Uchiha Lord 15: This idea came to me when I was reading a fic about Deidara and Sasori raising Naruto. I hope you like it!
Pain: Aren't you forgetting something?
Uchiha Lord: Oh yeah, I don't own Naruto.
Uchiha Lord: Or Pain or Konan, or anyone else in the series. Happy now?
Pain: As happy as possible.
Nagato and Konan leaped through the trees. Technically, it was Konan and Nagato's Deva path Pain, which had been made from the corpse of their long dead friend Yahiko. The real Nagato was hidden on top of a nearby mountain, guarded by the other five Pains. As they traveled, Nagato remembered the conversation they had had that led to this trip.
"Nagato, what do you think about the Kyuubi attacking Konoha?" Konan asked.
"I think it will ultimately be good for them," He stated calmly.
"What!? How can you think that will be good? They lost their Hokage and about a hundred Chunin and Jonin!" Konan shouted at him.
"Exactly. They now know what true pain is. It's exactly what we're planning on doing. Now that they have experienced pain and despair, they will seek peace and will become less violent. Overall, it will help the village to grow and become a better place," He concluded. Konan frowned.
"Talking about it subjectively, that makes sense, but for some reason I'm having doubts about it."
"I don't know, call it intuition. I just have a feeling it won't play out like we expect it to," She told him.
"I don't see why not. If you'd like, we could go to Konoha to see the proof," He offered.
"I think that would be a good idea," Konan said thoughtfully.
So now they were traveling to Konoha to see the changes there in order to assure Konan that their progressing plan would work.
Their plan was rather simple: They would use the chakra of the nine Biju to build a super weapon that would wipe out entire nations with a single shot. The pain brought to the inhabitants of said nations would cause them to seek peace instead of war, ultimately bringing a temporary period of peace to the world, or at least the continent.
They arrived in Konoha a little less than a week after the Kyuubi's attack. Nagato's main body and the other five paths of Pain were hidden on top of – yet again – a nearby mountain.
The two of them had taken the time to blend in a little bit; They wore long, dark gray, hooded cloaks that covered them completely. Nagato was using a very small genjutsu to make his Rinnegan look like normal dark blue eyes. He was also hiding his facial piercings so as not to draw attention to himself. Konan had no need for genjutsu, since she had no doujutsu or piercings to hide. Neither of them was wearing their slashed Amegakure headbands.
"The trip was pretty long, do you mind going to get a snack?" Konan asked him.
"Not at all. You can get something to eat while I take a look around," He told her. She nodded and they quickly found a stall selling sweets and tea. While Konan sat down and looked for something good, Nagato began walking around the village, looking for a leaf nin to talk to. He soon found one, a Chunin with a beard and a cigarette sticking out of his mouth.
"Excuse me, can I talk to you about something?" Nagato asked politely. The man glanced at him and shrugged.
"Sure, I got nothing better to do." He leaned against a wall and took out another cigarette as the one he had in his mouth went out.
"Well, I'm a foreign ninja, I came here because I heard of the Kyuubi's attack and I wanted to check up on some friends of mine who live in Konoha. I happen to know some things about the Biju, and I wanted to ask you a question."
"Go ahead," The cigarette smoking Chunin said.
"Well, I know that the Biju can't be killed, only sealed away. I also know that the most common container is a newborn child, who can adapt to the Biju's chakra. I was just wondering who the Yondaime used as the container." The man's eyebrows went up.
"You do know a lot," He remarked. "Why do you wanna know?"
"Curiosity." Nagato answered. The man shrugged.
"I haven't seen him myself, but I have heard he's got bright blonde hair and his name is Uzumaki Naruto. Oh, and he's apparently guarded by ANBU, so there's no point in trying to kill him, if that's what you're after."
"I'm not an assassin," Nagato said, a little disgruntled. The man held up his hands apologetically.
"Sorry, didn't mean to upset you. Anything else you wanted to ask?"
"No, thank you." Nagato walked away. He returned to Konan, who was finishing her dango and green tea.
"So, what did you find out?" She asked casually. He sat down and leaned closer, speaking in a low voice.
"The jinchuriki is a blond boy named Uzumaki Naruto. Have you heard that family name before?" She thought for a moment before shaking her head.
"Nope, never. He's not affiliated with any ninja clans."
"That'll make him an easier target when we're ready," Nagato said thoughtfully. They sat there in silence for a moment. Konan was drinking the last of her green tea when they heard a shout. They both turned curiously to see a mob of civilians all yelling and apparently attacking something on the ground. The two shinboi picked up a few of the things they were yelling.
