A Fractured Blossom, by Weebee.
Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto or Ranma ½. Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go run from the Ninja lawyers and practitioners of martial arts law that are hunting me down as we speak.
Summary: We all know that Sakura Haruno's got some unusual mental issues, what with inner Sakura and all, but when a new mental voice shows up during her fight with Team Dosu, things go from awkward to just plain weird.
Timeline:Early season 2, and about six months after the end of the Ranma ½ Manga.
Note: Everyone seems to have a Naruto fic, right? Well, this is mine. I'm not terribly familiar with the series, and even worse, what I AM familiar with is the English dub of the Anime. I'm quite aware that this loses me points with the rabid fan-people. To be brutally rude and honest, deal with it or bite me.
Prologue: Good morning, Sakura.
The clearing in the middle of the forest of death was silent, save the ragged breaths of the Ninja, and the pained gasps of Rock Lee as his head threatened to explode from the sound wave attack that he'd just finished being assaulted by. This lasted for several seconds, as Sakura Haruno looked on in shock and Naruto and Sasuke lay, unmoving, until Dosu stepped forward, sneering.
"Now, just stay down while we take care of Uchiha." Stepping forward, he made the metal apparatus on his arm ready for use with a soft series of clicks, and Sakura moved, removing her Kunai from its spot at her waist and hurling it with all the strength she had.
The man responded quickly, merely raising his arm protector and deflecting the small knife with a clang before speaking. "I almost forgot about you completely." He admitted.
"You leave them alone!" Sakura proclaimed, her hand darting for her belt pouch and coming up with three shuriken, which she pitched swirling through the air. This time however, Dosu didn't move, Zaku darting in front of him and raising his arms to emit a strong gust of wind that knocked the bladed stars back at Sakura, who barely dodged to the side in time to be punched in the gut by Kin.
As the pink haired girl pitched over forward, Kin grabbed a hank of her long hair, yanking her head harshly. The younger Kunoichi had no choice but to sink to her knees, a sharp gasp coming to her lips as she desperately tried to regain the breath she'd just lost. "Hmph, pathetic." Kin spat, looking down at Sakura contemptuously. "You know, if you spent as much time on your fighting skills as you did on this silky hair of yours, you would have done much better."
Sakura didn't respond, now only able to look on as Dosu studied her teammates. "So, what do we do now? They're all incapacitated." The man commented, casually.
"How about we let this little beauty queen watch as Zaku finishes off her friend?" Kin suggested, tugging on Sakura's hair again.
Her two partners nodded, and the compressed air user started towards Sasuke as Sakura's left hand sank to the ground, its fingers drawing small furrows there as she tensed up. 'I… I can't believe it.' She thought, her eyes welling up with a single tear. 'I keep ending up on the sidelines during these fights, and the one time I'm the only line of defense between my team and death, I… I fail like this?' As she thought that, several images of her past battles flashed through her head.
She'd always thought herself one of the better Ninja in the class, despite her poor performance in physical activities. Her Jutsu skills were adequate, and she was at the top of the class in written assignments, but that had all not seemed to matter when she'd been put on a team, in the real world.
In the first test, she'd ended up tied to a tree, then she'd had to stand by helplessly during that whole mess with Zabuza and Haku. Now, she'd managed to get four shots off, all of which had done nothing, and then gotten immobilized almost effortlessly. She knew that the grasp the other woman had on her hair would slow her down, probably just enough to get her throat slit by a Kunai, if she tried to escape. 'It's hopeless.' She groaned, finding that more tears were following the first down her face.
"Wow, you're acting pathetic." A voice split through Sakura's depression, and she let her head rise to find that she wasn't being held anymore. Instead, she was standing in the middle of a dark chamber, the only illumination provided by three spotlights. Confused, she looked around only to see there were two figures present. One, which seemed strangely familiar, was like some black, shadowed version of herself, made entirely of outlines. It was scowling, and glancing between her and the other figure, who was a red haired girl about her own height, her hair tied into a pigtail.
"Who?" She asked, blinking.
"My name's not important right now." The other her said, shrugging, and continuing her glaring session.
"Aw, Kura-chan, ya wanna cut her some slack? She's pretty confused." The other figure said, and Sakura recognized it as the voice she'd first heard.
"For the last time, Saotome, do not call me that." 'Kura-chan' retorted, angrily. "And I thought you were the one who thought she was acting like a cry baby this time?"
'Saotome' snorted, and then grinned at Sakura slightly apologetically. "Doesn't change the fact that she's probably real confused." She answered. "Ta answer your question, I'm not sure who she is. As for me, I've been sittin in your head for the past twelve years, or so. Name's Ranma Saotome, sorry 'bout this."
