Chapter Thirteen: Peace Treaty
Freedom was a gift that man had come to comprehend and strived for since the very beginning. To any human, freedom was the greatest attainment of living. It served as a motivation to attain new heights in life. It is a dream so fulfilling and so wonderful that people can't help but rejoice!
Which was why the people of Wave where busy with their festival for the last three days. When they heard of the mission that the Daimyo of Fire Country had assigned to the Konoha shinobi, they were overjoyed. Especially when they heard that the team had unremarkably caused the downfall of the Gatou shipping lines, the millions worth of smuggled drugs and goods going to Fire Country and its allies were confiscated and demanded that Gatou reprimand the damages that it caused to the countries. That is of course, not before Naruto had something to do about it.
"Listen up lowlife; I gave you the chance to live. Now just sign the damn contract!" Said the blonde, handing Gatou a piece of paper, the defeated businessman gained an indignant huff of protest.
"As if, I would let any remaining money I have on you, my remaining Swiss accounts only have about, Seventy Million Ryo left. I'd be damned if I give it up to you!"
Naruto had grown a bulging vein on his forehead as he began to choke the man.
"You little bastard! I 'ought to-!" Naruto then stopped as an idea popped into his head.
"Shin Yogen no Me! (Eyes of Death Perception)" Naruto's eyes began to change, as a white stream from his irises began to circulate, his pupil began to constrict.
At the most basic sense, from his understanding of the doujutsu, it seemed as more like it was a Genjutsu rather than a Ninjutsu in itself, it somehow "tricks" all of the opponent's five senses… It does the job well. But Naruto soon discovered that it can also prolong the sensations within a nerve. So if say, Naruto stabs an opponent with a needle on the skin of his victim, they would experience pain like no other. It would be doubled even tripled than the amount of pain given by a normal needle prick, and the duration of the pain would be far, far longer than it is normally.
Naruto then slowly grabbed Gatou by the right arm, and began stabbing Gatou's elbows and shoulders. At first, Gatou had not felt the pain coursing through his body like an electric jolt. Instead it was slow, Gatou was already in a stupor like daze at first, then as fast as a lightning bolt, pain surged through his system like wild fire, a single needle prick like that felt like being stabbed with a sword continuously, as Naruto then raised his arm and began to continuously stab Gatou on his arm who was crumpling in a heap because of the pain.
Naruto wasn't done yet as he then held the prisoner down with a foot on his back.
Gatou could feel his senses going into overdrive, the pain was excruciating! It felt like being electrocuted and it was spreading around his body. Even the blonde's pressure on the back of his head was painful.
Gatou yelled in pain from his cell, as Naruto devilishly grinned and continued to torture the corrupt business man.
"So, feeling like handing over the money?" Asked the blonde earning a curse from the business man
Naruto's eyebrow twitched, as he grabbed Gatou by the collar and then said,
"Maybe if I hit the correct area, you'd change your mind!"
Another scream was heard…
Two days later:
A grin escaped from the Uzumaki's face as he walked towards the opposite end of the bridge with some of the people from Wave escorting back. With his hands on the back of his head, the blonde jinchuuriki's mood didn't go unnoticed by Sakura.
"What got you so happy about?" Asked the pink haired shinobi, Naruto merely chimed and said, "Oh nothing…"
With that, he whistled and averted Sakura's gaze, Sakura however, looked at him with doubt but ignored it in the end… Naruto was Naruto after all; no one could ever tell what was on his mind. Especially since he had invited the quartet of Kiri Nuke-nin to join the village, to be able to walk around with them as if their fight was nothing, was a little nerve wracking, that and Zabuza's eyes seemed to send the shivering goosebumps down her spine in fear of the man's history.
Sasuke on the other hand, just kept quiet with his hands on his pocket, letting the mist twins have a conversation with him in the middle. Well, if you could consider Meizu's muffling in the bandages speaking.
"MMFFF, MFFMMFF, MMFF MFF!"
"Oh, so you really wanted that Toro Sushi? Too bad you can't eat any solid food for the next two weeks!"
"MMFFF, MMFF, MMMMFFF, MMMMMMMFFFFFFFF!"
"Ah, yes, it would be nice to get some Onigiri on the way back now is it?"
And throughout the conversation, the raven haired avenger in the middle was growing a throbbing vein on the back of his head, which, by the time Meizu muttered another worth of gibberish from his bandaged mouth, Sasuke lost it.
"WOULD YOU TWO JUST SHUT UP?"
The twins looked at him in silence and then walked forward leaving Sasuke behind, all the while, he saw his blonde team mate handing over what seemed to be a hundred ryou bill.
"MMFFF, MMMFFF, MFFFFF!"
Gozu laughed lightly as he counted the money and then said, "I couldn't say it so better myself, dear brother! Money makes the world go round!"
Sasuke just shook his head as he cradled it with his right hand, all the while looking at the blonde who was laughing while handing the bill over.
The Uchiha just seethed at that thought.
As they were making their way to the opposite end of the bridge, Naruto looked back when the little boy called out to the 'blonde idiot'
The said blonde turned around and gave a smack on the head of the little boy.
"Don't call me stupid! Stupid!" Naruto yelled
"Who you callin' stupid!? Stupid!?"
"I'm calling you stupid! Because you ARE stupid!"
