the triumphant cries of the other two Sannins as Orochimaru was struck down for the last time—finally obliterated by one last inhuman punch courtesy of Tsunade. Sakura ran to help Kakashi-sensei with Kabuto, leaving him with the unconscious form of his once best friend. He was exhausted, but happy. Too bad it seemed the afterglow of gaining back Sasuke was short lived. He remembered sensing very strong chakra signals before something struck him hard in the back of the neck, knocking him out.
"Naruto-kun, you are awake."
The blond started and twisted his head to the left, seeing the tall, imposing figure of Uchiha Itachi. The missing-nin looked mildly surprised at his mindful state.
"The drugs should have kept you unconscious throughout most of the procedure."
"Drugs don't work so well on me," Naruto bit out with contempt. He began sensing other chakra signals and one by one more cloaked figures began to appear on the tips of the up-stretched fingers of the sculpted hands. The weird part was that more than half of them had no physical body. Moaning, Naruto laid his head back on the ground and closed his eyes.
So this was it, huh?
"This looks a bit extreme, yeah?" the clay master stated, staring at the restrained young boy with the one eye that wasn't hidden behind hair.
"The nine-tails is different from the others." An overly shadowed figure stated. His body was exposed all the way up to his neck, the face deliberately left in the shadows; he was clearly the leader. "We must take certain precautions. Let us get this underway."
Naruto felt like laughing. Everything he had trained for, everything he had dreamed of...now void because of one moment of weakness. The bit from the mouth of the statue fell and stuck the ground noisily.
"You can't contain him..." he warned them; his voice sounded raspy yet amused, "He's just going to destroy you and then he'll move onto the rest of the world—"
He broke off in hacking coughs and was forced to turn his head to the side lest he choke on the blood he spit up. He must still be pretty injured—why wasn't the fox healing him?
Oh, he knew why.
The beast was saving its strength to take advantage of the seal—had the seal been in its original condition, the Akatsuki's extraction jutsu might work correctly, but as it is, the seal was damaged, and little by little the Kyuubi has taking advantage of each crack and crevice. Not only that, but as the seal slowly deteriorated over the years, the fox's chakra had been steadily intermingling with his own, his chakra pathways adapting and developing to accommodate the otherwise hazardous life force—the Akatsuki would soon find extracting the fox from him to be more difficult than planned. When the seal finally breaks, there will be only one way to save Konoha, and it was impossible while he was left immobile. Uzumaki Naruto felt nothing but defeat.
"You underestimate our power, Jinchuuriki..." the leader hissed, the swirling eyes glowed from within the darkness and bored into Naruto's skull. The genin looked away; there was something very twisted about those eyes.
"Fuunin Jutsu: Genryuu Kyuu Fuujin!"
Several seconds of silence fell across the assembly and Naruto began to hope that something had gone wrong. Then a cold rush of air flew from the hollow opening of the mouth and nine dragon-like depictions poured forth, taking form around the captured boy.
It had begun.
The remaining Akatsuki members were immediately aware of several differences between this extraction and the other vessels. For one, the other jinchuuriki were unconscious during the procedure, while Naruto was very awake. The next difference was the removal part; the part they were witnessing right now. The bijuu were normally relieved through any openings of the head; the mouth, the eyes, the ears...that was when they first realized something was wrong. The Kyuubi was being ripped from the seal and strait out of the stomach.
Naruto's body was arched as far back as the restraints would allow as his stomach was torn open, the massive, blistering demonic chakra rushing out of his abdomen. His head was thrown back as he let loose a single, long, hoarse scream. Blood began to pool beneath him; a mounting blackish puddle that grew, spreading across the cold stone floor, seeping into the cracks between the rocks.
"You can scream all you want...no one will be coming for you, jinchuuriki..." the leader hissed maliciously at the breaking boy. Greed swelled in his chest as he stared fixedly at the eyes of the statue. One by one the stone lids slowly pealed apart revealing six with pupils and three blank. This shouldn't have happened for at least another two days, but the extraction was happening differently—the chakra flow was much faster, much heavier, than the others.
The mounting excitement filling the leader's being from both the pained screams of the sacrifice and the sheer power the Kyuubi was delivering was expunged when the blank, center eye suddenly and loudly cracked.
Finding Sasuke's body in the middle of a battlefield with Naruto gone and only the remnants of Itachi and Kisame's chakra signals to indicate what had happened did not bode well with the rest of the party. Sakura had immediately broken down in tears, blaming herself for leaving him in the first place while Tsunade seemed close to tears herself and took on a pale, shaky look. Kakashi's one visible eye seemed dead; he had already resigned himself to the fact that he let another teammate die. Jiraiya didn't know what to do and was rooted to the spot, his eyes sweeping over the crumpled form of the Uchiha, not wanting to believe the implications.
