Disclaimer: I do not, in any way or form, own any of the Naruto characters. However, I do own all made up characters of this AU.
Bold- Biju/Yōkai talking
Bold and Italic- Biju/ Yōkai thinking
Italic- someone thinking/ Flashback
Italic and Underline- Time/location shift
Bold and Italic and Underline- Translations, Title, or Narration
Chapter 1: A Fated Meeting – Enter Uzumaki Naruto and Ienari Josuke!
What does it mean to be an outcast? What is so scary about being alone, with no one around? Is it total quiet one is given by his peers and his elders? Or is it the fact that no one can give the person what they crave for the most: Love? Whatever the answer, there is one sure fact among those who are outcasts: though they are outcasts, there are others like them...
The young boy sat on the swing watching some clouds pass by with a look of mild intrigue on his face. He was average height for his seven years, and wore a simple shirt and shorts. He let his hand passed through his short, brown messy hair and let out a sigh as he watched the clouds go by. The one thing that was odd with this boy was his eyes: both were grey in color and lacked the pupils that many had. Some would consider him blind because of this; however, the boy could see perfectly and was for the most part normal. Beside the swing, resting on the tree was a small bag that seemed to contain something metallic.
The boy's name was Josuke and he, like many of the children in Konoha, was an orphan from when the Kyuubi no Kitsune had attacked Konoha and killed the shinobi who had gone to fight the Yōkai. Not that it matter, for he had never really known about his parents as they had abandoned him a few years ago. He had been left with nothing except a pair of metal gauntlets that he kept in a small pack with him at all times. Though they were too big for now, Josuke knew that one day he would be wielding the gauntlets in order to fight and protect those he cared for.
Josuke sighed as he picked up the bag where his gauntlets were and began to walk back into the orphanage, wondering if he could steal some sweets before eating the dinner that they served. As he made it halfway towards the building, he noticed someone passing by. After a second, he recognized the man as a Hyuga for the white/lavender tinted eyes that lacked pupils and the robes he wore. Something deep inside of Josuke made him stay and watch as the Hyuga went about his business, ignoring the little boy altogether. As he took a look at the orphanage, the Hyuga noticed Josuke for the first time and gasped at seeing his eyes.
Josuke wondered if there was something wrong, and a small part actually was hoping that he would be adopted by the man. He checked behind him to see if it was him that the Hyuga was staring, and seeing that there was nobody else, he turned only to see the Hyuga in front of him, the Byakugan ablaze with what Josuke recognized as anger. Josuke couldn't move his legs out of fear and surprise as he watched as though in slow motion the hand that would kill him coming down at his head.
Just as the hand was about to touch him, a powerful force suddenly erupted around the Hyuga and him, freezing them in place. The air itself seemed to have been filled with a dark killing intent, and the Hyuga knew somehow that the person behind the killing intent was at least Sannin level, if not Hokage. Josuke looked ready to die as the pressure intensified, and he wondered for a moment if this was a technique of the Hyuga before they killed their enemies.
That was when the force suddenly disappeared, and both the Hyuga and Josuke fell to the floor shuddering at how intense the power had been. The Hyuga looked around, wondering who had such power that their very presence alone could freeze him in place. That was when he noticed someone in a dark cloak walking towards him and the boy from the gate he had entered. As he approached, the Hyuga could see that the person was a man around thirty or forty, and was wearing a pair of dark glasses that hid his eyes. He also noticed something weird: although there was no wind, the man's cloak and his shoulder-length, brown hair were waving as though there was some wind coming from where the Hyuga and Josuke laid.
The man stopped a few feet away from the pair and asked in a calm voice, "What do you think you're doing?"
The Hyuga stood there watching the cloaked man, whom sighed and asked, "I will ask you one more time, what do you think you're doing?"
The Hyuga stood up and reactivated his Byakugan, a look of determination upon his face. The cloaked man gave a small smirk and chuckle as he asked, "So you think that the Jūken will stop me? Need I remind you about the killing intent that you felt earlier?"
Suddenly the pressure from earlier on came back, but this time it was all directed at the Hyuga, who began to convulse from the sheer pressure. Josuke watched in both horror and amazement as the Hyuga began to choke and gasp as he fell to his knees before becoming unconscious from the pressure. The cloaked man gave a sigh as he grabbed the Hyuga by the hair, and dragged him into the small grove of trees that the orphanage had near the playground. He then threw the Hyuga right at one of trees and walked back towards Josuke, who was still stunned at how powerful the man was.
