*Disclaimer: I own nothing but my original characters and ideas….and the plot bunnies in the corner. Please don't sue, I'm a poor college student that has no life and way too many video games.*
WARNING: This story contains slash, graphic scenes of sex and violence, gore, rape, torture, death, and anything else my twisted mind can come up with. This fanfic is extremely MATURE (That's why it rated M). I will not be informing you when a mature scene comes up because I will be throwing them around like glitter at a gay parade…THEY ARE EVERYWHERE! You have been warned, if this is not the thing for you, or you are too young, turn away now!
AUTHORS NOTE: Finally a freaking rewrite. Everything has been updated and there have been many changes to the plot. Thank you to everyone who stuck with this story even though it spent years in hiatus. I only came back to it because of you. This is the most popular of my stories but I had lost all interest in it. It was because of your constant emails and reviews that I realized I was doing both myself and you the reader an injustice by leaving it unfinished. Updates will be sporadic and unpredictable, but never again will I leave it to catch dust for so long.
ARTISTIC LICENSING: Now that I have your attention let me explain. There are going to be many inconstancies for the original Manga and Show. Events are going to be switched, villains will be combined, and history of the Naruto World will be shattered. Be aware that if you email me to say: "But that never happened…" or "Naruto didn't meet so and so until…" and even "That person never did that, that was actually…" I will ignore them. This is so not Canon, in fact consider it so AR that it is actually AU. Thank you.
PAIRINGS: Main = Kakashi x Naruto, others to be announced later.
"Do not fall in love with people like me.I will take you to museums, and parks, and monuments, and kiss you in every beautiful place, so that you can never go back to them without tasting me like blood in your mouth. I will destroy you in the most beautiful way possible. And when I leave you will finally understand, why storms are named after people."–Caitlyn Siehl
Pain was such a relative thing, a scale on which only the experienced could define. Before that day, Naruto had thought he had known his scale like one would a lover. He knew his limits, knew just how much could enhance pleasure and how much would break him. Naruto understood his threshold limit and today it had been truly shattered.
Madara was skilled in the art of pain and Naruto was his canvas. The Uchiha introduced the young man to levels not even he could have imagined. He was slow and careful, taking his time as he exposed Naruto to his boundary and then shoving the man over and beyond it. It took weeks, but Madara was patient, methodical almost. And as each day passed he pressed the jinchuuriki's breaking point further and further.
He had stopped screaming long ago, laying in a daze upon the altar, mouth open and panting as his insides boiled, bones cracked, and flesh melted. Tears of blood left rivers down his cheeks unheeded as his body regenerated a fraction slower than the damage inflicted, just enough to keep him alive. Mindless from the agony, Naruto could do nothing more than lay there as the process repeated in an everlasting loop.
The bijuu's red tainted chakra flowed from his pores, killing him from the inside out and repairing him nearly as quickly as each tail was extracted from him. Naruto could not even flee to the sewers of his mind as Kurama's roars of agony filled the very air, walls trembling as water surged. There was no escape, no end to the torment.
Claws grew from skinless fingers, the agony unbearable and yet unescapable. A part of him relished in it, biting through his regrown lip with sharpened teeth, believing he deserved the pain. No matter what happened –what was done to him, was being done to him– it could never atone for what he allowed, what his failures had let come to pass.
The pain was deserved because he had failed.
They were all gone, every one. Every person he had fought to protect, every single one of his precious people were gone –dead – and it was his fault.
-Your fault, broken bodies upon broken pyres. Screams singing like lullabies in the night. Gone, shapeless wind, words and promises like sand through fingers. Whispers "your fault" red moon of blood, oceans filled with it.-
The stone beneath him was coarse, wet with his own blood and fluids. Particles of grit sticking within regrown flesh. The room was dark, faceless figures surrounding the seal upon the floor, the altar in the middle within a puddle of melted flesh and torrid blood. The torches upon the wall flickered, the flames pulled to the man as red fractured, overcoming all other color. His body seized upwards, chains holding him down as his back arched, another tail leaving him to be sucked into the mouth of the demonic nine-eyed statue.
Eight of its eyes were already opened, the ninth nearly complete as it absorbed the eighth tail from the kyuubi. Soon it would be over, and even though Naruto knew that it would mean the death of him and everything that he had fought to protect, part of him was looking forward to the end. Death meant no more pain, no more having to fight for a lost cause. He was tired of going through the motions because there simply was nothing else left.
Death meant he would finally be able to see his precious people again.
-Back turned, blonde hair a cascade. "Baa-chan?" Turn, fingers limp around metal. "What is that?" Light on metal, flashing. "Tsunade, please, put it down."
"What's left," voice worn, age old, exhaustion. "It's all gone…what's left when it is all gone?"
