Author's Notes: Well this is it; this chapter brings the story to an end. I want to thank all of you who have read it and I especially want to thank everyone who took the time to leave a review. It still amazes me how popular this story has been. As I already said I have begun a prequel. I have no plans for a sequel, but I will leave that possibility open.
Now just one last rant before I begin the final chapter. I fully realize that a lot of people disliked some of the things I did in this story. Naruto was too powerful, too smart, too perfect, Hinata and Naruto got together too soon, I crippled Neji, I killed Gaara, Kankuro, Sasuke, Sakura, Tsunade, I made Yugito a love interest, and on and on. I read every review and every private message sent to me. The ones offering constructive criticism I honestly considered. The ones that just told me they didn't like my story I just ignored.
I realized a very long time ago that you will never make everyone happy, and in trying to do so you will only end up taking something unique and reducing it to the lowest common denominator. (As proof of this just look at the absolute mindless garbage that is 90 percent of all films and t.v. shows.) Yes, I killed characters, and yes, I did things some people hated. But I told my story and the story I liked. And in the end isn't that the whole point of this web site? The entire point of writing a story to begin with is to give voice to your own thoughts and imagination.
I really enjoyed writing this. The fact that others enjoyed reading it I count as just a huge bonus.
For which I thank you.
Two months later
He was sitting in the waiting room nervously. Yugito, his second wife was sitting next to him holding his hand trying to comfort him. His mom, Alysa, his new brother Masaharu, uncle Shinzou, his niisan and Kiba were all there waiting with him.
Kushina saw the look on her son's face and grinned. "You don't need to be so nervous Naruto-kun, everything is fine."
"I know that, but I just can't help it."
A couple hours passed before Shizune cam out. Everyone jumped to their feet.
"Is everything all right?" Naruto asked. "How is Hinata-chan?"
Shizune smiled and motioned for calm. "Mother and son are both doing fine. Come with me."
They all followed close behind as she took them to a private room on the second floor. There an exhausted looking Hinata held a small bundle in her arms as Neji smiled down.
Hinata looked up at her husband and gave him a gentle and loving smile. "Naruto-kun, there is someone here who wants to meet you."
Naruto walked to her side and looked down at the tiny little person in her arms. She gently held him out to his father and he oh so carefully took him. Kushina, Hinata, and Neji all told him how to hold a baby. Carefully supporting him Naruto looked down into the baby's face.
His son already had a little blonde hair and his eyes were open. They were a blue much lighter than his own. And on each of his little cheeks were three scars. It amazed and scared him how much he loved his son. It didn't seem possible that someone you had only just met could get such a hold on your heart.
Gently he leaned down and kissed his son's forehead. "Hello Minato-kun, I'm your dad, and I love you very much."
Five years later
A 21 year old Naruto looked up from the maps. Despite his age his eyes had weariness in them. In one way or another he had been fighting to make his dreams come true his entire life. Sometimes in moments like these the exhaustion from all that struggle came through. But even if his eyes held some fatigue they also held a greater strength and resolve. He wasn't just fighting for himself or his family now. He was fighting for everyone. He was fighting to bring on a new golden age of peace to the world.
"This is the last battle," Naruto told them. "After today the war will be over and there will be no more killing."
A pale and weary looking Jiraiya shook his head. "There will always be battles to be fought. Even when this war ends and peace begins again there will still be enemies out there somewhere."
Naruto nodded slowly. "I guess there will be," he admitted quietly. "But there won't be any more wars." Naruto looked closely at the man who had been his sensei and a kindly grandfather to him. Jiraiya was dying of liver failure. A slow painful death, and not the kind of heroic end the old pervert had always pictured for himself. He had always said he wanted to end his life in a glorious battle.
He looked at the other faces in the command tent. His mom, Kakashi, and Asuma were also glancing towards Jiraiya. They all knew.
The tent flap opened and his aid walked in. She was a 17 year old Chunin wearing a black and red body suit. Her long dark hair was tied in a ponytail with a pink bow. On her ring finger was an engagement ring from Sarutobi Konohamaru. She had an excited smile on her face. "Niisan! The Kages are coming out under flag of truce."
"Alysa!" her mother said sharply. "What have I told you about campo discipline?"
The girl gave her mother an amused look and then performed a ridiculously deep bow to her older brother. "Oh forgive me great and powerful Hokage-sama."
Naruto grinned and rubbed the top of her head affectionately. "All right Alysa-chan but just this once."
Kushina shook her head. "You know you're not helping."
