Beach Interlude Re-post

Chapter 17

Naruto came out of kitchen and yelled, "Pervy-Sage, you're late!"

Jiraiya's eyes darted around in embarrassment before he shoved Naruto around the corner and whispered in a harassed voice, "Hey, I told you not to call me that in public."

His student ignored him and his blue eyes raked him over knowingly, "Yeah- yeah, so, what held you up this time?"

Jiraiya blushed, "Oh nothing… I was just doing some re-search."

"Oh I bet you were - you probably stopped at that town with all the strip joints down the road," Naruto accused him with a shrewd look.

Jiraiya shot his apprentice a quelling glance before shifting his eyes meaningfully toward Tsunade, warning him to shut the hell up in front of her, "No, no - of course not."

Itachi decided to come to the old pervert's rescue and asked everyone to follow him to the library. Hinata went into the dining room and had everyone else come with her to the library. The Hokage and Nana brought their glasses of sake with them.

The library was a large room with windows on one side of the room and skylights in the ceiling. One side of the wall contained many books as well as several shelves filled with scrolls. Nana had arranged the chairs in a circle with a chair for Itachi a little further away so everyone could see him well.

He sat down in his chair at the top of the circle. Tsunade and Jiraiya sat across from him. Hinata took the chair closest to him and Nana flanked him on the other side. Shikamaru, Naruto and Sakura filled the vacant chairs that were left.

Itachi glanced around the room and saw he had everyone's attention and with brief and concise language he shared about his recent illness and how he came across Hinata and how she and Sakura had healed him.

"Hey, how do you know Hinata so well?" Naruto asked him after he had finished as he scratched his head.

Hinata leaned forward in her seat and answered gently for Itachi, "Naruto-kun, Itachi and I are old friends from when I was very young. At one time our families were planning an alliance between the Hyuuga and the Uchiha. Itachi and I were to be married when I became old enough."

Several eyebrows were raised at once, as the alliance between the Hyuuga and Uchiha had been conducted in secret and this was the first any of them had heard of it.

Naruto was going to say something but Sakura interceded by giving him a dark look. Naruto sat back meekly in his seat and watched Sakura warily out of the corner of his eye.

Itachi looked around the room to make sure he had everyone's attention before continuing.

"Sasuke and I were born into the Uchiha clan's legacy of hatred and violence…we have great power with the Sharingan, but it comes at a great cost. That legacy of power helped corrupt my clan. Over the years the clan had been becoming more corrupt, continually feeling unsatisfied being the police force for Konoha. They felt they had been distanced from the rest of Konoha and it created resentment. Many of the Uchiha had started meeting secretly to plan an uprising against Konoha. While I was growing up a great deal of pressure was applied to me to join in their rebellion," he paused for a moment so they could absorb his words.

Jiraiya shared a glance with Tsunade as they listened to the young Akatsuki member in front of them share how he was stuck in the middle of clan resentment and Konoha politics. He was not surprised when Danzo's name was mentioned as the one who gave the order for the clan's elimination.

The Hokage's eyes were regretful as she interrupted him, "My sensei left me a memo stating he had attempted to end the hostilities between your clan and Konoha but he had been out-voted by Danzo and the other elders."

"Yes, Lady Hokage, he did try but I believe Madara Uchiha was secretly controlling Danzo behind the scenes. I am not sure about the other two advisors, Homura and Koharu, I just know they voted with Danzo, to destroy not just the leaders of the uprising but the women and children as well," Itachi supplied with a grim twist of his mouth.

An emotional silence permeated the room as he continued, "The reason I believe he was involved was because around the same time I was given my orders, Madara Uchiha showed up and told me he was planning to invade Konoha along with a neighboring village. He'd never forgiven Konoha or his clan for not supporting him in his bid to become Hokage. I offered to allow him to assist me in destroying the clan and give him his chance for revenge in exchange for not attacking Konoha. He agreed. On the night of the massacre I was supposed to kill my brother Sasuke, but I couldn't go through with it. In order to keep Madara from killing him, I had to join Akatsuki and promise to help him accomplish his goals," he admitted before breathing out shortly and continuing.

"After I carried out the order, I went before the council and made them promise to not harm my brother. I offered to take all the blame for the massacre if they kept the truth of the clan's uprising a secret from Sasuke. And I threatened to share Konoha's secrets with other nations if they tried to harm him. I also pleaded with the Third to protect my brother from them, in return I would watch over Akatsuki and Orochimaru for him. He watched over Sasuke until his death," he said sadly.