"Twelve years? But that would be ever since I was born." Sakura said, confused. "I… think I've heard her before, but you…"
Saotome shook her head sadly. "Look, I'd like ta explain, but we're a bit short on time. Time here's a lot faster than it is outside, since we're pretty much talkin inside your head, but that guy's gunna kill Lover Boy and Naruto soon." Sakura noticed that the redhead's face scrunched into disgust when she mentioned lover boy, who she guessed was Sasuke, and blushed, both in embarrassment and annoyance.
"Fine then, what do you want?" She asked, deciding to cut to the chase.
Saotome sighed. "Look. Up 'till now, I've been willing ta let you live your life, and stay settled down in my little section of your brain. Mostly, that's cuz you're way too girly for me to keep myself from throwing up. Now, though, you're in a situation where you're probably gunna die and take two other people with ya, and as a martial artist I gotta interfere."
"Wait, you're offering to help me?" Sakura asked, letting the girlyness comment slide for the moment. At Saotome's nod, she started shaking her head. "I… I've hidden behind everyone else all the time already, and it's gotten me in this mess. I have to fight them myself." She resolved, gulping.
Saotome snorted again. "Normally, I'd agree with ya, and I admire you for sayin it." She said, seriously. "These guys, though, they're real tough. Not the best situation for yer first real battle, ya know?" Seeing that both Sakura and her inner shadow were looking ready to argue, she continued quickly. "I promise that if ya let me help this time, I'll teach ya all I know about the martial arts."
Sakura blinked, as if realizing that this person had never specified how she was going to help her until now. "All you know is more Taijutsu?" She asked, in disbelief. "How will that help?"
Saotome glared, as if her pride had just been injured, and Sakura's shadow gave her a look as if she'd just mentioned that the sky was bright pink. "Ya know that Lee kid?" The redhead growled, finally. "I'm like what'd happen if his Sensei had no morals whatsoever and had sixteen years ta mold him into the perfect fighter, 'n I've listened in to every Ninja lesson you ever took. I've even already got a few strategies cooked up ta help against those idiots out there. Trust me, I'm better off in combat than you."
Sakura thought for a moment, then nodded. She really didn't have any other choice, after all. "Fine, but what do you want in return?" She demanded, her eyes narrowed.
"Look, all I want is ta keep you, and therefore me, alive along with your friends if I can pull it off." The redhead admitted. "Now, that guy with the tubes in his arms is almost at that Uchiha guy, so if you'll excuse me."
"That's Sasuke-kun!" Sakura exclaimed, but then stepped forward, taking the redhead's hand.
The last thing she heard before the world went white was "Whatever."
When Sakura's eyesight cleared again, she found that her body was already moving. She tried to look around, but it seemed almost like there was someone else behind her eyes, and she was some sort of spectator. Deciding that this must be the help that Saotome offered, she watched nervously as her body jerked itself forward, and she felt several follicles rip free of her scalp. Still this did get her out of Kin's grasp, and as the Sound Ninja tried to react to this development, the small pink haired girl's right foot lifted, moving backwards in a mule kick that connected with her knee, breaking it with a loud crack.
Wincing, the girl thought that she wouldn't usually use such brutal force, but the other Ninja would likely try and do worse if she wasn't immobilized, and this was a life or death battle. As Kin fell to the ground, screaming with the sudden pain of a shattered knee, Sakura pushed off the ground with one arm, dashing forward more quickly than she ever had before.
Just as Zaku was raising a Kunai to plunge into Sasuke Uchiha's heart, a red blur impacted, her left elbow smashing into his head as her right hand snatched the knife away, chucking it into a tree limb up to the hilt. Her danger sense flaring, the Kunoichi rolled away as Dosu's chakra guided sound waves passed through the air where her head had once been. Rolling to her feet, Ranma Saotome cursed her body for being far too out of shape as she tried to catch her breath.
'Hey, I train every day!' Sakura's mental voice echoed, irritated.
'Not nearly enough, now be quiet.' Ranma returned, taking up a defensive stance.
"I see, so you want to play using Taijutsu too, do you girl?" Dosu said, bringing his arm up to his side. "Just like your friend, you must know that I can disorient you before you can start to fight, making it impossible for you to stand."
The pink haired girl shrugged, giving the Sound Nin an irritating smirk. "Y'know, I gotta ask. Why do all you idiots explain yer moves to your enemies while you're fighting 'em?" She asked, causing the others in the clearing to be taken aback by the change in her speech patterns. Seeing that there was no response, she continued.