Kakashi decided to try and bring things back on track. "It looks like they've accepted your offer to parlay."
"It's a waste of time," Jiraiya croaked. "They'll never agree to your terms."
"Probably not," Naruto admitted. "But if there's any chance to save lives I have to try." With that he left the meeting.
None of them tried to argue him out of it. They all knew he was going no matter what. Besides with his ultimate defense there was no chance that the Kages could do him any harm even if they were stupid enough to try.
As he left the command tent people saluted him or called greetings. He was surrounded by familiar faces.
Haku and Gabrella were talking with Kiba and Tayuya. Along with their six adopted children the Momochi's had a natural born son and daughter. They had just recently moved out of the Namikaze estates and into their own mansion. It had seemed odd at first to know there were Uchiha children in his home, but after awhile they had become part of the family. In a way that saddened him. The Uchiha were just people like everyone else, if only Riyuki and a few others could have understood that.
Kakashi had grown extremely close to his son Obito and they were hardly ever seen apart in the village.
Kiba and Tayuya had finally gotten married a year ago. Tayuya had given birth to healthy baby boy four months later. Even though she was occasionally seen chasing him around the village threatening to cut his balls off, they were a happy couple.
He spotted Ino and Chouji exchanging a kiss, no doubt for added luck. Hinata's old rival had found the man of her dreams and they were very happy with two little girls.
Seeing Ino and Chouji immediately made him think about Shika and Temari back in the village. Shika was acting Hokage while Temari was stuck there due to good old rule number 77. Naruto laughed at the irony of it. Temari had been trying to get pregnant for five years without success. This of course had led to Shikamaru complaining about being forced to try and get his wife pregnant when he's rather be relaxing. That in turn usually led to Kiba mocking him for complaining about having to have sex with a beautiful woman. Then of course Temari had gotten pregnant on the eve of the climatic final battle of the war and been forced to remain home. Not too surprisingly she blamed Shika.
Hinata was also home due to rule 77. She was going to have their third child. While she was there she would look after their son as well as their three year old daughter, Hannah. She would also take care of the four year old son he and Yugito had. The boy's name was Junsaku.
He missed all his children terribly, that was he worst thing about having to be out on campaign, having to be away from the ones you loved. He promised himself that when this war was over he was never leaving Konoha again unless he could take the whole family with him.
Thinking about family he also thought about uncle Shinzou. He had a total of eight children now from his three wives. Just as with his own family all of Shinzou's children were being brought up to see the each other as brothers and sisters. Each child had a mom and two aunts. Shinzou's three eldest sons were especially close as only brothers could be. Shinzou was already talking about the day the three of them would be a genin squad.
He spotted Tenten and her genin squad. Her son Hizashi was living back in the Hyuga compound. With his father Neji… the clan head. The Hyuga clan really had changed and Naruto was very proud to have been the catalyst.
He finally found the person he's been looking for. Coming up from behind he suddenly grabbed her and gave her a kiss.
"Did I surprise you?"
Yugito smiled at him. "No silly, I smelled you sneaking up on me the whole way."
He shook his head. "One of these days I am going to surprise you."
"The Kages have come out to parlay, since there are two of them you want to come with me so the numbers are even?"
A catlike grin played across her face. "I wouldn't miss it for the world."
The Raikage and the Tsuchikage stood in the ground between the two armies. Behind them was a force of about four thousand rock and lightning nin. Before them was an army of about five thousand with banners from every other ninja village including mist and sand. This was the army of the Grand Alliance, and it was the army of the fox lord, Namikaze Naruto.
All alone the lands of earth and lightning had struggled to resist the growing economic and military might of the alliance. Knowing they stood little chance in an open war they had instead launched a campaign of terror with assassinations and bombing and uprisings; all aimed at weakening the alliance. But in the end it had led the sixth Hokage to declare war on their lands, and now this would be the decisive battle. Unless they could come to some sort of agreement.
"He's coming," the Tsuchikage said. "And it looks like he is bringing his wife."
"Yugito?" The suddenly nervous Raikage asked.
The Tsuchikage smirked. "Oh that's right, she scares you doesn't she?"
"Don't mock me," the Raikage said. "If you had ever seen her angry you would be scared too."
Naruto and Yugito approached them. Bows and pleasantries were exchanged. Yugito smiled at the Raikage hungrily and she could smell his fear.
"Well then you asked for this parlay," the Tsuchikage began. "What do you want to discuss?"
