When they got off the boat, the three genin had enough knowledge to use sealing scrolls, and were greeted by two royal guards. "Are you the shinobi sent by Konoha to escort Koyuki-hime to Oni no Kuni?"
Naruto stared them down with a straight face. "Yes, as well as delivering a scroll to her."
The guard nodded. "We'll take you to her." The guards led them to a room about the size of Tsunade's office where a black woman wearing a white and red kimono was looking out over the snow-covered city through a window. "Hime, the shinobi from Konoha have arrived."
She turned around and smiled widely when her eyes landed on Naruto. She walked over and hugged him and stepped back a little after letting go. "It's been so long since your last visit." She looked down sadly. "I heard about Kakashi, I'm sorry."
"I'm sure he would appreciate you saying so. He was so depressed when he heard you were getting married, figured you wouldn't star in the Icha Icha movies after that." He started rummaging through his bag. "Speaking of which, I have to newest script, it's supposed to be the best yet." He held it out to her.
"That's wonderful Naruto, I was wondering when I be getting this one, Jiraiya sent word almost two weeks ago that it was finished." She took the scroll from Naruto and turned to the three children. "I see you've taken on a genin team, care to introduce them?"
He pointed at Kisei. "This is Kisei Hyuga, and the young lady next to him is Motooru Yuuhi Sarutobi."
"So you're Asuma's daughter, I was so sorry to hear about what happened to him, Naruto was really broken up about it the last time he was here, I was barely able to convince him to come out of his room."
Naruto cleared his throat and pointed to Takai. "And finally we have Takai Mitarashi Hatake."
"Hatake, as in Kakashi?" Naruto nodded and she smiled again. "It seems fated that I keep receiving help from a Hatake."
"My team and I are ready to leave whenever you are Koyuki-hime."
"Naruto, you know I hate it when you call me that, just call me Yukie like you did before."
"Alright, so how soon would you like to leave?"
"There's no rush, you just got here." She turned to the two guards. "Would you take these three to the kitchen so they can get something to eat, I'm sure they must be hungry after the boat ride." The two guards bowed while the three genin looked towards Naruto who nodded, they too then bowed and followed the guards out.
"Did the generators run out of power again or did you just want to see the snow?"
"A bit of both I suppose, the generators were nearly depleted, so I turned them off so it wouldn't take as long to recharge, but I also can't help miss the snow. So, how have things with you been?"
"It's been alright, been keeping busy and those three are a handful, though they all take training seriously."
"That's not quite what I meant Naruto. Let's try something less subtle, are you seeing anyone?" The blonde groaned and muttered 'Not you too.' "Oh come on Naruto, you haven't visited in over twelve years, I'm just curious to find out about my savior's life outside of his missions."
Naruto sighed. "No I'm not seeing anyone, no I'm not looking, and no I don't want you to hook me up with anyone. Almost all of my time is spent training my students, and my free time, what little I have, is used trying to prepare for the assured battle with what's left of Akatsuki."
"But if you don't look, how will you find the one you're meant to be with?"
"Not everyone is meant to be with someone."
"I know you don't believe that, you once said to me that nobody's meant to be alone. In fact, I remember you telling me how much you wanted an actual family instead of one made of close friends."
"That was before Akatsuki kidnapped Motooru and Takai when they were still babies to get to me. Even if I found someone who didn't care about Kyuubi, how can I ask her to take on the additional risk that they'll be targeted by some of the most dangerous people on the planet? As long as they're around, all of that will have to wait. Can we not talk about this?"
"I'm sorry Naruto, but would you mind if I asked one more thing?" He stared out the window a moment before slightly nodding his head. "I know it's really personal, but have you ever been in a serious relationship?"
"I don't think it can really be considered it a relationship, we both knew it couldn't go any further then it already was. It wasn't because we didn't have feelings for each other, but I had a duty to my village, and she had one to her country. Aside from her not being able to marry, her's keeps her within the country, and the only ways I'd be able to stay with her, is to either resign and leave everyone else I care about, or to ask for a long term assignment in Oni no Kuni."
"You never told me you knew Shion-nisou."
He didn't ask how she knew, since he knew he had made it fairly obvious. "I helped her destroy a demon a little while after I returned from my trip here with Ero-sennin. Then eleven years ago, I went back for a year to fulfill a promise I made before I left."
Koyuki looked at him curiously. "What promise could possibly take you a year to accomplish?"
"Well technically I only needed to stay for eight months, but we had grown even closer and I didn't want to leave. When the year was over, I got called back to Konoha, so I had to go back or be labeled a missing-nin."
