Author's Note: Here it is, ladies and gentlemen! This is the first chapter of the newly revised edition of Naruto the Angel of Death. For those of you wondering why I went about doing this, it was for several reasons, but the main one was that I went back, read my story, and loathed it. The characters, the cliches, the Gary-Sues, the overpowering... Ugh. I violated so many of my personal FanFiction Writing Principles and Pet Peeves... I could take it, so I made the decision to rewrite it. I would work on improving the characters, removing the cliches, balancing out the power, reducing the ridiculous number of jutsu I have in this story, etc.
And thus, two years passed...
I cannot begin to tell you all how sorry I am for how long its taken to update this story. And in a way, this still hasn't been updated. But, at the very least, there are now 14 newly revised chapters in this story, which equals about a chapter every other month, so it's not that bad... Now, before you guys start thinking that its just a cleaned-up version of my old story, I assure you that it isn't... Well, except for maybe one or two chapters. As it turns out, the more changes I made in the earlier chapters, the more the old content didn't work and I had to basically rewrite it from scratch! So, on that note, please get yourself a drink, park your butts into your chairs, and enjoy the newly revised edition of Naruto the Angel of Death.
IMPORTANT: Given the sheer number of complaints I've gotten in the last 24 hours, I am going to outright say this right here, right now: This story was written when I was in middle-school. Therefore, the plot and overall storyline is going to be overdone. I CANNOT CHANGE THAT. Even with all my revisions, the only thing I can do without basically making a new story is smooth things out. This will become very apparent in the first chapter - Even though I tried to temper it, Naruto got a lot of power given to him because its necessary for later in the storyline. If you don't want to read something that will be somewhat overdone, then please look for another story. I do not take any offense from this whatsoever.
Summary: When faced with rejection, a man has only two choices: To wallow and despair or rise above and take that step toward the future… For Naruto, it is no different. But he makes the right choice. He chooses to become a true shinobi. Now, watch as he goes forth into the world and carve his name into history. All will know his name - Naruto the Angel of Death.
~ Naruto the Angel of Death ~
Chapter One - When One Life Ends, Another Begins
It was a beautiful day in Konohagakure.
The sun was shining, the birds were singing, and all just felt right in the world to one Naruto Uzumaki. With a smile that shined brighter than the sun, the newly graduated Genin practically skipped out the Academy doors with three thoughts running through his mind: (1) He was awesome, (2) he needed Ichiraku Ramen, the food of the Gods (and may all who say otherwise burn like the heretics that they are), and (3) now that they were on the same team, maybe Sakura Haruno, the smartest kunoichi in his class who also happen to be his crush, would finally agree to go on a date with him! Naruto had been trying for years to gain the girl's affections, but every time, the pinkette would rebuff him. However, today would be different. Today would be the day! He was feeling on top of the world and nothing could bring his spirits down!
So, with that in mind…
"Hey Sakura-chan! Now that we're on the same team, would you go out with me?" the boy casually asked his crush as he followed her outside. Surely, she would have time, right?
After all, their now former Academy Instructor Iruka Umino, had just informed them that they had a couple months before their teams began active duty. Apparently, there had been a recent attack on the Daimyo and as a result, the man had requested for some of Konoha's top shinobi to help protect him and eliminate the threat. This, unfortunately, meant that most of the new teams' Jōnin Captains/Instructors wouldn't be around until they could ensure the Daimyo's safety.
However, on the plus side, this also meant that he had two entire months to kill besides training and stuff. And what better way to fill that time than going out on a date. And besides, even if she refused, they could still just try and get better acquainted. After all, they were on the same team now.
Unfortunately, Sakura wasn't thinking along the same lines as Naruto. In fact, aside from getting on the same team as Sasuke Uchiha (proving that true love does conquer all, SHANNARO!), the girl had had a horrible day. It had started when she overslept and, thus, did not have the time to apply her makeup so that she could look good for Sasuke. Then, she realized that unless she skipped breakfast and left right away, she would be late for the team announcements and also lose her chance to sit next to the Uchiha, something her rival, Ino, would no doubt take advantage of being the vicious bitch that she was. And Sakura refused to let the Yamanaka get the best of her in anything. Unfortunately, once she got to class, it was as if the Gods themselves were trying to make her life miserable as she witness the most horrible of incidents.