Naruto smiled. "Since I'm in sight aren't all the Iwa nin supposed to retreat?" Since the Tsuchikage did not respond to his little joke Naruto continued. "My terms haven't changed. You and your families must surrender to me. You will be given spacious homes in the village of Konoha and treated well, but you will not be allowed to leave. Your nations must surrender unconditionally and end the terror attacks. Both of your countries will be allowed to join the grand alliance once I am satisfied they will honor their obligations. Think carefully before you answer, my terms are generous."
"We don't need to thinks about it," the Tsuchikage spat. "Your terms will leave us your slaves!"
Naruto grimaced thinking about his uncle all those years ago. "Unlike Iwa, Konoha does not keep slaves. Your country will have the same rights as all other alliance members."
"So you would try and reduce us to the same status as Waterfall or Grass?" The Tsuchikage demanded.
"That's right," Naruto stated. "All the members are equals and follow the same laws and hold the same obligations to one another. When your two nations join there will be an end to war."
"Do you truly believe that?" The Raikage asked. "Is that really your goal or just a pretty sounding piece of propaganda?"
Naruto looked at him firmly. "I mean to bring peace to this world and I will. Whether you live to see it or not is entirely up to you."
"And what place do ninja have in a world of peace?" The Tsuchikage mocked.
"Some will remain warriors no doubt." Naruto answered. "There will always be a need for soldiers and a police force to keep the peace and maintain order. But jutsus and chakra can have uses besides killing. The greatest healers in the world are medic nins. The greatest builders in the world are earth typed ninja. Ninja can bring water where it is needed, or wind to drive ships. Ninja can provide swift and certain transport of mail and goods and a hundred other tasks that do not require killing. There will always be a place for ninja in this world."
The Tsuchikage shook his head refusing to see it. "We are the greatest warriors this world has ever known. That is our place. To do what you suggest would strip us of all honor and glory."
"What I suggest is a way for us to live without pointless wars and the waste they cause."
"I've had enough," the Tsuchikage turned to go. "There is no possibility of agreement."
The Raikage also turned to leave.
"I'll be seeing you soon." Yugito purred.
Naruto shook his head sadly. "Why does it always come to this?"
He allowed the Kages to return and officially end the truce before he walked out well in front of his army. Just as he went a hand fell on his shoulder. He turned and saw who it was.
"Kid," Jiraiya's voice croaked. "Let me take the lead."
Naruto looked at the old man who he loved. "Granddad…"
He smiled one of his old happy smiles. "Come on kid, do this one last favor for me. We both know I'm dying; at most I have maybe six months left. My life has been a great story kid, one filled with adventure and romance and joy and sorrow. But every story has to end sometime. Me dying in a hospital bed just doesn't cut it. Now, going out all alone against an enemy army? Now that's a death worthy of a Sannin."
Naruto looked at the man. He suddenly reached out and pulled him into a fierce hug. "I love you prevy granddad."
"I love you too kid, I love you too."
Jiraiya stood out before the entire army, every eye was on him. He smiled, this was much better than slowly wasting away. He looked out towards the enemy. The brave hero went fearlessly forward against the enemy. He met his end like a true warrior. He nodded happily, that was the perfect ending. He bit down on his thumb. "Just one more time. Summoning Technique." Out of a huge puff of smoke Gamabunta appeared. Jiraiya was glad that the Uzumaki would have the toad summoning contract once he was gone.
Gamabunta looked up at the ninja sitting on his head. "This is it, isn't it Jiraiya?"
"Yeah it is." Jiraiya took out a flask and filled a cup. "Will you have a last drink with me Bunta?"
"It would be an honor." He put out his tongue and Jiraiya poured the contents of the flask onto it as he gulped down his own.
"All right Bunta, what do you say? One last time?"
The giant frog nodded and drew his sword. "Right!" He leapt forward and together he and Jiraiya went into the battle.
The forces of the Grand Alliance did not go forward. That was what Jiraiya had wanted. So instead he and all his ninja watched as Gamabunta delivered horrible destruction down on the enemy until his own wounds forced him to withdraw. Jiraiya was then left all alone in the middle of an enemy army.
They all came at him at once, but it took them ten minutes to finally bring the old man down.
Naruto lowered his head in respect and wiped his tears away. That had been a death worthy of a Sannin.
When he looked back up again he saw the enemy was rushing towards him. He smiled.
Taking out a kunai he sliced his palm. "Summoning of the Kyuubi." He rode upon the head of the mighty nine tail fox. Just the mere sight of the Kyuubi and the sense of his malevolent chakra was enough to bring the enemy army to a halt.