"I AM NOT SHORT!" Naruto yelled, as he was about to tackle the little brat until Kakashi held him by his collar.
"Mah, Naruto, calm down… We wouldn't want you to destroy your image in Wave now, don't we?" Said the Cyclops Jounin
"Huh?" Both Sakura and Sasuke wondered as Zabuza pointed at the horde of girls that were Naruto's age all holding their hands close to their chest with hearts in their eyes
A sudden chill coursed through Naruto's spine as he watched the women making their way towards him with a glint in their eyes.
On to the background, Sakura could see Haku emitting a somewhat dark aura as she stared as the women in front of the blonde boy continued to ogle him with hungry stares. Sakura could only laugh nervously…
"Now let's be rational about this…" Sakura tried to console Haku whose aura grew darker and fiercer than ever before. Then it all went back in Haku as she looked at Sakura with a smile on her face,
"Why? Whatever do you mean, Sakura-san? I'm rational beyond doubt, you see! I'm not angry at all!" She said, Sakura just sweatdropped and said to Haku, "If you're not angry then don't hold your senbon like that…"
Haku, out of embarrassment, laughed nervously and slid the senbon in her pocket, though she dared not to let go…
Sasuke just shook his forehead.
"Well, thanks to you guys, the dream of finally getting rid of Gatou off our hide came true!" Said Tazuna and everyone from behind the old man cheered
Kakashi just scratched the back of his head and laughed modestly, "Ah, it was nothing."
Zabuza had a different opinion though, "Nothing!? You should be thanking me and my team you lazy ass jounin! I can't believe you're actually THE Copy Ninja! I'm disappointed!"
Kakashi, turned a deaf ear towards Zabuza and just said, "Hmm… You say something?"
Zabuza had a vein popping from his forehead, "YOU WANT A GO?"
Naruto just sighed along with Kakashi, people just naturally get ticked off by them, that or they have almost too much unwanted attention…
The small group of girls then began surrounding the last Uzumaki
"Ow, hey! Don't shove!" The blonde yelled by this time, Sakura was already restraining Haku by the shoulders who was beginning to thrash about.
"If things are going to be like this every mission, I won't mind being stuck in this team." Said Sasuke, Sakura turned to him and wonder, until Sasuke replied,
"The blonde dobe is too much of a magnet for trouble… Every time we're all together, there's always something bound to happen." Said the Uchiha
Sakura chuckled at that, seeing the blonde struggle inside the horde of fan girls that he had made in this small country.
"Ow! Damn it! Get off!" The blonde yelled, with none hearing his words
He was soon relieved from his anguish when Kakashi, who was still holding Naruto by the collar pulled him from the assault of almost stripping him bare.
When Kakashi pulled the blonde, Naruto looked like a wet puppy that almost drowned.
"Mercy…" Naruto muttered and Kakashi just gave an eye smile when the women voiced their disappointment.
"Well, it's been a blast staying here in Wave, but as any shinobi must do, we shall take our leave." Said Kakashi placing Naruto by the shoulders and walked away with his team, along with an irate Zabuza and a not so friendly Haku who glared back at the village women that were waving at them.
"That kid… He'll make miracles someday…" Said Tazuna who was seeing the shivering blonde on Kakashi's back
"Who are you talking about, father?" Asked Tsunami
"I meant the idiot looking blonde, that guy just brought back hope to my grandson and to the people of Wave, I was planning to name this bridge after him, but I never caught on his name…" Said Tazuna
Inari just scratched the back of his head, was his grandfather drunk again?
Inari then deadpanned him, "His name's Naruto, grandpa…"
"Oh! Haha! Then I guess 'Super Amazing Bridge that Tazuna Built' would no longer be the appropriate name, huh?" Tazuna said, giving a sheepish smile
One of the villagers muttered, "It was never an appropriate name…"
Tazuna then glared at him intensely and then said, "Well, I guess the Great Naruto Bridge would suit this little thing just fine…"
To that, everyone in Wave agreed.
Hokage Tower, Three days after:
"I hate you…" Sarutobi muttered, sending a vicious glare at his current enemy right now, if looks could kill, Sarutobi would have already dealt a lethal blow at his undefeated foe.
"…" Was the object's reply, Sarutobi then reached for his most trusted weapon, his opponent was merely waiting for him to make the first move, standing on the old man's desk, patiently waiting for Sarutobi Hiruzen to initiate his plan of action.
"Damn it, I'm more than Seventy years old, past the age of retirement, I imagined myself just fishing or gardening at this age and I still find myself having another bout with you for the past twelve years after the Yondaime died! Curse you, Minato! I bet you why you did what you did was just to escape from any Kage's adversary!" Sarutobi griped, handing another paper in front of him, with the Kage officially stamping it.
"Petition for an exclusive Porn Shop? What kind of joke is this!?" Sarutobi yet again mentioned, as he then looked to his left and then to his right, not one to skip a beat, he did a double take
"…" Sarutobi was silent for a moment and then slowly but surely, he grasped the approve stamp and then as fast as lightning, he stamped the petition and gave the allotted budget as fast as he can. Then without anyone noticing, he placed the paper on the approved bin and piled it up with the rest of the missions.
Sarutobi merely whistled and then began going through the rest of the paperwork that were mounting on his desk.
