"A Dragon's Will of Fire"
Chapter 1: "Take the Stage, Goku Sarutobi"
Disclaimer: Naruto and Dragon Ball Z belong to VIZ Entertainment. Naruto is the creative property of Masashi Kishimoto, and Dragon Ball Z is the creative property of Akira Toriyama. I make no money whatsoever from this story and I am only doing this for fun.
Author's note: This story came to me courtesy of a young man called "keemsaiyan." He entrusted me to write this story, and I like to think my spin on it will make sure this story comes out as good as possible. I won't give too much away, but suffice it to say, it asks and answers the question of what would happen if Son Goku's space pod had landed in Konoha when it came to Earth. The only thing I can safely say is that Goku will not learn ki attacks. If that's not enough to dissuade you, read on.
Hiruzen Sarutobi, recently reinstated as the Hokage in the wake of Minato Namikaze's untimely death, glared at the paperwork on his desk. Oh, how he wished he could burn it to ashes, but his village needed him, so he could hardly afford to do that. Still, the thought crossed his mind more than once.
The one thing I never missed about being Hokage, Sarutobi thought wistfully.
Unbeknownst to him, he was going to get a nice little distraction from his paperwork in five, four, three, two, and . . . one.
"Lord Hokage!" an ANBU burst in, and Sarutobi recognized him as Kakashi Hatake thanks to the dog mask he wore.
"What is it?" Sarutobi asked, looking up from his paperwork.
"A strange pod crashed onto Hokage Monument, and a baby boy fell out of it!" Kakashi replied.
"Is the boy harmed?" Sarutobi asked.
"You'll have to see it to believe it," Kakashi answered.
"Very well," Sarutobi said. "Take me to him."
When Kakashi brought Sarutobi to the scene, Sarutobi was not quite prepared for what he saw. First of all, the baby boy had the strangest hairstyle he'd ever seen, black spikes sticking out in all directions with no apparent pattern to them. Second, the baby boy had a monkey's tail protruding from his backside.
"What is he?" Sarutobi asked.
"I'm not sure," Kakashi replied. "His clan might be involved with monkeys somehow, judging by his appendage."
"Was he unharmed by the fall?" Sarutobi asked.
"That's the strangest thing, Lord Hokage," another ANBU, this one with long purple hair and wearing a cat mask, replied. "From the looks of it, he didn't even feel that fall, and Hokage Monument is pretty high."
"What do you suggest we do with him?" Kakashi asked.
"I'll take care of him," Sarutobi replied. "For now, we'll keep the pod a secret. Bury it somewhere it won't be so easily uncovered."
"Why?" Kakashi asked.
"People fear what they do not understand," Sarutobi answered somberly. "If there is any cause to doubt the boy's origins, fear will automatically take hold and it will lead to trouble. I do not wish to see an innocent child harmed."
Kakashi looked at Sarutobi strangely, but let it pass. "What are you going to call him?"
"Goku," Sarutobi replied with a smile. "Just like the Monkey King of legend."
Seven years later . . .
Seven years later . . .
"Goku! Goku, it's time to wake up! GOKU!"
A head full of spiky black hair just turned and hunkered closer to the pillow.
A low growl came from the spiky-haired head, belonging to a seven-year-old boy known as Goku Sarutobi. "No, Grandpa . . . I'm not ready to wake up yet."
Just then, the sheets were thrown off his body, exposing him to the cool air. "Goku, you will get up so that you can be on time for your first day of school."
"You suck, Grandpa," Goku muttered to the Third Hokage as he reluctantly got out of bed.
"Up and at it, grandson," Hiruzen Sarutobi replied with grandfatherly affection mixed with stern authoritativeness.
It didn't take long before a pair of ANBU was tailing Goku as he went to the Ninja Academy. Goku had dressed in a blue martial arts gi and a pair of orange slacks, specially designed to hide his monkey tail. Goku had wondered why he had to hide it, but Sarutobi had warned him that not a lot of people would understand how he had a tail and would assume he was something dangerous. He didn't understand what was so dangerous about a monkey tail, but he figured the old man knew what he was talking about and let it alone.