It had been so horrible, so terrible, so unforgivingly wretched that her heart had shattered and somewhere deep in her soul, something shriveled up and died… Or puke. She wasn't sure which.
What happened, you ask? Well, she witnessed Sasuke's first kiss… Stolen by Naruto. BY NARUTO! That kiss was supposed to be hers, dammit! That action had immediately put her on end with Naruto, so when he, in his oh so ignorant and stupid mind, pranced up to her and asked her out… AGAIN… well, needless to say, she snapped.
"WOULD YOU JUST SHUT UP YOU STUPID, ANNOYING, USELESS SHINOBI WANNA-BE?! YOU'VE ASKED ME A THOUSAND TIMES ALREADY AND I'VE REJECTED YOU EVERY SINGLE FUCKING TIME! WHY DON'T YOU JUST GET IT INTO YOUR THICK HEAD THAT I DON'T WANT TO GO OUT WITH YOU AND NO GIRL IN THEIR RIGHT MIND IN A MILLION YEARS WOULD EVER EVEN CONSIDER GOING OUT WITH SOMEONE AS UGLY AS YOU AND PATHETICALLY WEAK AS YOU!"
Sakura huffed in exasperation and left to track down (cough, cough… read: stalk… cough) her other teammate. While she did feel better after venting her frustration, a part of her couldn't help but think on whether she had been too harsh. She eventually shrugged off the concern for her blond teammate and focused on catching up to Sasuke, confident that Naruto would bounce back. He did that every single time she rejected him, so why would this be any different?
~ Scene Break ~
This feeling… It hurts so much.
Why did she say those things? Did she really mean them?
Naruto felt his heart shatter. His elation from today's events disappeared while what little pride he genuinely possessed was utterly crushed. He had never felt so low nor could he stop the negatives thoughts that now ran rampant in his head, questioning his self-worth and Sakura's claims. Was he really that bad a shinobi? Was he truly that despicable and ugly that no girl would ever go out with him? That one truly hurt… Sakura had never been so harsh out of all the times he had asked her out. Aggressive, frustrating, and even a little mean, yes, but never so cruel as to say that no girl in their right mind would go out with him.
But then, what girl would willing go out with the Kyūbi vessel? It was something Naruto had never thought of before, but now, he realized just how dangerous it would be for a girl to show interest in him, especially with how negative and, occasionally, violent the villagers could be.
Closing his eyes, Naruto bowed his head and valiantly fought the tears that threatened to fall. He had not cried for years from the hate of the villagers and he would not cry now. He was stronger than that despite the hurt he felt and despite the depressing thoughts that refused to leave his mind.
Startled, the blond boy looked up to see his favorite teacher walking up to him, a concerned look on his face.
"Are you alright, Naruto?"
Putting on his best fake smile, which failed miserably if the frown on Iruka's face was any indication, he said, "Of course I am, Iruka-sensei! Who do you think I am? I'm going to be Hokage someday, after all!"
The scarred Chūnin wasn't convinced. "Naruto, I saw and heard everything."
Naruto stiffened. His mask crumbled, revealing his desolate expression to one of the few people who really cared about him. "Ne, Iruka-sensei… Is she right? Am I really that terrible a shinobi? Do you think I'm… ugly?"
Iruka's heart cried out upon hearing the misery in his favorite student's voice. He immediately crouched down so that they were eye to eye and spoke in a soothing tone. "I am going to be totally honest with you, Naruto. What Sakura said and how she said it was unforgivable. I believe that you are a great person and that anyone would be lucky to have you in their life. I also think you have the potential to be a fantastic shinobi. After all, you saved me last night, didn't you?" Naruto smiled hesitantly. "But can you be better? Are there things you should work on? Absolutely."
"What do you mean?"
"How do you think the Hokage got to where he is today? He trained. He never stopped learning."