"You still haven't told me what were you doing?"
"Officially, Jiraiya and I were there to protect her because we received information about an attempt on her life."
Naruto smiled. "I'll tell you later Yukie, I've got to go make sure my students aren't getting into trouble."
In the Kitchen:
Takai looked up from his now empty plate at the other two genin with him. "Why do you think she asked them to bring us here and not Sensei?"
Kisei didn't look towards him when he stopped his chopsticks in their rise to his mouth. "Sensei said they were friends, so she probably wanted to catch up with him, after all she said the last time he was here he was upset about Motooru's Tou-san's death, so they haven't seen each other in almost thirteen years, I'm sure they'll have a lot of things to talk about."
Takai noticed that Motooru hadn't really been eating her food, but pushing it around the plate. "Motooru are you feeling alright, you haven't eaten much."
Motooru sighed. "I'm fine, I've just been thinking about the mission."
Kisei looked at her curiously. "What about it?"
"It's just that Sensei seemed really eager to leave for Oni no Kuni, and I don't think it's because he wants to get the mission done quickly, I think he really wants to see that person he and Kaa-san were talking about."
"Hey yeah, didn't he tell us he went on a mission there for a year, maybe he has a girlfriend there, it would explain why he never goes out on dates."
"You know," Naruto voice sounded from the door making the three of them jump. "it's bad enough I have Kaa-san, your Kaa-san, Yukie, and my other friends at home talking about my love life, I don't need you three making it worse by spreading rumors."
"So, there's no girlfriend?"
"There is a friend who is a woman, but that's all it is." 'Now anyways.' "She the one Yukie's going to be meeting with, Shion-nisou."
Kisei's chopsticks dropped from his hand. "Wait, wait, wait, you're friends with a Hime, a Kage, and a Nisou? Any other important friends we don't know about?"
Naruto placed his index finger to his chin and looked up without moving his head. "Well let's see, my team is considered heroes in Nami no Kuni and they named a bridge after me, we helped the leader of Tonbogakure no Sato save his village, befriended a warrior from another continent, helped stop training that slowly and painfully killed children your age in Hoshigakure no Sato, and helped the royal family of Tsuki no Kuni end a coup started by a minister. I had a team each time, but for some reason the clients always like me more, maybe it's karma."
Kisei's mouth hung open, and Takai snickered silently at his expression. "Um Sensei." Naruto turned to look at Motooru. "What are our duties on this mission?"
"Since it's an escort mission we're only required to protect her on the road, but once we're there, I still plan to keep an eye open for any danger against her or Shion. If you three see anything, you can act on it, but if there's even the slightest chance you need help, get it. It's better to have it and not need it, than to need it and not have it. But regardless of if you three can handle it or not, report to me using your radios. If it's too much for all of you to handle, follow at a safe distant, and relay to me where they stop." All three of the genin looked at him questioningly. "Anyone targeting them would want them alive." He looked between his students. "Any other questions?" When none of them spoke up after several seconds, he smiled. "Alright, Yukie wants to leave in an hour, once she's on the boat, she's our responsibility."
The trip was uneventful, except for the fact that after the first night on the boat Koyuki had a constant blush whenever she was around Naruto, though the genin didn't know why. As they got off, they found an armored group of people Naruto recognized as Shion's personal guards bowing on the dock. "Naruto-sama it is pleasure seeing you again. Shion-nisou has asked us to bring you and Kazehana-sama to her immediately. Your students may wander about the village if they'd like, and we shall give their descriptions to the guards at the gate so they may pass when they wish."
Naruto smiled at the man. "Thank you Tei." He turned to his students. "You heard him, go explore, but don't cause trouble, remember what I told you before we left Yuki no Kuni." He got three shouts of yes before they ran past him and the guards. He smiled as he watched them go, but it soon left his face as he looked back at the one known as Tei. "Shion knew I was coming didn't she."
The guard nodded. "For over two weeks, probably before even you knew."
Naruto sighed. "Well better get going, she'll be pissed enough with me as it is." Crouching down, he looked over at Koyuki with a smile. "Hop on Yukie, it's the quickest way to travel."
She smiled back. "Just like old times, you having to carry me around, though this time, I think I'll get more enjoyment out of it." She jumped on to his back with a giggle and dug her heels into his sides slightly. "Ya mule."
The guards all snickered a bit, before moving towards the large building near the center of the village.
