Disclaimer: Naruto and Final Fantasy are the property of their respective owners. I own nothing but my original ideas.


Chapter 1: Light of a Distant Sky

A flash of light in the darkness of space was all that was present to harken the arrival of a sleek black figure.

Like a predator the black metal vessel glided silently through the void, slowly dropping into orbit of a nondescript blue-green world in a distant arm of a spiral galaxy.

Tiny flashes of light announced the activation of small thrusters, correcting the trajectory and speed of the object so that it could slot into a stable orbit.

Slowly, it's descent towards the planet slowed, until the object was in a perfect geosynchronous orbit.

After several long minutes several cylindrical ports around the object irised open. From the ports facing the planet several metal rods extended before fanning open to reveal satellite dishes, pointed down towards the planet.

From ports along the sides of the object several smaller objects, like miniature versions of the original, were ejected into space. Propelled by small thrusters, the objects began to spread into an orbital pattern, forming a network surrounding the small unassuming planet.

After several hours, when the deployed probes had reached their assigned positions and completed the orbital network, a protocol inside the main vessel activated.

A final panel irised open, and twenty small tapered cylindrical objects, about three feet in diameter and about eight feet long, dropped out of the vessel, descending towards the planet below.

The people of the world below bore witness that night as a small but spectacular meteor shower lit up the night sky.

As each of the cylinders dropped through the atmosphere, the outer coating became ignited by the fire, and was burned away. Finally, the surviving pieces of it exploded away, and a small spherical object inside each projectile flew away under its own power, free of flames.

Silently, twenty orbs shimmered and disappeared from view, heading towards the major population centers on the planet.

The search for a candidate had begun.


Two Months Later

Six year old Uzumaki Naruto was excited. Today was the day he was to start at the Academy. The day he would finally get to be trained as a ninja.

Currently he was sprinting as fast as his short six year old legs could carry him, dodging amongst the towering figures of adults on one of Konoha's busiest thoroughfares. He would normally have taken an alleyway or side street in order to avoid the glares, hateful stares, and occasional thrown rock or rotten vegetable, but today was special, and he didn't want to be late.

And if he didn't pick up the pace that was precisely what he was going to be.

Rounding a corner Naruto had to leap into the air to avoid colliding with a pair of kids his own age who were walking through the arched gates that lead to the Konoha Ninja Academy.

Naruto, underestimating his own strength, flew further than he had intended, hitting the ground and rolling to the stop at the feet of a pretty girl his own age with pink hair.

Naruto blinked up at the surprised girl for a moment before grinning.

"Whoa. You're pretty."

Any response the blushing girl may have made was immediately forestalled as her mother moved to kick the blond boy, who quickly rolled out of the way and hopped to his feet, sprinting into the Academy, and any memory of the incident entered the back of her mind as Uchiha Sasuke, the super-cool Uchiha heir entered through the gates, escorted by an ANBU.

Naruto found his classroom after seven tries. The hyperactive blond was just too excited to remember his assigned room number, so he had crashed six classes of various age levels before he finally found his. Thus, by the time he arrived, he was the last remaining student to arrive.

There was an austere looking woman wearing a Chunin vest standing behind the desk in the front of the classroom, and she shot Naruto a withering look as he bent over to catch his breath briefly.

After a moment, Naruto stood, his massive grin returning to his face, before he burst out loudly. "Hey!! I'm Uzumaki Naruto, and I'm going to be the Hokage someday!! Dattebayo!!"

Most of the students either snickered or glared at Naruto at his noisy entrance. A trio of dark haired boys in the front of the classroom were whispering conspiratorially, though Naruto didn't see this. The instructor's glare merely darkened.

Why the hell do I have to teach the demon brat? He took my parents and brother from me. The woman thought to herself. Well, if she had to teach the demon brat, she certainly wouldn't teach him well. Maybe if he was failing the brat would give up and leave the Academy.

"Naruto." The woman said coldly, barely getting the name of the demon brat out between her clenched teeth. "Take your seat immediately."

Naruto blinked and had the good manners to blush slightly in embarrassment before making a beeline towards an empty seat in the back of the room.

The teacher, who had introduced herself before the blond arrived and refused to repeat her introduction for the likes of the demon, had the students introduce themselves, but when she skipped calling Naruto's name he just shrugged. He had long since learned that when people disliked him he was better off ignoring them unless it really mattered.