"Yeah, you little monster!"
"Who are they attacking?" Nagato wondered aloud. He peered forward to try and see the target of the villagers anger. He couldn't see anything at first, even with his Rinnegan. Then he saw something that shocked him to his core. "No, that can't be…" He trailed off as he and Konan stood up and took a few steps forward to get a closer look. Konan gasped. They looked at each other for an instant then ran forward together. A long black blade slid out of each of Nagato's sleeves and he grabbed them, holding them like swords. Konan performed a jutsu with her chakra infused paper.
The villagers were taken completely by surprise when three of them were slashed across the back by an orange haired man. They were turning to fend him off when he snapped his arms back the other way and threw the blades like two long kunai, stabbing two more men in the stomach and knocking them down. Before anyone could attack him, two dozen small blades made out of paper shot down from the sky, stabbing several more people and keeping them down. The men looked up to see a blue haired woman floating above them by use of her large wings. She folded the wings and fell to the ground, crouching down. Without a word, Nagato placed a hand on her back and leaped up over her. As soon as he did, Konan snapped the wings out to their full length and swung them in a large circle, sending paper blades in all directions, easily taking out the rest of the civilians. An ANBU member who had been leaning against a wall watching the civilians attack their helpless victim, was now running forward, pulling out his sword. Nagato thrust his hand out as he fell and a burst of wind flew forward, hitting the ANBU in the stomach and sending him flying backward. He crashed against a wall and his head hit it hard. He fell to the ground, unconscious.
Nagato and Konan rose to their feet, completely unblemished. Konan's paper wings fell apart, and the paper slid back under her cloak.
"Thank you, thank you so much!" They turned to see a young girl approaching them. She had a bruise on her head. "I was taking care of Naruto when his guard knocked me out. I woke up to see them attacking Naruto, but I didn't know what to do. I'm a medic nin, not a fighter," She explained.
"Well then, don't you think you should heal Naruto?" Nagato asked. She gasped.
"Yes of course, I'm such an idiot sometimes!" She knelt down and put her hands over the bleeding blond baby. He had been stabbed and cut in various places across his body, it was a miracle he was still alive. A blue glow surrounded him as the girl healed his wounds.
"What's your name?" Konan asked her.
"Shizune," The girl answered. The glow vanished and Naruto was perfectly healed. "Oh, I can't believe even the ANBU would try to kill him! I mean, he's a baby! I don't care what reason they have, they have no right to try to kill a helpless baby."
"I agree," Nagato said calmly. He was calm outwardly, but on the inside he was wishing he could take each of the people who had attacked Naruto and teach them what happens to real monsters like them. Sadly, they would probably get away with a very small punishment. Shizune picked up the baby and cradled him.
"I should take him to Tsunade-sensei, she'll know what to do," it seemed as if Shizune was speaking to herself.
"Tsunade? Of the Sannin?" Konan inquired. "She's your sensei?"
"Yes. Why, do you know her?"
"Kind of," Konan said. "We met her a long time ago."
"Well then, would you like to come with me?"
"No thanks," Konan told her with a smile. "She probably doesn't even remember us."
"Okay. Well, thanks for saving Naruto." Shizune waved goodbye as she headed for the Hokage tower. Nagato was watching her leave while thinking about the attack when Konan called to him.
"Nagato, what are you waiting for?" He looked up to see her standing on top of a building. He shunshinned next to her.
"What are you talking about?"
"I'm talking about following her to make sure Naruto doesn't get attacked again." Without waiting for a reply, Konan took off after Shizune, leaping from building to building. Nagato followed.
"That's not at all what I expected." He told his friend.
"Well, if you think about it, it makes perfect sense. They were hurt by the Kyuubi and they want revenge. Naruto is a convenient if illogical target, so they went after him. It's the chain of hatred all over again."
"I know, but I had expected them to want peace, not more violence!" Nagato exploded. "It doesn't make sense!"
"Nagato, I'm worried that our plan will have the same results," Konan confided.
"Simple. If we take out an entire nation, any survivors will have a monstrous amount of hate and anger in them, and they'll want revenge. Whoever used the weapon will be their target, and if they can't do anything to that person, their revenge will simply build and build until they just lash out at anything. My point is that they'll be like those villagers; they'll just want more revenge instead of peace. They held an incredible amount of hatred towards a baby, just because he has the Kyuubi sealed inside him. The demon destroyed less than a fourth of Konoha. If we make a weapon that destroys an entire nation, there's no telling how angry the survivors will be. And they'll have a logical target. It won't bring peace, Nagato, it'll just bring more hatred!" She suddenly got very angry at the end of her little speech. "You'll break some of the old chains of hatred, but you'll create a new chain. That's the exact opposite of what we want."