As soon as he had finished his paperwork, it was already sundown, he looked outside and saw the visage of the Hokage mountain, standing tall and proud below his beloved village, the eldest Hokage sighed…
It was times like these that Sarutobi was reminded why HE was Hokage, as he stood up from his chair to view outside, a person knocked on his door and said,
"Hokage-sama… Team Seven and four other people have arrived at the southern gate."
Sarutobi nodded, he stood up grabbed a pipe and then lit it,
"Send them to my office at once." Was his simple but immediate reply.
A few minutes later, a silver hair peeked inside the office and then slowly entered the office,
"Did you get my… Request… Hokage-sama?" Asked Kakashi, Sarutobi's eyes were as wide as dinner plates,
"That was you?" Asked the old man incredulously and then coughed, blushing a little and stammering while replying to Kakashi
"Ah… Y-yes, ingenious request, I'm sure the male shinobi would find that request of yours… Intriguing." Said the Fire Shadow coughing a little when the rest of the awaited team arrive
"This is Konoha? Isn't the idea of Konohagakure supposed to be hidden? How can a red fortress wall be camouflaged in a forest full of green leaves? This isn't what I'd imagined it to be."
Zabuza continued to rant outside, Kakashi just slumped his shoulders and sighed, this is going to take a while…
"Don't mind Zabuza-sama, it's just his way of showing affection…" Said Haku, Naruto then muttered
"Yeah, affection to a tree stump…" To this, everybody except for Zabuza snickered while the said man grabbed Naruto by the collar of his shirt and said,
"Want to take this outside, little man?"
Naruto had a direct reply, "I am NOT little!"
He raged as he was then again, grabbed by the back of his shirt and was then brought inside the office,
"Okay, care to tell me what all of this is about?" Asked the Sandaime
"Well, it's like this, Gatou had us fooled when he paid for a C-Rank mission, I thought it would go over smoothly, until the opposing factor hired a ragtag team of Nuke-nin…" Kakashi then pointed to the four people behind him.
From then on, Sarutobi heard the full details of the mission how the double mission that Kakashi had taken place, the evidence that he had obtained and the interruption of Zabuza and his team, the little information gathering that occurred in Wave and the battle at the bridge, Sarutobi was impressed with Team Seven's competency, perhaps he would consider them to more C-Rank missions in the future.
"I knew it was suspicious, our policy stated that all mission payments were to be paid before the requested mission's specified date. All transactions shall be between the finance department and the client or to the Hokage himself. I let this little excursion happen for one time due to the request of the Daimyo. Gatou was careless enough to sink into my trap, I've been endorsing Konoha to him for months now, it was a relief that it finally paid off."
Naruto scratched the back of his head while Sasuke and Sakura frowned, "You mean to tell us that the mission payment was zero to begin with?"
Sarutobi closed his eyes and then nodded
"In your C-Rank mission… Yes, but thanks in part to you three; I'm splitting the mission payment by the daimyo's A-Rank mission. Don't worry; you'll be receiving payments that are well above than that of an average C-Rank mission. Kakashi, I hope this is okay with you?"
Kakashi merely replied, letting his cheapskate attitude show for a moment just to tease his students, "Well, I'd really hate splitting the money that I rightfully deserve alone…"
To this, the three shouted in unison, "Hey!"
Sakura was the first to reply, "If it weren't for us, you'd have already drowned in that Water Prison that Zabuza made!"
"Tch." Was Sasuke's usual reply and Naruto was raging so much he was stomping the floor with his foot
"You perverted jounin! You'd already be swimming in the gallows if it weren't for us! IT TOOK ME QUITE A LOT OF MONEY JUST TO SET UP THOSE TRAPS GODDAMN IT!"
Kakashi chuckled and said to his students, "Well, I was only joking, of course you get the pay; I hear the Daimyo put a hefty price on the mission, and he deemed it a priority so…"
With that, the three just sighed and glared at Kakashi,
"When it comes to business…" Naruto said
Sasuke continued "We mean…"
"Business!" Said Sakura
"Excuse me…" Interrupted Haku, the four (Sarutobi, Kakashi, Sasuke, Sakura and Naruto) turned their heads at the same time to look at her and she said nervously
"Well… That is um… Don't forget about us?" She asked unsurely
"Ah yes, this does put you on a precarious situation…" Sarutobi said, as the four shinobi from Kiri nodded
"Normally, Nuke-nin are to be executed in any hidden village, as part of the treaty that all nuke nin are to be considered a danger to any hidden village." Sarutobi said and then closed his eyes, leaning back into his chair and then continued
"At least, that's the façade, to any hidden village, a Nuke-nin is vital, they have information from their hidden village, which is essential to any opposing village, right now, Kiri is on a neutral Peace treaty to the other hidden villages, being secluded due to their countless civil wars and the terrorizing of the Kaguya Clan, the Mizukage ordered a complete isolation of Kiri from the outside world. The Mizukage, I have no doubt, is not foolish enough to instigate an aggressive action towards us."
To this the four people nodded, the Sandaime then said, "But understand that we have a standard precaution when handling foreign nins, and with that event coming ever closer in just a month, our security will be tightened even more."
Kakashi immediately understood this, it was the chuunin exams, the event would surely attract foreign dignitaries and nins alike.
"With that, I'm afraid I'm going to have to place you four in house arrests for a month and then we can begin your active duties, until I say so otherwise…"
The Sandaime finished and the four looked surprised for a moment,
With that said four ANBU came in from the windows and escorted the four outsiders to their current stay.