"Well, for once I'm gunna try it, see why it's so appealing. All I'm gunna say, though…" She started, as she moved one hand down to the hem of her dress, "is that I found a way past yer technique, and all because you explained it to me." In one smooth motion, she tore a large strip of her clothing off, then tore this in half, ignoring the protests of Sakura in her head. Rolling the fabric slightly, she jammed it into her ears, then secured it there with her Ninja headband.
Dosu smirked, not seeming bothered, and aimed his arm at his opponent. Sure enough, when he created his attack, she didn't even tremble. "Hmm, it looks like you're right." He conceded, moving into a stance himself. "That was pretty stupid of me." Not seeming to be bothered at all, the Sound Nin charged in on the attack, his two companions following.
Nearby, where they were hiding, Team 10 watched on, surprised. Even Shikamaru had let an expression of shock pass his face for a brief moment, before covering it again with a mutter. "How's Sakura doing that?" Choji exclaimed, excitedly. "I thought she was finished there, for sure!"
"So did I." Shikamaru replied. "Yamanaka, Haruno used to be your friend, did you know she could do this?"
Ino shook her head, having trouble not gaping as her old friend and current rival somersaulted over Zaku Abumi's wind cutter attack, allowing it to slam into Kin Tsuchi, who had just managed to work herself past the pain in her knee and was trying to get back into the fight. "She never showed me any of this!"
Granted, Ninja weren't supposed to advertise special techniques, but this kind of training was something that Sakura would have had to practice for her entire life, and the two had been good friends for a long time. Plus, Ino had no idea where she would have learned it, since she came from a civilian family.
"Well, this does mean we won't have to help her." Shikamaru said, leaning back slightly. "That would have been quite troublesome."
Choji nodded, laughing nervously, before Ino clubbed him in the back of the head with her hand.
Back in the fight, Ranma winced as yet another sound cutter attack swung past her, slashing another part of the damned annoying dress. She wasn't really worried about the thing, but Sakura's angry yells were starting to give her a headache. The worst part was that the air pressure user, who had recovered shortly after realizing that she'd blindsided him and quickly joined the fight, wasn't her most dangerous opponent.
Dosu was still perfectly good at Ninjutsu without the advantage of his fancy toy, and for some reason he'd kept trying to get close and punch her, something she wasn't ready to allow, especially given Sakura's body's relatively frail state. Frowning, she started dodging, and allowed her mind to drift for a moment.
'I can't believe it, she's destroying my clothes and constantly insulting my skills, I mean she is protecting the others, but she's so obnoxious!' Sakura was complaining, as Ranma focused in on her voice.
'You know I can hear you, right?' the martial artist drawled, causing Sakura to quiet down, and a distinct sensation of embarrassment to wash over her mind. 'Look, I'm havin a bit of trouble here, and I wanted ta ask you something.'
'I thought you said you knew all of my Jutsu?' Sakura returned, sounding both insulting and worried.
Ranma didn't directly respond to that, but the next time she wanted to dodge, she concentrated for a moment, and then disappeared in a poof, the replacement jutsu moving a rock into the way of Dosu's hammer blow. 'No, I wanted to ask for permission to go full out.' The currently dominant personality explained. 'I can go faster, and be stronger, but yer not conditioned for the amount of Chi I would need ta use to do it, and it's gunna damage your body.'
'Damage my body?' Sakura asked, nervously. 'How much?'
'Nothin permanent… I hope.' The martial artist explained. 'Just a lot of pulled muscles, maybe some bruised or cracked bones, depending on what I do. Trust me, you'll be sore.'
Sakura considered objecting, until one of Dosu's punches connected, and both of them were rattled. It seemed as though the vibration from the blow shot through their bones, and continued for far longer than either expected. Flying back, and teeth still rattling from the blow, Ranma just barely managed to bounce off of the tree she was heading for at break-neck speed, bouncing to her feet. "What the hell was that?" The Kunoichi exclaimed, indignantly, not really paying attention as the ear-plugs fell from her ears.
"As I said, sound is Vibration." Dosu said, smugly. "So I can cause you great damage simply by striking you, thanks to my melody arm."
"Gee, thanks." Ranma said, sarcastically, running forward and landing a hard kick across the guys face. "Now what'd I tell ya about explaining techniques, idiot?" Jumping back while the man recovered, she turned inward again. 'Well?' she asked.
'Do it." Sakura replied, still feeling her teeth ache slightly from the vibration attack, and knowing that Ranma was having trouble keeping on her feet, due to the nausea building in her stomach.
