Chapter 2: Torture is in the Eyes of the Beholder

"Are we there yet?"

"No."

A pause.

"Are we there yet?

"What part of no do you not understand? If you ask me again I'll stab you and leave the damn kunai in you."

Silence.

It had taken a while but Kisame was starting to beat the stupid questions out of Naruto.

"Why are you blue and shark like?"

Maybe not yet. Kisame put his hand on the kunai.

Seeing the threatening gesture, Naruto quickly backpedaled. "I'm kidding, jeez, but seriously where are we going again?"

What conversation that had been going on the last few days between them had been much the same. It went on until Kisame grew irritated at Naruto, which inexorably led to Kisame knocking him unconscious or stabbing him. On the bright side, Naruto probably had the highest pain tolerance of any other seven year old. That happens when one gets stabbed multiple times a day over a period of five days. Oddly enough stabbing Naruto had been strangely therapeutic to Kisame. He hadn't felt his blood lust stirred up since he kidnapped the boy. Oh he had been plenty irritated at Naruto, hence the stabbing, but he didn't feel the constant demands for blood that Samehada usually insisted on. In fact his sword felt strangely subdued which in itself disturbed Kisame. He didn't mind too much. It was occasionaly bothersome having to kill random people. It was fortunate that Samehada wasn't picky. That could have been troublesome. He liked violence, but he preferred it on his own terms rather than others. Life was simpler that way.

It was much quieter since Mist had stop sending their Hunter-nin after him. From what he understood, ten teams of hunter-nin being slaughtered was all it took before they decided it was more trouble then it was worth. The Mizukage might hate him but he wasn't stupid. Hunter-nin took time and resources to train, resources that would be difficult to replace if they kept losing veteran Hunter-nin against Kisame.

The boy had been uncharacteristically quiet waiting for the answer. Looking over there was a constipated look on the boys face and he looked ready to burst.

"If you're going to be useful to me then I'm going to have to train you somewhat." Telling Naruto he was going to train him had been the easiest way to shut the kid up. He was obnoxiously loud and frustratingly stupid at times, but he had more than enough determination to make up for those factors. Deep down a small voice couldn't help but see the similarities between the two at the same age. Kisame quickly suppressed that voice with a retort. 'I was never that stupid.' Now secure in his own superiority he continued, "If you're going to stay with me, then you're going to have to help me." 'Maybe he should tell him that the boy was going to help him assassinate the top official in Aomori, a moderately sized city that was on the northern border of the Land of Fire, then again the boy might get all idealistic on me, so probably best not to let him know.'

"What do you mean help you," questioned an excited Naruto.

"Boy, it costs money to take care of you and you are not going to be freeloading if I have anything to say about it. So you are going to be helping me make money. After all training supplies cost money. And second a child can get into places that I can't get into." Inwardly Kisame was growling at the amount of placating he was doing to this child. Screw it, he would get his laughs when he began to train this kid. His teachers had never gone easy and he would push this brat who had a ridiculous amount of chakra and his healing ability past the limits of his endurance.

"I'm no child," shouted an angry Naruto.

"How old are you," asked Kisame.

"I'm already seven years old," shouted Naruto back.

"Yes, a child," growled Kisame, tired of the conversation already. He was doing that a lot recently, getting tired of his conversations. Naruto quit immediately, sensing the volatile nature of his companion.