"We need to get him, now!" the pink haired kunoichi screamed at her master and village leader, "They'll kill him!"
Tsunade would have given anything to go after the boy that reminded her so much of her little brother, but she was forced to put aside emotional impulses and think logically on the situation.
"And do what? None of us are in any condition to fight the Akatsuki! It would be suicide." However, her tone suggested she felt otherwise on the matter.
"We're going to die anyway if they do extract the Kyuubi." Kakashi argued, against all reason, "We may not know what their intentions are, but anything involving releasing the nine-tails from its seal can't be good for Konoha's well being."
Jiraiya too wanted to retrieve his student while there was still time, but even he knew it was hopeless at this point in time.
"Look, I understand. I want to get him too. But we need to gather our strength and bring Sasuke back to Konoha. God knows this little bastard is going to give us hell when he wakes up," he said, gesturing to the unconscious traitor before bending down and slinging his body over his shoulder.
"They'll start the extraction immediately!" Sakura cried, refusing to accept that it was futile, "We don't have any time to waste! After everything he's done for us—you're just going to let him die! Just like every other village has done to their Jinchuuriki!"
"I will not!" Tsunade snapped, effectively shutting her apprentice up, "It's a jutsu that takes at least three days. We have time. We will go back to Konoha and gather reinforcements, and then we will have a chance of saving Naruto."
The fiery young woman wasn't about to be mollified.
"Oh yeah?" she shot back with no restraint, "Like we had time with Gaara? There's no one to bring Naruto back to life this time!"
Tsunade stared, frustrated at her student. While she usually admired her rare bouts of boldness, this insubordination was extremely out of character. It was as though her famed inner personality had completely taken over. Was Naruto that important to her?
A loud roaring to the far north of them startled the group out of their case. Miles and miles ahead a thick, red cloud could be seen rising from the mountains in a twisting pattern, gathering in the sky and sending off loud thunderous rumblings accompanied by foreboding flashes of red light. All four of them recognized that chakra, the feel of that aura, all too clearly.
Sakura tore her eyes from the horrific scene to shoot them a withering glare before dashing off in the direction of the commotion. Kakashi wasted no time in following after her...but not to stop her.
"Shit!" Tsunade swore. Hokage responsibilities be damned. It was one thing if Naruto was taken, but she wasn't about to loose the brat and her apprentice.
"Hey—wait!" the remaining sannin called to the busty woman's retreating back. He sighed, looking back and forth between the burden on his shoulder and the ominous red clouds piling in the sky...taking the shape of a fox...
Without a second thought he followed the three other members of their makeshift team, Uchiha and all.
"Shit! This wasn't supposed to happen!" Kisame cursed, gritting his teeth as he struggled to maintain the jutsu through the pain of the scalding demonic chakra licking at him.
"Just hold it strong!" the leader's projection commanded over the roaring chakra, "Do not let go!"
How had things gone this badly? One minute the extraction was going along fine, albeit slightly unorthodoxly, and the next the Kyuubi had broken free of both the seal and the statue, blasting through the roof of the cave and gathering in the clouds; taking form.
"I—I can't—" Tobi groaned as his arms in his real body started to bleed from the demonic chakra eating away at his projected human flesh. He cried out as his projection was forcefully dispelled from the overwhelming energy, his real body, in a whole other country, flew backwards from its lotus position and slammed into a cement wall of his hotel room. One after another, Akatsuki members were blown away by the sheer power, many falling unconscious due to the intensity of it.
The leader looked up at the gargantuan fox-head and two front legs that had formed in the sky. The Kyuubi was materializing right before him, and its power was nothing that he could imagine. For the first time in years he feared death. With quick decision, he released his hold on the jutsu and dispelled away from the awesome force; this was a battle he would fight another day.
Amidst all the terror and disorder and chaos no one seemed to notice the strange binds holding the condemned young man break apart under the strain of the escaping demon. He moaned piteously, his sore arms immediately going to his torn open stomach, as though trying to hold in the chakra. He forced his eyes to open and was nearly blinded by red. Biting back the pain, he realized his situation. He was free to move.
There was only one thing to do.
Standing was more painful than he imagined, especially when his chakra coils were being drained of the Kyuubi's chakra that they had become so accustomed to. Not to mention the severe amount of blood he had lost. His feet slipped a little in the dark liquid that covered no small amount of ground, making it extra hard to remain standing as the dizziness from blood loss and fatigue settled in.
His body felt very hot, the chakra scratched at his skin, picking off bits and pieces of his flesh as he stood in the center of the cyclone. Squinting through the fog he could already see the torso of the Kyuubi and five of its tails. Thankfully, their chakra was still connected, which was just what he needed for this to work.
