Disclaimer: Naruto belongs to Masashi Kishimoto and not me.
A/N: Welcome to new readers, and many previous (you guys are awesome for waiting). I promised I was going to do a rewrite for 'Two Tailed Angel', and here it is at last. I apologise for being late, but I've been writing a lot of stuff in advance rather than write one chapter at a time and put it up. I think things will make a bit more sense if I have things to refer ahead to when I edit over it.
Anyway, I should probably explain a couple things which made me decide to do this rewrite – I felt like my style of writing had changed to much from when I first started the original and it was holding me back. I also felt like Kita and a few others were walking across the fine line into Mary Sue-dom. I love my OCs, but they shouldn't be immune to the harsh reality of writing. I hope you all forgive me and you'll enjoy this story. If you have any constructive criticism for me, it is more than welcome and I will listen to every word you have to say.
Chapter 1: LIFE
"Doctor… where's the doctor? Get the doctor!"
Blood dripped with soft 'plipping' sounds, pooling onto the linoleum flooring.
"Hissori-san, you can't stay here. The nurses need to do their work."
"Don't tell me what to do! Minami, she needs me, now!"
The man pounded on the door as it was slammed shut in his face. His calls to see his wife went unheard though. He pressed his forehead against the wall, hearing the muffled sounds of people moving, things clattering around, and the slow beep of some unknown medical device. He hardly blinked while he strained to listen to the beeping. The world in the hallway around him was gone – only that faint sound beyond his grasp was what existed. The afternoon sun burned the back of his neck as orange light filled the corridor. It slowly faded to red as he stayed, melded to the wall and listening… listening to what he knew was his wife's heartbeat.
Dread filled him as the sound eventually changed, becoming a flat tone that wailed endlessly. The man's eyes widened.
"Hissori-san?" The door opened. A nurse stepped out, her form bathed in red, but not from the sun's lingering light. A metallic stench filled the hallway.
The man turned from his place at the wall, his face a blank look of disbelief.
"You'd… better come in," muttered the nurse.
The walk into the room seemed to take forever, his footsteps were clumsy and mismatched. His hands shook as he held them out. It took him a moment to realise something had been placed into them, a bundled blanket stained with red. He looked down at it, feeling the slightest of weights within it.
He nearly dropped it when he saw it, a tiny face, blood splattered and turning blue.
The thing he was holding was dead. Its head rolled to the side limply, towards the bed where its mother was laying, colour slowly draining from her skin. Tears cut through the mascara she had so carefully put on that morning. Where she had been crying was obvious, the inky lines on her cheeks stained her face.
Her eyes were glassy, and the man knew… she had gone.
He glanced back down at the small creature in his hands. It was so tiny…
"Do something," he whispered in a pleading voice. He held the baby out to the staff at the end of his wife's bed. "Please… do something. You can do something, right? You know medical jutsu? Can't you use it? You have to know something! I don't want this to be it!"
Some of the staff looked at each other, strange expressions on their faces, almost like fear.
"Get the Tsuchikage," muttered one of them.
Shrill screams tore through the air. It was hard to tell what the sounds were – that of a baby, or some dying animal. The screams were painful to hear.
But the man was smiling, biting back tears. It was alive… no… she was alive – his daughter.
"Kita… That's what she wanted to call you," he said to the tiny form. He ignored the worried looks of the nurse that stood nearby, the laboured breathing of the Tsuchikage as he tried to regain his stance from doing the ritual. He ignored the chains of the inky seals on the baby's skin, snaking up to become a strange circle on her forehead. He didn't even blink as the dot within it moved around, fixing itself to look up at him before melting into the skin with the rest.
"Hissori, you know what this means, don't you?" asked the Tsuchikage, being helped to a chair by the nurse. He thanked her and took another large breath. When the other man looked at him, he sighed in frustration. "This sealing we've done is an anomaly. Past rituals have never been done this way… with such a subject. The fact it went so well isn't a good sign. You know the Nibi's association with power, don't you?"
Hissori nodded slowly. Behind him, the nurse wrapped the baby in a new blanket. She put the tip of a finger inside the tiny human's hand, but it didn't clutch back - unusual. It was hard to believe she was alive now, not after seeing the oxygen-starved face previously.
"And to think, something associated with death actually brought something back to life," she whispered quietly so nobody could hear. "But, what will you become? The last Jinchuuriki was killed by the previous Tsuchikage for going insane and murdering his team-mates in the last war. Even if you're human on the outside, what are you on the inside?"
The baby opened her eyes, staring up at the nurse with such calm it was disturbing.
"Yes, Benkei-sama?" The nurse glanced up from the child's gaze.