"This is going to be so boring," Goku muttered.
At the head of the class was a young chunin in the standard Leaf ninja uniform, his only distinguishing features being a spiky upward ponytail and a horizontal scar across his nose. "Hello. I'm your instructor Iruka Umino. Raise your hand when I call your name. Shino Aburame!"
"Here." This was said in a borderline emotionless tone.
"Here!" This was accompanied by a loud munch.
"Here!" This one word was spoken in a peppy shout.
"Here." This was said much more hesitantly than the last, and with a stutter at that.
"Here." This was spoken in an aloof, almost cold tone.
"Here." This was said in almost a defiant growl.
"Here." This was said with a lazy drawl, as though it were too much effort to even speak a monosyllabic word.
"Here!" This was announced quite spiritedly.
"Here!" Goku shouted.
"Here!" a spirited female voice shouted.
"Here," a calm, somewhat relaxed male voice replied.
"Here!" a bright, cheery young voice shouted.
"Here!" a boisterous female voice shouted.
"I'm going to step out for a minute," Iruka said. "You all have the opportunity to get to know each other." Iruka walked out of the room, leaving the students alone.
Hinata looked at Naruto hesitantly, a blush on her face. Sakura and Ino were both looking at Sasuke, who didn't seem to notice them. Tenten was staring holes in Neji, who didn't seem to notice her at all. Shikamaru was just sleeping, while Choji was eating his chips.
"Hey, why don't you go talk to him?" Goku suggested to Hinata.
"Um, I . . . I . . ." Hinata stammered, unable to speak properly.
"Ok, I'll show you how to do it!" Goku declared, and jumped up so that he was next to Naruto. "Hey, buddy, how you doing?!"
"You . . . you're talking to me?" Naruto asked.
"Yeah," Goku replied. "Why wouldn't I?"
"But . . . nobody talks to me!" Naruto uttered, still stunned out of his mind that somebody would want to talk to him.
"What about Grandpa? He talks to you," Goku said.
"Well, he's old!" Naruto responded.
"Well, yeah," Goku admitted. "I wouldn't call him Grandpa if he wasn't old. But, seriously, I know at least one other person that wants to talk to you!"
"Who?" Naruto asked.
Goku pointed at Hinata, whose blush turned even redder. "She wants to talk to you. Why don't you go over to her?"
"I'm . . ." Naruto started to say, but Goku grabbed him by the arm and pulled him over to Hinata.
"Start talking!" Goku declared.
"I'm Naruto Uzumaki! Would you like to be my friend?" Naruto asked.
"I'm . . . I'm Hinata . . . Hyuga . . . and I'd . . . I'd like . . ." Hinata could barely get the words out, and then she fainted, which prompted Goku to catch her.
"What happened?" Naruto asked. "Is she going to be ok?"
"I don't know," Goku replied. "She must have a fever or something. Why would her parents send her to school if she's this sick?"
"I'll take her to the nurse," Neji cut in, walking toward them.
"Thanks," Goku said. "Mind if we come with you?"
"No, you're not coming with me," Neji denied.
"Why not?" Naruto asked.
Neji just glared at the two boys and carried Hinata away, much to Goku's and Naruto's dismay. "I don't get it," Naruto said. "She was fine a minute ago." Then he turned to Goku, a faintly accusatory look in his eyes. "Hey, wait, she didn't faint until you made me talk to her!"
"I didn't know she was going to faint!" Goku answered.
"Why don't you two losers just quit it?" a purple-haired girl named Ami asked them. "It's obvious Hinata's allergic to the two of you."
"Shut up, Ami!" Ino shouted. She turned to Goku and smiled at him in an effort to comfort him. "Don't worry; she's just a big meanie."
"Thanks," Goku said.
"Girls . . . what a drag . . ." Shikamaru mumbled in his apparent sleep.
After the school day was over, Goku decided to hang out with Naruto for the rest of the day. He'd have invited Hinata to come with them, but Neji was constantly guarding her, although the long-haired boy didn't seem to be very happy with it. Goku just wondered why he'd do something he wasn't happy doing, but then he figured Neji was her brother and brothers had to look out for their sisters.
