Part 1 - Anomalistic
Chapter 1 - Jesus Powers Activate
"…and now I will kill you on a whim."
No…no. Sasuke god damnit. He was very aware of his friend's hand on his back holding them close to one another. It was intimate and yet threatening. There was the distinct ringing, and then click of a sword being drawn out of its sheath. He could feel that there was no real killing intent radiating off of Sasuke. He wasn't lying; he really was doing this on a whim. He couldn't care either way whether or not Naruto lived or died. He could hear Sakura calling to him, and to Sasuke trying to stop them. But all Naruto could seem to focus on was Sasuke's breath on his neck, and his hand on his back holding him flush against the other. He heard the sound, though it was brief and quick, of the sword whistling through the air coming straight for him. The initial pain was overpowering and he heard Sakura gasp, and Sai swear. Sasuke…said nothing. But as he felt Naruto go limp in his arms he didn't immediately let go. Naruto felt the numbness begin to take over; he was losing nearly all feeling and capability of supporting himself. He hated himself for it as he slumped against both his best friend and his murderer. One of the last conscious things he felt himself do was move closer against Sasuke, and nuzzle against his neck. Despite the situation he felt completely at peace.
"Sa-su-ke…" He panted, blood coming out of his mouth as he tried to talk, "I'm sorry…I…I didn't…save you."
"Naruto!" That was Sakura; he could hear her voice was wet. She was already crying no doubt. Maybe he should have dodged.
"Why do you keep thinking you need to save me, huh? I'm working towards one of my life's goals…to avenge my clan. After that I can come home, no rescuing required."
"Tha-t's…that's good to know." He was fading, he was almost gone. He had to say it, so much for pride, "I love you, Sasuke."
The body holding him up tensed but that was the only response he got. That decided it. He should have dodged. Kyuubi could fix a lot of things, but he couldn't fix death. That was that. The pain had been all consuming at first, but then in its place was an inexplicable numbness. A darkness enshrouded him and all of his senses dissipated. No longer was there touch, smell, sound, sight, taste. There was nothing. Naruto would have called it a peculiar feeling except that he knew that wasn't the truth of it. It wasn't a feeling, it was the absence thereof. It didn't last long however.
Suddenly he was pulled from one extreme to the other. In one moment he'd been in Sasuke's arms with the feel of his sword stabbing through his chest. Then he'd been in that abysmal nothingness. Now, now he was in a very comfortable bed. Sunlight was stabbing him in the eyes and he felt…different. It wasn't just him that didn't feel right; everything around him was out of place. A gentle breeze blew in through the window ruffling his hair, caressing his cheek. His eyelids fluttered open and he stared up at a ceiling that was not familiar to him in the slightest. Then there were the sounds. The
noise of Konoha's hustle and bustle drifted in through the open window by his bed. A deep, heavy breathing emanated from the other side of the room. There was also noise coming from the floor below him, he was on a second floor? It sounded like someone cooking. Naruto peered around the room he'd woken up in and received several surprises that might have given him a heart attack. Maybe he'd die again? Wait…again? Did he die? But he felt alive. Where was he?!
Across the room, lying on the floor was a large orange fox with nine tails wrapped around it. It was sleeping calmly, shifting ever so often into a more comfortable position. As though it could feel his eyes on it, the fox awoke, blinking red irises with slit pupils at him. Naruto tried to reach for a kunai from his leg holster but it wasn't there. Damnit. The fox blinked at him again, but then it spoke.
"What are you staring at Kit?" The fox growled. Naruto shook his head, squeezed his eyes shut, and then opened them again. It was still there.
Naruto thought that the tiger sized fox in his room talking to him was a shock. But he had no idea that was the least of his problems. Another voice addressed him, this one much sleepier, and far more human. It was also so extremely familiar to him that Naruto was afraid to turn his head. No. He'd…he'd just left him behind right? Wherever they'd been? Naruto was still mostly confused about the 'why am I still alive' part.
"Naruto? Are you okay…?" The voice was much more awake now, and was slowly approaching him. "Naruto…?"
His breath caught in his throat, as he stared ahead at the lithe body standing in front of him. He didn't want to look up and see the face he knew was waiting for him. He couldn't but he didn't have a choice apparently. The boy bent over to bring his face in front of Naruto's, peering at him worriedly. The face of a much younger Sasuke was a few inches away from his, and it had morning breath.
"I'm…fine…I guess I just had a nightmare is all." He needed a moment or two to think this all over. There…he…what…
"Do you want me to get mom?" Sasuke asked him.