Carefully, so not to let anything else spill out of his stomach wound, he pulled his arms up to his chest and began a long series of hand seals he had beaten into his own head. He tried his best to ignore the dark, booming cackles of the fox, the black flecks of his charred skin tearing away, the high chiming of the jutsu he was performing, and focused on the task at hand. There were so many things that could go wrong with this jutsu.
But he knew it was going right when two half-circle, runic-like seals glowed on his forearms. Tears gathered in the corners of his eyes as he prepared to accept his fate.
"Forgive me, Ero-sennin."
He fisted his hands and drew his arms together, connecting the two seals to create one circular design that glowed an eerie black upon completion. The ground shook tremulously and fractured. A menacing chill swept through the territory, mixing with the evil chakra and making the situation that much worse. More wisps of red chakra flew from Naruto's being, joining the demon above. But these were different. They came from the palms of his hands, which were now outstretched and reaching towards the hellish creature; they wrapped around parts of the solidifying fox, tightening in an iron grip. The Kyuubi's blazing red eyes fixed themselves on its defiant vessel.
"YOU DARE TURN MY OWN CHAKRA AGAINST ME?"
Naruto glared back at it; blood leaked through the cracks of his clenched teeth as he forced his body to produce more chakra than it had, throwing both his own and what demonic he had left into the jutsu.
Itachi started from his position pressed against a cave wall. His attention had been solely fixed on the reforming Kyuubi; he hadn't thought to look at Naruto. Apparently the same went for the rest of the terrorist group.
"What—!" the blue-haired member growled, "When did he...?"
"What the hell is that brat doing?" Kisame yelled, looking furious—most likely from his perplexity with the situation. "We need to stop him!"
"No!" Zetsu yelled sharply, but the shark-like man had already jumped a little too close to the boy and was rewarded with a tendril of chakra whipping him across the cave. "Tch...idiot."
The Akatsuki members could do nothing but watch as the tendrils the jinchuuriki was supplying multiplied and began to pull the great Kyuubi down to the earth. What shocked them more was that the ground began to release a strange type of chakra, equally as red, from the clefts in the ground, and these too began to pull at the beast.
Naruto's entire body was shaking and it was sheer will that kept him standing. The surrounding pain was nearly unbearable as he entered the final stages of the jutsu. The ground beneath his feet turned jellied, dipping, creating a basin of sorts, and the new vines of chakra released from the ground wrapped around his legs, worming along his torso and arms, pulling him down into Hell—much in the same manner as his own chakra was doing to the bijuu.
The Kyuubi began to double its efforts to be free of its ties, nearing madness as it recognized exactly where this was going.
"HOW—NO! THIS SHOULD NOT BE POSSIBLE!"
"You're fucking right it is, bastard!" Naruto snarled. His body was numb, his nerves burning out from the concentrated pain running rampant thorough his body. But he didn't release the jutsu—not even when the chains of Hell tightened so hard on his battered body that his right arm was crushed, causing him to let loose an agonized scream. By keeping the image of his friends, of Sakura-chan and Ero-sennin and Tsunade-baachan firmly in his mind he was granted a strength that should have left him long ago.
The Kyuubi was thrashing wildly now as two more of its tails were pulled back into Naruto's stomach.
"JUST WAIT, HUMAN. JUST WAIT UNTIL I HAVE YOU IN MY CLAWS! YOU KNOW YOU WON'T BE ABLE TO BRING MY ENTIRETY BACK INTO THE CURSED SEAL! YOUR LIFE IF FORFIET!"
The ground broke open with a loud blare as a tidal wave of energy erupted from Hell and began to cone itself around the two beings, pulling them into its depth at a catastrophic speed. Everything was nearly complete—soon the world would no longer be forced to endure the presence of Kyuubi, sealed or not. It was so loud, so hot, that Naruto almost didn't hear the shouting of his name.
In a daze, he drew his half-aware eyes to the image of a screaming Sakura being held back from running strait into the mesh of chakra by Kakashi. Through the reddened filter he could see that she was sobbing, clawing at her sensei to let her go.
Sakura had never seen anything more horrific than what her eyes were taking in now. It had nothing to do with the Kyuubi thrashing above them, or the uncontrollable demonic chakra flying everywhere, or the scattered and burnt present members of the Akatsuki. It was Naruto, so pale and haunted looking, covered in blood and sizzling chakra, stomach torn open, tears running down his face that was screwed up against a pain that looked indescribable. She wanted to run to him, to save him like he always saved her. She didn't want to sit by and watch from the sidelines anymore—especially not for this...anything but this.
Their eyes connected, a spark of awareness returned to Naruto's baby blues, and a silent message was passed between the two.
Weak in her grief, she fell to her knees, slipping from her sensei's grasp.
"N-Naruto...please...please don't leave me..." she knew he couldn't hear her—she could barely hear herself—but she wanted him to know...