Naruto was silent after that. He wasn't quite sure what he was doing with this large blue man who had a sword bigger then him. For some odd reason it felt right, something that being in Konoha had never brought. He was always restless, always moving, it was difficult for him to relax in Konoha. Not that he was relaxing now, but in Naruto's opinion relaxing was overrated. Konoha hadn't been that bad. Sure he was mostly ignored by everybody except for those people who glared at him until he left, but he was left unharmed, mostly. There was that time a year ago when on his birthday he had escaped his ANBU escort and had attempted to run around with the rest of the children celebrating the Nine Tail's defeat at the Yondaime's hands. That had ended quickly when a couple of drunks had seen him and dragged him into an ally. They had then proceeded to beat the shit out of him. It had gone on for about five minutes before his ANBU escort had caught up and pulled them off of him. Thankfully by that time Naruto was already in the sweet embrace of unconsciousness. The next thing he remembered was the Old Man at his bedside apologizing to him for what happened then reprimanding him for sneaking away from his escort. Oddly enough despite the foolishness of his ditching the ANBU escort, as the Old Man had been lecturing him, he couldn't help but get the feeling that the Hokage was proud of him. Why he was he didn't know, but despite Naruto's often apparent stupidity, he was pretty good at reading other people. Oh and last week he had been beaten up by that asshole villager who tried to overcharge. Well when he had tried to overcharge him he had done what was natural and pissing on the guy had been funny. Of course the store manager hadn't been to happy. He had expressed his distaste for the whole situation by dragging Naruto into the back alley and beating him. Fortunately the large man had tired quickly and left him in the refuse pile. All parties had been unhappy with the situation. Beyond those two incidents though, the worst he had ever gotten was a few glares and the occasional merchant overcharging him.

As the day rapidly closed, Naruto began wondering how he would help this big blue man who obviously had no need of anyone to help defend him. "Eh, blue man, what do you want me to call you," asked Naruto. All of a sudden something heavy hit him in the back of the head. "Oww, what the hell was that," shouted Naruto.

"Call me master," said Kisame.

"Hell no, you're not my master," shouted Naruto.

Thinking for a second, Kisame responded, "Fine, call me Kisame."

"Is that your name?" asked Naruto.

"Yes."

"How can I help you?"

"Good question, your learning." Seeing Naruto's blank look, Kisame sighed and continued, "Look kid, you can get in places I can't as easily. Few people suspect children, especially children your age. You're too young to be a gennin, so most bodyguards will overlook you, at least the less experienced ones. You of all people can lure targets into complacency."

"What do you mean targets," asked Naruto curiously.

"Do you know what I do?" asked Kisame.

"You're a ninja right," asked Naruto.

"Well yes, but what does a Ninja do in your opinion," asked Kisame?

"Save princesses and protect their village," shouted Naruto in excitement.

Kisame palmed his face. "I can guarantee as long as you stay with me you will be doing none of the above." What was left unsaid was that Naruto wouldn't have the chance to walk away. "First of all I'm a missing-nin, so most of what we do doesn't involve Ninja villages except for hurting them, second of all, if at all we deal with Princesses it's usually to kill them or kidnap them."

"Kidnap princesses, b-b-but that's evil. I don't wanna be a bad guy," pouted Naruto.

Obviously he wasn't getting through to the kid. "Brat, we're ninja. Shadow assassins, although to be fair many of us don't do much in the shadow's anymore, that's more of a tradition than anything. But going on most missions I get and by extention you get, will be assassinations. Most of the time the men we will kill will be corrupt and evil by your standards, but some of them will even be good men. The fact is brat that we all need to make a living and I am particularly good at killing and one day I imagine you will too."

Naruto was silent. What Kisame was saying made sense to Naruto. The idea of killing people actually didn't bother him all that much. That he couldn't bring himself to care about killing people bothered him more than actually killing someone. Deciding it was better to not to ask about it he asked, "When do I start training?"

"Determined little bastard aren't you," said Kisame. "We stop here for the night."

"Here?" asked Naruto.

"Here's as good as any, better get some sleep, we start early tomorrow." The barely hidden malice made Naruto's hair rise on the back of his neck.

The next morning started early with Naruto being dunked with water. "What the hell was that?" screamed Naruto.

"Time to wake up brat, you almost overslept."

"What time is it?" sputtered Naruto.

"Half an hour past dawn."

"No way, what are we doing," shouted Naruto.