Before they closed the door however, Haku took a glance at the spiky haired blonde before going away,
Sandaime was quick to notice this and chuckled silently,
But before being dismissed, Sarutobi Hiruzen made an announcement to team seven, "I got another mission for you four."
To this, Naruto looked flabbergasted and said, "Huh!? But we just got back!"
Kakashi didn't pay attention to Naruto's banter and let the Hokage speak, "No, not now, I meant four days from now Naruto, an emissary has sent a letter to me from Kumo…"
He paused for dramatic effect and then continued, "It seemed, now, that with the new Raikage appointed, they want to renew the peace treaty."
Naruto looked pale at this, remembering the night of the abduction of the Hyuuga Heiress. To this, Naruto frowned and asked,
"Are they going to take place here?"
"No, the treaty would take place in Kumo now, just to show that they mean it, we would do so as well."
Naruto was wary however, "I don't understand why we're going for this mission, shouldn't Jounin come in case something DOES happen?"
Hiruzen knowingly smiled and said to Naruto, "That's why I have Kakashi; he'll be more than enough to handle anything… And one more for security purposes."
Now, Kakashi was interested, who could possibly provide support to him?
"I think Yuuhi Kurenai and her team would be sufficient."
Kakashi's visible eye widened and Naruto scowled, expressing his discontent
"With all due respect Hokage-sama, as I recall an international incident occurred when it involved someone from her clan…"
Sasuke and Sakura looked bewildered for a moment, while Naruto still remained silent
"And if we go to Kumo with her as one of our representatives, with all due respect, that is not bravado but foolishness!" Said Kakashi, Sarutobi however, begged to differ
"And that is exactly why I'm allowing it, you see, tempting Lightning Country would prove whether or not Kumo is willing to kidnap her again, if they do so, I already have Tora and his team on standby at the borders. For more direct purposes, I'm there as well. Rest assured, I have taken the liberties of any other possible scenarios I could think off. Meet me by the northern gate 4am sharp."
Although Naruto's dismay was subtle, Sasuke and Sakura couldn't help to notice nonetheless, exiting the room, the four had been dismissed, and without even looking back, Kakashi was already gone with a poof.
As Naruto was about to turn his head and go home, he was then halted when Sakura said to him, "How about the three of us get some snacks before we head on home… This is the first time the three of us completed an A-rank mission."
Naruto raised an eyebrow at this… Sakura never asked for a team outing even after their training and team exercises, both of which were physically demanding on all of them.
'Then again, we didn't even have the energy left to do something fun after it.'
Naruto had his suspicions but he was reluctant at first, that is, until Sasuke approved of the idea.
"Time to relax for a moment and enjoy something before heading back home… I suppose we COULD go for Takoyaki at this time no ramen for now, my tongue is getting stale from eating the stuff every week after training, I just think Kakashi's just too much of a cheap bastard to treat us to other restaurants …" Said Sasuke, now Naruto started raising his right eyebrow, indicating that there was indeed something going on.
But Naruto was curious, so he had to let it get the better of him and finally agreed.
Sakura was relieved at that, she thought she might never convince the blonde to go ahead with what she was thinking, but thankfully, the blonde took the bait.
The three of them headed of towards the restaurant and ordered their meals, waiting for the vendor to finish with their order, while they were waiting, Sakura had broken the silence with the three…
"Back then at the Hokage's office, you were behaving differently when Hokage-sama mentioned a peace treaty with Kumo… As far as I know, it went horrible and the treaty was almost never signed…"
Naruto merely looked outside and scoffed at it, "More lies about what is really going on…"
Sasuke simply looked interested and asked the blonde, "You know something we don't?"
Naruto replied quickly, "No… Nothing."
Sakura frowned at this, "Then what about that statement earlier? You said there was something going on that's deeper than this."
Naruto sighed and made his shoulders loose, "I'll tell you if you keep quiet, let's finish our food here and we'll go to some place secluded."
The two nodded and ate their share of the Takoyaki, all the while; wondering what was going through Naruto's head.
When they were done, the three rookie members of team seven made a beeline towards one of the training grounds, Naruto did a double take, and sensed the presence of fluctuating chakra, other than Sasuke's or Sakura's.
Once it was clear, he turned towards his teammates and said, "Kumo attempted to kidnap a member of the Hyuuga Clan when the peace treaty was taking place, the peace treaty was a fraud to capture the Byakugan. But now, I'm more wary about the peace treaty taking place in Kumo."
"Isn't Hinata part of Team Kurenai?" Sakura wondered, Naruto replied, "Precisely why I'm worried, it was also Hinata that was kidnapped all those years ago."
Sasuke frowned at this, "So you're saying Kumo could attempt to kidnap Hinata again, even under the nose of the Hokage."
Naruto merely nodded, and then looked at the training stump situated in front of them,
"There's a high possibility, the same could be said to you too, Sasuke, you are one of the two last holders of your bloodline, I'm sure there's a high chance that Kumo would be interested in you as well."
Sasuke tensed at this
Naruto then put his hands in his outer pockets, and said, "I have no doubt there's something big going to happen once we get to Kumo, so I want us to train for two days after we rest, I might request team eight to join us as well, we'll be needing a plan just in case, Jiji may be the professor, but he's still human, he can't guarantee everything in this, and neither could us, but at least we'd have a slew of back up plans if everything blows up."