"But, Iruka-sensei," Naruto protested. "I do train! And I learned the Kage Bunshin last night!"
"Yes, you did. But how well do you know your new jutsu? Do you know all its strengths and weaknesses? What about its limits? Its variations and uses? Did you know that a Kage Bunshin can be dispelled after one good hit?"
Naruto's eyes widened. He had not known that. After all, the only time he had used the technique was back in his fight against Mizuki and the traitor never got the chance to fight back, let alone disperse one of his clones.
"Did you know that whenever a clone dispels, anything it learns mentally will be transferred back to you?"
That surprised the Jinchūriki even more.
"There's a lot more about that technique, or any technique for that matter, that you need to know before you can really say you've mastered it. This is just one of the reasons why you must never stop training or learning if you want to get stronger."
"I-I think I understand, Iruka-sensei."
"Good. That's all I ask."
"Ano, is there anything else I should work on?"
Iruka smiled. "No matter how strong a shinobi becomes, there is always something that can be improved on. For you, I'd recommend working on your Bukijutsu, your chakra control, and especially your Taijutsu. I don't know why you chose not to learn the Academy style, but your own fighting style looks more suited for a brawler and that won't cut it in a fight with a shinobi."
Naruto made a face. "But the Academy style is so boring! And it always felt uncomfortable to me."
Now there was a head scratcher. As far as Iruka knew, there weren't many Taijutsu styles available at the Shinobi Library, at least none he could think would fit the blond. "Well, perhaps you can go ask the Hokage. I'm sure he has a couple scrolls on Taijutsu styles you can learn."
Naruto nodded. It was worth a shot at least.
"I would also recommend you getting a different uniform."
"What's wrong with what I'm wearing?" the boy asked, looking down at his clothes.
"A professional should have a uniform that's more practical and not… orange."
"B-B-But orange is awesome!"
Dear Kami, he actually looked offended.
"Orange isn't practical for a shinobi, at least not for one in Hi no Kuni. You would easily be spotted in the forests here and shinobi are supposed to be able to remain unseen. Maybe in Tsuchi no Kuni, it could work, but certainly not here." A dark cloud formed over Naruto's bowed head at the diss toward the awesomeness that is orange, much to Iruka's amusement. "Just think about it, Naruto. And think about all the shinobi you've seen in Konoha, the ones you thought were strong, and ask yourself what are they doing that you aren't right now?"
Now that was an interesting question, one that Naruto couldn't help but mull over his head.
Seeing this and feeling satisfied that he had not only helped someone he thought of as a little brother deal with an extremely harsh rejection, but that he had also helped set Naruto on a path that would only make him stronger, the Academy Instructor stood with a smile. "Now, I have to go, but promise me you won't let what Sakura said bother you anymore, okay?"
The Jinchūriki frowned, but nodded nonetheless as he waved goodbye to the scarred Chūnin. Sighing, he turned on the spot and began walking toward the Hokage Monument. It was his favorite spot to relax and reflect on his life. One thing was for sure, he had a lot to think about.
~ Scene Break ~
'It's strange,' Naruto thought, sitting atop the Yondaime Hokage's head as he looked over the village that hated him. 'Even after everything this village has done to me, I still want to protect it.'
He didn't really understand why he felt this way. On some level, Naruto believed that he could actually feel the pain and suffering the villagers felt whenever catastrophe struck… Like the night of the Uchiha Massacre or the attempted Hyūga Kidnapping. And especially on the days of his birthday, the anniversary of the Kyūbi Attack… On those days/nights, when the emotions of the villagers ran high with tears and sorrow, the desire to protect them from harm, from the forces that would inflict such sorrow and misery upon them, shined brightest in him.
He also wanted their recognition and acknowledgment. He did not want to be scorned anymore, he wanted to be seen as a valued member of Konoha, not as hated vermin. Perhaps… Perhaps that was why he had initially pursued Sakura with such fervor. Looking back through his memories, Naruto realized that somewhere along the line, he had reasoned with himself that if a girl as smart and pretty as Sakura could learn to like him, then he would eventually gain the villagers' respect and interest. She had also been the first person his age to be nice to him, even if that did disappear rather quickly. That, and the frustratingly stubborn part of him simply would not accept defeat, especially against Sasuke.