The pink haired Kunoichi nodded, confusing everyone in the clearing, and then blurred into movement more quick than any that had been made before, ignoring as her legs sent signals of burning pain from the exertion. Jumping at a now fully recovered Dosu, she moved both arms as if they were connected to pistons, driving them into his right arm with a rapid, and loud, repeating bang. None of the Ninja there had heard a machine gun, but if they had they would have made the comparison instantly.
As she sprang back and landed, the pink haired girl smirked. Dosu was about to ask what she thought she'd accomplished, when he realized that his melody arm had more cracks in it than it had once had. As he watched, the thing fell from his forearm, shattering as it reached the ground.
"How dare you?" The Sound Ninja roared, his face twisting in anger for the first time in the fight, though some fear could be seen there as well.
"I dare 'cuz I'm the best." Ranma replied, a cocky smirk dominating her face, as she did her best to ignore her throbbing fists. Still, this battle had been all but won, as Dosu looked tired, as well as angry, and Zaku would be easy enough to take out if fought on his own. Cupping her hand, she channeled some of her blue Chi into it, launching it at her primary opponent with a cry of "Moko Takabisha!".
Nearby, all three members of team 10 blinked again. "Did she just do that without a Jutsu?" Choji asked, panicking.
Before anyone could respond, two soft thumps were heard behind the group, and a new voice butted in. "Is this a private show, or can we join you?" Neji Hyuga drawled, his byakugan fully active and the veins around his eyes bulging.
All three of the Ninja who were already there felt rather sheepish for letting the others sneak up on them, but Ino shielded this sheepishness by asking a question. "Neji, why are you guys here?"
"We're looking for Lee." The boy responded, "And I see him over there, but," He continued, raising his hand as Tenten tried to run past him, "I think we should get a bit more data on this fight before rushing in."
Tenten nodded and waited as her partner peered over the bushes with the others. For herself, all she saw was Sakura, her uniform ripped to shreds, squaring off against two sound Ninja, a third laying against a tree and knocked silly. Also, Naruto and Sasuke were laying under a tree, Lee sprawled nearby. Worried, she finally asked, "What do you see?"
Neji's eyes narrowed for a moment. "There's something wrong with Haruno's chakra, for one." He started. "It's like she's using her stamina before combining it with her mental energy, which I've never seen before."
The others gasped, as it was very rare indeed to hear the Hyuga branch house member admit that he hadn't seen something before, but Neji ignored them as he continued. "Also she's torn over a dozen muscles in her arms and legs, as well as breaking several bones in her fingers."
"So… what do we do?" Choji asked, nervously.
Neji was about to respond, when his eyes widened in visible surprise, and all hell broke loose.
'How did you do that without hand seals?' Sakura gasped, but Ranma only smirked, though she was heavily panting. Dosu had been thrown into a tree, which looked like it was going to keep him pinned for a while, and she turned to Zaku.
"I'll tell ya later." The pink haired girl muttered, forgetting to simply think for the moment, and then spoke louder. "So, how about ya give us yer scroll and take off?"
"Not on your life!" Zaku snarled, and raised his arms. Ranma started towards him, accelerating as quickly as she could, but wasn't quite fast enough. "Super-sonic wind cutter!" He screamed, and a blast about as powerful as a Hiryu Shoten Ha smashed into the Kunoichi. Even Ranma's adaptability wasn't quite enough to counter this, and she found herself lifted into the air, her hands held desperately in front of her body to keep the chakra sharpened wind from impacting her torso or head.
After slamming into a tree of her own, and feeling that she'd sunk in about a foot, the martial artist groaned, and started coughing up blood. "Okay, that hurt." She muttered, and could hear Sakura's mental voice screaming in pain within her head.
Prying herself out of the hole, she fell forward, and ended up holding herself just above Naruto Uzumaki's body. "Oh, Sakura-chan, I'll save you!" The blonde boy said, with a happy grin, and then promptly rolled over in his sleep. Then, another sound came, that of someone groaning and moving nearby.
Looking, Ranma and Sakura gasped in unison as Sasuke's head rose, quickly followed by him propping himself up on his arms and forcibly rising to his feet. Almost instantly afterwards, a column of purple and black energy exploded around the last remaining loyal Uchiha, and his skin began to take on patches of modeled black. Unfortunately, the two didn't have much time to observe these changes, as the force of the aura knocked Ranma backwards, landing on her back.