The cloaked man knelt down to Josuke's eye level, and asked, "Are you alright?"
Josuke nodded his head vigorously, earning him a small chuckle from the man, who stood up and pointed to the gate of the orphanage, "Go."
Josuke stood there for a moment, not comprehending what the man meant. His "savior" frowned a little as he replied, "I don't like repeating myself over and over again. Go to the forest and stay there until things have calmed down."
Josuke decided to follow the cloaked man's command, and began to head out of the orphanage's ground. Before he exited, Josuke turned and asked the man, "Excuse me, sir, but who are you?"
The cloaked man looked at Josuke, as though he was wondering if he was worth telling his name, and after seeing Josuke still standing there, he answered, "Ienari…Ienari Kenji."
Josuke looked at the man for a one more moment before he ran out the gate and began to head to the forest that outlined Konoha's gates. Kenji smiled for a moment as he thought to himself, Grow, Josuke…grow and become someone who can truly bear their name without dishonor and humiliation. Grow into a shinobi who will give his life in order to protect the people he loves. Grow until you have the power to confront me and reveal the truth about your past…
With these thoughts in his mind, the cloaked man called Ienari Kenji disappeared before he was noticed by an ANBU whom was passing by.
Two weeks later; at one of the streets of Konoha…
The young blonde boy ran as fast as his legs would carry him, trying to outrun the mob that had somehow appeared when he had left the Ichiraku Ramen Bar for the day. He didn't understand why they were attacking him as he had done no pranks that day, and why they wanted to hurt him so badly each and every day. Most of the time he was lucky and he could get away from them, but some of the time he was beaten to a hair of his life. At those times, he would head towards the Konoha hospital, where further torture would accompany his healing. Thankfully, he was able to heal quickly enough, and only stay there for the afternoon before he headed towards the apartment that he was supposed to call home.
In truth, Naruto only kept a mask of being another happy child, when he was really crying his heart out for anyone at all to acknowledge him and to love him. Ever since he left the orphanage a few months ago, the villagers' attacks had been intensifying and Naruto had had to be on constant alert in order to dodge the punishment he received nearly every week. The constant beatings, the hateful glares, and the constant cursing from the more drunken men made Naruto wonder constantly why he was always being beaten for what seemed no apparent reason. The only reason that he could think off was that his parents, whoever they were, had done something bad and the only one left to take the blame had to be him.
As Naruto rounded a corner, he slammed into something very hard that knocked him down into the floor. Looking up he was greeted by the sight of a man around thirty or forty in a dark cloak, looking at him from behind his dark sunglasses. Just then both noticed the crowd around them, and Naruto knew that he was about to earn another trip to the hospital.
"Good job cornering that demon!" one of the leaders told the man as he brandished a large wooden stick, "We'll take it from here!"
However, before the man could even step forward, the cloaked man slammed his fist into his face and sent him and a few behind him reeling backwards. After cracking the bones in his hand, he replied in a calm voice, "You should watch your tongue…there's a child here after all."
Many of the mob had been amazed at how quickly the man had hit the guy, but their anger had risen when he had defended Naruto. Naruto not knowing what was going on and seeing no way out, did the only thing that was possible and grabbed the man's cloak trying to stay as close as he could to him. The crowd charged at the pair, only to freeze when the man began to radiate enough killing intent that to the mind of the mob it seemed that several evil spirits had risen from the man's body. Naruto almost let go of the man, but held on thinking that if he did, the man would disappear and then he would be left defenseless.
The cloaked man then grabbed Naruto by his shirt and lifted him onto his shoulder. Naruto then clung to the man's head, not wanting to fall or let go still. The mob then watched as Naruto and the cloaked man disappeared from sight and the killing intent suddenly disappeared. They looked around, and seeing that Naruto and the cloaked man were gone, decided to get Naruto the next time they saw him.
Both the cloaked man and Naruto watched as the crowd began to separate and once they were all gone, the cloaked man set Naruto down on top of the roof. Naruto looked up at the man, and after gathering his courage, replied, "T-thanks for saving me…"
The cloaked man looked at the Hokage Monument for a moment before he answered, "You're welcome."
They both were in silence for a while before Naruto asked, "Umm…who are you? You don't look like ANBU-chan."
The cloaked man raised an eyebrow as he asked, "ANBU-chan?"
Naruto nodded as he explained, "Yeah, ANBU-chan always watches me in case someone tries to beat me up or goes to Hokage-jii-san whenever I do get beat up."