Once the introductions were done the woman began with a lecture on history. Naruto immediately found his eyes beginning to droop. He was an extremely active kid, and sitting in a warm classroom listening to a woman who seemed to not want him there drone on about events that happened centuries before was anathema to him.

Before he knew it, Uzumaki Naruto's head had dropped to his desk and he was snoring lightly and drooling on the desk. Around the class numerous people snickered at the loud hyperactive blond. In the front of the class their Chunin instructor narrowed her eyes. If it had been any other student sleeping in her class, she'd have woken him up with a shout. But it was the demon brat. Good. The more he slept, the less he learned, and the more likely he would fail.

As she continued her lecture on the wars between the shinobi clans before the formation of the hidden villages the Chunin woman allowed herself to display a slight smirk.

Naruto ended up spending most of the rest of class off and on asleep, waking up periodically, only to fall back asleep when he realized it was still just boring old history. When he finally did wake up fully, he was in time to catch the one lecture of the day that actually caught his attention.

"Deception is the most powerful tool in a shinobi's arsenal." The angry Chunin lady, whose name Naruto had learned was Akane Kawamoto spoke.

Naruto's ears immediately perked up, as the subject actually appeared relevant to being a shinobi.

Akane smirked slightly to herself as she saw the demon brat was awake and paying attention. Suddenly a light bulb lit up in her head. This was a perfect chance to embarrass the demon, and to make him look like an idiot to the rest of his peers.

"Naruto. Could you please tell the entire class why this is so?" She said, using all her control to keep her smile off of her face.

Naruto blinked and stared down at Akane in confusion. The angry Chunin lady wanted HIM to answer the question? But how was he supposed to know the answer. She had only just started to lecture on the topic, and he'd never had anyone to teach him any of this stuff before. Well, when in doubt…

"Um, I dunno. Is deception something good to eat?" Naruto replied, scratching the back of his head.

The entire class broke out laughing at his expense as Akane glared at him.

"I would appreciate it if you keep your foolish jokes to yourself Naruto." She snarled, causing Naruto to color and shrink back into his chair.

Outwardly Naruto appeared simply embarrassed, but inside he was hurt, angry. Why didn't anyone give him a chance? Why did they always treat him with disdain?

I mean, Jiji isn't like that, and neither is that strange ANBU, Serpent, nor Ji-san Ichiraku and Ne-san Ayame. But everyone else just treats me like I'm scum! What have I ever done to deserve it?!

At the front of the class, Akane took a deep breath before continuing.

"Deception is a ninja's life blood. Even in a heated battle, a tiny deception can make the difference between victory and defeat." Akane said, looking around the room. She was pleased to note that most of the students were paying attention, and that the damn demon seemed to just be sulking and not paying attention.

"One of the first rules of being a shinobi is to see 'beneath the underneath.' This means to look past the façade your opponents put forth, and instead see what they don't want you to see. This means their weaknesses, their fears, and their desires. However, if your opponent can lure you into seeing exactly what you expect, your guard will be lowered, and you may not think to look 'beneath the underneath.' The number one rule for a ninja is simple: Never let your guard down; never let your opponent deceive you. Do that, and you will go far as shinobi."

In the back of the room, contrary to what she had thought, Uzumaki Naruto was most certainly listening, although he filed the lesson away to review later. He did this not because he was depressed, annoyed, or even angry.

No, Uzumaki Naruto did this because at that precise moment his stomach chose to grumble loudly.

Uzumaki Naruto was hungry for ramen.


When class finally ended Naruto sped from the room so fast he left a vacuum in his wake. As he rushed off towards Ichiraku Ramen, the hyperactive blond failed to notice the three brown-haired boys who followed much more sedately in his wake, matching evil grins on their faces.


"MMMM. That was great. Another miso ramen Ji-san." Naruto cried out as he slammed his bowl down on the counter, adding it to the stack of ten bowls already there.

Behind the counter the kindly old man, Teuchi Ichiraku, who ran the ramen shop smiled and began serving another bowl of ramen for the excitable blond. At the other end of the counter Teuchi's daughter Ayame smiled at the young boy. He was always such a joy to have around, as he positively thrived off of her father's ramen. She couldn't understand why so many of the villagers seemed to dislike the child.