The two nodded at this, and then Sakura asked, "H-How do you know about Hinata's kidnapping?"
Naruto then said, "Because I was accidentally involved with it, I was the other witness."
Sasuke was surprised at this and then asked the blonde, "Let me guess, it was confidential info?"
Naruto nodded and then said, "Well, I got to go home, I need to check my things and get a new apartment, living near Training Area 44 is too much even for me…"
With that, he went away, Sasuke and Sakura looked at each other, then Sakura said, "It seems like Naruto knows more about Konoha than we do… I'm getting worried of what other secrets he has considering the safety of Konoha."
Sasuke looked intently on the blonde, if he knew literally that many confidential info, could he also know about the massacre as well? It was then that Sasuke's head began to ache, somehow, a flashback was entering his mind…
"Hey quit that what are you doing!?"
"No time to explain, we need to get to the Uchiha Complex right now!"
"What!? What's happening at home right now!?"
"Just come with me, or else you could die!"
Sasuke began to breath heavily, he looked on at Naruto's direction, that sudden memory bewildered the Uchiha, "What the hell was that!?"
He mumbled, Sakura looked worried at first as Sasuke kneeled when his series of headaches began to make the Uchiha kneel on the ground… Sakura immediately recognized it, it was a symptom that was far too familiar with people who've had recurring memories from traumatic experiences.
Sakura had began studying medical techniques, as per Kakashi's request back then, Sakura served as back up for team seven, between two promising direct assault and assassination specialists, Naruto and Sasuke.
Kakashi mentioned how Sakura was crucial to the team, for she has the ability to keep them alive whenever injury should beset them.
Sakura knew that Sasuke's repressed memories were coming out, and it was starting to worry her as well, she too looked at Naruto's direction, she wondered, 'Does Naruto have something to do with Sasuke's past?'
She wondered, just how deeply connected was Naruto to Konoha's confidential cases.
A few hours later:
Naruto had found a luxurious apartment on the northern part of the village, being near the training grounds and near the Hyuuga and Uchiha compounds, after finding the said apartment, the blonde pulled out an unhealthy wad of cash from his pocket and slapped the rude desk boy in front of him after he heard the words, 'demon' and 'hellspawn'. Needless to say, the man was pretty much speechless as Naruto went ahead to his room with all the essentials he had, his clothes and some of his ninja gear.
He saw his room and saw how big his apartment was compared to that makeshift den he had at the Forest of Death. The blonde shivered at the memory as he remembered how the Kyuubi made him take all of those basic survival skills.
He flexed his arm muscles and stretched them before laying on to his new king sized bed.
'So what do you intend to do when treaty progresses?'
'What made you so interested all of a sudden, kitsune?'
'Hmph… Incessant brat, I merely want to know your stand in this.'
'You should already know that.'
'Ah, where would be the fun in that?'
Naruto growled, 'Back up plans, no doubt this isn't going to go as smoothly as what Jiji thinks.'
'What makes you say that?'
Naruto growled a little and said,
'He's visibly tempting Kumo, Kitsune, he's playing with them, if Hinata were to be kidnapped again, we'd be in a wagon load of shit.'
The Kyuubi chuckled at that, 'So basically thinking of a counter strategy in case anything happens…'
Naruto mentally affirmed, the Kyuubi gave a sinister grin
'You have come far from your survival skills brat, that I can guarantee you.'
He paused for a moment and then said,
'I think it's time for you to learn more about that little doujutsu, your father and I had accidentally installed in you.'
Naruto then nodded,
'As with that accursed blood of the Uchiha, your doujutsu has another level with it, too bad the only way to access it is to break the two minute time limit mark.'
Naruto was surprised at this,
'It somehow integrated itself fully when you were in Nami when it happened, I don't know the specifics of what it can truly do, but rest assured, it has a high possibility on bordering on a Jikan-kuukan (Time and Space) type Ninjutsu.'
Naruto suddenly raised his lower torso sitting on his bed, time and space Ninjutsu? He had only known one person that could do this successfully!
He then got down and went to look on the best person who was close to the Yondaime, Hatake Kakashi…
A grin plastered on his face, as he was about to get out, it was then replaced when he remembered that he had not known where the unsurprisingly lazy Jounin would always hang out or let alone live.
Someplace in Konoha:
Kakashi was strolling along the sides of his favourite side of the bookstore, the adults only section. A bright orange book had caught his eye and turned his head around.
His visible eye widened in delight as he had seen the latest volume to his bible, Icha Icha Violence
His fingertips were shaking as his body was giddy for excitement, just the thought of reading this masterpiece brought joy to his miserable and lonesome career.
'Hmm… I wonder if the rumoured movie's lead actress will be played by Fujikaze Yukie…'
Naruto sighed in defeat instead, getting back to his room and changed his clothes; at least he could sleep for tonight.
The Next day:
Naruto yawned out loud as he extended his arms upwards when he was out of the apartment, going out of the northern district; he proceeded to the eastern section of the village, where the training grounds were closest. As he proceeded to the route that he had used so long ago, he saw Sakura simply jogging her way to the said grounds and then saw Hinata who looked distraught as she walked towards the grounds,
Curious to her situation, Naruto quickly made a dash for his friend as he called her attention and waved, "Hinata!"
