Naruto Leaf in the Whirlpool - Rebuild
Konoha Late Evening
"I know what you're going to do" she said as she stood in front of the love of her life. She had been watching him for a long time and had known that something like this was going to happen.
Sasuke had changed, ever since his brother had died. Despite his outward demeanour of acceptance, she still sensed the rolling emotions that had plagued him for most of his life. In fact they seemed even more intense.
"Then why are you standing in my way?" he asked. "If you know what's good for you, you will step aside" he said calmly.
"I can't do that" her voice became firmer as she began to form a strong resolve. She had never been able to do anything for the boy she loved but from this point onwards that was going to change. "I want nothing more that to be by your side." She clenched her fist as she said the words that came from her heart. "Not as some fan girl but as your partner"
"My partner?" he said with mild interest. "What could you possibly offer me?" he took a step forward and she saw his eyes transform from their dark colour to a bright red with three tomoe around the pupil. "The path I am going to walk is not an easy one and looking at all of our developments since the Academy, you are truly the dead last"
He said the words she knew he would. "Her lack of growth since they all left the Academy was glaringly obvious. "I won't deny that I'm not the strongest, but I know I can change."
"Change is not enough, you have to want power, to do everything you can to get it" he said firmly. "This is not a childish D-Rank mission" he said. "This is life and death."
"I know" she said not flinching from his anger. "And I'm not afraid"
He chuckled then and it was a sound that filled her with dread.
She saw his eyes morph. The colours of red and black became inverted. The background of his iris returned to its original black and the tomoe changed to red. The tomoe then morphed into a six pointed red star intercut by lines that formed an internal star around his pupil.
"Prove to me your determination" Sasuke closed his left eye and his right eye focused on her.
The world she was in suddenly became inverted in colour. Everything that was dark became a shocking white and everything that was light became a deep black.
She saw a dark beast approach her with gleaming black teeth and an enormous killing intent. She was frozen solid and couldn't even run.
What are you doing! You Idiot! Her inner self shouted.
The part of her mind she kept compartmentalized and blocked off came to the forefront.
We won't be taken down like this! It said as it clenched its fist. It wound up and delivered a punch to the formless smoky beast causing it to disperse.
It's time you and I became one. She said as she approached her.
Sakura nodded. She understood that she couldn't hide from what she was anymore. Her true power was finally going to be shown.
She reached forward and took her other by the hand.
A strong power burst from them and changed the colour of the world they were in. Waves of energy spread out from them and a bright aura enveloped them.
She was finally whole again.
Her eyes transformed from their normal green to red.
Utilizing her power, she broke down the Genjutsu and cast her own to counter it. She forcefully dragged Sasuke into the world and bound him within it.
"I'm stronger than you think Sasuke-kun" she said.
Despite the position he was in the Last of the Uchiha smiled.
Konoha the Next Morning
The banging on his door woke him up abruptly. He scrambled to get out of bed and see who it was.
He opened the door and saw his little sister staring up at him.
"Dad's looking for you big brother" she said.
He knew that something was wrong from her subdued tone.
"I'll be right there"
Naruto closed the door and quickly got ready. He was dressed and ready fifteen minutes later and rushed downstairs.
He saw his mom sitting in the living room with Hoshi in her lap.
As soon as he came in she looked up.
"Naruto you're father went to the office, he asked that you follow him as soon as you are ready"
Naruto nodded and he teleported to the Hokage's Office. Before he materialized he noted the surroundings. His dad was behind his desk and Shikamaru was in front of it.
It was clear that he was expected so he materialized next to Shikamaru.
He startled the other ninja. "Geez Naruto I wish you wouldn't do that" Shikamaru said.
"Sorry, but it seemed like this was an emergency"
"Indeed it is Naruto" his dad said. "As at six hundred hours this morning Haruno Sakura and Uchiha Sasuke have been marked as missing Nin." His father said seriously.
"What!" Naruto said in shock. "That can't be?"
"Unfortunately it is" Minato took out a report and handed it to Shikamaru "Sakura's parents reported that last night she left to apparently go and see Sasuke but she never returned. A search of Sasuke's apartment revealed that it was not slept in."
"That could just be because he was training all night or something. He's been a little bummed ever since I returned but that wouldn't be a reason for him to leave"
"That's where you would be wrong Naruto" Shikamaru said. "You might not have noticed it but you are regarded as the strongest Genin right now. Something that Sasuke had always had. Not only that but you were reunited with your family which was thought to be dead."