"Baa-chan, please don't." Desperate, hesitant steps forward. Blade raised, sharp edged, worn handle. "I'm left!" Screams desperate, hesitant pause, blade halted. "Please! I need you!"
Tears cascading down worn face, rivers of sorrow. "I'm sorry," whispers, useless words on wind. Blade drops, flesh pierced and dragged, stomach open, kneeling pool of blood.
"Do you think I'll see them again?" Quiet, trees creaked in cold wind. "I want to see them again."
"Don't leave me…" Bloodless hands clinging to bloodless body.-
A small part of him rebelled at giving up, screaming at him that he could not quit, they could never give up because that was his nindo, his promise. But it was such a tiny part of him. The rest just wanted it all to end.
Do you think I'll see them again?
The room began to shake as the final tail emerged, the stone trembling as the statue's mouth opened wider. Fractures started to crawl up the cave wall and splintered apart like a spider's web upon the ceiling.
Kurama raged against the pull, claws digging into the very walls of Naruto's mind as progressively more of him was drawn into the statue. He bided his time, becoming weaker with each passing second as he waited for the opportune moment to fight back. With such a small window his timing had to be perfect. The kyuubi dare not think upon the consequences of his failure…he dare not think upon the consequences of his success either.
He readied himself, preparing his mind and body as the moment was almost upon him. There were only seconds for him to enact, and as that moment came upon him, Kurama silently begged forgiveness of his companion. Words -dark and ancient- filled the cavern, pouring from the mouth of the jinchuuriki with a layered echo voice that was not his. They destroyed his vocal cords, burning and tearing, words not meant to be spoken by mortals.
The circle around him broke, the cloaked figures fleeing as the statue cracked, the ninth eye closing as the bijuu was pulled back into the man. Madara was enraged as he was dragged from the cave. The red chakra swirled, plunging into the jinchuuriki's stomach, scorching and eating away at his skin as his mindscape buckled under the onslaught like the cavern around them.
The chakra surged through Naruto, contaminating his very being as the world crumbled. Kurama laid his weary head down upon the red water, tainted like blood and boiling as the world turned into nothing and time itself stopped. There was a moment of stillness, seconds of tranquility before everything pulled back into itself. The very heavens trembled as time became unwritten.
The broken man had simply wanted it all to end, for everything to finally be over and Kurama knew Naruto would never forgive him for what he had done.
It was the alarm that awoke him, screeching like a dying cat in the otherwise silent apartment. His hand flew out of the covers, crashing onto the frog clock and breaking it into tiny irreparable pieces. Silence once again filled the room and Naruto pulled the comforter over his head to relish in the warmth. Naruto never was a morning person, his brain slow to awaken and even slower start. He had nearly fallen back asleep before the wrongness of the situation finally penetrated his sluggish mind.
The covers flew from the bed Naruto launched himself into a fighting position, the leg of his blue pajamas twisted up to his knee and penguin cap flopping over one eye. He ripped it from his head, blue eyes darting to every shadow as he searched for anything out of place.
Everything was out of place.
Heart beating a staccato in his ribcage, he gazed upon the cap in his hand, claws tearing into the soft fabric. He dropped it, startled, breath coming in harsh pants as black tendrils started to creep into his vision.
"Calm," a voice said, echoing not in his ears but his mind. It took a moment before Naruto was able to place the exhausted tone as Kurama's. He tried to do as told, but the sight before him was overwhelming. He stood in his apartment that no longer existed in a city that had been destroyed. Only a crater marked the place that Konoha had once proudly stood. "Come to me."
Naruto could do nothing but obey. He closed his eyes, shutting out the impossible image as he forced his body to relax and breathing to regulate. Moments later he was plunged into his mindscape, crashing into the blood colored water. He blinked in surprise, confusion twisting his face as he took in the unfamiliar sight.
The water should have been blue and cold, the walls stained but whole. This mindscape was unfamiliar to him. The water was stained red, hot and nearly boiling as he sloshed his way further down the tunnels. The walls were corroded, cracked, and crumbling. Spider webbed fractures leaking red liquid.
The path to the kyuubi was familiar but the sight was not. It gave him the feeling of unease that settled like a rock in the pit of his stomach. When he reached the room that housed Kurama he blinked in surprise at the sight. The bijuu lay unmoving upon the floor, waves of red chakra pulsating off of him, evaporating the red water before it could touch his fur. The sizzle of steam almost drowned out the deep breaths of the giant fox demon.
It had been many years since he had released the bijuu from its prison, the doors open but still present if he ever was in need of sealing the kyuubi once more. Now the bars that was used to cage the beast were melted into the wall, some parts still orange and dripping liquid metal onto the floor.
"Kurama?" Naruto whispered hesitantly, approaching the beast with cautious steps.
A red eye cracked open, taking in the tiny figure of its companion. One ear twitched, the end brushing the floor as it drooped. It looked completely exhausted, muscles twitching in fatigue and chest raising in quick succession as it panted tiredly.