"…mom?" Naruto's head snapped up on his neck, suddenly staring at Sasuke in confusion he couldn't hope to hide. This Sasuke shook his head and went over to the door by the stretching Kyuubi.
He opened the door and leaned his head out it into the hallway beyond. He called, at the top of his lungs in a way Naruto had never heard him, "Moooooooom!"
"What sweetie?" A warm, feminine voice greeted him.
"Could you come here? Naruto's acting funny, he said he had a nightmare!"
Naruto was frozen. Sasuke's mom was…dead. Itachi killed her. Years ago, when Sasuke was a little kid. His whole family had died. What was going on? Quick footsteps sped up the stairs that didn't sound too far away from the room they were in. Then the door pushed farther open and a woman Naruto didn't recognize at all stepped into view. She had long, thick red hair and blue eyes. Her warm, round face became creased with concern as she strode across the room towards him. Naruto was in so much shock, and confusion he had no idea what he should do. He was unable to move. She knelt on the floor in front of him, taking his hands into hers. Naruto had no idea who this woman was. But Sasuke had called her mom so…
"Baby boy, are you okay? Do you wanna tell me what your nightmare was about?"
Naruto couldn't bring himself to answer her. He stared at her with wide eyes. But the way her face grew more worried made him shake his head. She asked him again if he was sure that he didn't want to talk about it. Again he shook his head. She wrapped her arms around his shoulder and hugged him, and then she stood up and left the room. Naruto turned to face Sasuke and forced a smile onto his face that he did not feel.
"Sorry, I just had a really weird dream." He ruffled his hair and shuddered as if he was trying to shake the dream away. Sasuke frowned at him and demanded to know what it was about. So Naruto told him. He said he'd had a dream about an entire life that was completely different from this one, which ended with Sasuke killing him.
Sasuke merely stared at him, wide eyed. Kyuubi's eyes were narrowed disbelievingly, but not as if he didn't believe that Naruto was making things up. More like he didn't believe that everything Naruto'd just said was a dream. Naruto had no idea really what he should do except go with the flow. He'd figure things out as he went along. He doubted he'd figure out the 'why am I not dead' part in the course of the day, but he could learn a lot about everything else. He could learn, for instance, why the hell Kyuubi was walking around the room like a lethargic house pet. He could ask the fox himself, but he was afraid what questions that might bring into being. He also wasn't sure that he could trust the fox to keep his mouth shut about whatever Naruto told him.
Naruto decided he was going to go downstairs and find out whatever 'Mom' was cooking. He'd never had a Mom before, so this was bound to be an interesting experience. Sasuke followed him, as did Kyuubi. It was a good thing that as soon as he got down the stairs that the kitchen was immediately to his right. He didn't wanna look like he had no idea where anything was. That would only make his foxy companion more suspicious. The room was of a modest size, large enough for an l-kitchen with a bar long enough to fit four bar stools. He climbed up onto one and greeted the woman he guessed was the mother of both Sasuke and himself. She turned and smiled at him.
"It's good to see you looking back to your normal self. You definitely gave your brother a scare."
"I wasn't scared Mom." Sasuke scowled as he took the stool next to Naruto's. Kyuubi settled into a comfortable heap on the floor.
"Oh, okay tough guy."
Naruto could tell she was being sarcastic with him just to ruffle his feathers. But Sasuke took to the bait and growled. She taunted him with a plate of pancakes and he ended up giving in. Naruto happily took a plate as well and dug in. He searched the kitchen with his eyes for a ramen cup, but upon not finding one decided that the pancakes were good and he could live without ramen for the moment. Mom kept glancing at the clock on the wall, her eyebrows knitted together.
"Honey, didn't you say you had some sort meeting you two had to be at today?"
"Oh yeah! Today's the day we get our jounen-sensei Naruto! Hurry up; we're supposed to be there in twenty minutes!"
Oh no. He would be meeting Kakashi-sensei again…wait, again? God this was going to get more confusing the longer this went on. He needed to find some things out. He couldn't necessarily just start talking to Kyuubi inside his head like he was used to doing. The fox was outside his body. Why he was being so well behaved he had no idea. Naruto lifted up his shirt and stared at his stomach, the seal was there, but Kyuubi was on the floor. He glanced over at the fox and saw as he rolled onto his side, the seal on the fox's stomach. This wasn't making a lot of sense. While he was busy brooding over the current situation, Sasuke had wolfed down his breakfast and shot back up the stairs to get ready. Mom was cleaning up the breakfast mess and had knowingly taken Naruto's plate already.
"Kit, you're staring again." Kyuubi announced. Naruto glared.
"Oh, good morning Kyuubi. Have a good night's sleep?" Mom greeted, leaning over the counter to look down at the fox demon.