Nagato had absolutely no response. The problem was, he agreed with her. Everything she said was right on target.
Then what will we do? He asked himself.
"Konan, you keep following Shizune, I need some time alone." Konan nodded. Nagato stopped on the next roof while Konan kept going.
Dammit! This is not good. Well, it's better than following through with our plan and having it fail, but still! I was sure this would work, now it looks like fear and pain won't help at all. Even worse, it'll make new chains of hatred, as Konan pointed out. What am I supposed to do now? I'm the messiah, I should be able to figure out how to bring peace to the world!
Shizune entered the Hokage tower and quickly went upstairs to the Hokage's office. After a brief argument with the secretary, Shizune was let in. Tsunade and her teammate Jiraiya were there, talking to Sarutobi, the Sandaime Hokage.
"Shizune, is something wrong?" Tsunade asked her apprentice.
"Yes, Tsunade-sensei." Shizune quickly related the details of the attack on Naruto. When she was done, both Sannin and the Hokage were astonished and angry.
"How dare they even think of doing that to him!?" Tsunade erupted.
"Who were the two people that saved him?" Jiraiya asked Shizune.
"One was a man with spiky orange hair, he used a pair of odd black blades and a Futon jutsu. The other was a woman with blue hair. She made wings and kunai out of what appeared to be paper." Jiraiya gaped at her for a moment.
"Did you see a man with red hair nearby?" He asked eagerly. Shizune thought for a moment.
"No, I don't think so. Why?"
"Because, I'm pretty sure I know those two. Tsunade, do you remember during the third great ninja war, when you, Oro, and I ran into those three war orphans from Ame?"
"Yes, because you stayed with them for three years to train them."
"Well the girl, Konan, she developed jutsu to control paper, in order to make use of her origami talents. And Yahiko had spiky orange hair, just like Shizune described. The third one, Nagato, he had red hair, not to mention the Rinnegan."
"THE RINNEGAN!?" Tsunade exploded. "You met someone with the Rinnegan and you never told us?!"
"I told Sarutobi sensei, but for some reason I never got around to telling you and Oro. And anyways, I heard they all died a few years after I left them. I hope Nagato didn't die, that would be really bad."
"Well, if we can find those two again, we can ask them," Sarutobi reasoned. "I'll send out an ANBU squad to search for them."
Konan was leaning against the side of a building across the street from the Hokage tower. She had sent in some paper butterflies to keep an eye on Naruto. If someone attacked him, the butterflies would turn to weapons and attack, buying enough time for her to get to him. She felt sad as she saw Jiraiya and remembered Nagato saying that they shouldn't contact him. She knew that Nagato disliked Konoha ninja because of the incident during the war, but Jiraiya had cared for them and taught them for three whole years, and she still thought of him almost as a surrogate father. She doubted that Nagato had lost his own feelings for Jiraiya, but she knew he would act as though he had.
She was lost in thought and in the small communication she had with her butterflies when she suddenly found a kunai at her throat. She came out of her reverie and looked up at a man with ridiculously spiky silver hair, wearing his headband at an angle so as to cover his left eye.
"I saw you and your friend attack those people," He told her. "I don't disagree with helping Naruto, I would have done the same thing if you hadn't gotten there first, but I would know you if you were from Konoha. Who are you and your friend and where are you from?"
"We're travelers, we're not affiliating ourselves with any ninja village."
"You could never have gotten as strong as you are without formal training. What village were you originally affiliated with?" She hesitated for a moment.
"Ame." He raised an eyebrow.
"You expect me to just believe you?"
"Well if you don't believe me, why don't we go talk to the Sannin? Jiraiya-san knows me and he can confirm that I'm from Ame."
"Maybe I will. Where's your friend?" Konan shrugged.
"I don't know, he went off by himself to think about something." Kakashi frowned. He was a master of reading body language, and he couldn't see any sign that she was lying.
"Okay, come with me." He kept the kunai at her throat as they went up to the Hokage's office. Kakashi told the receptionist that he had a foreign ninja who wanted to talk to the Sannin. They were sent in a few moments later. Konan smiled when Jiraiya's jaw hit the floor.
"Konan!" He yelled, shocking everyone in the room. "It is you!" He darted forward and was about to hug her when Tsunade grabbed him by the back of his shirt and yanked him away.
"Don't try to feel her up, pervert!" She snapped at her teammate. He sent her an angry look.