As they were walking down the street, Goku was oblivious to the looks Naruto was getting. Naruto seemed oblivious to those looks himself, but what Goku didn't know was that Naruto was quite aware of how they were looking at him. "Hey, how about I take you to my favorite spot?" Naruto asked.
"What's that?" Goku asked.
"Ichiraku's Ramen!" Naruto replied spiritedly.
"Ramen?" Goku repeated.
"You've never had? You're missing out, buddy!" Naruto shouted, dragging Goku to the ramen stand. "Ten miso ramen for me, please!"
"Sure, and what'll your buddy have?" Teuchi, the owner of the ramen stand, asked.
"Twenty pork ramen!" Goku replied.
"Wow, you two young men have big appetites!" Teuchi remarked. "Where will you put it all?"
"In here!" Goku shouted, tapping his stomach.
"Your orders will be ready right away!" Teuchi declared.
Soon enough, Goku was faced with twenty bowls of pork ramen and Naruto was faced with ten bowls of miso ramen. The two boys broke their chopsticks apart and gleefully thanked Teuchi and his young daughter Ayame for the meal before digging in and eating like they'd never seen food before.
"Wow!" Ayame giggled. "Naruto's friend has just as big an appetite as Naruto!"
When they were finished, both Naruto and Goku were patting their stomachs. "So good . . ."
"You gonna pay for that?" Teuchi asked.
"I'll pay!" Goku replied, dropping enough money to cover both his and Naruto's meals along with a tip. "Thank you!"
"You're welcome!" Teuchi responded cheerfully. "Come again soon! By the way, what's your name?"
"Nice name," Ayame remarked, giggling.
"Thanks!" Goku answered, before he and Naruto took off for more fun within the walls of Konoha. "So what do you wanna do now?"
"How about we paint the Hokage Monument?" Naruto asked.
"Are you sure about that?" Goku asked. "It's the Hokage Monument! I don't wanna get in trouble!"
"It'll be fun!" Naruto insisted.
"Ok, fine!" Goku conceded. "But I choose the colors!"
"Ok!" Naruto cheered.
The next morning, Sarutobi found the Hokage Monument painted in varying shades of orange and blue with some hints of black. He went to Goku's bedroom and tugged the young boy out of bed. "Goku! Do you know anything about what happened to Hokage Monument?"
"No, Grandpa, what happened?" Goku asked.
Sarutobi showed him, pointing at the repainted Hokage Monument. "That's what happened."
"Oh!" Goku exclaimed in realization. "Naruto and I did that! Do you like it?"
"While I appreciate your interest in art, I would also appreciate that you not use Hokage Monument as your canvas," Sarutobi replied.
"What's a canvas?" Goku asked.
"It's something you use to make art," Sarutobi answered. "Now, I'm going to find Naruto and he's going to join you in cleaning up Hokage Monument. Understood?"
Goku sighed. "Understood, Grandpa."
Four years later . . .
Four years later . . .
"Since you'll be graduating from the Academy this year, I believe it's time for you to learn your element," Sarutobi said.
"Element?" Goku repeated.
"Yes," Sarutobi confirmed. "All shinobi have a special affinity to one of the five elements – earth, wind, fire, water, and lightning. That affinity determines which element you can most easily convert your chakra to, although with enough training and control you can use another element, albeit not as easily as your natural one." He gave Goku a piece of paper. "Try channeling your chakra into that."
"Ok," Goku said, channeling his chakra into the paper. Surprisingly enough, its edges ignited and turned to ash before the rest of the paper turned damp. "Huh?"
"It seems you have both fire and water, although your stronger element seems to be water," Sarutobi explained.
"Aw, man . . ." Goku groaned.
"You sound disappointed," Sarutobi observed.
"How am I supposed to fight anybody with water?" Goku asked. "All I'd be able to do is make them wet!"
Sarutobi chuckled. "That's not all you can do with water. Come with me and I'll show you."
