This is my first story I'm posting on . I've been a long-time reader of fanfiction, and I have plenty of plot bunnies, but I have hardly any time to develop them into stories. Hopefully, this story won't end up being too shabby. It's been a while since I've written fanfiction, with school and all.

This is a response to Hyssopus's challenge, posted on his profile. I was reading his story—which any fans of the Naruto-becomes-Minato plotline should definitely read—and when visiting his profile page, the challenge he set up had instantly captured my interest, so much in fact that I ended up writing chapter one of a potential story. So here it goes.

Summary: Response to Hyssopus's challenge. Having the voice of a bloodthirsty demon in your head is bad enough, but the Shinigami doesn't take Naruto's opinion into account when he sends the dead Hokages in his seal, intent on restoring the balance of good & evil. The pair of arms he threw in don't really matter, after all. The day after the funeral of the Third Hokage, Naruto suffers through the most unpleasant experience of meeting four very confused (and confusing) voices in his head, one of which is the voice of the dead and buried Third Hokage.

(summary paraphrased from Hyssopus's challenge on his profile)

DISCLAIMER: I do not own Naruto.


The Invasion

There was blood everywhere.

The Konoha genin looked around him in horror. Bodies laid everywhere, buildings had been crushed into rubble, and blood… blood flooded the streets, running along the grooves in the road that typically carried rainwater away from the village.

The boy chanced a look at the nearest dead bodies, a man and a girl who couldn't have been much older than an academy student. The man laid face-down in the dirt with two kunais in his back, but the hitai-ate on his arm carried an hourglass. The girl, eagle-spread with blank eyes staring into the sky, wore a different ninja headband on her forehead, but the symbol was that of a single music note. The genin recognized both symbols immediately, and noticed that all other bodies on the street wore either headband.

Suna. Oto.

The genin quickly darted down the street, staying in the shadows and moving as quickly as he could, avoiding the carnage. It took all of his willpower not to throw up, but when he reached the center of the village, he couldn't suppress the urge anymore. Bodies covered the streets, multiplying the closer he got to the stadium where the Chunnin Exam Finals were taking place.

Wiping his mouth with his sleeve, his eyes caught a flash of purple in the sky, and turned to see what looked like a large purple box sitting atop one of Konoha's biggest and highest buildings, with small forms of cloaked ninjas surrounding it.

He didn't have any time to ponder the appearance of the strange sight though, because he was whisked away by a pushy jounin who was helping the civilians and genin evacuate into the safe houses underneath the Hokage Mountain.

However, the genin did have time to wonder if what he saw was real or not. From what he had glimpsed in those few moments, the Death God himself arrived within that purple barrier, and from the fearsome Shinigami four wispy figures rose, floating through the barrier before vanishing into the sky. Later on, he dismissed his memories as hallucinations caused by extreme stress, and didn't think any more of it.

What the nameless genin did not know was that the four wispy figures were not hallucinations but actual spirits, and that the Death God was going to restore the balance of good and evil through a lone jinchuuriki named Uzumaki Naruto.

Sand creeping closer. Lungs bursting. Head spinning. Need chakra…

"Shit!" The blonde-haired, sapphire-eyed genin swore when he felt sand creeping around his ankles, quickly engulfing his shins and feet.

The boy, known as Uzumaki Naruto, frantically tried twisting his way out of the grainy clutches of the sand, but to no avail. Less than ten meters away, a giant sandy being stood, cackling madly. Blue veins of pulsing chakra showed on its arms, while between its crazed yellow-and-black eyes was a small figure, embedded in the creature's forehead and slumped over as if asleep.

"PREPARE TO DIE, HUMAN!" roared the Ichibi no Shukaku, the one-tailed demon raccoon-dog. Laughing maliciously, the demon commanded the sand to engulf Naruto, watching in sadistic glee as the jinchuuriki struggled to escape. "YOUR BLOOD IS MINE!"

A couple meters back stood another black-haired, onyx-eyed boy with two other girls; one pinned to a tree by sand, sporting cherry pink hair, and the other hiding fearfully behind a tree, slightly older than the first two with blonde hair pulled into four pigtails.

"No," whispered Uchiha Sasuke in horror, watching helplessly as his teammate was engulfed in sand. "NARUTO!"

The blonde-haired girl, Sabaku no Temari, dipped her head in resignation. "Uzumaki Naruto, I'm sorry…"

However, Naruto heard neither of the two's words, instead struggling with the sand, now up to his neck. As he felt the sand rise and crash down over his head, Naruto was suddenly filled with fear.

"I can't die," he murmured, his eyes darting frantically back and forth, continuing to twist and turn despite the uselessness. "I can't die! I… I haven't saved Sakura –chan! I haven't taken Jiji's hat! I haven't become Hokage!"

As the walls of sand closed in, Naruto felt the despair in the pit of his stomach grow. He could hear the roars of the demon fox sealed into his stomach, screaming at him to do something. But Naruto couldn't do anything but watch the sand come closer and closer, the demands of the Kyuubi no Kitsune fading into the background.

Naruto squeezed his eyes tight, and prayed with all his heart to Kami-sama. 'Please… please don't let me die… please…'

Suddenly, Naruto felt like someone had punched him in the gut. Looking down, his eyes widened in shock as he saw the ends of what looked like tendrils of white chakra pass through his stomach, before he heard a voice in his head; not the voice of the Kyuubi, but something less evil, less menacing… more human.

"Use the chakra… Summon with the chakra…" Bewildered, Naruto felt his empty reserves fill to full capacity, and suddenly, was struck with the memory of the Kyuubi attack.

'Kyuubi… a demon like this crazy Gaara guy. The Yondaime Hokage… a ninja, like me. And The Boss Toad Gamabunta…… a summon… that I have!'

Naruto, never one to look a gift horse in the mouth, swiped blood from the corner of his mouth, whipping through handseals at a rate he had never before reached.

Just as the sand began to wrap around him completely, Naruto slammed his hand through the sand and yelled, "KUCHIYOSE NO JUTSU: GAMABUNTA!"

So here's the end of chapter 1. I hope all you readers liked it, and I'll try to get the next chapter up in the next week or so. Please let me know what you all think.

Also, if anyone is interested in being my beta for this story, please PM me. Thanks!