Kisei was wandering the market alone as Takai and Motooru had left to find something to eat. He found that this place wasn't as crowded as the market's of Konoha, but thought it was to be expected due to the differences in size of the two villages. He couldn't help but smile at the peaceful and kind atmosphere the people created, at least until a young girl bumped into him as she ran past. Normally, he would brush such a thing off, but when four men armed with a katana each, wearing dust covered light brown kimonos roughly pushed past him at full sprint after her, he activated his Byakugan and gave chase on the rooftops. Using his Byakugan, he was able to follow them easily and when he caught up, the four men had corner the girl in a dead end alleyway, and though none of them had their blades out, one of them was slowly approaching the girl with his hand out to her, and she was glaring defiantly at them. He could see that the approaching man was saying something, but he couldn't make it out, nor could he read the man's lips, but from the way the girl shook her head angrily, he could tell that they were trying to get her to do something she despised and he decided to step in.
Dropping down behind the men he walked up to them. "Leave her alone."
The four men whipped their heads around and nearly laughed when they saw him. "Go home brat, you have no idea what's going on here."
"I know she doesn't want to go with you, and if you continue to try and force her I will stop you."
The three closest to him sneered at him and prepared to draw their sword, but the other man stopped them. "Leave him be, let just get her and go."
Kisei clenched his fist in anger of being dismissed as no threat, but a smirk made its way to his face as his fist opened and chakra flowed to them. These men would regret writing him off. Charging forward the men's eyes widened as he hit every chakra point in their shoulders and knees, making their arms useless and causing them to fall to their knees. "You should have listened." Running up to the girl he took hold of her hand. "Come on, there may be more of these guys around." Running out of the alley, the two disappeared into the crowd of shoppers and merchants.
Trying and failing to try and move, one of the men growled in anger. "When I get my hands on that brat he's going to wish he had listened to us!"
The same man that had stopped them before spoke up again. "There's no reason to harm the boy, he did what he thought was right. All he saw was four grown men harassing a small girl, can you honestly say you would not have done the same in his position?"
"I would have left them to their job, Moro-sama knows she can't just run off like this."
"But he's obviously not from here, or he would have recognized her and done just that, so we cannot look at this for our perspective, in any case, one of us must inform Shion-sama while the rest of us continue the search."
"And how do you figure that's going to happen? Whatever that kid did made it extremely difficult to move our limbs."
They all became silent, before a single man forced his arm to move, although it was excruciating painful. Clenching his teeth in his pain, he grabbed a small cylinder off his waist and pointed it into the sky and grabbing a string coming from the bottom with his teeth and jerked his head away, sending a small ball of fire into the air. Once he was done he let his arm fall and the string to fall from his mouth. "There, now some other guards with head over here and we can explain the situation. Until then all we can do is wait and hope that boy's able to keep Moro-sama out of trouble." The other three nodded silently.
Kisei kept running till they were out of the market district and in what seemed to be a park with a dark blue bridge crossing over a creek. Turning his Byakugan on again, he looked around for any trace of the men or someone following them. Seeing neither he turned it off with a sigh of relief. "Looks like we lost them." Turning to the girl next to him who was trying to catch her breath, he got his first good look at her, she had bright blonde hair, not as bright as Naruto's but close, that went half way down her back, two locks of hair fell in front of her ears and were looped back and tied with the rest of her hair into a ponytail with a white cloth at the base of her neck. Her eyes were a darker violet than any amethyst and shined like as brightly. She was wearing a light blue kimono with flower prints on it, and judging by her size, he guessed she was a couple years younger than him.
She looked up at him with a bright smile and he felt his cheeks heat up a bit. "Thank you for helping me get away from them, my name Moro, what yours?"
"Kisei Hyuga, I'm a genin from Konoha. Why were those men chasing you?"
She just continued smiling like it didn't matter. "Don't know." 'why they still try, they know only Tei-kun can catch me, though they are getting better.'
Kisei frowned. "Well I think it would be best if you stuck with me for now, they may try again."
Moro nodded happily and grabbed his hand. "Come on, let's go eat." Kisei shook his head while smiling and followed allowed himself to be pulled along.
Tei lead Naruto and the now walking Koyuki to a lounge like room where a woman with long blonde hair and light purple eyes waited for them. "Shion-sama, Koyuki-hime and her escort Naruto-sama."
The woman nodded. "Thank you Tei-kun, please wait outside to take our guests to their room before taking a rest yourself, I know you need it."
The man bowed deeply. "Thank you malady, by your leave." Exiting the room, he closed the door behind him.
"Shion-nisou it's a pleasure to meet you, I hope we can reach an equally benefiting agreement."