"Shortly after the Third's death, I used the excuse of trying to capture Naruto to enter the village. My real goal was to remind Danzo and the others that I was still around and to keep their promise to me," he said firmly.

"Yeah, I remember that time. If you cared for your brother so much, why did you beat the crap out of him and put him in the hospital?" Naruto yelled at him.

"Naruto-kun, I had no choice, I had to make Sasuke hate me - in order to make him stronger. It was the only way I could help him survive."

"Well, I don't agree with you. It was because of you he left the village in the first place," Naruto shot back.

"Yes, that is true. He sought out Orochimaru's training in order to defeat me," Itachi admitted. "However, I think it was just a matter of time before that event took place. You see, Orochimaru had coveted the Sharingan for a long time. When I first joined Akatsuki, he attempted to use his Living Corpse Reincarnation jutsu on me and I used my Sharingan to counter it. I injured and humiliated him and forced him out of Akatsuki in order to find a new body to use. A few years later, he began to set his sights on my brother," he said with a look of distaste on his face.

"Regarding Sasuke, I plan to meet Sasuke very soon to give him a chance to defeat me. I will need your help to protect my brother. Akatsuki must not be allowed to capture him. Sasuke is also travelling around with a team of leftovers from Orochimaru's experiments. We will need to also keep them away from us while we fight," he said as he turned toward Shikamaru.

"Nara Shikamaru, I specifically requested you to be at this meeting because of your ability to plan. As I said before I received detailed information about your fight with Hidan. I know for a fact you did not just get lucky in defeating him. You planned out all the details for every situation and defeated him. I will need your help in collecting my brother. I will assist you by being the bait to catch him. Otherwise, he will not return to Konoha until his goal of defeating me is fulfilled," he explained as he glanced over at Naruto.

"Lady Hokage, I will need two teams to provide back up for me when I meet my brother, I will give you the meeting place a week or before it happens. You will need to have one team intercept Sasuke's team and another to stop Madara, who also is known as Tobi from coming near our location. Another person is Zetsu, He is an Akatuski member who is a spy, I know he will be in the area. I will provide you with details about their abilities before you leave," he stated as he looked at the Hokage.

"I will have to fight Sasuke until he is at the end of his limits in order to draw out Orochimaru and seal him and his filthy curse mark away forever. I will need you to capture both of us and bring us to Konoha for medical attention. For the information I provide you against Akatsuki I wish to be given a pardon as well as one for my brother. If you cannot give us both full pardons I wish at least the chance to make reparations for my past crimes and prove my worth as loyal shinobi to Konoha. Lady Hokage, I will accept whatever punishment you give me as long as you pardon my brother," Itachi said humbly.

Sitting next to him, a flash of worry came over Hinata's face at the thought of him being punished.

"Itachi, if you prove yourself worthy and do not betray us, I will be very fair in my judgment of you," The Hokage promised firmly.

"That is all I ask Lady Hokage. I am ready to come home and help defend my village," Itachi said as his eyes glanced meaningfully toward Hinata. He surprised her by standing up next to her and holding out his hand. Blushing furiously as she put her hand in his, she slowly stood up next to him and looked at him with wide, confused eyes.

"Lady Hokage, I have one more request of you. Hinata and I would like to be married - would you perform the ceremony for us?" Itachi requested as he felt his future bride start to faint, he caught her before she hit the floor.

To be continued in Part II…

Author's Note: Sorry it took me so long to finish this. It took me a while to edit all of the details of Itachi's past, etc. Anyway, this is the last chapter, part II will start soon and will be practically rewritten because it sucked so bad. There were a few scenes/settings I liked so I will leave some of it in but it will be a lot shorter than it used to be.

Also, regarding my use of Lady Tsunade vs Lady Hokage, in the anime if some of you notice it is sometimes translated like that in the subtitles. I know for sure Shizune calls her that on occasion. I decided to go with Lady Hokage just to simplify it.

Manga spoiler notes: (Ch 511) Dang, I really liked the last chapter, for once Kishimoto didn't destroy a romantic moment. The scene where Konan was bandaging Yahiko's wounds and they share a look, it was touching and so sweet. Also, I liked how Nagato was standing out in the rain giving them their time together. (Aww) I liked that there wasn't an ugly romantic love triangle between the three of them that was really refreshing imo.

Edited: 5/4/13. I just started posting again for part II, thanks so much for reading:)