Hinata's thoughts were disrupted when she saw Naruto waving at him, the thoughts on the instructions about the Kaiten had to be taken to the side first, Naruto was talking to her,
"What's wrong, Hinata? Got something on your mind?"
Hinata smiled, it was always Naruto that she could confide too, next Kurenai of course. She couldn't help but tell Naruto what she had in mind whenever he noticed her delving into things too deep.
As it was, she said to Naruto, "I-I'm thinking about what father said about me when he… heard of our mission to Kumo."
Already, Naruto's left eyebrow was raised, there was still no team conference held between the teams, usually, this would occur days or even hours before the mission, the Hokage had already informed them, but strategic values and logistics were still nowhere there, as Kakashi had mentioned to them during one of their team exercises, "Preparation is everything."
"He wanted to tell me that the mission is too much for me and that he wanted to pull me out, however, if I manage to do the Hakkeshou Kaiten (Eight Trigrams: Rotation), then… He'll think about it…"
She paused for a moment, as she felt some of the weight was beginning to be lighter as it somehow escaped her,
"But as a… Stipulation… F-father wanted me to learn Kaiten on my own… I don't know how I will do it but… I'm afraid I'm going to pull o-out on this mission…"
Hinata looked down, obviously, her confidence was slowly being shot down.
Naruto had recognized that look exactly as he did with Itachi, it was there, that lingering feeling of helplessness that slowly consumed the person that it had, it shattered everything within the person, their thoughts, mindset, and confidence, all seem like fragile glass that within its grasp.
Naruto frowned at this, he didn't want to see it in any other person… No, if he could, he would help them, any way he can
"Does the mission mean so much to you? Aren't you scared? These are the same people that wanted to kidnap you…" Naruto mentioned, Hinata just shook her head and smiled,
"No, Naruto-kun, although they wanted to kidnap me, I still think that we should give them a chance, blind judgment is condemnation, it is… How the villagers saw you, that is why, I'm willing to forgive…"
It was true that was why Hinata befriended him, like that, Naruto was already dear to her, and Naruto understood why Hinata wanted to go to this mission,
"You want to make amends with Kumo?"
He asked, Hinata nodded and said, "And seek an apology to the assailant's family, whom my father killed."
Naruto then felt his head down in shame, it felt like he was a villain, he didn't want Hinata to be part of the team, simply because of her illustrious past with Cloud, not only that, Naruto had some form of loathing with Kumo for what they did, but, hearing Hinata's advice like that, it was as if he was one of the villagers, he judged before he knew, he generalized rather than specify.
Naruto just lowered his head in shame and then said, "Okay, if you don't know where to start with Kaiten, how about we talk about, what are the basics of Jyuuken?"
Hinata then answered, "It is technically a taijutsu form that is semi-stationary, we can not perform well when we move in different directions, as our style relies heavily on footwork and then precise timing to strike the opening."
She then grabbed a small twig and made a circle on the ground, "Beginners are taught the Jyuuken at first with this small circle, as the basis of our taijutsu style is this very circle, we are taught how to do different steps with this circle which requires either movement of both feet, or with one feet while the other is anchored at the center."
Naruto nodded, so the circle drawn was the line that guided the Hyuugas for their footwork, and the circumference served as the key positions where they could strike, a primarily defensive taijutsu.
Naruto then cupped his chin and began to think, coming up with a solution, he said to Hinata,
"How about we test different footwork techniques first, I think with this much movement, you could invent countless possible jutsu that could devastate your enemies, your dad and maybe your elders don't realize this now, but I can see countless possibilities with your taijutsu, moves like this are pretty destructive, especially when facing a speedy fighter, chances are, you could cause enough collateral damage to kill him in one blow." Naruto then asked,
"Tell me Hinata, does footwork add power to a palm strike?"
He got a nod and then Hinata said, "Naturally, all moves that require a pre-manoeuvre are powerful, adding a spin before a strike makes us gather chakra more and expel it through our hands, but it is difficult since the more time we gather chakra, the less likely we'll be able to strike a vital organ."
"I get it… So now that you have this circle, let's try you force through my defense with your palm strike, and then succeed it with a much stronger attack."
Hinata looked concerned, "But… You could get hurt…"
"Ah, a few punches never killed me, I have a ridiculously unexplained regeneration rate. So it's fine." Naruto then grinned, as he held up the seal of ram together in his hands and said,
"Fuuton: Sou Reppuken (Wind Release: Twin Violent Gale Fist)"
Naruto's forearms began to accumulate the wind as its small visible tendrils began to surround his fore arms and then started to circle violently,
"Try to break through this with your attacks, Hinata!" Said Naruto, lunging at Hinata.
Surprised, Hinata reacted on instinct jumping on a tree stump and activating her Byakugan, as soon as her vision widened, she saw Naruto already making his way at her, Hinata turned around, sliding her left leg and then forcing chakra to her palms, she deflected Naruto oncoming right fist by tapping the back of Naruto's hand.