"You are to tell those that were present that they are not to speak of this. Under order of death." The Tsuchikage gave a frown. "We only have the option of patience and time to see how fate unfolds on this child."
The woman gave a nod as she handed the baby to her father. "Benkei-sama, we should let Hissori-san have some time alone with his daughter."
"Yes, yes… I know. Geez, I feel like an old man. Help me up." The Tsuchikage grumbled to himself as Bara assisted him to stumble to the door. He paused and glanced back at the man cradling his new daughter. "Hissori, we are supposed to be guardians for the next generation. We won't allow the past mistakes our village have made with Jinchuuriki to be done again. We can't forget that all children need love to become strong."
The man looked down at the baby in his arms and turned to the window as the door shut behind him.
Bara raised an eyebrow at the stumbling mess of a man beside her. "Benkei-sama, why exactly did you decide to revive the child? Is it because she's of Mitsukai blood?"
Benkei shook his head. "A fellow Iwa shinobi should never be denied help, and Hissori is basically family to me. He was one of my first students when I was a jounin, and I watched him grow up. Him and Minami… they became such a close couple while working together. I wasn't surprised when they finally decided to marry. The village will be so sad for losing her… She was one of the best kunoichi I knew…"
"What of her child then? Do you think she'll become like her mother?"
The Tsuchikage stared down the long hallway. The fluorescent lights began to flicker to life above them as the sun's light vanished behind the mountains. "Maybe, as long as this part of her life is kept a secret – she may grow up never knowing. But…" His voice faded out for a moment.
"But…?" repeated Bara curiously.
"The Nekomata is not one to let itself be confined so easily. And I am sure it misses its freedom. Death has a way of affecting us all."
7 years later…
"I don't want to go, Dad. I wanna stay with you." Purple eyes blinked frantically, tears on verge of spilling over.
It nearly broke Hissori's heart whenever she gave him those eyes. He crouched down next to his daughter, stroking her hair. It always amazed him how much she looked like him – the same colour eyes, same shade of hair – a shade of purple so light it was almost silver. She even had the same stubborn chin.
Still… he always felt something like disappointment when he looked in those eyes. Nobody ever said she had her mother's features. It was always 'she has your eyes', or 'she even smiles the same'. Every time he looked in her eyes, he was never able to find a hint of her mother in them.
The years had been rather quiet since Kita's birth. Well, quieter than he had expected. Those who had been involved had been true to their word and only the most minor of rumours were heard. Of course, it was the kind of rumour that was more like an urban myth – bound to spring up every few years or so, but having only speculation behind it. Still, whenever Jinchuuriki or Bijuu were mentioned, a strange silence would always follow. Iwagakure could still remember the reasons why they were so feared, and the news that Konohagakure had been attacked two years previous to Kita's birth was still unforgettable. The photos in the newspapers of the village burning to the ground while a demonic fox presided in the centre became infamous.
In his mid-twenties now, Hissori felt like he was finally stable with what his life was. Becoming a single parent hadn't been easy, but he had been lucky. The community around him had practically flocked to his aid, giving him everything to clothes to advice on raising a kid. But, of course they wanted to help. The Mitsukai clan had once been called the 'Guardians of the Rock'… at least, until the war with the Land of Fire. He remembered it hadn't been too long after he'd graduated from ninja academy. When he'd answered the door with his grandmother, they had both still been celebrating his official entry into a team. The second they saw the messenger though, their faces fell. His grandmother collapsed from grief. And eventually, a few years later, she too would join the rest of their relatives buried in the graveyard outside of town; the loss had been too much of a burden on her grieving heart.
The only thing that had kept Hissori from a broken heart had been his angel – Minami. He had seen her around the academy, though she was in another class. The classes back then had been so big, trying to graduate as many shinobi as they could and as quickly as possible for the war. When he finally met her on their first day as Team Omega, his heart had stopped for a second. She had smiled at him with such beautiful eyes it was intoxicating. He would never get enough of her.
And everyday he missed her. Every. Single. Day.
Realising he'd been silent for far too long, he gave his daughter a smile and ruffled her hair. "Don't you want to become a ninja? Last night you were talking for hours about it. You want to become strong like your father, right?"
Kita started bawling, clinging to his shirt and refusing to let go. "I wanna stay with you!"
Hissori looked up at the sky and prayed for some kind of intervention. He held onto Kita tightly until her crying turned to quiet whimpering. Suddenly, he had the urge to laugh. This… he should be treasuring this moment.
But he couldn't. In the back of his mind, there was always that feeling there was something wrong – something awfully wrong, and with his own child at that. Her face buried in his shoulder, he could only stare at the top of her head and wonder about what was within. Even if he loved her, the feeling was still there. He couldn't admit it, but for the first four years, he had been terrified of his daughter.