His eyes gazed back at her with such sadness that she felt as though Tsunade had just socked her in the stomach. He smiled forlornly and mouthed, 'I'm sorry'.
Without warning, the walls of chakra folded over and crashed down on Naruto and what was left of the Kyuubi. Sakura was back on her feet, screaming and running towards the sea of chakra, somehow hoping to pull Naruto from beneath it. But the instant the energy hit the ground it spread flat and melted into the charred and hardened earth, taking with it Naruto and the demon.
"Where is he? Where did he go?" Tsunade shouted, circling the cooling rubble along with Sakura. She didn't bother to care that the four solid Akatsuki members had fled the area and were most likely observing them from afar. She just wanted that hyperactive nuisance back; she couldn't loose another one to that necklace...
Tsunade, Kakashi, and Sakura all turned to face Jiraiya, who was standing next to a now awake Sasuke. The traitorous ninja seemed as confused as ever, staring at the toad hermit in disbelief with what he just heard.
"H-hell...?" his voice sounded raspy and he spit up a little blood as he spoke. He knew it was senseless to try and run. His former teammates clearly did not hold back against him; he could even recognize the pain of a few ruptured organs.
Jiraiya glared at the brunette so hard that it took all of Sasuke's well earned self-discipline to keep from flinching.
"Yes, Hell," he repeated. His face then went slack and he sighed pitifully, addressing the rest of the party, "What you just saw was a forbidden jutsu, one that can force entry to Hell. I believe it's called a strained opening. He discovered it in an illegal scroll back in Earth country."
"How could you let him learn something like that?" Tsunade screamed at him. She raised a fist threateningly at the pervert who in turn threw his hands up in defense.
"Hey! I had research to do! I couldn't keep an eye on him all the time." She took a menacing step towards him, "I didn't like it either but we both knew that the seal was weakening. Chances were that he would be forced to use this anyway. No mortal can kill the Kyuubi, the fourth proved that, but it is possible to relieve this world of it."
The group fell silent at that, each having their own internal struggle to accept that what just happened may have been for the best.
Sasuke felt an extremely unwanted emotion tighten around his chest. He couldn't put a name to it but it almost felt like...regret? He stared at the pink haired woman who had fallen to her knees in the spot where Naruto was last seen; her arms were wrapped tightly around her body and she rocked herself as her sobs increased. Kakashi knelt down besides her and placed a hand on her shoulder, his eye was dark with his sentiments.
Sasuke shook his head, trying to clear the ludicrous thoughts that he could have ever been a part of those bonds. No, he would not regret his decision.
Naruto felt his body collide against a hard, rocky terrain; pieces of jagged rocks dug into his already shredded back. The sickening scent of sulfur filled his nose and mouth as he cried out in pain. He could still sense the Kyuubi's chakra swirling around him, the beast's presence collected angrily above his stomach. With much effort, he managed to force his eyes open in order to look the Kyuubi dead in those furious, crimson eyes as it once again began to pull free from the seal.
He didn't have the strength or the will to try and fight it. There was no point to it anyhow; Kyuubi wouldn't be able to hurt anyone ever again now that damned to Hell. Naruto didn't care what the beast did here—he was dead anyway. At least this way his precious people would be safe.
"I WILL ADMIT THAT YOU PROVED TO BE AN ADEQUATE FOE...FOR A HUMAN. IT IS A PITY THAT THERE IS NOT MUCH BLOOD LEFT IN YOU TO FEAST ON, BUT I WILL ENJOY TEARING YOUR FLESH FROM YOUR CARCASS NONETHELESS."
Naruto tried to muster one last defiant glare, but could only blink. Numbness started to seep into his body; the pain seemed very far away now. His vision was fading, his senses shutting down on him as death swooped to take his soul away. Maybe...maybe if he was lucky he would die from blood loss before the Kyuubi completely pulled free of the seal. It sure would save him a lot of pain.
The chakra of the Kyuubi began to flicker and he could sense commotion going on around him. There was a roaring—was it death? He couldn't be sure...everything was so dreamlike...
There was pain in his stomach, but he was feeling fuller if anything. That couldn't be right. The Kyuubi was supposed to be escaping...extracting its revenge...but there was no mistaking—death induced state or not—that the offending demonic chakra outside his body had thinned considerably. Just what the hell was going on?
He thought he could hear a faint crunching sound, as though someone were approaching wearing heavy footing. It was getting so, so hard to hold onto consciousness. There was someone else or somethingelse, here.
A shadow loomed over him just as his eyes closed and he was distantly aware that someone was standing over him, speaking in a half-amused voice.
"A human, huh? Now how the hell did you get here?"
Yay for first chapters!!! Let me know what you think, alrighty? Hopefully this is off to a good start.