The aged Hokage took Goku to a waterfall, pointing it out to him. "Wow!" Goku exclaimed.
"See?" Sarutobi asked. "Water has its strong points, too. Water can be gentle enough to nurture life, but it can be just as destructive as it is nurturing. See that waterfall? With enough power and momentum behind it, water can sweep away just about anything unless it's rooted firmly enough. The best thing about water is that it represents balance; its gentle flow can nurture life, and its rushing power can destroy anything in its path."
"Wow . . ." Goku murmured, having a newfound respect for water.
"Now, I'll take you to school," Sarutobi said. "I'm sure you're anxious to see all your friends again . . . especially that girl Ino . . ."
"I don't know what you're talking about, Grandpa," Goku answered with complete honesty. "We're just friends."
"I'm willing to believe that for now, Goku," Sarutobi teased affectionately. "But what do you want to do with your life once you become a shinobi?"
"That's simple," Goku replied. "I'm going to be the strongest ninja on Earth, stronger than even the Hokage! If I'm strong enough, I can protect everyone in the world!"
Sarutobi smiled and ruffled Goku's hair. "You make an old man proud, grandson."
One year later . . .
One year later . . .
"Leave them alone, Mizuki!" Goku shouted.
"Sarutobi's little brat!" Mizuki shouted, turning away from Iruka and Naruto and throwing the giant shuriken he was going to throw at them at him instead. To his shock, Goku caught it.
"You want this back?" Goku taunted.
"Goku, get out of here!" Iruka shouted.
"No can do, Iruka-sensei," Goku said. "Naruto's my buddy. Now, Mizuki . . . catch!" He threw the giant shuriken back at Mizuki with such force that even when Mizuki dodged, it cut down several trees.
"What kind of freakish strength is that?!" Mizuki asked.
Goku began performing hand seals rapidly, finishing with a shout. "Water Style: Raging Waves!" He spat a veritable tidal wave out of his mouth and at Mizuki.
"What the –?" Mizuki shouted as the torrent of water crashed into him and knocked him around until he was left high and wet on the ground. He growled. "Hey, Goku! How would you like to know the truth about your buddy?! Why none of the villagers want anything to do with him?!"
"What are you talking about?" Goku asked.
"Mizuki, don't!" Iruka pleaded.
"Twelve years ago, the Nine-Tailed Demon Fox nearly destroyed this village, but our esteemed Fourth Hokage defeated it!" Mizuki shouted with manic rage. "But he didn't kill it! No, he bound it to a baby boy born on that damned day! That baby was none other than Naruto Uzumaki, the reincarnation of the Nine-Tailed Fox!"
"You're full of crap, Mizuki!" Goku shouted. "Naruto might have the Fox sealed inside him, but he's not the Fox! He's my best friend, the guy I play pranks with, the guy who's going to be Hokage someday! He's Naruto Uzumaki!"
Naruto, who'd almost been in despair at Mizuki's revelation, was relieved to see that nothing had changed in Goku's eyes. "You hear that, Naruto?" Iruka asked. "You have friends here. You have people who'll fight for you and with you no matter what. Just like me . . ."
"Iruka-sensei? Why?" Naruto asked.
"I was a lot like you once," Iruka admitted tearfully. "I couldn't bear the pain of being alone after my parents died because of the Nine-Tails, so I became a prankster and a troublemaker just to get people to look at me, to acknowledge that I was there. Naruto . . . I don't blame you for what the Fox did. You are Naruto, not the Fox. Understand?"
"I hate to break up this touching moment, but it's time for you to die!" Mizuki yelled.
"Still haven't given up?" Goku asked. "Fine!" With a Body Flicker, Goku was in Mizuki's face immediately, and he socked him in the stomach. "You won't touch Naruto if I've got anything to say about it!"
"You brat . . ." Mizuki snarled. "You monkey freak! I know all about you, too!"
"What are you talking about?" Goku asked.