"It's a pleasure to meet you at last as well Koyuki-hime, and hope we can as well. I would also like to congratulate you on the success of you newest movie, my daughter and I enjoyed it very much."
Koyuki looked surprised by the mention of a daughter, but it quickly became a smile. "I'm always glad to hear someone enjoyed my work, perhaps I'll get the chance to meet your daughter and gave her an autograph."
Shion smiled as well. "I'm sure she would love that. Now then, I'm sure you would like to rest before dinner, and negotiation can wait till the morning. Tei will show you to where you'll be staying, and unless you object, I'd like to speak with Naruto for a moment."
Koyuki's smile remained and she shook her head. "No, that's quite alright, Naruto told me the two of you were close, I'm sure you have a lot to catch up on. Thank you for opertunity Shion-nisou."
Both women bowed to each other and Koyuki left the two blondes alone. "Shion I…" Naruto's head recoiled and there was a red handprint on his cheek. "I deserved that."
Shion glared at him. "And much more. You don't write to tell me you're okay, or come see our daughter, even on her birthday, how am I suppose to react when you finally come back?"
"You know I couldn't come back due to the war, and by the time I could, it had already been six years, I didn't think you'd want me to come back. I wasn't sure what you told her, and didn't want to confuse her with me showing up out of nowhere."
"That's why you should have written, I would have told you. I told her that her father is a powerful ninja that had to leave to protect his village, I didn't say which one, or anything about you in case you died, I didn't want her to go through that. And you know you could never lie to me, there's more to it than what you said, so what is it?"
He looked down at the floor ashamed. "I couldn't bring myself to endanger you, with Akatsuki still after me, they'd use you both to get to me, I couldn't risk it. They kidnapped Motooru and Takai to get to me, I refused to allow you be put in danger because of me, so I cut myself off from you, went to extreme lengths so that everything that pointed to us having a daughter was gone. I regret missing out on our daughter's life more than I could ever tell you, but if it's between her having to constantly look over her shoulder out of fear or me having to live with this hole in my heart, I'll bare it a hundred times over."
"I understand why you think this way, but being a orphan, you know the value of family, and even if she doesn't show it I know she's hurting that you're never here."
"How do you know?"
"Because she told me that every year she wishes that you'd be here for her birthday and honestly I wish the same, this year will be different, even if I have to be difficult with the negotiations to make sure they are."
"You don't have to go to such lengths, I can explain the situation to Yukie and I'm sure she'd agree to stay a couple days."
Shion's eyes narrowed. "Yukie?"
Naruto smiled widely. "She insists that I call her that, ever since I helped her reclaim her throne from her uncle. It was before I met you, and you have nothing to worry about, my feelings haven't changed and besides that she's married."
"Good. But there's something else I need to speak with you about, do you remember what I told you when you were last here, about the temple?"
"I remember you saying it was rebuilt, and that you felt your Nisou energy coming from the area."
She nodded. "Shortly after you left, I started feeling your energy as well, but wrote it off as missing you, until a year later when it started increasing in strength, then eight years ago I started feeling his energy."
Naruto's eyes widened. "But what does that mean, that he wasn't destroyed like we thought?"
"Exactly, and worse it's been getting stronger, meaning he may eventually be able to escape. I've been train Moro in her powers, so that if it should happen she'll be prepared to take over for me if I should die, which without my powers is an almost certainty."
Naruto wrapped his arms around her and rest his chin on her head. "Don't talk like that, Moro needs you, if that demonic bastard even tries to touch you I'll rip him to shreds."
"You may just have your chance." Naruto pulled away and looked down at her. "I wasn't the one that saw your coming, it was Moro. She saw you using Kyuubi's chakra and fighting Moryo."
Taking a deep breath, Naruto smiled. "Then I'll just have to destroy him this time around, make sure he'll never come back."
"You make it sound so easy."
"I have no doubt it won't be, but I've never given up on anything and this will be no different."
An armored man burst into the room and bowed deeply. "I'm sorry malady, but it's Moro, she gave her caretakers the slip again."
Shion sighed and Naruto started chuckling before it turned into full-blown laughter. "You think it's funny our daughter's run off again?"
He struggled to get himself under control. "Well no, but if there was ever any doubt that she was mine, it's gone now." Shion glared at him. "There wasn't, promise. Just saying that it sounds like she's acting alike like I did at that age."
"Then be a father for once and bring your daughter home."
"Of course Shion."
A/N: I know that Moryo was killed by their combined powers in the movie, but I wanted a good fight in the next few chapters, probably the next one.