Now, though, he knew why the villagers hated him. They saw him as the Kyūbi no Yōko.
Because of that, Naruto knew it wasn't about getting the village's recognition anymore… What he wanted now was to no longer be viewed as a monster. He wanted the village to see him as Naruto Uzumaki!
'If I want the village to see me as more than just the demon sealed inside me, I need to change. I need to change how they see me. And…' He sighed. 'I should probably stop chasing after Sakura.'
With everything that had happened today, turning over a new leaf with the ending of his crush to Sakura seemed like a good start. After all, Sakura had made it perfectly clear that it would be a waste of her time. But should he search for and pursue other girls or give up entirely?
Naruto shook his head slightly at the thought. Now that he thought about it, he had never really even thought about the kind of girls he liked. He wanted girls that were smart, pretty, but most importantly, mature enough that they would look past the sealed Kyūbi and see him for who he truly was. In short, he wanted someone who acknowledged and appreciated him.
Unfortunately, very few people fit into that category and none of them, save three or so, were women. He knew that some of the older female shinobi accepted him but he doubt they would ever see him in a romantic light.
And, let's face facts, Naruto knew he wasn't the most attractive person. Sakura had pounded that opinion, quite literally in some cases, into his head. He had heard Sakura and Ino discussing, what they believed, his horrible fashion sense on multiple occasions, not that he could fix that since no shop would sell anything to him. Besides, the orange outfit had gotten him attention! A lot of it. After all, it practically screamed "LOOK AT ME!" And when he was younger, getting attention meant far more to him than his grades, hence why he started playing pranks and continued wearing the orange eyesore.
Playing pranks had also hampered his skills, with the exception of stealth and trap making. Naruto knew that despite defeating Mizuki, his skills were far from top-notch - his three failures at graduating was a testament to that. Hell, he still couldn't create a basic bunshin and that was considered one of the most basic techniques in the shinobi world!
All in all, Naruto could see that he wasn't someone a girl would stop and look at. And until he could fully change himself into someone worth respecting, he realize it would probably be best to just give up on women for the time being.
And instead, focus on becoming a true shinobi of Konoha.
But where to start?
Thinking back on what Iruka had said, Naruto tried to recall all the strong shinobi he had ever met. The ones that stood out in his mind were the Hokage, obviously, and a few Jōnin and ANBU he had interacted with. What did they have that he didn't?
That was the first and most obvious thing he could think of. But it was also the one thing he couldn't get until he was put on active duty.
He also knew that they trained constantly. Every day they weren't on a mission or injured, they were out training and improving their skills. What did he do? Goof off, play pranks, and boast about how he would become Hokage without ever putting any real effort into his training. That was not something a respectable shinobi would do. He would definitely be changing that, but what else was there?
'Gah, I don't know. Maybe I should ask jiji.'
Yeah. That sounded like a good idea. Well, after he got a bite to eat and tried changing his outfit. Even though the Sandaime has and always will be his surrogate jiji, the man was still the Hokage so showing a little decorum wouldn't hurt. Besides, he was trying to be more professional. Better to start sooner than later.
~ Scene Break ~
Orange. Orange. And what do you know, MORE ORANGE! He had absolutely nothing that wasn't orange save for a few shirts, shorts, and pajamas. Naruto also noted that aside from the jumpsuit, he didn't have anything that would be considered practical for a shinobi. The several t-shirts and shorts he had simply weren't designed with durability in mind. They'd probably fall apart after a single training session, if that.
His only option would to be to buy new clothes and that alone made him worry. None of the shopkeepers had let him buy anything from them and had promptly kicked him out, some literally. Perhaps, some of the shinobi-only stores would let him in? He had a reasonable amount of money saved up.
Naruto quickly left his home in search of a proper store that sold ninja equipment. Predictably, the first couple stores immediately kicked him out the second they saw him. But as he approached the third store, Naruto had a thought… What if he looked like someone else?