The cloaked man looked thoughtful for a moment before he stated, "My name is Ienari Kenji, and I'm a friend of ANBU-chan and the Hokage."
Naruto smiled as he held out his hand and exclaimed, "My name's Uzumaki Naruto and I'm going to be the next Hokage!"
Kenji let out a rare chuckle as he shook hands with the small boy. He then grew serious as he told Naruto, "Naruto, I have a favor to ask of you…"
Naruto listened aptly as Kenji continued, "I need you to go into the forest near the eastern gate of Konoha. Somewhere in that forest is a boy two years your elder that I want back here in Konoha. He will need the help of you, ANBU-chan, and the Hokage in order to grow strong enough to protect himself and others," he then looked thoughtful for a moment before he added, "And he may be the only person who will understand your predicament."
Naruto looked confused at the last statement, but since he had been saved by Kenji, he decided not to question his favor. Naruto nodded and answered, "Okay, I'll look for him," he then realized something he almost forgot to ask, "Umm…Ienari-san? What's the boy's name?"
Kenji then took Naruto off the roof of the building they had been standing on, and landed right where he had saved the boy. As he began to leave the boy, he answered Naruto's question, "His name is Josuke. Ienari Josuke."
Naruto was about to ask if this Josuke was Kenji's son when he saw him disappear from sight. Naruto would've shouted his name, but wanting to be safe for a while longer, decided against it and ran towards the east gate.
From his vantage point on the roof, Ienari Kenji smiled to himself, Naruto…you're exactly Josuke. You have a good soul and a curse that no one should bear. I hope that when Josuke grows, he will help you grow. It will be interesting if you both become strong enough to see to your destinies…
With this thought, Ienari Kenji began to walk over to the Hokage's Tower, where he knew the Sandaime Hokage would be to make the necessary arrangements.
Forest near the Eastern Gate; an hour later…
Naruto looked around the trees that surrounded him, and wondered where he would find the boy called Ienari Josuke. The forest was gigantic and there were several places where a kid could hide if they knew how to do so. He had been looking around for nearly thirty minutes, and felt that he was going around in circles. Naruto sighed to himself as he sat down and began to think where Josuke could be hiding that no one except a child his age would hide in.
Hmmm…well it can't be up a tree 'cause most people in Konoha are ninjas and they travel above the trees. It can't be anywhere near the ground either 'cause they could use a dog or something to track someone. This is pretty hard…
Naruto's face lit up as he remembered the one place no adult would go to because of how big the entrance was. He rushed through the forest, and began listening for the sound of a nearby waterfall that he knew the forest was closed to. After finding the sound, he rushed through the forest at a greater speed, finally exiting to a river and a waterfall. Naruto headed towards the waterfall, and went behind the falling water where a small hole was hidden. He ducked inside, entered the hole, and looked around in amazement as to what was hidden inside.
The small cave had not only been cleaned, but there were now carpets lying around as well as a few candles lighting it. Hanging from the walls were some carcasses of animals that had been hunted by someone, as well as the spear that must've been used to hunt the animals. As Naruto continued to look around the cave, he didn't notice someone behind him until he felt the tip of something sharp at the back of his neck.
Naruto stood absolutely still as a voice asked, "Who are you? What are you doing in here?"
Naruto's eyes looked back without turning his head, and answered, "M-my name is Uzumaki Naruto. I-I was told by someone called Ienari Kenji to look for you!"
Naruto felt the tip of whatever was touching him disappear and he was able to turn around to see Josuke. He was surprised to see someone a little taller than himself holding another make shift spear, and looking quite dirty and tired. The clothes on him were covered in both stains and dirt; his gray eyes were now sizing up Naruto.
Josuke decided to test the grounds as he demanded, "Okay then, if you were sent by Ienari-sama, and then tell me how he looks and maybe I'll believe you."
Naruto then described the man he had seen merely an hour ago, and through Josuke's surprised face, he could tell that Josuke had met the man in person as well. After Naruto described the man, Josuke asked, "Why were you sent here though? I mean I don't really know you and I would've remembered someone like you…"
Naruto replied, "Well…Ienari-jii-san said that we were a lot alike…"
Josuke looked thoughtful before he asked, "I really don't see how we're alike…unless you've been attacked by someone or you don't have parents…"
Naruto's eyes widened as he whispered, "You mean…you ran here because people were trying to hurt you too and you don't have a mom or dad…?"