"Good morning Kushina." He got up and stretched some, as he seemed prone to do, "I slept just fine. But I woke up to the yellow furred kit staring at me."
"Naruto, sweetie, it's impolite to stare." 'Kushina' stuck her tongue out at him and Naruto returned the gesture.
"I'm gonna go get ready, too." He paused at the doorway before turning to face the red headed stranger, "Thanks for breakfast…Mom."
She smiled at him warmly though it didn't quite reach her eyes, she could tell something wasn't quite right. "You're welcome, dearheart."
With that he started to trek up the stairs, noticing that Kyuubi followed him. Maybe they were bound to each other in this place too? Wherever this place was. He was still trying to figure it out. It was apparent they were in Konoha, but it must be a completely different universe because Sasuke and him had never really be brothers. Nor had either of them had mothers at this age, and Naruto had never had a mother to begin with. Something was very weird about this world Naruto had landed himself in. Suddenly as he reached the top of the stairs a gravely voice filled his head, yet he knew he wasn't really hearing it with his ears. He turned and looked down the stairs at the Kyuubi who was staring right at him.
You're not the same kit as was using that body last night. The voice said. It wasn't a question. Kyuubi knew. Of course he knew. They were bound to each other, even if they didn't share the same body in this world.
Probably not. I have no idea what's going on here. I thought I was dead, and then I woke up here. Naruto replied.
Hmm. This isn't the world you belong in. You shouldn't be here.
Naruto continued on his way into the room he shared with Sasuke. Said boy was currently strapping a kunai pouch to his leg and dressing himself in an outfit Naruto never remembered him wearing before. Sasuke prattled on to him about who was probably gonna be with who with what sensei. Naruto vaguely listened while he spoke to Kyuubi in his mind. He was very accustomed to holding up a conversation with Kyuubi while talking to someone else at the same time. He'd had to do it all his life. Naruto wandered over to the dresser that was on what he guessed was his side of the room. In it were clothes he never thought he'd wear. Ever. But he put on some that would probably look normal for 'this' Naruto. Then he started inspecting the gear he assumed was his. Not too bad. Definitely the weaponry and packs of a genin. Nevertheless he put them on and followed Sasuke down the stairs, Kyuubi following him.
Tell me more about this world so I don't screw up. And why aren't you sharing my body? Why can you walk around with me like this? Naruto started.
Sasuke led the way down the hall past the kitchen and through an entryway into the living room. Their mother was sitting on the couch filling up her own kunai pouches, picking and choosing between some different thrown weapons by their sharpness. Sasuke went over to her and hugged her and kissed her forehead as if he'd done it all his life. Naruto forced himself to keep from gaping. His Sasuke hadn't ever willing done something like that…not for as long as he'd known him. But…then again, maybe this was how he'd been before his real mother died? Sasuke rushed past him and down the hall, probably towards the front door. Sure enough there was the sound of a door opening, but none of it closing.
"Naruto! Hurry up and say bye to mom! We need to go!" Sasuke called, obviously waiting for him
Naruto shuffled his feet awkwardly. He knew he did sort of have a time limit here. But…this wasn't his mom. Either way, he supposed for now he did have a part to play here. He picked up his feet and quickly hugged 'Mom', and bade her goodbye. Before he could completely detach she pressed a kiss to his cheek. Then she patted his back, pushing him towards the door. She wished him good luck but he didn't respond. He wasn't really sure what exactly he was supposed to do here.
"Make sure you don't help him too much, Kyuubi. He's a big boy, he can do things for himself." Kushina laughed good-naturedly.
"Of course. Kits must learn to care for themselves after they leave the burrow, this does not happen if they do not hunt for themselves once in a while." Kyuubi agreed.
"Narutooooo! Hurry uuuuup!" Sasuke's voice was impatient, so Naruto followed it to the front door.
As soon as Sasuke had him in sight he grabbed a hold of Naruto's hand and shot out the front door. Naruto barely contained the yelp that leapt into his throat. His brother lovingly dragged him all the way through town towards the ninja academy. The crowds parted for them, and Naruto was astonished when no one glared at them. In fact, most of the adults merely chuckled. Maybe in this universe they were better at hiding their hatred for him? As Naruto kept up with the one dragging him he glanced over his shoulder to check on Kyuubi. Sure enough, the orange fox was loping along easily behind them. When they passed by a clock, Naruto noticed that it was a good fifteen minutes after Sasuke claimed they were supposed to already be at the meeting. Oh well. It wasn't like they could send him right home instead of getting a sensei…right? That's what he was hoping anyways.