"Forget so soon brat." Naruto's tired expression slowly shifted to one of comprehension. "We've got a month before we need to carry out my next job and I plan to impart a modicum of talent."

"Wha-," said Naruto, the last sentence having gone over his head.

"Oh for fuck's sake," muttered Kisame. "I've got a month to get half way competent so you don't die on the job."

"Like hell I'll die Kisame," shouted Naruto.

"Then do what I tell you. Start running." Kisame said.

"Where," asked Naruto?

"Anywhere you idiot." Seeing Naruto look around in confusion, Kisame continued, "Run around the goddamn clearing for all I care."

"How long," asked Naruto.

"Until I damn well tell you to stop," barked Kisame. And so Naruto's training started. The boy ran for nearly two hours, jumping occasionally when Kisame yelled and threw kunai at him for slowing down. Inwardly Kisame was impressed with the boy's stamina. When he got him in proper shape, he'd be able to run all day. Next he started putting him through some basic taijutsu stances. When Naruto started asking about what style he was going to be taught, Kisame only replied, "Over reliance on any particular style leads to predictability, predictability will get you killed." When Naruto looked at him blankly Kisame sighed, "We're going to need to work on your vocabulary. Basically, if you're unpredictable the enemy can't plan against you, which makes it harder to kill you." After that Naruto was much less argumentative.

After Kisame deemed it acceptable for then, he handed him a dozen kunai out of several pouches. He then carved targets onto several trees and instructed him to hit the targets. It took Naruto several times before he started to hit the tree with the blade. Kisame was constantly correcting his throwing technique. After another two hours Kisame led him back towards the camp only to find another Kisame lazing away in the sun. Naruto's eyes widened at the sight and began to furiously twist his body around trying to confirm that there were in fact two Kisames. "Wha-what's going on," shouted Naruto, panicking.

"How'd he do," asked the Kisame sitting on the ground?

"Not good enough Boss," replied the other Kisame. He then began to go into detail into what they had covered including Naruto's successes, mostly failures, and every complaint and reaction.

"Wha-, how," asked Naruto still dazed from the revelation that there were two Kisame's.

"Oh, don't flatter yourself brat." At Naruto's confused expression Kisame continued, "Did you really think that I would get up at six in the morning just to train you? That's what water clones are for. Maybe when you begin to show some real skill I'll actually train you."

"How cool is that," shouted Naruto. "Teach me, teach me how to do that, please, please, please," demanded Naruto.

"Do you even know what Chakra is," asked Kisame?

"Ehh, isn't that something to do with Ninjas," Naruto answered.

Kisame could only sigh; in fact it was disturbing how much sighing he was doing while exposed to the brat. "Chakra is the lifeblood of ninja. It is a mixture of spiritual and physical energy. With Chakra we can be more than human, beings of immense power. We can do things with it that few people truly understand. With chakra we can heal wounds almost instantly, Create walls of water, earth, fire, and lightning. We are masters of the elements; we can walk on water, break boulders with a single flick. It takes years to master and learn to use your chakra. It is not easy and most people don't begin using their chakra until later in their life. In most cases around ten and eleven. Few have enough chakra to do much with it. You on the other hand have about as much chakra as most young ninja do at twice your age."

Naruto sat entranced. Kisame was many things mean, sadistic, even funny at times, but rarely was he completely serious and for him to be so obviously passionate about something was even rarer. "So how do I get to this chakra," asked Naruto?

"Close your eyes," said Kisame.

"Why," asked Naruto?

"Just do it, stop asking questions and just listen," growled Kisame. Naruto quickly complied. "Now try and feel the ebb and flow of the chakra, just beneath the skin, feel the core, pumping from your heart."

At first Naruto felt nothing and then as if something was tickling his senses, just beyond his vision, he started to feel it. As he came closer to feeling it he got more excited and quickly lost it.

"I felt it," shouted Naruto, arms up, fists raised in triumph.