The Kyuubi chuckled and Naruto knew the baka fox wanted to play. The Kyuubi looked up at the man standing on his forehead. Well you summoned me. Do you have an order for me or not?
Naruto looked at the enemy army before him. "Sic 'em."
The Kyuubi howled with laughter and did exactly that.
The actual fighting lasted less then half an hour. Yugito had gone in and dealt with the Raikage personally. Other wise all the fighting had been done by Naruto and the Kyuubi. Naruto had ordered the army to stay where it was unless attacked.
Thus at the end of the battle the forces on one side had been wiped out almost to the last man while the forces on the other side had suffered exactly one casualty. It would go down as one of the most decisive victories in history and one of the most important. For with this victory the way to the unification of the whole continent was now open.
Five hundred years later
The academy teacher was looking at his students. "All right class we are going to do a review." As one they all moaned. Ignoring that he began. "We'll start with an easy one. Who was the sixth Hokage of Konoha?" Every hand rose. Anyone who didn't know the answer to such an easy question was going to fail the test tomorrow. He pointed to a boy.
"Namikaze Naruto," Momochi Jobi said.
The teacher nodded. "What were some of his accomplishments?" More hands rose. He nodded to a pink haired boy.
Haruno Sasuke spoke eagerly happy to show off what he knew. "He established two new clans here, the Uzumaki and the Momochi. He was the founder of the Grand Alliance and its first president. He brought an end to the age of warring nations and began the Pax Konoha, the peace that has lasted ever since. He was also the one to bind the Kyuubi to the service of the fox clan, the Namikaze." The teacher nodded pleased. The students all mocked him with whispers of teacher's pet.
He looked at his laziest student. "Nara Shikato, can you name me another accomplishment of the sixth Hokage's?"
The boy lifted his head up. "He changed what it meant to be ninja." The boy put his head back down again.
"Please explain," the teacher insisted.
Shikato raised his head again. "Bothersome," he muttered. "In the age of warring nations all ninja were expected to be warriors. But now a ninja is simply someone who is able to use chakra. A ninja can be anything from a soldier to a doctor to a farmer." Seeing the teacher nod the boy put his head back down.
"Was Namikaze Naruto always well respected?" He pointed to a blonde girl.
"No," Yamanaka Kara answered. "As a young child he was hated due to his being the Kyuubi's container. His mother killed everyone who threatened him."
The teacher nodded. "That is something all of you should remember, impressions can change over time. Someone who is a villain can become a hero, and a hero can end up a villain. Now who can tell me about the unknown clan?" He pointed to a dark haired boy.
Hatake Obito answered. "There was once a clan who revolted against the Hokage and tried to kill him. The Hokage ordered all records of the clan destroyed."
The teacher grinned. "And what was this clan's name?"
The boy shook his head, he wasn't about to fall for such a simple trick question. "No one knows, the clan's name was lost as well as their abilities and even the exact reason why they rebelled. It is known that the Hokage took revenge by killing all of them and exterminating the clan."
"What were some of the names the sixth Hokage was known by?"
"I'll answer that one." A girl's voice called out.
The teacher was not surprised that his top student would want to answer that question. "By all means Namikaze Kushina."
The girl first took her pet fox from her lap and set him down on her desk. She then stood so she had everyone's attention. She had long flowing red hair, green eyes, and a mischievous grin. On each cheek were three scars, one day she would replace her father as the summoner of the fox clan. She had on the black and red battle suit that both the Uzumaki and Namikaze clans wore. The only way to tell them apart was the clan patch. The Uzumaki's was a whirlpool. The Namikaze had a grinning fox with nine tails.
"Namikaze Naruto was the son of the fourth Hokage and the father of the eighth. He is recognized by most to be the greatest ninja who ever lived. In our home he has a memorial listing all his names and titles." She cleared her throat. "He was a loving son, a good brother, a devoted husband, a beloved father, a loyal friend, a terrible enemy, a fierce warrior, a great student, an adept politician." She needed another breath. "He never broke a single promise, he never abandoned a precious person, he never forgot an enemy, he invented over a hundred jutsus and seals, and he changed the world. In his day he was the Demon of the Leaf, the Second Flash, the Lord of Foxes, and the Summoner of the Kyuubi; but there was one other title that he was most proud of." She grinned and looked at all her classmates. "He was the greatest of all the Hokage's."
With that she sat back down and put her little fox back in her lap.
The teacher nodded, that did pretty much sum it up.