It was worth a shot.
"Henge no Jutsu (Transformation Technique)!"
In Naruto's place was a totally nondescript looking teen with long black hair, dark brown eyes, and a plain shirt and short outfit with his hitai-ate tied across his forehead to ensure the shopkeepers knew that he was indeed a ninja.
"Here goes nothing!" Taking a deep breath, he entered the Higurashi's Blades and Armors, hoping to the Ramen Gods that he wouldn't get thrown out.
However, as soon as he entered, all worries disappeared as he took in the rows upon rows of shinobi equipment throughout the shop. A large section of the store was reserved for all kinds of weapons and equipment, including different swords, kunai, shuriken, weights, and many other things that Naruto didn't recognize, let alone know the name of. He felt like he could get lost in this place and probably could spend hours looking at everything he didn't know or had heard about but never seen. For a young Genin such as himself, this truly was the place to be, there was no doubt about it.
It was at that moment the shopkeeper arrived. "Ah welcome! How may I help yo-" the shopkeeper stopped and studied him closely. Naruto immediately began to sweat, fearing that the man had figured him out already. His fears proved correct as the man brought his hand together in a hand seal and said, "Kai (Release)!"
Naruto mentally cursed as his illusion dropped and turned to leave the shop, already knowing he was going to get kicked out… Only to feel a hand suddenly grip his shoulder.
The shopkeeper frowned, having noticed how Naruto had immediately started to leave and then at the fear on the boy's face the moment he touched his shoulder. 'Damn, the villagers really did a number on him. You would be ashamed of what they did to your son, Minato.'
"Where are you going, kid? I thought you came here to buy something," the man asked jovially.
Naruto's jaw dropped. The only thing coming out of his mouth was a very articulate "Whaaaaa?"
"You'll catch flies if you keep that up, kid," the shopkeeper laughed. "And I know what you're thinking, kid. Don't worry. I ain't got no problems with you."
"B-B-But what about the Kyūbi?!"
"Oh, so you know about your burden! Well, that certainly makes thing a lot simpler. I, for one, have always respected the Yondaime's wishes and I know he wanted you to be seen as a hero. Plus, I have full confidence in his sealing abilities." Naruto's eyes widened. "You are always welcome in my shop, Naruto.""
If possible, Naruto's eyes widened even further. He could also feel tears beginning to well up again upon finding another person who didn't see him as the demon. What's more was that this man owned a store and would not overcharge him! He hastily wiped away his tears and faced the kind man.
"Thank you very much, sir," Naruto said with a bow.
"Your welcome, gaki. The name's Hideki Higurashi, owner of the Higurash's Blades and Armors," Hideki said proudly. He was in his mid-40's, had dark brown hair, a neatly trimmed beard, and sharp piercing green eyes. The man was relatively well-built, no doubt from working in the forge for so long, and was dressed in a simple shirt and pants. "So whatcha need?"
"Ano, I'm not really sure. Iruka-sensei said I should get a new uniform that looks more professional, but I'm not sure exactly what to get."
"No worries. You just graduated, right?"
Naruto nodded timidly.
"Congratulations on that, by the way. Anyways, you'll definitely want a few basic weapon sets of kunai, shuriken, ninja wire, and explosive tags. As for your outfit, yeah, you need to ditch that. Seriously, kid, orange? What are you, colorblind?"
"Oi! Orange is awesome! Why is everyone dissing the orange?!"
"Because as awesome as you think it is, it sucks. And I'll be honest with you, kid, the Kyūbi's fur was orange… A darker orange, but orange nonetheless. If you really want people to stop seeing you as the demon, not wearing that color would be a good start."
Well crap. He hadn't thought about it that way.
"Anyways, you'll definitely want something that's durable and light. Black, gray, navy, and green are the best colors for when you're a Genin, since you'll mainly be doing missions in Hi no Kuni or nearby… Ah, I got it! Come with me!"