"Well look at this, guys. It's the dobe. Thinking he can eat here like a normal person." A young male's voice came from behind Naruto.

All three occupants of the small ramen shop turned to find three smirking brown-haired boys about Naruto's age standing there, their expressions a mixture between smirks and glares at Naruto.

"But he's not a normal person. My father told me he's a demon in human form, and that we should treat him like we would treat any other demon." The ringleader glared at Naruto.

Naruto's eyes widened. He recognized that look. It was the look the stupid villagers sent him on his birthday every year, right before they tried to beat him.

Without waiting for his last bowl of ramen, Naruto dropped some money on the counter and leapt off of his stool. He sprinted off down the street before turning and shooting off down an alley, the three boys hot on his trail.


Twenty minutes later, Naruto had managed to keep ahead of them by using a winding path through the city, but he was beginning to get tired. He saw the sun was starting to get low in the sky, and seeing that none of his pursuers seemed to be on his trail, he dodged inside one of the parks in Konoha intending to hide in a small grove north of the pond.

Unfortunately for Naruto, the three boys had seen Naruto at the last second, and rather than following him in through the same gate, instead spread out so they could corner him from multiple directions.

Naruto was running breathless through the park towards the grove, looking back over his shoulder for signs of pursuit. Seeing none, Naruto began to turn his head to face forward.

CRACK

Naruto cried out in pain as he ran face first into the fist of one of the three boys. His hands instantly went to his face, holding onto his nose as blood streamed out from underneath them. As he collapsed to the ground, Naruto noticed that the boy who had punched him was suddenly screaming in pain and clutching his hand.

"The demon broke my hand!!" The ringleader cried out, glaring daggers at the bloody-faced blond on the ground. "I'm going to make you pay for this demon brat!!"

Naruto tried to roll out of the way of the kick, but he only succeeded in changing the point of impact from his face to his ribs.

Naruto tried to stand, but he was forced to curl up as the second boy threw a kick from the side straight into his gut, doubling Naruto over and dropping him to the ground again.

"Bah. Look at him. The demon can't even fight back. Pathetic." The ringleader said with disdain, spitting on Naruto before turning and walking away, still cradling his injured hand.

After a few minutes the pain began to lessen, and Naruto uncurled, trying to get to his feet. He fell back to the ground several times, before finally managing to get to his feet, albeit unsteadily.

As Naruto stood there in the corner of the park crying and trying not to fall over he heard an odd beeping sound from somewhere in front of him. Naruto looked up, only to witness as a floating metal sphere about two feet in diameter suddenly shimmered into existence in front of him.

Naruto blinked and rubbed the tears from his eyes.

Nope, still there. Still floating. Still completely alien to anything he had ever seen.

Suddenly a panel on the front of the orb irised open, and a coherent green energy beam swept over Naruto.

[[Final Confirmation Scanning]]

[[Subject Confirmed: Uzumaki Naruto]]

[[Initiating Contact Protocols]]

The machine's voice sounded mechanical, sounding neither male nor female. As it spoke several smaller ports on the surface of the device irised open in sequence, ending with the primary panel on the surface.

Suddenly, a series of multicolored lights rose in a spiral out of the top of the device, condensing and coalescing to form a three foot tall hologram of a spiky blond haired man in odd purple-blue and brown armor, with a single pauldron over his left shoulder.

[[Greetings, child]]

The hologram spoke, the voice redefining as a solid male voice, although still with a hint of computerization to it.

[[You are to be our legacy, child of the Planet]]


AN: So, here it is, the first chapter of a new wrangling from my insane and oft-times creative mind. Before this story continues, I will likely be writing this in shorter chapters than "Phoenix Rising" or "Konoha's Golden Viper", just to warn you. That may change later on, but for now that's the format I'm planning to utilize.

Please, remember to read and review, as reviews are an author's lifeblood. I won't be insulted if there aren't many reviews at first though, as there is so little for you to review at this point. But hopefully you will all enjoy where the story is going from this point.

Questions will also be appreciated, and I will give what answers I can without spoiling the plot. I'm personally quite proud of this plot bunny.

Translations – Because, admit it, not everyone has a Japanese-English dictionary and an obsessive memory for phrases.

Dattebayo – Roughly translated, "Believe it!"