The wind slightly shifted, but Naruto regained his control, Hinata remained on the tree stump, as long as she had the higher ground and the basis for her circle, she had the advantage. The blonde quickly took notice of this, luckily, the stump was wide enough to allow a small brawl inside, and Hinata was at the center so he definitely had a disadvantage if he wanted to fight on even grounds with her,
Naruto then let his jutsu on his left hand release itself blasting a gust of wind straight to Hinata, Hinata barely dodged the attack, managing to graze her left jacket sleeve, with that, Naruto was already above her, about to deliver another whirlwind punch, blocked his fist by using both her hands and forcing Naruto to flip back and landing at the edge of the said stump.
Naruto activated his technique yet again and then proceeded to come at Hinata, the sleeves on his arms rustled as the wind howls furiously on Naruto's arms.
Hinata looked worried for a moment; she had seen Naruto perform unorthodox styles when fighting, going as far as almost injuring himself in the process. It's not that Naruto was a complete novice in Taijutsu; it was that most of his attacks take a huge amount of risk that pays off every time. It was either the blonde knew where his opponent would attack and come up with split second counter, or he was really, really, REALLY lucky.
In which case however, Hinata then parried Naruto's right hand with her left and then aimed a palm strike straight to his chest, Naruto then jumped up and over Hinata, he then began rolling in mid-air, an attempt to get to Hinata's back.
Hinata, being a Hyuuga, took this opportunity as a miscalculation on Naruto's part, to turn her back and gathered more chakra into her palm, facing the blonde.
Naruto cursed as he got on the wooden floor and faced Hinata, who had already a palm strike launched at him, surprised by the move, Naruto tried to block with his wind enhanced arms only to stagger back as the blow that Hinata unleashed destroyed his defence, the wind dying down by the blow.
'I see it!' Hinata then spun again, sliding her right foot for a moment, and then cupping her hands, placing the base of her wrists together, she gathered more chakra than her previous attack, only this time on both hands.
She then slammed her palms on Naruto's abdomen, effectively sending him flying away from her, a shroud of a lion made of chakra felt like being horned from a bull, it sent him skidding across the forest floor and finally being stopped as his back was embedded on a rock that had halted his trajectory.
"Ouch…" Naruto muttered, Hinata quickly made her way towards the blonde out of worry, that blow could have resulted in multiple injuries!
Surprisingly, Naruto got out of the rock and sat down on the ground, feeling his body ache from Hinata's blow.
"What the hell was that? I never saw your movement close to that when we were in the academy!" Said the blonde Hinata merely giggled and sat down next to him and said,
"I-It was just instinct… I just poured whatever I can in to that last attack. I'm sorry of I had hurt you…"
Naruto stretched his arms a bit and he noticed small spots on his arms. In curiosity, the blonde raised his sleeve and found multiple spots on it, when he touched it, it was as painful as loosing a few teeth.
"Ouch… That hurts!" The blonde yelled, as he panted and then said, "Damn and I can barely move it either!"
He hadn't noticed it, but when he became aware of it; his body began to send electrical impulses to his brain that indeed, it ached.
Hinata was surprised at this, she activated her Byakugan just to be sure…
And sure enough, she could see countless dots on Naruto's chakra pathways, and these 'dots' that Hinata continued to repel with her chakra before, seemed to be closed, it only meant one thing…
"Tenketsu…" Hinata muttered, she hadn't noticed it during her battle with the blonde as she was focusing on how and when Naruto will attack… But now… It was all visibly clear, her Byakugan improved.
"H-Here Naruto-kun… Let me try opening them…" Hinata then grabbed his left arm with her left hand to support it and aimed her right index and middle finger on one of the tenketsu points.
Quickly applying chakra to her fingertips, she had hit the pressure points fast and not so delicately causing the blonde to wince in pain.
Hinata's vision confirmed that the spots were now open again when she saw the flow of chakra going back to the blonde's arm, she then did it to his other arm and the blonde reluctantly agreed. As soon as he could feel his arms again, albeit painfully, Naruto asked Hinata,
"Ne, Hinata… Does the technique have a name yet?"
Hinata shook her head, "I told you that it was just a moment of impulse…"
"Okay, since you don't, I do! It's a really a kickass name too!" Said the blonde enthusiastic as ever. He then stood up and said,
"How about, Shishisenkou? (Lion's War Cry)" Asked Naruto and Hinata nodded, it was a fitting name for an attack that seemed to take a shroud of a lion's head.
Just then, after his conversation with Kyuubi late last night, Fuujin had entered his mind and whispered to the blonde,
Sakura was grasping her right hand as she opened and closed it, something felt weird inside her, as if it was something that was making her hand numb… She didn't know what to do so she just rested for a moment. But even when resting, her right hand still felt like it was being electrocuted, and it was getting worse, by then, the ground around her area began to shake slightly, and she could here sounds of metal clashing against metal, all the while her hand became more and more painful. It was unbearable! The pain was reaching her limit!
With a loud yell, countless metallic spikes bursts from the ground around Sakura reaching outwards with the pink haired kunoicihi knocked out in the center…
Thus, her exposure to Naruto's Tenki has given birth to Kinzokuton… (Metal Release)
Kakashi's remaining visible eye was itching, he didn't know why, but it felt irritating, going for the bathroom, he went to his sink and washed his visible eye with warm water thinking it would do the job, but it didn't stop there, furiously rubbing the eye, Kakashi looked up and stared at the mirror above the sink, his visible eye widened, there he could see, a fully matured Sharingan, three tomoe and all…
"H-How…" Kakashi did not finish his thoughts as he removed the nightcap covering his left eye and indeed, it was Obito's Sharingan, with the scar still present.