"Kurama?" Naruto tried again, trembling hand reaching to stroke the heated fur upon a quivering cheek. His fingers twitched before settling, the heat just barely on the side of tolerable. The red eye rolled towards him, the slit pupil contracting as it brought the boy into focus. "What's going on," he asked hesitantly, taking several hurried steps back.
The giant eye followed his movements as Naruto shifted nervously. Aside from the occasional fist bump when sharing chakra, they never really had physical contact with each other. Naruto was unsure what had made him touch the bijuu, but he had had the sudden urge to do so. It was unnerving.
Kurama's lip twitched as if reading the boy's thoughts, though he did not comment upon it. Naruto was unsure whether to be thankful for the beast overlooking his strange actions or annoyed that the kyuubi decided not to explain them.
"I am sorry, brat," the words came heavy, pressing upon him like a physical entity. "This was the only solution."
Naruto blinked at him, clawed fingers digging into his shirt. "Kurama," he whispered, gaze riveted upon the dry floor as the pulses of heated chakra washed over him. It turned the air nearly sweltering, so hot that he began to sweat. "What," he swallowed, voice catching in the thick heat. "What did you do?"
He kept his blue eyes submissively upon the ground, but the words were laced with accusation, tone bordering on desperate. Kurama blinked at him, unaffected by such emotion. "I did what I had too, what had to be done."
Blue eyes finally darted up to him, hesitant at first before they finally caught his gaze and held it. "What did you do?"
Kurama huffed at him, breath so hot that Naruto could feel his skin beginning to burn as if he had stood too long in the sun. "That damned human was killing you, he was going to enslave me and destroy what ever was left of this world. I did what I had to do to ensure your survival and my freedom," the beast chided, voice mocking as Naruto looked away in shame at the reminder of how he had given up. They both knew that the boy had been welcoming death, wishing for it almost. "I brought us back."
"What do you mean 'brought us back'?" Naruto asked, teeth gritting as he physically stopped himself from approaching the bijuu. He had the sudden urge to crawl between the giant paws and cuddle into the orange furred chest. Instead he stomped out that urge as best he could and took another step back, heels inches from the water, as if to prove that he was unaffected.
Kurama snorted in amusement at the action, perfectly aware of what was happening to the boy and why. "I made history unwritten, I tore a hole through time itself and dragged you back to the beginning," his voice was thick with pride at his accomplishment even as his eyes darted away in what Naruto almost thought was guilt. "The past is yours. You can change everything…or nothing. The choice is up to you."
"The past…" he whispered, eyes darting around the nearly destroyed room. His gaze followed the tendrils of steam as the kyuubi's chakra evaporated the blood water, mind trying to wrap around what was being told to him. "I don't think I can-" he cut himself off, ashamed at his willingness to give up. But the thought of going through all of it again was too much.
"Please," he begged, voice soft and twisted with desperation. "Please don't make me do it again. I can't…I can't do it again, I won't watch them die. Not again."
"Then change it!" The beast snapped, tone harsh but eyes soft as he fought not to let his pity show as the boy flinched. "It does not have to be the same,"he added softly. Kurama gazed upon the broken boy with sadness as the once strong being seemed to almost huddle into himself, fingers twisting into his shirt as his head hung low.
"There is another thing that you must be made aware of," he continued after a long moment of silence. Kurama waited patiently until the broken blue eyes finally looked up at him. "The technique I used to bring us here could only work if I condensed my youki within you all at the exact same moment. The human body was never meant to hold so much demonic chakra. I had to alter you in order to ensure your survival."
"Alter how?" Naruto asked hesitantly after a long moment of silence. His only reply was for Kurama to expel him from his mindscape.
Moments later he was opening his eyes and taking in the impossible room within the impossible village. He stood there for a long moment, just looking, trying to wrap his mind around the situation. It took several long minutes before he made his way to the bathroom and brought his gaze to his reflection in the mirror.
Naruto was unsure how long he stood there, gaze fixated on his reflection, but the shadows had crept steadily across the floor to stretch upon the walls by the time he tore himself away. The mirror shattered under a clawed fist, tiny cracks thin as silk splintering upon the reflective surface. It was not him, that thing in the mirror…it could not be him.
He was young, younger than he truly ever remembered being. Short, but lithe, compact body within a youthful appearance, more delicate in appearance. He looked more like his mother now than he ever did his father.
Two yellow fox ears, ends dipped red like blood, were pressed flat against his blonde hair, streaks of red breaking the colors apart. His slit pupils contracting within cerulean blue orbs, a clear membrane sliding over his eyes as he blinked. The whisker marks on his cheeks were darker, elongated with sharp incisors giving him a more feral look.