Suddenly both boys began to talk about their lives, and were amazed at how similar they were to the other. Naruto had no parents; he had no idea as to who they were, why everyone hated him, and why he was always called a demon. Josuke, on the other hand, talked about how people always looked at him as though he was a freak, how he was always overlooked by the families that had come to the orphanage, and lastly, the failed attack of the Hyuga clan member.
Both boys continued talking for a while longer; somewhat happy knowing that there was someone like them here. Soon Josuke and Naruto noticed the sunlight began to wane, and Naruto knew that the gates would be closing soon. He looked at Josuke and asked, "Josuke-nii-san, are you going to come back to Konoha?"
Josuke looked thoughtful but smiled as he answered, "If Ienari-sama gave me his name and wants me to prove I'm strong enough to live there, then I'm coming too!"
Both boys grinned and headed quickly back towards Konoha before the gates would be closed. Neither of them saw Ienari Kenji, watching them from a distance with a satisfied expression on his face. He watched the boys rush away for a while, before he turned around to greet a young looking man who had eight, black fox tails waving back and forth. The fox tailed man wore a black kimono with white flames outlining the edges and had a silver belt around his waist. The man's black hair was well matched with the fox-like ears, and his piercing amber eyes were at the moment scrutinizing Ienari Kenji.
Kenji sighed as he greeted the Kitsune, "Hachiro-san (Eight Son), to what do I owe your presence?"
Hachiro stared at Kenji for a while before he answered, "I have a question for you, Rakugosha-sama (Outcast), why were you speaking to the vessel of our leader and a human? It is quite out of character for someone of your stature."
Kenji frowned, "Don't call me by that name. I discarded it when I was banished by my own clan, and I will never bear that name again," he looked to where the boys had been, "As to your question, I have a certain affinity towards the human and I thought that the vessel could do with someone who can understand what it means to be alone, at least to a degree."
Hachiro just shook his head as he asked, "And what will happen to them now? You're not going to interfere with human affairs, are you?"
Kenji's voice was now filled with irritation as he answered, "I'm well aware of what would happen if I did more than what I did just now, Hachiro-san. That particular human…he's someone quite close to me…"
Hachiro's eyes widened as he stammered out, "Y-y-you don't mean-!?"
Kenji nodded, "Yes, that human is my true son. He is Ienari Josuke, son of my human form, Ienari Kenji, and Hyuga Masami (Grace and Beauty), and the successor of the human clan known as the Ienari clan."
Hachiro pinched the bridge of his nose as he muttered a few curses as he stated, "You know what would happen if everyone in Makai knew about the boy, don't you? The vessel of my master is already being disputed of being killed by some of the weaker clans, and if word got out that that boy was your son, how many days do you think it would take for every Yōkai there to kill him or turn him to their will?"
Kenji watched the last of the sun's light disappeared behind the sea of trees as he answered, "Josuke and Naruto will watch over each other. Once they become shinobi of this God forsaken village, I will personally train them in their respective clan's Jutsus."
Hachiro rubbed his temples, wishing that Rakugosha-sama wouldn't be so unpredictable when it came to anything personal. It was bad enough in Makai when all of the heads of the Nine Great Demon Families had not only been abducted by a summoning, but it was even more humiliating when they had been sealed away by mortals into different objects or mortals. Now that the Demon Realm was in disorder, for someone like Rakugosha-sama to do something so reckless like having a Han'yō child was as dangerous as having declared war on the entire Demon Realm. Not to mention that the current King of Makai himself had no love for anything that looked human, let alone a Han'yō.
Hachiro sighed, knowing he was out of his league at the moment, and asked "So what now? Do you have some sort of plan?"
Kenji nodded, "I'm going to fuse the vessel and your…master…together so that he can learn your techniques."
Hachiro's jaw fell at the answer he had not been expecting, "ARE YOU CRAZY!? OUR MASTER WOULD NEVER AGREE TO SOMETHING LIKE THAT!!!"
Kenji removed his sunglasses, and placed them inside his coat, "Do you have any better ideas?" when Hachiro didn't answer, Kenji continued, "The vessel is special, and your master will likely know this. He and I disagreed on many things, but on this occasion I think he'll agree that the best way for Naruto to become Hokage and to humiliate the people who had ever thought him as weak or harmed him in his life, is to make him into a Kitsune."
Hachiro rubbed his temples again, and wished that he had had an easier life than being the Kyuubi no Kitsune's right hand fox. Hachiro then hesitantly asked, "When…when do you plan on fusing them?"
