"And this will be your room," Jiraya spoke opening the door to one of the rooms on the second floor. The room was large and done in bright, sunny yellow. A four poster stood against one wall with yellow and white ruffled curtains handing from each of the four towering posts of the walnut bed. A white vanity painted with yellow flowers everywhere occupied another and in an alcove of a bay window was a tiny table and chair in a similar pattern.
Naruto wrinkled her nose and looked at the white haired man who had just become her newest foster parent. He stood about a foot taller than her and had a nice physic but he was still an old man.
"Can't I redo the décor?" she asked still wincing from the happy colors.
"Um, I guess so but…you don't like it?" he asked perplexed, looking back at the very feminine room.
"It's nice but I don't think I can live with…um, yellow," she finished looking back at the room and stepping gingerly onto the yellow carpet. She was wearing her favorite pair of combat boots and they were looking soo out of place in the frilly room. She just wasn't the frilly type of person. The only thing that was frilly about her was her hair and she wore it pulled back into two long blond braids.
She set down the back leather suit case and looked back at the white haired man. She smiled slightly at him and asked, "Do you really think that this is me?"
Jiraya looked at his newest charge seeing the black t-shirt, the orange cargo pants, and the black boots. He shook his head and nodded. "Nope, your right, the room really doesn't fit you. So go ahead and redecorate." He set another case he was carrying down only to hear a yowl of protest from its occupant. "I must warn you now; we have a dog in occupancy so you might want to keep the cat confined to your room. Um, let's go over some of the rules."
Naruto nodded the smile fading, not that it was a real smile. She hadn't been able to smile a real smile in a long time.
"Okay, rule number one. You must pick up after yourself, that includes dishes, rooms, and so forth. Rule number two: you must be back here at nine, that's the curfew and I will send a police officer after you if you aren't. Rule number three: since you are an older member of the household you can get your own meal, so long as you clean up after yourself, however, you are welcome to eat with the younger crew, we eat at six and then you're expected to help with the clean up. Rule number four: um…well, you are the only girl in residence so…well, no, fraternizing with the boys, talking, watching TV are okay but you will not step foot in their rooms and they are not to come into yours." Jiraya's laid back expression became stern as he eyed the seventeen-year-old girl. She nodded solemnly back. He had seen the fake smile earlier and now he wondered if she ever smiled. It had been two years since her parents had died, but he guessed that he could deal with a serious kid for once.
"Okay, now, I've heard that you get an allowance from the trust that your parent set up so you can use that in any way you feel like. There is a chore list posted in the kitchen and if you perform any of the tasks that are listed you will receive and extra sum of money, the prices are listed with it.
"I expect you to show everyone some respect they are all in the same situation as yourself, though some of them have been in it longer. I also expect you to conduct yourself in a manner befitting a woman of good morals."
Coming from a guy who writes pornographic novels? Naruto thought to herself but just nodded in his direction again. Rules were the same in nearly all of the homes she had been in.
"I'm going to let you get settled, and in an hour I would like you to come down stairs and meet the rest of the gang." Jiraya stepped out of the door and went back down stairs where he had left the Child Services personnel.
Hatake Kakashi smiled at the older man when he came back into the room. "Jiraya, I know that you have your hands full but basically your our last resort when it comes to placing problematic kids. The last home we had her in…well…the woman just couldn't deal with Naruto." He held out a folder so that Jiraya could take a look at it.
There was a picture of the girl when she was younger, her eyes were angry, red and swollen, a frown pulling her lips down but her jaw a clenched shut. Under the picture was her vital stats and other public knowledge information and under that was a police report.
"Breaking and entering? Vandalism, assault, and resisting arrest?" Jiraya looked up and Kakashi. "That little girl did all that, what's the story?"
"Well, it seems that the foster parent took Naruto's trust allowance because she felt that in doing so she would teach Naruto some sort of lesson. I wasn't there so I didn't get the whole story. Naruto broke into her room and trashed the place looking for her money. The woman called the police and threatened to kick Naruto out and called Naruto's mom and few names, Naruto took exception to the name calling and punched the woman. Knocked her out by the way, and when the police arrived, well, um, she took out two of them before they got their heads together and it took four of them to restrain her and get her into a car and down to the station." Kakashi shrugged in an apologetic fashion, but he also sounded a little proud of the girl. "Um, it seems that she has had some martial arts training."
"Some? She took out two police officers, I would say that she has probably been studying since she was at least five." Jiraya said, "So as long as I don't take anything from her we should do alright together."
"Well, before that she was in a home and one of the boys took a liking to her and snuck into her room in the middle of the night. He's still in the hospital." A wry smile formed on Kakashi's face.
"Okay, so I just need to tell everyone to leave her alone."
Jiraya looked up at the silver haired man in sitting in the chair. He wore a medical mask in front of his mouth and nose but his brown eyes were shining with mirth. They had know each other for a long time now since Jiraya and his wife, Tsunade, had begun taking in children who needed at the very least a place to call home. Tsunade had a job of running the town so she was away right now but would be back the day after tomorrow.