Movement out of the corner of his eye had him glancing behind before his whole demeanor slumped in defeat, a golden tail of fur and fluff waved dejectedly behind him, the red tip tucking against his leg. Something in his chest caught, shoulders pulling up and shaking as he fought down the hysterical feeling clawing a path up his throat.
A chuffing sound that he heard but did not exist grabbed his attention before the panic could set in. "Brat…" Kurama's tone was almost soft. "You are going to be la-"
"What did you do?" Naruto hissed, eyes riveted on the tiny reflective shards littering the floor. "I'm a-what am I?"
"Hanyou," he replied, voice devoid of sympathy. "A half demon."
"Why…why would you-" he stopped himself, the question redundant. He already knew why. Kurama was a living creature, selfish in its want to continue on like all living things. The kyuubi would have survived the extraction, but it would have been a slave, a puppet with a master scripting all of his lines.
The bijuu had done much worse to retain its freedom before, this was a minor thing in comparison.
"You are going to be late," Kurama reminded him gently.
Naruto moved slowly, limbs jerky and disjointed as if he had been sedated. The closet was full of the orange jumpsuits he vaguely remembered being so fond of years ago. It felt like a lifetime between then and now, almost as if he was experiencing the memories of somebody completely different. He had not exactly been the happiest of children, but his current reality and this lie that he had been dropped into were a kaleidoscope of differences.
Movements almost methodical -as if on autopilot- he got himself ready for the day. Ripping a hole in his pants for his tail, he spent longer pulling his sanity into place than he did his clothes but he refused to think upon it…could not afford to think upon it.
Please, gods…don't be real.
Making his way to the window, Naruto almost leapt out before Kurama delicately reminded him to place a henge upon himself. He paused there, one foot upon the sill and he imagined for a moment what the consequences would be if he went outside just as he was. The thoughts were not kind, the realization of how the village he loved so much would react were even less so. He would not survive the day.
Pulling himself back into the room, he concentrated for a long moment, trying to remember what he had looked like back when his village was whole and his precious people were still alive. A puff of smoke filled the room, leaving behind a blonde child that was so familiar and yet not. A flash of metal pulling his attention away.
His hitai-ate lay innocently and undamaged upon his night stand. Naruto had not worn it for many years, not after Konohagakure.
-Crater, fires smoldering. Hole where home used to be.
"Leave them! There's no time!" Hands pulling, yanking, desperate fingers with desperate faces.
There, than not. Space of nothing. "Iruka!" Gone.-
Naruto picked it up carefully, fingers hesitant and shaking as if he thought it would disappear at his touch, a terrible mirage of what was. It was solid in his hand, metal cold and cloth soft. The headband was heavier than the actual object, the weight of his failures dragging it down.
Kurama chuffed at him, a comforting reminder as Naruto tied the hitai-ate in place. He took to the roof tops, open shoes barely touching the surface, a butterfly kiss of contact as he propelled himself forward. The villagers below went about their day as they had every other day, unknowing on how fragile it all truly was. Looking at them made Naruto feel like he was looking directly at the sun.
He learned quickly to just not look at all.
The school was solid and whole, the door unbroken, the building still standing proud. So easily it had collapsed, roof caving in as children screamed in terror…then they had screamed in pain. So many had been trapped, rubble caved into tiny pockets of survivors. Those that had survived the initial blast had died there, alone in the dark.
At night, Naruto could still hear them crying, his own voice pleading with Iruka who refused to leave even one child behind. His first true friend died with them, trying futilely to dig them out. But there had not been enough time and Konoha had burned around him as the teacher kept digging even as everyone else evacuated. He had kept digging when the ground began to tremble, and still yet when Konoha buckled and fell into itself before an explosion turned the night sky into fire.
Do you think I'll see them again?
His body had never been found and Naruto knew that there was nothing to find. His brother in all but blood was ash now, dark flakey specks that fell from the sky for weeks after. It covered everything for miles, almost like snow as it blanketed the trees, clinging to their perspiring skin like war paint.
Some of the Konoha shinobi took the ash and painted designs on their flesh, almost ceremonial in its likeness. Naruto never figured out if they did it in remembrance or if they did it as if to make themselves forget that the ash was the only thing left of their family.
He took a deep breath, chest expanding quickly with clean air as he gathered his memories and emotions, placing them within a dark corner of his mind that he labeled 'do not touch'. He then carefully erected a mask around himself, trying desperately to remember what happiness felt like. He honestly could not remember, but he knew how to pretend like he did. Naruto had always been good at pretending.
A smile plastered itself across his face, painted with enthusiasm and joy –lies– that was just a little too wide and he made his way inside the academy. It was with a heavy heart and mind that Naruto Uzumaki, the village idiot and prankster, twenty-seven turned twelve, walked into a dead classroom full of dead friends. He made sure to squint his eyes as he smiled, a mask to hide the monster beneath.