Growling, the martial artist hauled herself to her own feet, and studied Sasuke for a moment. She knew who he was, as she sat in a lot of Sakura's classes, and if the martial artist wanted to learn anything about chakra she had to put up with the girl's constant mooning at him, but what she saw now shocked her.
Extending her chi sense and her learned ability to sense chakra at the same time, she gulped, and kept the bile from entering her mouth only through force of will. "That… that's the darkest aura I've felt in a while." She muttered, eyes wide.
Since Sakura was sharing a mind with the martial artist, she'd felt all of the same sensations, and had to agree. 'Sasuke, what's happened to you?' She thought.
"You want it Sasuke, you want power, don't you?" If she'd had control of her body at the moment, the pink haired girl would have shuddered. She didn't want to remember that, especially not now.
"Sasuke, what the hell's wrong with you?" Ranma managed to say, giving voice to Sakura's words slightly less eloquently than she would have liked.
The last Uchiha turned to the voice, and one eye widened as he saw Sakura, favoring one side and with a steady stream of blood running down from a broken nose. "Sakura?" He asked, "who did this to you?"
"That doesn't matter," Ranma said. "What happened to you, and why's yer chakra feel so… evil?"
Sasuke laughed, almost sounding manic as he spoke. "I'm fine, Sakura." He explained. "This is the gift HE gave to me! I need power, to avenge my family, and I don't care if I have to sell my soul to get it!"
'To avenge… his family?' Sakura thought, as Ranma's eyes narrowed.
She really didn't like talk like that. It sounded far too much like some of the stuff she'd heard from people who abused their power, but before she could say anything, Sasuke spoke again. "Now, tell me, which of these people hurt you?"
"Hehehe, worried about your girlfriend, eh?" Zaku sneered, not noticing that his leader, who was still half dazed from Ranma's last Chi attack, was looking horrified behind him. "Well, I'm the one who caused her all that pain. What're you going to do about it?"
Sasuke didn't respond, only moving in a blur. The Sound Nin tried to get off an attack, but was too slow as Sasuke dodged his wind cutter, getting off a phoenix flower jutsu to distract him before getting behind him and dislocating his arms.
Ranma frowned as the man screamed in agony. 'He could have just knocked him out.' She thought. 'If he's not going for killing blows, there's no need for torture like this.' Sasuke didn't seem to hear this, since as Zaku fell, he turned towards the sound team's leader, who was backing up and raising his hands. Even though he tried to hide it, Dosu was scared, for some reason, and looked ready to give in, though Sasuke didn't seem to care, starting to walk towards him casually.
"No way!" Ranma roared, knowing that the black haired boy would likely kill or maim this person as well. As she got closer to Sasuke, and was about to raise her hand for a knock-out blow, she felt a lurching, tugging sensation and Sakura regained control, stumbling forward and throwing her arms around the boy's body. "Sasuke, stop!" She cried, desperately, and surprisingly, he did.
In the pink haired girl's mind, Ranma and her inner self watched the scene play out, as Dosu begged Sasuke for his life, and offered his scroll. "Well, it looks like they're safe." The redhead grumbled.
"You don't exactly sound pleased." Inner Sakura said, and by the look on her face, neither was she.
"I had them almost entirely beat, and even if they don't know about me, it was YOUR body that did all the fighting, and now this freak's bowing to Uchiha to spare his life when all he did was use excessive force." The redhead ranted, getting an annoyed look from Inner Sakura.
"Hey, I like Sasuke-kun." She pouted.
"Yeah, but you agree with me." The martial artist responded, then looked out at the world again, as Sakura started to try and wake Naruto. "Still, that aura I felt around the Uchiha has me worried. Felt worse than Ryoga on his worst day, almost like…" She shook her head, and then started walking into the shadows.
"Hey, where are you going?" Inner Sakura asked, irritated.
"Back to where I don't have to see her fawn over some guy." Ranma returned.
"But, now that she knows you're here, she's going to want to talk to you at some point." Inner Sakura explained, impatiently.
"Don't worry, I'm not going that far back." Ranma returned, then smirked. "It's almost like you're worried about bein lonely up here."
"Ah, just get lost!" Inner Sakura yelled, and turned away with a huff.
Okay, yes, this is my obligatory Ranma/Naruto crossover. I know this kind of thing's been done a lot before, but I did it this way because I thought it would be funny. As for how Ranma got in there, that… is a secret! No, actually, it's not. Sakura will extract the story from Ranma for you nice people at some point, I'm sure.
Please note that, while this is not in the vault, I can't see myself updating it that often. I wrote it in a haze while I was supposed to write something else, so… yeah.
Please don't kill me.