A mere half hour later, as soon as Naruto got home, he immediately don his new clothes. Gone was the orange nightmare that he had once worn (he would hold a proper funeral for it later… sniff… goodbye, orange jumpsuit), and in its place was an outfit that looked befitting of a Konoha shinobi. He now wore a mesh undershirt under a form-fitting tank top turtleneck of navy blue color, a pair of dark gray cargo pants that had plenty of pockets to hide weapons and scrolls, and steel tipped boots in place of his sandals. In addition to this, he had also, at Hideki's recommendations, purchased a pair of arm warmers with steel guards attached to it as well as fingerless, steel plated gloves. His hitai-ate hung loosely around his neck, providing some protection to the vulnerable spot while also letting his hair hang free over his eyes.
All in all, he looked badass.
Naruto couldn't help but smile as he inspected himself in the mirror. He looked completely different and much more professional in his humble opinion. Hell, he even felt more like a real shinobi than he did just five minutes prior.
"Alright. Time to see jiji."
~ Scene Break ~
"Grumble, grumble… Should all just burn… Grumble, grumble… Kami-sama, save me… grumble, grumble… Shinigami-sama, just take me now…"
Naruto couldn't help but sweatdrop upon hearing the mumbled curses coming from the Hokage's office. He had been standing outside the closed doors for the past five minutes, at first thinking that Sarutobi was in a meeting until he actually caught some of the words that the man was saying and instantly knew what the elderly shinobi was talking about. Turning to the secretary, he asked, "How long has he been going on like this?"
The woman sighed in exasperation. "Three hours, Naruto-kun."
"Is it really that bad today?"
"It's usually pretty bad on the day of Graduation, but it became a whole lot worse with the Daimyō situation."
"Oh…" Shaking his head, Naruto decided he'd best get to rescuing the Sandaime Hokage from the bane of leaders everywhere: Paperwork. 'I wonder why jiji never used Kage Bunshin to do paperwork,' he thought as he walked in with a jovial, "Yo, jiji!"
The Hokage looked up and jaw dropped as he stared at Naruto.
"The one and only! What? Don't recognize me with my new digs?"
"I almost didn't, Naruto-kun. I have to admit you look quite sharp in your new outfit," Sarutobi said with a smile. 'He looks just like you, Minato.'
"I just thought it was time for a change. I'm a shinobi now, after all. Gotta be more professional."
"Indeed, you are right, Naruto-kun. I am very pleased to see you taking your career seriously."
"Ano… Do you think you could help me with that?"
The Hokage raised an eyebrow. "What do you mean?"
"Well, I know our Jōnin senseis aren't supposed to be back for at least two months and I wanted to use that time to get stronger. I'm just not sure how or where to start."
In that very moment, Sarutobi had never felt more proud of his surrogate grandson than he did now. "Well, tell me this, Naruto-kun - What do you think you need to work on?"
"Lots of stuff, but Iruka-sensei said I needed to work on my Taijutsu, Bukijutsu, and chakra control the most. Problem is I don't know how to improve on my chakra control and the Academy Taijutsu style has always felt uncomfortable to me. And I don't know anyone I could ask to teach me."
Making a mental note to give the Academy Instructor a bonus, Sarutobi pondered his young charge's dilemma before smiling. Getting up, he quickly exited the office and returned a moment later with several scrolls in his hands, three of which were easily as tall as Naruto.
"These scrolls here," the Sandaime started, gesturing to the larger scrolls, "contain ancient Taijutsu and Kenjutsu styles dating back hundreds of years. The red scroll contains the teachings of the Rokushiki (Six Powers). It is a very powerful style that requires a high level of chakra control, but those who master it are said to be able to create blades of pure chakra from a single kick, make their bodies as strong as steel, and even jump multiple times in the air."
Naruto's eyes widened, even as Sarutobi reached over and picked up a large green scroll. "This scroll describes the style and techniques of Santōryū (Three Sword Style), though there are other teachings of techniques that use fewer swords. Legend has it that the creator of this style was considered to be the greatest swordsman in all the lands before he died. Finally, we have this black scroll which describes a unique Taijutsu style that only uses a person's feet and legs. This martial art is known as Kuroashi no Waza (Black Leg Style) and was genuinely used for people who did not wish to injure their hands, like cooks, tailors, or blacksmiths. Despite how it sounds, this style is just as deadly and versatile as the others."
