Kankuro sighed as he walked down the streets. He hadn't gotten a mission for ages. He clenched his teeth. Gaara was the one who wasn't giving him missions due to him being his brother and finally caring. Curse caring. The Kazekage was going overboard, and the puppeteer was headed towards his office now, set on setting him straight. He sighed for what felt like the hundredth time.

A black blur suddenly flashed across his vision, and he instinctively reached for his puppets. A laugh echoed through the streets and Kankuro froze as his surroundings changed until it looked like he was in the desert. Crap. Genjutsu… he thought as a form appeared in front of him. It was a man, taller then the puppeteer and sporting fiery red hair. A smirk was plastered on his face making his red eyes glow.

"You are Kankuro, no?" the man asked.

"If I am?" Kankuro retorted with a snarl.

"Heh, resisting won't work against my Genjutsu."

Kankuro narrowed his eyes, almost laughing inwardly about what this would look like to someone walking down the streets. "What do you want with me?"

"Two things. Gaara, and yourself."


Kankuro never got to finish his sentence as he blacked out after being hit on the head. The man laughed. "We need you more then him though."

Gaara tried to take in the information calmly. Temari was seated next to him, a worried expression on her face.

"Kankuro was…kidnapped. I find that hard to believe, him being a jounin," Temari stated.

"We have found no traces except this," the sand shinobi said, handing Gaara a note.

"This is…" Gaara said, opening the note cautiously.

Gaara of the desert,

If you would like your brother back alive, come alone to the moon pool today at midnight. If you attempt anything, Kankuro will be damaged beyond repair.

Gaara clenched his fist. Kankuro…he thought, handing the note to Temari. She looked it over and sighed in defeat.

"There is no way around it then. Gaara, are you up for it?" she asked her brother.

"…I will go. It troubles me though. "Damaged beyond repair"? What does that mean?" Gaara asked himself. "Normally they just say that they will kill the hostage…"

Temari slapped her palm down on the desk. "You better get moving Gaara or you won't make it in time," she said, pushing him out the door.

Kankuro…I'm gonna kill you once this is over with Gaara thought to himself.

Kankuro opened his eyes only to close them again due to bright light. Where am I? he thought when he finally opened his eyes again. Everything was white. Genjutsu again? No… He tried to find someplace thatwasn't white, but found none. A high laugh suddenly issued all around him, sending a chill through his body. He kept a straight face though.

"Who are you?" the puppeteer asked through gritted teeth.

You will soon know.

Kankuro started. The voice was…inside his head.

"What do you want with me?"




"What is going on?!"

A feminine laugh was heard, and then a sudden pain shot through his body, making him grimace. What…what is going on!?!?

Gaara stepped into the large room that housed the moon pool. Glancing around cautiously, he stepped forward, only to have a kunai whiz past his ear. He froze instinctively. A deep laugh echoed around the room.

"Where is Kankuro?" Gaara asked in an even tone.

"Don't worry, your brother is safe, if not a bit…shaken," the masculine voice replied.

"What did you do to him? You said if I came, you would give him back."

"Alright then, I'll make you a deal. If you fight with someone and win, I'll give you back your brother."

"What's the catch?"

A chuckle made Gaara wince inwardly. "Your brother…you will fight him."


"If you don't do it, you'll never get him back."

Gaara gritted his teeth. "Alright…"

A shadowy form appeared out of no where. Gaara narrowed his eyes. He only knew one person who moved like that; with a slight limp in the right leg. Kankuro. Another kunai shot past his ear, making him clench his fists in frustration. They were most likely manipulating the puppeteer, so it would be difficult since Kankuro was at the jounin level. He took the cork out of his gourd, letting the sand float around him. All he had to do was restrain Kankuro, easy enough, right? That was the problem with puppeteers though; it was hard to tell what was a puppet due to the ability of being able to switch bodies almost instantaneously.

"Kankuro…" Gaara mumbled under his breath as the puppeteer took a step forward.

There was something…different about him. Gaara's eyes widened in confusion when he noticed Kankuro's chakra level. Wha…what? This is impossible! Only demons have this kind of…aw crud, don't tell me…


What? Why?

It is to strong for me, or you.

What is?

My sister…Cheve.

Cheve? But…I have to get my brother back!

Gaara defiantly stood his ground, not heeding his demon's words. His sand blocked three more kunai from their deadly path, and then Gaara's eyes widened when he felt a presence next to him. He turned sharply to meet with dark green eyes; so dark that they were almost black. He started, backing away on instinct. Kankuro smiled, reminding Gaara of what he had been before. No…this can't be happening…not to Kankuro… Gaara thought with sadness.

Kankuro appeared next to his right side, making the red head jump. "Hello Gaara."

Gaara subconsciously gulped. This was the first time he had ever felt real fear. "Kankuro…"

The sand barely blocked the deadly kunai, making Gaara worry. Kankuro was already quick on his feet. If it was enhanced…

So, it is a pleasure to see you again raccoon poop.

Gaara started at the voice in his head.

Cheve…What are you doing?

Can't I have some fun every once in a while? Plus, this boy suited my needs perfectly. His jutsu corresponds with mine quite splendidly.

If you're talking about the puppet technique, the boy sucks at it.


Shut up Gaara.

Leave the stupid boy alone. I just want to say the kabuki boy is mine.

Why would I…wait…you actually wanted him to be your host?!

Why not?

Because it's torture! I can't do anything in this stupid body.

Meanwhile, while there was a battle going on in Gaara's head, the two brothers' gazes met for a split second. Kankuro had an apologetic look, and Gaara forced out a smile. "It'll be alright Kankuro."

"I…hope…I'm sorry Gaara, I let you down again…"

"It wasn't your choice."

Well then, I'll just have to show you I'm better.

Go ahead and try!

Gaara felt the sudden sensation of losing control of his body. He struggled against it, but to no avail. Kankuro let out a small hiss as he stepped back, his head in his hands. Suddenly Gaara's eyes changed to look something like a star surrounded by black. Kankuro growled in realization of what was happening. His eyes flashed a deep shade of purple, but he managed to get away from Gaara before he lost control. I'm sorry…bro.