"Good, now do it again," said Kisame. Seeing a look of concentration on Naruto's face, he said, "Do you feel it again." Naruto nodded slightly. "Good, now reach out for it. No, not with your hand you idiot." Kisame wanted to sigh, but had already reached his limit for the day and just looked up at the sky for a few seconds. "Imagine your hand reaching into your core and grasping the energy." Feeling chakra being used by Naruto, Kisame said, "Good job brat. Keep practicing until you can reach your chakra instantly. No enemy is going to let you gather your chakra together. Remember that. The next part of using chakra is using hand seals to utilize chakra."

"Hand seals," asked Naruto?

"Hand seals allow us to manipulate chakra better. They allow us to change chakra into all different forms. There are twelve main hand seals that you will be practicing. They are rat, ox, tiger, hare, dragon, snake, horse, ram, monkey, rooster, dog, and boar. Those signs are involved in most jutsus.

Kisame then showed Naruto how to do each one, correcting his hands until Naruto could do them comfortably. "In order to execute a jutsu you need to do the hand seals in the correct order. Speed is an important aspect. Completing a jutsu before another opposing ninja is important." Kisame then began the long painful, that is for Naruto at least, process of having him memorize the seals. Kisame had Naruto stand up and do the hand seals in the order Kisame would say. Every time he screwed up Kisame would throw a kunai at him, and every time the kunai would hit. It only took a few tries before Naruto would consistently do the hand seals perfectly. After that Kisame had him speed up the process, again throwing kunai at him if he didn't do it fast enough. It was remarkably good motivation to excel in the subject.

And so Naruto spent his month. He would run for several hours in the early morning, followed by practicing taijutsu with Kisame's clone. He then practiced utilizing his chakra to help speed his body and to strengthen it. Teaching him to use his chakra to jump higher then anyone could without it. Learning to combine hand seals together in whatever order Kisame asked him to do it in as fast as possible took up the evenings while the sun was still up. He would then finish up the day running again. Most of the training was conducted by Kisame's sadistic clone, whenever Naruto slowed down Kisame would throw a Kunai at him. It was only after two weeks Kisame had shown him his first jutsu.

"What are you going to teach me, huh, huh, huh?"

Kisame looked up at the sky, 'why oh why couldn't I have found someone less hyper' Kisame wondered.

"Are you going to teach me how to breathe fire, or better yet shoot lasers from my eyes," asked Naruto excitedly.

"I thought you lived in a Ninja village," asked Kisame?

"I did, I lived in Konoha," replied Naruto. "Why," he asked?

"Because idiot, have you ever seen anyone shoot lasers out of their eyes," asked Kisame exasperatedly.

"Well, uhh, no. But it could still be possible," shouted Naruto.

'The last statement is truer then he knows' thought Kisame. He thought it better to mention legends of a man with demonic eyes that could shoot black fire out of his eyes. 'Probably better not to give the brat ideas,' he thought.

"The first technique I'm going to teach you is how to do the henge no jutsu. It's a low level illusion technique. The hand seals are dog, boar, and ram. When doing the jutsu it's important to picture the person you're imitating in your mind. Now watch me do it," Kisame instructed. He then did the technique and turned into Naruto.

"Whoa, that's so cool," said an amazed Naruto.

Kisame then released the technique. He then said, "Now you try turning into me."

A look of intense concentration appeared on Naruto's face. He quickly did the hand seals. Smoke billowed up from the excess chakra being used. As the smoke cleared Kisame snorted and let out a chuckle. Where Naruto had been their stood a comically blue caricature of a human being that only resembled Kisame in the fact that they were both blue. The eyes were too far apart, the nose too big and the mouth slanted. The body was bloated and barely resemble human. "You're going to have to work on that," said an amused Kisame.

This was how the month was spent training. Naruto trained his body, and learned how to properly utilize his chakra. During that month Naruto experienced all manners of aches, pains, and stabbing wounds. It was one day following the fourth week when Kisame let Naruto sleep in.