Kenji began to walk away from Hachiro, "In seven years time, I will come back and fuse both Naruto and the Kyuubi no Kitsune together. At that time, I will also reveal a few things to both Josuke and Naruto about the roles they will play…"
With those words, Hachiro watched as Rakugosha disappeared into thin air. He gave a sigh and a shake of his head as he thought, For your sake, Rakugosha-sama, I hope that your plan goes the way that you played out…
Seven Years later, in one of Konoha's street… (Author Notes: I decided to skip ahead so as to not take so much time.)
Naruto and Josuke laughed as they outran the Chuunin and Jonin that were chasing the pair at the time. It had been seven long years since they had met, and both boys had grown up much like blood brothers. When they had arrived at the Hokage's Tower, they were both surprised to hear that they would be living together in a small apartment and have an allowance that would cover their expenses until they both became shinobi of the Leaf. Naruto had smiled and cheered at the idea, though later he and Josuke wondered who would've gotten them an apartment and fixed an allowance so that they could live for a while by themselves. After a while, they concluded that the man called Ienari Kenji had got them a home and money, for some reason that would only make sense to the enigmatic, elder man.
At the moment, however, both of the boys were wondering how they should get rid of their pursuers so that they could sneak back to the Academy without their sensei and father figure, Umino Iruka, noticing they were both gone. Josuke looked through his black sunglasses at the pursuers and asked aloud, "Do you think we should use one of our special bombs?"
Naruto grinned having already pulled out one of the bombs Josuke spoke off, "Way ahead of ya, Josuke."
Sending a bit of chakra into the bomb, Naruto threw the bomb after a few seconds and both he and Josuke rushed into an alley as it exploded. Both stopped and looked out of the alley to see their handiwork, and laughed seeing the shocked expressions on their pursuers, who were now covered in rainbow paint along with a lot of the street that they had been on. As Naruto and Josuke turned around to continue their getaway, they were both greeted by the sight of a very irritated Iruka. Both gave a small "Yipe!" before they turned around getting ready to run for their lives. Neither got far, as Naruto was grabbed by the scruff of his orange jumpsuit and Josuke by the hood of his black hoody.
Iruka glared at the pair as he muttered, "You two are in serious trouble for ditching class…"
Moments later; at the Ninja Academy…
Josuke sighed as he and Naruto sat in front of the class, both tied up at the moment thanks to Iruka. Both boys had been causing pranks and the like for three years, and were known as Konoha's Troublemaking Duo. Many of their pranks were harmless, and no one really got hurt by any of them at all, but people tended to curse them whenever they caused trouble of one sort or another. Josuke couldn't count on his fingers the times that they were taking to the Hokage for one of their pranks, or stay in detention for causing a small ruckus in class.
Iruka sighed as he asked, "How many times do you two have to get in trouble before you two quit?"
Josuke smiled pleasantly as he asked Naruto, "Naruto-nii-san, do you know how many times we've been caught? I kind of lost count after the ninety-eighth time when Hokage-jii-san gave us that speech on being responsible."
Naruto shrugged, answering, "I lost count, period."
One of Iruka's eyes twitch at the disrespect he was being shown by both boys, and announced to the class, "Alright, everyone! Today we will be reviewing the Henge no Jutsu (Transformation Technique)!"
The entire class groaned at the announcement and many of the students glared at Naruto and Josuke, whom were now talking about dinner at Ichiraku. Only Hyuga Hinata, Naruto's girlfriend, Nara Shikamaru and Akimichi Chouji, both good friends of Josuke and Naruto, were the only ones not to complain, but rather had a "Those two will never learn" expression upon their face. The entire class soon lined up and demonstrated the Henge no Jutsu to Iruka. Iruka then called out, "Ienari Josuke."
Josuke walked forward, his hands inside the large pocket of his hoody, and stood there, awaiting Iruka's signal. When he gave it, Josuke got his hands out of his pockets, and with a shout of, "Henge!" transform into a perfect copy of Iruka. Or rather one that would've been perfect had it not been that the transformation still had Josuke's eye color. Iruka jotted down on his clipboard a bit, feeling a bit sorry for Josuke. Josuke had the skills and mind of someone with top grades, but the kid had the bad luck of being unable to alter the color of his eyes no matter what type of Jutsu he used.