"Kakashi, is it alright for Naruto to be here. I mean, I've known her father since he was ten and well, isn't there a law that prohibits her from being here?" Jiraya said. He hadn't been around when Naruto's father had died in a freak accident and he still felt slightly guilty about it.
"Minato was a good man and I'm sure that he would feel that you're the best person to raise Naruto. And no, there isn't any law that prohibits a well respected foster parent who may have a connection to the foster kid's family from caring for the child. I looked into it before bringing Naruto here. The only reason the office didn't do it earlier was because we were reluctant to place her in a home with only boys. I'm hoping that she might have an influence with the boys, you know that whole mother roll that girls tend to take on."
"God DAMN it, give it back!" a yell back from the rear of the house. It was followed by a crash and a loud bang.
Jiraya got up to see what happened with the door flew open and two tumbling figures rolled into the room, wrestling each other. He stood up and grabbed one boy by the collar of his shirt and the other by his belt and separated them letting them hand in mid air for a moment.
"What is going on?' he asked the two eight-year-old boys even while they struggled to get their hands back on each other. He held them easily giving testament to the strength that was still in his body.
"Tatsuo took my shiny stone and won't give it back," the brunette hanging by his belt yelled.
"Yeah, well, it's a stupid rock and belongs outside," the boy named Tatsuo said in defense.
"Hold it!" Jiraya said with a slightly raised voice to be heard over the arguing pair. "Tatsuo, where is the rock?"
The kid looked down at his feet. "I lost it," he mumbled shuffling his feet as Jiraya set the two on their feet.
"LOST IT!" screeched the brunette then his voice dropped into a whisper, "but my mom bought it for me." He began to cry in earnest and Tatsuo looked at him with guilt and misery written in every line of his body.
"I'm sorry," Tatsuo said.
The brunette looked at him then ran from the room tears streaming down his face. Jiraya sighed deeply.
"Tatsuo, where were you when you first noticed that the rock was gone?" Jiraya asked.
"Um, I was in the garden."
"Where were you before the garden?"
"Um, in Rees' room."
"Empty your pockets."
The boy pulled his pockets out and a hole was in one of them. He looked at it in puzzlement before looking at Jiraya.
"Why don't you go and look at every inch of your back trail from Rees' room to the garden. When you find the rock, you will give it back, apologize again, and you will be doing all of Rees chores tonight."
The boy ran out with a look of hope on his face, and then he slid to a stop at the door. "Thanks, Jiraya, I will." He disappeared.
Jiraya rolled his eyes at the departing Tatsuo then looked back at Kakashi. "He has a hard time because he doesn't have anything to remember his parents; all their things were burnt when the house went up. He just wants to find a connection to them." Jiraya explained.
Kakashi nodded suppressing the smile that had been threatening since the young Tatsuo had ran out of the room. "All I see is that you would make an excellent parent to anyone."
"Yeah, well, those two are easy now put Gaara and Sasuke into the same situation and they would probably demolish the whole house."
"Yeah, probably. So I will leave you with Naruto and check back up with you in a month, if nothing happens before then." Kakashi stood, stuffed the file that Jiraya had discarded when the ruckus had broken out back into his briefcase, and went to the door.
The two shook hands and Kakashi left. Jiraya stood watching him go before he turned his attention back to the matter and hand. He was going to have to introduce Naruto to the rest of the house.
Naruto stuffed the suitcases into the closet not bothering to unpack. She had taken a photo of her parents out and placed it on the white and yellow nightstand that sat next to the bed. She tested the bed and found that it was soft but not too soft, then looked around the room again.
Tomorrow, I am definitely going to start redecorating tomorrow. She felt excited because this was the first time that she'd had permission to do so. All the others had told her an adamant no, but she hadn't listened to them, and had changed the room that they had given her. They had seen and tried to ground her, tried to get her to put it back the way it was (which she had refused), and one had even taken a belt to her for it. She hadn't said anything through the beating but in the end the woman had regretted it because the state had filed child abuse charges against her. Naruto still had some scars left across the back of her thighs from the beating.
She moved around the room pausing at the large floor to ceiling windows that looked out onto a large garden in the back yard. Curtains formed diamond openings on the doors but the glad enclosed blinds that could be opened and closed for privacy. She had never been in a room that was so girly or fancy. Most of the people hadn't bothered much with the rooms; a single bed and a night stand, once even a book shelf but everything had been Spartan.
She looked at the clock and noticed that the time had nearly past and she should be heading down stairs to meet her new foster family.
Whooopie, big deal. She felt little enthusiasm for the newest chapter in her life. From what she had over heard everyone else was a boy, she was the only girl. Great, well, if they though she was easy then they had another thing coming.
A/N Okay another story, guess what, which ever chapter gets the most reviews is the chapter I'll update first!!! SO REVIEW REVIEW REVIEW! There is this story and the Precious Treasures story.
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