"Indeed," Sarutobi smiled. "I will let you take one of these scrolls to keep and train in."
"What? I can't take all three?!"
The Sandaime shook his head. "I'm sorry, Naruto-kun, but that would be showing a great deal of favoritism and as Hokage, I cannot do that. I am already doing more for you than I probably should. Besides, becoming strong is not about having more techniques. It's about mastering what you already have."
Naruto cocked his head to the side in confusion. "I think Iruka-sensei said something similar."
"And he is right. But how about a deal then. Whichever scroll you take now, if you can show me by the time your Jōnin sensei returns that you have a solid foundation in the basics, I will let you take one other."
"Yes, really. But you'll have to train hard."
"No sweat, jiji! You got yourself a deal!"
"Excellent! Now which scroll do you want? And I want you think about it carefully before choosing."
Naruto lapsed into silence, a deep thoughtful look on his face that surprisingly didn't result in his brain cooking. 'Which one to choose…' He didn't have a sword nor could he afford one in the near future, so that automatically meant that the Santōryū was out. That left the Rokushiki and the Kuroashi no Waza. 'But both sound so cool! How am I supposed to pick just one?! …Wait, jiji said he wanted me to think carefully before choosing. That must mean that one of them is definitely better for me right now, right?' It made sense. 'Well, according to Iruka-sensei, my chakra control needs work, so learning the Rokushiki would be harder. I guess that's my choice then.'
"I'll take the Kuroashi no Waza, jiji!"
"And why would you pick that one, Naruto-kun?"
Oh, was the Sandaime testing him? Well then, Naruto wasn't going to disappoint. "Well, you said the Rokushiki requires good chakra control, right?" The Hokage nodded. "Iruka-sensei said I needed to work on that, meaning that until I get better, I wouldn't be able to learn the style anyways. I also don't know how to use a sword, which means the Santōryū style is out as well. So that means the only one I can learn is the Kuroashi no Waza."
The proud smile that spread across the Hokage's lips immediately confirmed to Naruto that he made the right choice. "And you would be correct, Naruto-kun! The Rokushiki is a very difficult style to learn and without the proper skill in chakra control, you would not be able to learn it at all. Perhaps in the future though," Sarutobi said, handing over the scroll for the Kuroashi no Waza. "Now, before I tell you what's in these smaller scrolls, could you please channel some chakra into this piece of paper?"
"What is it, jiji?"
"It's a special paper that will tell us what elements you are compatible with."
Naruto nodded and began channeling his chakra into the paper. He watched as the paper glow blue for a brief second before it split down the middle with both halves suddenly becoming soaking wet, much to the Hokage's surprise.
'To have two elemental affinities at such a young age… Naruto-kun, you will undoubtedly go far,' the Sandaime thought. "It seems you have two very strong elemental affinities, Naruto-kun! Wind and water. That is quite rare for someone at your age. Now, these two scrolls each have a C-rank jutsu for your respective affinities and this scroll here will help you with your chakra control. I expect you to learn them well."
"I will, jiji!" Naruto promised. "Thank you so much!"
"You're very welcome, Naruto-kun!"
With a quick hug, Naruto turned to leave before suddenly remembering his old man's mumblings earlier. And with that came a devious idea. "Ne, jiji, what's it worth to you if I tell you how to defeat your paperwork?"
Sarutobi just stared. 'Did he really figure out the secret behind defeating paperwork?'
On one hand, he had a Genin trying to bribe him, the Hokage. That in itself was considered a serious crime in a shinobi village punishable with prison depending on the circumstances… But on the other hand, his surrogate grandson was offering him a way to finally defeat the evil that is paperwork.
The choice was simple.
Because there was no choice.
River of tears began falling down the elderly shinobi's cheeks as he, Hiruzen Sarutobi, the third God of Shinobi and the Sandaime Hokage of Konohagakure, literally fell onto his hands and knees and begged, "PLEASE tell me the secret! I'll give you anything! Anything at all! How about… How about two more elemental Ninjutsu scrolls?! A-rank techniques! And I'll give you a complete set of Fūinjutsu Instructional Manuals and the Yondaime's own notes on sealing! Just please! Tell me the secret!"