"Sasuke could not help but be jealous of all of that"
Naruto was silent as he contemplated what Shikamaru was saying. Looking back at the past weeks he had noticed that Sasuke was acting different around him.
"With Itachi's passing classified information has been released around the Uchiha massacre." His father said. "I cannot go into detail but I can say that Sasuke has a new focus for his revenge."
"This doesn't have to go any further, I can find them and bring them back" Naruto said. He closed his eyes and searched for the kunai he had given to Sasuke and Sakura. He found the location of both at the Three Logs training area.
Naruto opened his eyes and he couldn't hide the disappointment on his face.
"Well that has confirmed it for me" his dad said. He turned to Shikamaru. "The manpower of the Leaf is at an all time low and we cannot field any high level ninja to find him."
"From this moment you are in charge of an A-Rank mission to retrieve Haruno Sakura and Uchiha Sasuke. Gather four Genin from the same class and leave immediately."
"Yes Hokage-sama" Shikamaru said. "Naruto we will meet at the main gate in thirty minutes" Shikamaru bowed to the Hokage and left the room.
Naruto was alone with his father now.
"Naruto, I understand that this situation is confusing, but I need you to focus. Sasuke has awakened a powerful advancement of his bloodline limit called the Mangekyo Sharingan. It will grant him incredible powers. As the strongest Genin in the Village and the heir of the Namikaze and Uzumaki clan you are the only one who can stand a chance against him."
Naruto stood motionless, listening to his father.
"Please be careful and one last thing... come back alive"
Naruto grinned "I'm the hero of this story dad" Naruto said. "I won't lose"
Naruto disappeared in a flash.
"Alright we're all here" Shikamaru said to the assembled Genin. "I have been put in charge of this mission by the Hokage and from here on out we follow my orders."
"Hmm, the Hokage must have a lot of faith in you" Neji said. "Or he must just be desperate"
"Hey, Shikamaru is the only one out of all of us who made Chunin" Choji said jumping to the defence of his best friend.
"Even if he is a Chunin, he's still the lazy guy from the Academy who only liked watching the clouds" Kiba shot in.
"The Academy was a long time ago Kiba-kun" Hinata said. "A lot has changed since then" she looked at Naruto and smiled.
"Yeah a lot has changed dog breath. So shut up and listen to Shikamaru" Naruto said with anger.
"Just because the Hokage's your dad, doesn't make you the boss of me" Kiba said baring his fangs at Naruto.
"Enough you two" Shikamaru said. "I've been assigned as the leader and I take that responsibility very seriously. If any of you moves on your own or ignores my orders we might all end up dead" he said seriously.
None of them save Choji had ever seen Shikamaru so serious.
Neji spoke to diffuse the situation. "Tell us the basic strategy and plans then" he said. "According to what we've heard, it would have been impossible for Sasuke to leave undetected, so that means he had help, which means there could be possible ambushes."
"This mission has actually been classified a rescue mission so we are in fact the pursuers. Which means that the enemy will be able to get the drop on us the best way to counter that is to set up a formation that utilizes all of our abilities"
"We will proceed in a diamond formation. Hinata and I will be in the centre, Choji and Naruto on the left and right, Kiba in the front and Neji at the rear. Kiba is familiar with the terrain and has a keen sense of smell so he can easily warn of any dangers coming from the front.
Naruto and Choji both have incredible strength and will watch our flanks.
Hinata is our Medic Nin for this mission and as such her safety is of primary importance. Her Byakugan will also help us identify threats and she will then be able to assist where needed. I will be directly behind Kiba and will provide hand signals and orders to you all."
"Neji with his Byakugan will have the most difficult task of rear scout. Is everyone clear on the formation?"
"Hai!" they all said.
"Before we go, I'd like to say, I've never really liked Sasuke as a person, but first and foremost he is a Konoha Shinobi. And we never leave our own"
"As far as inspirational speeches go, that sucks" Naruto said but his smile removed the bite from his words. He walked forward and reached into his ninja utility pouch.
He retrieved five kunai.
The others noted the unique design of the weapons.
"I made these myself" he said. "Their shape is unusual and they are actually suited better for close combat then ranged, but at the moment of your most dire need, let one fly" he said.
Each of them took the tri pointed kunai, with the inverted outer points and stored it.
"All right everyone, let's go" Shikamaru commanded and they all raced out immediately assuming their formation.
AN: How long have I wanted to fix this? Too long I think
I want to apologise to all the readers for the bad job I did with the former last two chapters. They have been deleted from the site, but they will forever serve as a reminder of my hubris.
Onwards and Upwards from the very bottom.