Iruka then called out, "Uzumaki Naruto!" and Naruto stepped forward to perform the Henge no Jutsu. However, Iruka failed to see the small glint of mischievousness in Naruto's eyes and wasn't ready when he became a voluptuous young woman that was practically naked except for some clouds that hung around her private areas. Iruka flew backward from the force of his bloody nose, and Josuke couldn't help but laugh along with Naruto as the blonde proclaimed, "That's the power of the Orioke no Jutsu (Sexy Technique)!"
Both stopped laughing as Iruka shouted at Naruto, "YOU DUMBASS!!! DON'T INVENT STUPID SKILLS!!!"
Later that day; at the Ichiraku Ramen Bar…
Josuke served Naruto and Iruka another bowl of ramen as he smiled at a new customer, "Welcome to the Ichiraku Ramen Bar, may I take your order?"
The girl blushed and asked for a small bowl of miso ramen. Josuke nodded and called back, "A small bowl of miso, Aya-chan!"
Ayame, the daughter of the owner, looked from where she was boiling the noodles, "Sure thing, Josuke-kun!"
Josuke smiled at Ayame, earning him another blush, and went back to getting another bowl for Naruto. Josuke had at a young age asked Teuchi, the owner of Ichiraku, if he could work at night for him at the bar. Teuchi had accepted and Josuke had become good friends with Ayame, right to the point that he called her, "Aya-chan" regularly. Unfortunately for Josuke, because of his messy hair and his distinct eyes, many girls thought of him a good comparison to Uchiha Sasuke and in the end they had formed a fan club as large as the one that the Uchiha had. Josuke didn't mind, as he used his good nature plus a smile or two to attract the customers, earning him a good paycheck to which he would deposit in a bank account that he and Naruto used to save their money for emergencies.
Josuke listened in on Naruto's conversation with Iruka, whom asked, "Tell me, Naruto, why did you and Josuke go and vandalize the Hokage's Monument? You two do know what it symbolizes, right?"
Naruto finished slurping the ramen in his mouth, and answered, "Sure, we do. The Hokage's were the best ninja in the village and the Yondaime was the one who got rid of the Kyuubi no Kitsune."
Josuke nodded in agreement as he handed the small bowl of miso ramen to the young girl, whom blushed and muttered a "Thank you…"
Iruka looked confused seeing that both knew who the Hokage were, "Then why-?"
Naruto smiled as he proclaimed, "One day I'm going to get the title of Hokage, and then I'll surpass all of the previous Hokage!"
Josuke smiled as he crossed his arms, "And don't forget your trusted Sannin brother!"
Naruto grinned as he gave a small slug at Josuke, "How could I forget!?"
Iruka just slurped his ramen in a bit of shock at hearing the two proclaim their goals in life. After recovering from the shock he asked, "Are you two really going for those titles? I mean, only a select few are chosen for Sannin, let alone Hokage."
Naruto just finished the bowl of ramen, and looked seriously at Iruka, "Iruka-sensei, Josuke and I decided a long time ago not to go back on our words or dreams. If we don't make it, then we just be deluding ourselves."
Josuke nodded sagely as he added, "If people saw that we used our strengths to protect rather than get revenge on every single crime done to us, then maybe things would be easier for us and people will stop hanging on to their hate."
Iruka could only smile at how wise the boys were acting and couldn't help but feel a bit proud that both boys looked at him like a father as well as their teacher. Even though Naruto housed the Kyuubi no Kitsune, Iruka knew how it felt to be alone and could understand the boy. He was glad though when Josuke became Naruto's "brother" and was amazed at how well both got along. Of course, Iruka had not told them this because he knew that somehow the two boys knew that Iruka was one of the few who cared about them.
Josuke looked at the small clock on the wall, and gave a yawn, "Looks like its closing time."
Ayame looked from where she had finished cleaning a few of the bowls that Naruto had eaten from, and looked at Josuke, "You're not leaving here until you help me with the mountain of bowls that Naruto-kun left."
Josuke sighed, as Naruto and Iruka chuckled, and faced his brother and teacher, "I guess I'll be here for a bit. See ya later Naruto-nii-san, and try to get to sleep so that we can both pass the Exam, okay?"
Naruto gave his trademark grin as he answered, "Don't worry, I'll get a goodnight's rest and then we'll both be a step closer to our dream of getting the respect we deserve!"
Josuke smiled as he clasped his hand with Naruto's and gave it a firm shake sealing the deal. Josuke watched them go for a moment, before he turned around and helped Ayame begin cleaning the bowls.
