Alright! It's here, yet ANOTHER story started while I have, counts four others, and one that needs to be rewritten, but who cares!! This one is for the absolute COOLNESS that is Lizeth! Read her stuff and check out her artwork on Deviantart!
This story is based off of the cute pictures she drew of Kyuubi and baby Naruto, so you may want to check out her artwork anyway, if only to see where I'm going with this.
Not that I did all of it, Lizeth helped quite bit. Whatever!
Disclaimer: I don't own Naruto, Kyuubi, Minato, or the Naruto-verse in general. I wish I could say I own the plot, but Lizeth set down the basics for me with her cool and fluffy Kyuubi-Naruto pictures.
It was a quiet night when it happened.
Dark figures infiltrated the Hyuuga compound, killing the guards and kidnapping the year-old heir. The only reason the village was alerted was that one of the guards managed to call out an alarm before his throat was vengefully slit from ear to ear.
The Fourth Hokage was in his tower office at the time, head bent over his desk and slowly getting his paperwork out of the way. He'd put it off throughout the week in favor of more engaging tasks, one of which involved saving Jiraiya from the wrath of the bathhouses. Again. Scattered around his desk were miscellaneous origami pieces, born of boredom and carefully folded in the process of procrastination. The entire collection would have been enough for a miniature paper menagerie, the little animals caged by steep rectangular mountains and barricaded by classified scrolls. The young Hokage smirked and shook his head as he looked at them: his secretary would probably chew him out for those later.
'Oh well, bit late for her to even be here. I'll have to make sure to avoid her in the morning,' he thought, folding a D-class mission report into a paper airplane; the Firelady's latest pet, lost and retrieved, yet again. With a sigh, he launched it at the door.
Only to have its flight interrupted as an ANBU materialized in its path, hitting the man's stylized panther-mask.
"Hokage-sama!" he barked, ignoring the assault upon his person.
Minato's head snapped up worriedly at the ANBU's tone, ignoring his embarrassment at being caught. "What's wrong Kurohyou-san?" he asked, standing up behind the desk. Rarely had he seen this level of anxiety from one of the ANBU corps.
"We've got trouble, sir! A Hyuuga has been kidnapped," the man reported tersely. "Nezumi-taichou and her squad are on their trail. She felt you had to be notified immediately."
The Fourth hands gripped his desk as a chill seeped into his skin. "Kidnapped? By whom?! Who was taken?"
"We managed to detain one of the enemy, sir. He is currently being interrogated by Morino Ibiki." The ANBU hesitated before finishing his report. "And... the one who was kidnapped-"
"-Was my heir, Hinata," Hyuuga Hiashi interrupted, a dangerously frigid undertone palatable in his voice as he stormed up to the desk. "Those honorless dogs have stolen my only daughter, Namikaze. I want her back."
The crouching ANBU stiffened at the man's open disrespect for the Hokage, but Minato waved him down. He'd never really been one for honorifics anyway.
"Hiashi-dono," Minato frowned, sliding around the desk to lay a hand on the other man's shoulder. "Hiashi-dono, don't worry, we'll get her back!" he promised, nodding towards the ANBU. Taking the hint, the man bowed before departing to alert the rest of the ANBU squads.
"I'll say you'll get her back!" Hiashi hissed, reaching up to capture the Fourth's wrist. "She will be back before morning, or I will personally close all the tenketsu points below your belt line," he threatened lowly.
At once, Minato winced sheepishly as he backed away from the angry man, squeezing his legs together discretely. "I'll go out myself," he promised. Carefully, he steered the older man into a chair in front of his desk.
"For now though, why don't you sit down, try to relax, and give us a chance to find little Hinata, alright?" he said calmly, passing the man what was left of his long-cold tea. Hiashi's fingers closed around the cup reflexively.
"Namikaze, how the hell do you think I can relax right now?" Hiashi snapped, only to notice that he was alone in the office. "...Idiot."
"But Hokage-sama! You need to stay here!" protested a Chuunin, scrambling to stay up with the young man as he marched towards the door.
"There is no way that I am going to let these people get away with kidnapping one of our own. A child, no less!" the man snapped as he threw open the doors. He glanced back towards the stairs, and a wry grin jerked his lips for all of a second. "And frankly, faced between foreign ninja and a very pissed Hyuuga Hiashi, I'd rather face the ninja."
Outside, he looked back at the young Academy instructor as he placed a hand on a small seal on the side of the Hokage Tower.
"I need you to watch the tower for me. If any of the ambassadors from the Cloud show up, I need you to delay them until I get back," he ordered. After a second's pause, he added softly, "And sent someone to check on my son. Young Umino is a good babysitter, but I want to make sure they're alright."
Knowing that there was no way to reason with the young Kage at this point, the Chuunin saluted resignedly. "Yes sir," he said.
Nodding, the blond quickly went over the possible locations of the kidnappers. It was too much of a coincidence that this occurred the week that ambassadors from Cloud were here in Fire country to talk of a possible treaty. Thinking along those same lines, then most likely the kidnappers were heading back to Lightning Country.
'Which means I want the seal in the north-east point of the forest,' Minato thought as he activated his jutsu, the Hiraishin. In a flash of yellow light, he disappeared.