When they bolted through the front door of the familiar ninja academy Naruto was filled with a heavy sense of dread. Would they notice…any of them? As Kyuubi had said, he wasn't the same Naruto that they knew. In fact, he was technically four and a half years older than the Naruto they knew. Sakura always chided him for being immature, but he was definitely more mature than a twelve year old. He hoped so, at least. The way he was raised (by a fox demon in his brain, and in a village that hated him), his perception was bound to be a little bit distorted. The two of them clattered into the classroom, almost toppling over. Kyuubi blithely padded in behind them, appearing far more graceful. He muttered something under his breath about what 'clumsy kits' they were. Everyone in the room was now staring at them as if they were used to these sort of antics by now.
"Ah. Late as usual Misters Namikaze? I see you're only fifteen minutes late today! A new record!" Iruka-sensei teased from the front of the room, "Maybe one day you'll only be five minutes late!"
"But I don't want the world to end, sensei!" One voice chirped amidst the sea of students. Naruto recognized the voice but he couldn't place it exactly.
The room erupted in snorts and chuckles, and Sasuke rolled his eyes flippantly. Shoulders hunched in a slightly defensive manner he and Naruto found a seat down by the front that quickly emptied for them. Were both he and Sasuke shunned in this world? Why would they be? Either way this Sasuke seemed rather defensive of this world's Naruto. He glared at everything and everyone that so much as breathed wrong around them. Naruto was so focused on this odd behavior that he almost missed the reading of the first few genin cells. They were the same as Naruto remembered. When it came time for the assigning of Naruto and Sasuke's team, the reading was a little different, but the people in the group were the same.
"Team seven, Haruno Sakura, and Sasuke and Naruto Namikaze. Jounen sensei, Hatake Kakashi."
There was a commotion a few tables away from them, and Naruto's gaze scrambled across the room to find it. There was Sakura, sitting amidst a crowd of girls, including Ino who sat right next to her. Unlike the last time, Sakura wasn't cheering enthusiastically. Instead she was looking a little bummed out, like she'd gotten the worst deal out of everyone. In fact, the girls around her were patting her shoulder in sympathy, cooing words of reassurance. Was Sasuke not stalked religiously in this world? Why the hell not? He still looked the same. Had this Naruto accidentally rubbed some of his loser status off on the former Uchiha? After all, in this world they were brothers.
As the various teams filtered out when their jounen-sensei arrived, Sakura remained on the far side of the classroom, ignoring their presence. She looked as if someone had told her Christmas was cancelled. Naruto noticed that she had short hair, like she'd had when she was older in his world. That was a definite sign that this Sakura didn't like this Sasuke. Naruto turned to survey his brother again. His hair was still shaped into the duck-butt cowlick that the girls seemed to love so much. Instead of proudly donning the Uchiha mon, he wore a t-shirt that bore the design of a cartoon Naruto remembered watching a great deal when he was younger. Of course he didn't have a TV then, so he'd had to watch it on the TV's in the case at the electronics stores. But all the same he'd enjoyed it. The thing that struck Naruto the most was that this Sasuke kept fidgeting with his bangs, and pushed them behind his ears. When the crowd left that'd he'd been glaring at, he took off the angry mask and mellowed out. At the moment he merely looked bored, waiting for their sensei…that was the last of them to show.
An hour or so after everyone, including Iruka-sensei, had left the paper door slid open. In walked a rather lethargic Kakashi-sensei. He greeted them in his typical one handed salute as the other hand was preoccupied with his favorite orange book. However when his eyes came to rest on Naruto and Sasuke his shoulders drooped slightly.
"I can't believe Minato-sensei gave me you two. What was he thinking?" The one eye that they could see rolled at them.
Sakura had yet to say a word, but at Kakashi's statement she exclaimed, "The yondaime was your sensei?"
Naruto froze. He couldn't help it. He was trying to make himself move, and follow his brother and Sakura towards the door. But…but…what he'd just heard had made his muscles turn to stone. Sasuke, after noticing that Naruto wasn't at his side, came back to the classroom to get him. He stood in front of Naruto impatiently, glaring.
"Narutooo, c'mon. I've waited an hour for Kakashi-sensei to get here, I'm not gonna wait another hour for you to get off your lazy butt and come with us." Sasuke grumbled petulantly.
Through a huge force of will, Naruto managed to stand up and follow Sasuke out of the classroom until they were caught up with their new 'sensei' and Sakura. The fourth hokage…was his father? How could…but…
Would wonders never cease?
A/n: Soooo...there's the first chapter. As it's own story now. So I'm going to go remove that preview from the end of MW. :D