Naruto woke up strangely rested. As he looked up he realized what it was. The sun was already up in the sky. The previous weeks he had been woken up by Kisame's clone at ungodly hours to begin his training. So he was rightfully confused that Kisame had allowed him to sleep in. He looked over and saw Kisame sitting at the fire.

"What's going on," asked Naruto?

"We've got to make the meeting place with our client. There he'll give us the details on the job he's hiring us for. So we've got to make it there. Remember when receiving a mission always, always get there early. Make sure it isn't a trap, sweep the place. Many times ninja will conduct sting operations by pretending to be offering a job to catch missing-ninja. Always watch out for ambush. I'm pretty sure this job is clean so we won't have to worry about it. Anyways, your job is to put all the sleeping bags and pots together," said Kisame.

After Naruto had gathered the stuff and put them together into a couple piles he asked, "Where do you put all the stuff anyways?"

"We seal it away in scrolls, a basic sealing technique but still difficult to learn," replied Kisame.

With that Kisame took out several scrolls and with hardly any fanfare all the equipment was sealed into three different scrolls that were placed into a pocket in Kisame's vest. With that done the two of them left the site they had spent the last month in. After having spent the month living together and spending most of their waking hours together both of them had reached a limited understanding of each other, it wasn't perfect but they both had come to respect the other.

"So are those gills you have? Wait, be careful with that, don't, ahhh, stop, ouch. Did you really need to stab me?"

Well, maybe not.


Author Notes

I made a slight edit, I had mentioned in the first chapter that the reason Naruto was with the Hokage was because he had been beaten by a villager. In the first version of this chapter I had said Naruto had only been beaten once about a year so before this story had taken place. I added a couple sentences describing the incident that occurred a week or so before the first chapter. Sorry for the mistake.

If you like the story leave me a little review, tell me what you liked about it. If you didn't like let me know what you didn't like. I may or may not agree with you, but as long as it's respectful then I can only thank you. I apologize for any small spelling errors, my spell check for some reason doesn't work.

It's funny the new inspiration for this story came when I was taking a biology final. Something about excessive boredom finally shook loose a few bits and pieces of inspiration. I don't know when I'll next get a chapter out. Hopefully a month, maybe less, maybe more. No promises though.

There were a few things I'd like to comment about. A little explanation may be needed. In the manga from what I understand Kisame speaks in a rather respectful tone. Well since Kisame is talking to Naruto we're going to see little of that. Most of the time Kisame is talking to Itachi and there is a slight difference between Naruto and Kisame.

Second of all, you may ask why he left Konoha. There are a couple of reasons. First of all I'd like to say that he isn't abused on a regular basis. In fact in my story he's only been beaten a couple times instead of the weekly tradition you see in some stories. It kind of irritates me when you see Naruto abused every day by everyone and their mothers. I'm not saying Naruto didn't have a shitty childhood, he did. I'm just saying the amount of abuse heaped on him in some stories is beyond excessive. Alright now that I've said that his treatment wasn't that bad the golden question is why did he leave? Part of it is the treatment of him by the villagers, but mostly it's him not really having any good reason to stay. We'll say this is before his obsessiveve desire to become Hokage occurs, so his ties to the village aren't exectly binding. Sure he liked the Hokage, but as far as he's concernced he just a nice guy who occasionally spends time with him. Again the most important factor is he feels strangely at home with Kisame. This is in my opinion the similarities that I see between the two. Both Naruto and Kisame have massive chakra wells. Kisame is said to have as much chakra in his 30 percent powered clone as Naruto in his Kyuubi enhanced form. Karin mentions she has never seen so much chakra in one place. So I think Kisame could give Naruto a lot of help on fighting with lots and lots of chakra at his disposal. Also Kisame has a pretty badass sword.

Till next time.