Only to reappear miles outside of Konohagakure, kunai out, and ready to fight. Luckily, or unluckily, he was in the middle of the kidnappers. On alert, the man flashed into the Shunshin, weaving in and out of the mystery ninja like a vengeful wraith. The enemy barely knew what hit them before their comrades began to fall apart around them. One ninja watched in horror as the head of his partner slid from his neck with a sickening plop, blood spurting weakly from his neck as his body slowly crumbled to the ground. Too late, he felt pain in his own neck before blacking out in death.
It was only the work of a few blood-soaked seconds to dispatch the enemy nin. Breathing in, Minato flicked the blood off of his kunai before slipping it back into his weapon's pouch right as a squad of ANBU appeared.
"Hokage-sama!" exclaimed a woman in a rodent-like mask. "We weren't informed that you would be out in the field," she offered as she signaled for her squad to go at ease.
"Rest assured Nezumi-taichou, it was a bit of a, ah, spur of the moment decision," the blond said as he grinned at the captain. "Let's just say that Hyuuga-dono is very good at persuasion," he commented, a light shudder rippling down his back.
"To...sa?" a tiny voice queried shakily.
At once, the Fourth rushed over to the small girl, pulling body parts off of her. Under the pile, the young Hyuuga was trembling, her clothes soaked in blood and her pale eyes wide.
Seeing her, Minato smiled widely, trying to reassure her. "Hey there Hinata-chan, ready to go home?" he asked, pulling her up into his arms, ignoring the blood soaking into his flame-embroidered robes. Trembling, the young girl huddled into his chest, flinching away from the smell of blood.
'So young,' Minato thought sadly, 'and already baptized in blood. Ah, little one, I wish we could do better for you. For you and your generation.'
"We should get her formally examined as soon as , we get back," Nezumi offered softly, peering over the girl as a frog-masked member checked Hinata over. One of her other squad members, a bear-masked man, inspected part of the remains of the enemy ninja, looking for village markings.
"Captain, look, these men were Kumo nukenin," he called, holding up the slashed symbol of the Lightning country.
"Figures. They've wanted to get their hands on a Hyuuga for years now," the woman muttered darkly. "But the gall of them to take the heir..."
It was a common practice among smaller villages for females of clans to be bred until they die, which normally wasn't that long in coming. If Cloud had gotten Hinata, the heir of the Hyuuga bloodline, back to Lightning Country she would have been imprisoned until old enough, and then constantly raped and harvested for eggs in order to create a new branch there.
Hinata would never know how lucky she had been that night.
The frog-masked man looked over to his captain as the glow from his hands faded. "She's good to go captain, just a few bruises," he reported.
"Well, what are we waiting for then?" the Fourth chirped, rubbing Hinata's back as she squirmed in his arms. Turning, he loped in the direction of his village. "This little one's father is threatening Naruto with life as an only child if we don't get back soon!" he explained, sounding much too happy about possible castration to be totally sane.
Behind their respective masks, Nezumi's squad all rolled their eyes in amazing synchronization.
In the Hokage Tower, a cup cracked, drowning flimsy paper animals in a chilled sea.
It was hours later that the young Hokage was finally able to leave the office and return home, body-parts intact, to his young son. He hated not being able to take care of him as he would have liked, but with his wife Kushina dead in childbirth, he didn't have much of a choice.
"I'm home," he called tiredly as he entered his house, kicking off his sandals at the door. When Iruka didn't answer, Minato was instantly on alert, pulling a kunai out from his pouch as he stalked through his home. Quick looks through the kitchen, dining room and sitting room revealed nothing, but the second he entered the bedroom hallway, the familiar scent of blood tickled his nose. At the end of the hall lay a crumbled figure and a shadow hunched grimly over it.
Minato quickly flashed down the hall, almost attacking the crouching figure before recognizing him as a masked Konoha ANBU, possibly the very one he had ordered to check on his son.
"Hokage-sama," the ANBU acknowledged grimly. "He's still alive. Looks like he tried to fight too."
Looking down on the pallid face of young Iruka, Minato noticed that the boy was, indeed, breathing. There were slash marks on his arms, under his chin, and one across his nose, but whoever had tried to kill him had miraculously missed anything vital. The wounds had already begun to clot, weeping sluggishly in the darkness as the ANBU applied additional pressure.
Then the eerie white ANBU wolf mask turned forlornly up to face him. "Hokage-sama, I... I'm sorry, I..."
At once, a chill crept down Minato's spine.
"No. Oh please no," he whispered as he opened the door to his son's room with shaking fingers, his breath barely squeezing past the rising horror in his throat.
"Sensei!" the ANBU called. "Sensei, please wait!"
Inside the room was the cradle his four-month old son should have been sleeping in, but the little one was no where to be found. Trembling, the man inched towards the cradle, grabbing one of the small blankets that had been wrapped around his son, clenching it in nerveless fingers. There was blood.
There was so much blood.
"Naruto..." he whimpered, falling to his knees as he lost feeling in his legs. "Naruto, Naruto, Naruto..."
A howl of pain and anguish echoed throughout the village hidden within the leaves.