"Ever thought of using Kage Bunshin?"
The old man just stared at Naruto slack-jawed. Silently, he handed Naruto two more scrolls and a stack of books before walking over to his desk. He then slowly pulled out a piece of paper that Jiraiya had given him long ago, saying that he would use it should he ever discovered the secret behind defeating paperwork and placed it on his desk.
On that sheet of paper were the words "BANG HEAD HERE" inscribed within a large circle.
"Stupid, stupid, stupid, stupid, stupid, stupid, stupid…" Sarutobi muttered as he repeatedly slammed his head against the paper. Naruto could only sweatdrop as he quietly exited the room.
~ Scene Break ~
As soon as Naruto got home, he immediately went to open the Ninjutsu scrolls… only to stop. 'Iruka-sensei said that the things I need to work on the most is Taijutsu, chakra control, and Bukijutsu. As much as I want to learn the Ninjutsu, I need to learn how to better prioritize my time. I should open the scroll on the Kuroashi no Waza first,' Naruto thought, looking mournfully at the smaller scrolls. He so wanted to learn them, but if he was to become a better shinobi, it was best that he concentrate on the areas he was lacking first. So with that in mind, he turned to the Taijutsu scroll.
Rolling the scroll open, it only took Naruto five minutes to start cursing in equal parts frustration and awe.
Apparently, this style required an absolutely obscene level of leg strength and flexibility to be used effectively. Far beyond what Naruto currently possessed. "I'm going to need weights," he muttered to himself. But how was he supposed to buy them? He didn't have any more money and now that he was a Genin, he was cut off from the village's orphan funds. "Dammit, what am I supposed to do?"
His eyes fell on the stack of Fūinjutsu manuals and an idea popped up in his head. "Maybe there's a weight seal or something in one of these books?" Quickly creating a dozen clones, he had each one skim through the books as he went to get his calligraphy set.
"Yo boss! I found one!"
Hurrying back over, Naruto inspected at the complicated looking seal that, if he was reading this right, would very gradually add weight up to a certain limit. In other words, it was exactly what he needed. "Yosh! This is perfect! Everyone, grab a brush, some ink, and something to practice on!"
"What are you going to do?" one of the clones asked as it grabbed a dumbbell Naruto occasionally trained with at home.
"I'm going to start working on these stretches and basic exercises and then talk with Hideki-san to see if there's anything I can do to earn a little extra money."
"Oh, good idea, boss."
"I should be back soon though. Just keep working on th-"
Naruto's eye twitched.
There was a hole in his floor.
A hole… created by a pair of boxers. The clone had stupidly decided to try activating his badly drawn seal and the result was a ridiculous amount of weight that broke straight through the floor. He just hoped it didn't hit his neighbor below-
"GAH! WHAT THE HELL IS THIS?! WHERE DID THESE BOXERS COME FROM?! WHY ARE THEY SO FREAKING HEAVY?! SOMEBODY HELP! I CAN'T MOVE! HEEELLLPPP!"
"Get to a training ground and keep practicing. I'll… -sigh- … I'll be right back."
'This is going to be a long day.'
Author's Note: Well? What did you guys think? I ended up changing a lot more in this chapter than I had originally intended. For one, I realized upon going back that I barely made any mention of Iruka! How could I?! So, that's been fixed. Secondly, my original edition's first chapter was based on Crashtestdummy's Rise to Power story. I have since changed things to make it my own, though there are still a few parallels, but definitely a lot less now. I've also worked on reducing the amount of gifts Naruto got, but unfortunately, given what I want him to learn, I can only do so much. At the very least, I'll be spreading things out more so that he doesn't become totally OP. There will be balance in this story, mark my words.
Anyways, that's that! Please leave a review on what you guys think of this newly revised edition of Chapter 1 of Naruto the Angel of Death. I would love to hear your opinions