"She's a former student of mine, I'm happy to see her again, and I wasn't trying to feel her up!" He thought for a moment before adding, "Much."
"Jiraiya-sensei," Konan began kindly. "Do you know I keep a stock of paper that's dipped in poison that can enter through a person's skin and paralyze him for several hours while causing him intense pain?" The Toad Sage paled and backed away a few steps as Tsunade laughed.
"I like her style," The slug queen said, grinning at the blue haired girl. "But Shizune said that your friend Yahiko was with you." A pained look flashed across Konan's face, and was noticed by everybody in the room.
"No, that was Nagato." She saw Jiraiya open his mouth and she quickly cut him off. "It's complicated. When Nagato arrives, he can explain, or not. Just wait, he'll show up." Jiraiya nodded and his teammate and sensei followed his lead.
About forty minutes later, the door opened and Nagato walked in, with another ANBU holding a kunai to his throat. He waited for the ANBU to leave before facing Jiraiya and dropping his genjutsu, revealing his Rinnegan and facial piercings.
"Bu-but, Nagato had the Rinnegan!" Jiraiya exclaimed. "Not you Yahiko!"
"I am Nagato, not Yahiko. More specifically, I am Pain." This naturally raised a lot of eyebrows.
"Pain?" Sarutobi inquired.
"yes, Hokage-sama. This form goes by the name of Pain."
"This form?" Jiraiya repeated. "What do you mean by that?" Pain glanced at Konan who nodded very slightly. He took a deep breath, then launched into an explanation.
"Yahiko died several years ago. Because of his death, my Rinnegan activated to a higher level than usual, allowing me to use jutsus instinctively. I summoned an unusual creature that killed many of the people responsible for Yahiko's death. Unfortunately, I failed to kill Hanzo and Danzo."
"Danzo? What did Danzo have to do with Hanzo?" Sarutobi asked.
"They formed an alliance with the intention of getting rid of the group we had formed. Our group was determined to bring peace, but Hanzo believed we would get in his way, so he pretended to offer us an alliance. He kidnapped Konan and told me to kill Yahiko or watch Konan die. I didn't know what to do, I froze up," He admitted. "Yahiko and Konan were both willing to die for the other. Yahiko then grabbed my hand and forced me to stab him in the heart, killing him. That was when my Rinnegan activated and Hanzo and Danzo ordered their men to kill me. During the fight my legs were severely burned and damaged. I learned the technique that made the Rikudou Sennin so powerful. It allows the user to reanimate corpses and use them as his own bodies, by use of demodulators implanted in the body. Yahiko's corpse is one of six that I control. His is the most powerful, bearing the title of the Deva Path. Altogether, they are known as the Six Paths of Pain. The demodulators are the body piercings." He gestured at his nose and ear studs.
"So where is the real you?" Jiraiya asked.
"My real self was, as I already said, handicapped. I'm currently in a chair like device with legs attached for transport. I have many large demodulator rods implanted in my back, allowing me to transmit my chakra to the Six Paths." There was silence as the leaf ninjas absorbed everything they had heard.
"Well, may I ask what your intentions are now?" Sarutobi directed his question at Pain.
"I'm not sure anymore," Pain admitted. "I've been thinking for a long time about the best way to bring peace to the world as my ancestor the Rikudou Sennin did. I thought I had found the solution; My belief was that by bringing great pain to people, I would cause them to seek peace instead of war, initiating a period of peace in our lands. At first I thought that the Kyuubi's attack would have the same effect on Konoha, but then Konan and I witnessed the villagers trying to kill Naruto, for no other reason than that the demon is sealed inside of him. I have therefore come to the conclusion that my method would only have bred more hatred and revenge. So, right now, I simply wish to observe people in general so that I might have a better idea of how to bring about peace. If you will allow it, I would like to become a citizen of Konoha."
"Why not become a ninja?" Sarutobi asked.
"Because with my abilities I will be sent on A and S rank missions, and I am afraid that missions like that will cause the exact opposite of what I want. I would not be adverse to taking on the occasional mission that I agree with, but I do not want to be an official ninja of Konoha."
"Nagato, you won't get a good understanding of people if you're always in Konoha," Jiraiya warned him.
"I disagree. Besides, there is one more thing I wish to do since I will be staying in Konoha."
"Oh? What's that?" Sarutobi inquired. Pain smiled in anticipation.
"I wish to adopt Uzumaki Naruto in order to protect him as he grows up." A stunned silence followed his words. Even Konan was staring at him in shock. Jiraiya broke the silence.
"I think the Nara would say something like: 'This is gonna be really troublesome'."