Next morning; at the Ninja Academy…
Josuke watched with some sadness as Naruto came out with his head hung and unadorned by a headband and with a face that said he had failed. Josuke had performed the Bunshin no Jutsu (Clone Technique) and had easily passed the written test without any problems. However, Josuke couldn't help but feel like he had robbed Naruto off of his chance in becoming a ninja, and tried to cheer Naruto up.
"Hey, Naruto-nii-san," he said as he touched Naruto's shoulder, "how about we go see Hokage-jii-san and see if you can have a different Jutsu as your final exam? I'm sure he'll understand and-"
But Naruto just looked up and shook his head, "Its okay, Josuke-nii-san, I just gotta have some alone time for now…"
Josuke watched as Naruto walked away from the Academy, a dark cloud seemingly hanging over him as he made his way down the streets of Konoha. Josuke watched Naruto go, and a rare frown soon began to creep on his face. This disappeared as he nodded to himself and headed to see Iruka to see if there was anyway for Naruto to still pass and become a shinobi.
Later that day; within a secret grove…
Naruto read over the scroll that Mizuki had told him would help him become a Genin if he performed one of the techniques written within the scroll. It had been easy enough for him to sneak inside the Hokage's Tower and locate the scroll; the only problem he had encountered was the Sandaime Hokage, who got taken care of with an Orioke no Jutsu. He had been careful in not alerting any of the passing ANBU that had been around on their night patrol and had made it to the place that Mizuki-sensei had told him he could practice the Jutsu that he read from the scroll.
Hmmm…Naruto thought as he read through the scroll, Let's see…the first Jutsu on this scroll is the Kage Bunshin no Jutsu (Shadow Clone Technique). WHAT!? A CLONE TECHNIQUE!?...WHY DOES IT HAVE TO BE A CLONE TECHNIQUE RIGNT OFF THE BAT!? Oh well…I guess I better get started…
Naruto worked on through the night, not knowing how long he was in that clearing practicing the Kage Bunshin no Jutsu. As he lay down to rest for a moment, he heard someone coming from the woods behind him, and was surprised to see Josuke suddenly appear with a look of annoyance in his face.
Josuke looked at Naruto and bopped him on the head, "WHAT THE HELL DO YOU THINK YOU'RE DOING OUT HERE AT THIS TIME!?"
After massaging his head, Naruto retorted, "I WAS TRYING TO LEARN A JUTSU THAT WOULD LET ME PASS, SO THAT I COULD BE A GENIN!!!"
Josuke looked confused at this and asked, "Who told you that?"
Naruto answered matter-of-factly, "Mizuki-sensei did."
Josuke looked thoughtful as he muttered aloud, "But Iruka-sensei said that there wasn't any way for anyone who failed the test to become a Genin…"
Both then realized that Mizuki had tricked Naruto into stealing the scroll for himself or for someone who had hired Mizuki to steal the scroll. As both growled and cursed Mizuki, both noticed someone standing atop of one of the trees and turn to see who it was. Both gasp when they realized that standing on the branch was none other than Ienari Kenji, the man who had saved them both back in their youth.
Both boys stood there for a moment before a smile broke through Josuke's face, and he shouted, "Ienari-sama!"
Kenji jumped down from the branch and petted both boys on the head and gave them a warm, almost fatherly smile, "It is good to see you two. How have you been?"
Both boys then recounted the last seven years to the old man, and at the story of their infamous pranks, Kenji couldn't help but laugh at the mental pictures he got from imagining the scene. At the end, Kenji nodded thoughtfully at the boys' story, They have grown as well as one can when an entire village hates their existence…It seems that I will be able to train them both as I thought I would…
He then saw the scroll on Naruto's back and asked, "Where did you get that scroll, Naruto?"
Naruto pulled the scroll off his back and recounted everything that had happened after Mizuki had spoken with him about his failed test. Kenji frowned and grew disgusted, This Mizuki…he knew that if word got out that Naruto stole the Scroll of Sealings then Naruto, and likely Josuke, would both be killed on sight. He will pay for trying to kill two survivors of clans far worthier than all those in Konoha…
Josuke snapped into attention and looked around, alerting both Kenji and Naruto of someone coming. Josuke, Kenji, and Naruto turned in time to be greeted by the face of Iruka, whom looked as though he had run around all over the place in order to find Naruto.
"Naruto!" Iruka shouted out of breath, "What-who!?"
Kenji cleared his throat and Iruka noticed the man for the first time, "Who are you!?"