Kakashi then let the chakra discontinue to the flow of his eyes, and the itch stopped and also, the pair of Sharingan eyes vanished. He frowned, he didn't know why, but he had to let the Hokage be informed about this predicament.
Sasuke began to breathe heavily, his whole body was shaking after training, as if countless jolts of electricity was coursing through his body, getting up he held on to a rocky surface and saw it being obliterated by the jolting electricity in his hands, a look of surprise and awe was evident from Sasuke's face, and then, it turned into a grin,
Whatever this power was, this would surely help him in killing Itachi, his Sharingan eyes flared and tendrils of electricity shot forth from his body. The sounds of crackling could be heard in the desolate training grounds of the Uchiha complex.
'Since activating Fuutei, you have been leaking Tenki everywhere; remember when I said that exposure of other humans to Tenki would cause erratic changes to the said people. We don't know what will happen, but Kakashi, Sasuke and Sakura being exposed to you for almost a week, there's a chance that those three will be developing traits that they shouldn't have.'
Fuujin whispered in his ear, Naruto just mentally nodded,
'I can't say for certain how many people will be exposed to your energy, as Amaterasu likes to keep things to herself and watch us grumble in curiosity at what happens next. But the adverse effects on Tenki differs from person to person.'
Naruto then felt his Tenki escaping from his body, immediately, the seal on his forehead glowed, and the second kanji on the Hiraishin Kunai illuminated as well
'The second song is waiting Naruto…'
To be continued…
Shishisenkou (Lion's War Cry) – Offensive, B rank- A move that is solely for Hyuuga Hinata, the user pushes through the physical defence of the target with a palm strike, then follows a succeeding move with a double lateral palm strike to the chest with so much chakra that it eventually throws the enemy out of range, it comes out in a shrouded image of a lion's head. Based on, Farah Oersterd's skill from Tales of Eternia
Whatever you do, don't open the door!
It was a hot day outside of Konoha today, as for one Uzumaki Naruto who was now getting impatient waiting for his former teacher back at the academy, Umino Iruka, who had promised him free ramen for a successful C-rank mission, was already two hours late.
The blonde sighed in incredible irritation as he waited and waited outside, in the middle of the sweltering heat of Konoha's summer.
Normally, he would have expected Kakashi to be this kind of late, but being the cheapskate that he is, he would treat one of his precious students to a free meal for no reason at all when pigs fly.
Naruto began grumbling and grew even more frustrated as ten minutes went by and still Iruka didn't show up. Oh well, being the worried citizen that he is (and not one to pass up a free meal) Naruto went to Iruka's apartment and came to check on his teacher, whatever it was, something serious was happening and was keeping Iruka from Naruto's free Ramen.
When he arrived at the house, he could hear the sounds of moaning and a voice yelling,
"Who's your mistress!?"
And then a whiplash, Naruto then began to get worried, Iruka was being tortured by some crazy woman!
"Iruka-sensei! Are you alright!?"
Then, he heard the voice of his favourite teacher and yelled from his room, "NARUTO! WHATEVER YOU DO, DON'T OPEN THE DOOR!"
"WHAT!?" The blonde asked, was there a trap behind Iruka's door!? Now he was worried, all that ramen goodness was about to go to waste, but nay! Naruto would was then about to bust the door down when he heard Iruka yell
"NARUTO! DON'T BUST THAT DOOR DOWN! IF YOU DO YOU WILL SEE SOMETHING REALLY, REALLY HORRI-MMMFFFF!"
Naruto had heard his sensei being gagged inside, getting impatient, the blonde then thought, 'What could be more horrible than seeing real live visceral display of violence?'
So Naruto, believing that he had seen enough carnage to warrant something not to make his nerves of steel tremble, he smashed the door down and went inside…
… And saw pretty much a very gruesome scene wherein Iruka was barely wearing anything except for his briefs, spread eagle on his very own bed. His arms and legs were tied up in the four corners of each, and Naruto could have sworn Iruka was strapped on the mouth with a ball that had holes in it, all the while the scar-faced chuunin was telling him to get out in a muffled tone and then sobbed into a heap.
Naruto's mind was blank for a moment and then his view changed to Anko, who was wearing leather straps, high heeled boots that reached to her knees and was cracking a whip. Naruto was drawing up a blank,
"I don't even want to know… Just ignore me and continue whatever kinky thing you were doing, you guys just screwed up my already screwed up childhood for good."
With that the blonde did an immediate about face and fixed Iruka's door, all the while not looking at the scene that befell him and hightailed it out of Iruka's apartment or anywhere near the vicinity.
Once he got to Ichiraku's, he crawled into a corner and got into a fetal position all the while muttering, "I'm going to my happy place… I'm going to my happy place!"
Two souls, that grew in the same life, wind up meeting together, their hardships and burdens are the same, but one man shows how to handle them and shows just what their future might become. As the shadow disrupts the agreement of two factors, confusion is abound and trust… Becomes hard to obtain.
Next time: Crimson Howling
Well that's about it for this chapter, My exams were over and I had to write this when I was relaxing and waiting for my results, and I'm still waiting, just hope that I pass this exam, I need it to get into a pretty good university in the US for my Med Proper…
Well, hope you enjoy this chapter, RnR!