It had only taken a few hours after Kita's birth for them all to realise something was wrong. She never cried again after those first screaming breaths.
But truly, the first four years had been hell. Kita had never developed like other children; it was like he was looking after a living doll. She'd been so weak and small… she would lay there for hours, with eyes staring up at the ceiling until he came close. Then they would suddenly shift wildly about until they pinpointed on him. And she would continue to stare until he moved away.
During that time, he had been afraid. Although his daughter seemed so harmless, he was barely able to look at her without getting chills up his spine. It had only been thanks to Bara that he could continue. The woman would come over every so often to help and give Kita check-ups. Those free moments to himself had been a lifesaver, to let him recompose himself and go on with renewed strength.
When four years had passed though, he had awoken one morning to a tug on his arm and a pair of bright eyes staring at him.
"Daddy, can I have toast for breakfast?"
The doll had come alive. Impossibility died that day.
However, it was there that things began to turn stranger. Just when Kita had seemed to have become a normal child, certain problems began to arise. Suddenly she seemed to develop strange sleeping habits – staying awake until the early hours and sleeping in until late morning. Getting her to sleep at night was always a problem, as well as getting her up in the morning. Her appetite was never very big, though her growth was only a little stunted than others her age. Bara had noted it too with curiosity when he brought her in. It was even stranger when it came to other trips to the hospital. In the multiple times that Kita had hurt herself, the wound had healed quite rapidly. However, there had been times when the wound had just refused to heal, almost as though the body had forgotten it was there.
Or something had forgotten to heal it.
Nekomata… Sometimes it just replayed, over and over, on the edge of Hissori's thoughts. It plagued him.
Could it have been possible? He almost couldn't ask himself the question, but it needed to be asked. For those first four years… had he been raising a demon? He was almost sure the child he held in his arms now was someone else, but where had she come from? Who was she, and what about the child that had been there?
Kita finally looked up from having her face hidden and sniffed. "I wanna be strong like you. I'll go to ninja school."
"Haha, having some kid troubles, Hissori?" laughed a deep voice. Kita stopped crying to look up at the source. The man looked back down at her, a grin on his face. "Good morning, Kita-chan. How are you today?"
The girl sniffed, her bottom lip still quivering. "Okay… Tsuchikage-sama… bu-but…" Tears started to roll down her face again.
Benkei gave a chuckle and turned behind him. A young girl had been hiding behind his robe. About to scamper back to the safety of the folds, she paused to stare at Kita. "This is Hisae, my own daughter. She's a little older than you, but you'll be in the same class."
Kita gave a slight nod to the other girl. She timidly nodded back before scampering back, dark green braids flying in the rush.
Benkei scratched the back of his head. "Well, it's a start," he sighed, crouching down to his daughter. He pushed a pair of sliding glasses back up the girl's nose to frame her hazel-coloured eyes. "I expect you to do your best, okay? And make lots of friends." He placed his hand on her head warmly before giving her a nudge towards the gates. While hesitant at first, Hisae crept towards them.
Hissori managed to wrestle Kita's grip from his leg, the girl having clung onto him again. "Why don't you go help Hisae-chan go inside? I think she'll need someone to help her be brave. You can do that for me, right?"
Kita wiped the tears from her eyes once more and nodded. "Yeah," she replied.
"That's my girl," smiled Hissori. "I'll come by at the end of the day to pick you up."
"I can walk home by myself!" protested Kita stubbornly. "I'm a ninja now!"
Her father gave a chuckle. "Not quite yet. Until then, I'll be picking you up."
"No fair," pouted the girl for a moment. Her pout turned to a grin as she turned and began to run to catch up with Hisae, calling her name.
Hissori stared after her, rethinking over his daughter. There was a pain about this. Minami should have been here. She should have been standing next to him, fretting about Kita and saying how proud they were. Instead, it was just him. Just him dreading about what he had just done. Sending his daughter off to be around other children; was he essentially sending the Nibi off to kindergarten? The idea was so bizarre… almost laughable if he wasn't the person he was. His thoughts were interrupted by a hand on his shoulder.
"We should talk," said Benkei.
A/N: A lot of people seemed to like having a little reference guide at the bottom for names and such, so here we go again just to update on things. I have put the family name first, then organised the individual names under those.
~Mitsukai – Angel
*Hissori – Quiet / still / silent / deserted
*Kita – North
*Minami – South
~Ishi – Stone
*Benkei – It translates to 'strong man', although I have based his name off a figure of Japanese folklore. You should be able to find out more on Wikipedia if you wish.
*Hisae – An alternate version of 'Hisa' meaning sustaining or enduring. In the original fic, she was known as Hana.
~(Family name unknown) Bara - Rose
Thanks for reading!