Kenji raised a hand and waved it in a calming manner, "You may relax, Umino Iruka, I'm an old acquaintance of these two, and I was worried about them."
Iruka looked cautiously at the man, until he realized that if he had been the one to order the stealing of the scroll, then he would've left the moment Iruka had arrived. Kenji then looked up at one of the trees and said aloud, "It seems we have another guest…"
Everyone looked up in time to see Mizuki as he entered the grove, a look of surprise in his face when he saw how many people were there. Mizuki now looked worried seeing the face of Kenji who stood up and padded both boys' on their shoulder, "Why don't you two take care of this?" before he sat back down, he whispered, "And don't hold back…"
Both Josuke and Naruto looked at each other from the corner of their eyes and nodded to each other. Naruto turned around and handed the scroll to Iruka, while Josuke removed his sunglasses and pocketed them. Both then looked at Mizuki, and he was surprised at the anger and killing intent both were exhibiting from their bodies. Josuke formed a hand seal, and to Iruka's and Mizuki's surprise, he stated out loud, "Byakugan (White Eyes)…"
Naruto also formed a hand seal but grinned as he told Mizuki, "You have my thanks for letting me find an interesting Jutsu, Mizuki-teme…Kage Bunshin no Jutsu!!!"
Both Chuunin gasped as the field was suddenly covered with several Naruto, each a perfect copy of the original. Josuke gave a smirk as he asked the Naruto beside him, "Oi, oi, why didn't you tell me about a new Jutsu, Naruto-nii-san? You know I don't like not knowing something you don't."
One of the Naruto gave a trademark fox grin answering, "Sorry, but considering you weren't here at the time, I really couldn't do much," many of the clones cracked their knuckles as he added; "Besides I can teach you the Jutsu later if you want."
Josuke took the normal position of the Jūken (Gentle Fist) and replied, "No thanks, I'll just find a more interesting Clone Technique and use that one instead."
Naruto shrugged to himself, and then took the normal position of the Gōken (Strong Fist) as he finished, "Then how about we just beat this guy already? I want to go and apologize to Hokage-jii-san before returning the scroll and getting a night's sleep."
Josuke chuckled but didn't answer, knowing that Naruto didn't like to talk when he fought someone. Mizuki, seeing that he was clearly outmatched and outnumbered, turned to get away, only to be sent down towards the ground by a powerful kick and punch from two of Naruto's clones. Josuke then rushed forward, becoming a blur to the sight of Iruka and Mizuki, and reappeared in midair with Mizuki. Josuke tapped both arms quickly before landing a palm thrust at Mizuki's chest and kicked him into the crowd of clones that were waiting below.
Mizuki was soon pummeled within an inch of his life, and couldn't even groan from the intense pain that both his body and his organs were now giving him. Josuke prodded Mizuki with a stick he had found and asked, "Think we went overboard with our Taijutsu, Naruto?"
Naruto snorted as he answered, "He deserved it."
Kenji smiled as they made ready to go to the Hokage's Tower, Not only did Naruto learned a Jonin-level Jutsu in only a few hours, but apparently he also learned the Gōken Taijutsu style during my time away. His dream of becoming the Hokage may not be as farfetched as many believed. Josuke…for him to have both the Byakugan and to know the Jūken, he is even stronger than I had anticipated. They will become even more powerful than what I had imagined if they continue to grow like this…
Iruka smiled as he motioned Naruto to come over to where he was standing. Naruto obliged and was instructed to close his eyes. Both Josuke and Kenji smiled as they watched Iruka place his own headband around Naruto's, and could only laugh when Naruto opened his eyes and Iruka smiled telling him, "Congratulations, graduate, you passed!"
Kenji could only feel pride as Naruto smiled and hugged Iruka thanking him. He looked at the rising sun, and sighed to himself, I wonder how he will react when I tell him the truth tomorrow?
END OF CHAPTER 1
This is most likely not only the longest chapter I've written, but the one I took the most care to get ready. I hope you guys will be ready for the next one, 'cause it's going to be a doozy of a chapter!
Oh and for those of you wondering, I decided to change Josuke's looks, powers, Jutsus, and some of his personality in order to make the story interesting. That and the fact, that I thought Naruto should know that there is more than one type of outcast in this world.
As you all know, I'm a big Naruto/Hinata couple fan, so that's going to be one of the pairings in this story. However, for Josuke I'm going to see which one you guys want me to make him get stuck with! The list includes:
That's all for now!
Shidyk D. Shade