"Wondering why you don't have a tail anymore?" Mizuki mocked. "It's because thanks to that tail, you turned into a monster just like the Nine-Tails and you'd have destroyed this village yourself if that thing hadn't been cut off and sealed! But your granddaddy didn't wanna tell you because he thought you couldn't handle it!"
"I thought I was sleeping that day . . ." Goku uttered. He was tempted to call Mizuki a liar, but then he remembered the seal tattoo at the base of where his tail had once been, and he realized that he couldn't.
"Hey, Goku!" Naruto shouted. "You're my friend, too! You're not a monster, tail or no tail! You're the guy who plays pranks with me! You're the guy who was my first friend! You're the guy who's going to be the protector of the entire ninja world! You hear me?! You're Goku Sarutobi!" He glared at Mizuki. "Hey, bastard! I've got a surprise for you!"
"And what would that be?" Mizuki taunted.
"Shadow Clone Technique!" Naruto shouted, summoning what had to be hundreds of extra Narutos.
"Wow!" Goku shouted. "How'd you figure that one out?"
"Try anything you like!" the veritable army of Naruto shouted. "I'll throw it back at you times a thousand!"
"Bring it!" Mizuki yelled.
"Famous last words," Goku mumbled, jumping out of the way as the army of Naruto descended upon Mizuki and beat the living hell out of him.
After Mizuki had been turned in to the proper authorities, Naruto walked up to Goku sporting a new headband identifying him as a shinobi of the Leaf. "Cool headband, man," Goku said.
"Thanks, I like yours, too," Naruto said.
Naruto and Goku bumped fists. "I knew you could do it!" Goku cheered.
"I just hope we get on a good team!" Naruto remarked.
One week later, Naruto and Goku returned to the Academy, with everyone looking at them in surprise. "Hey, this is for people who graduated!" Kiba derided Naruto.
"He did graduate," Goku replied, pointing at Naruto's headband. "Special extra credit assignment!"
Just then, Sakura and Ino burst in, and Ino waved at Goku. "Hi, Goku!"
"Hi, Ino!" Goku replied amiably.
"What a drag," Shikamaru mumbled.
"Personally, I'm hoping Hinata's on our team," Goku whispered to Naruto.
"Why?" Naruto asked. "She's always fainting around us."
"She's nice," Goku replied. "And I think you two could be great friends."
"Yeah, right," Naruto muttered.
"Settle down," Iruka said as he arrived in the classroom. "It's time for your team assignments. Team Seven will be getting an extra member since we have a last-minute graduate. To wit, Team Seven, you are – Naruto Uzumaki . . . Goku Sarutobi . . . Sakura Haruno . . . and Sasuke Uchiha."
"No fair!" Ino and Sakura shouted, but for different reasons. Ino later clarified her disappointment.
"How come Sakura gets Goku and Sasuke?!" she asked.
"The Hokage's decision," Iruka replied. "It was originally supposed to be Goku, Sasuke, and Sakura, but Naruto's last-minute passing meant that he would have been without a team unless someone decided to make him their apprentice. The only other solution was to put him on a team." He continued where he'd left off with team placements. "Team Eight, you are – Kiba Inuzuka . . . Hinata Hyuga . . . and Shino Aburame."
Goku did not miss the disappointed look on Hinata's face. To be frank, he was disappointed, too; he'd been looking forward to her on their team so she could bond with Naruto. Besides, the guy needed a good girl to keep him honest, and somehow Goku doubted his best friend's crush was that girl, given how focused she was on Sasuke.
He tuned back in just in time to hear Team Ten. "Team Ten, you are – Shikamaru Nara . . . Ino Yamanaka . . . and Choji Akimichi." Iruka smiled wistfully. "That's about it. You can all wait here for your sensei to come and get you."
As observant as Goku was when it came to Naruto and Hinata, he was rather less than observant when it came to Ino's feelings for him, much to Ino's disappointment. Oh, well. Maybe somewhere in the next lifetime . . .
It was nearing sunset, and Team Seven still hadn't gotten their sensei. "Where is he?!" Naruto asked in frustration.
"He'll be here," Sasuke mumbled. "He's a jonin, he probably has important things to do."
"But he's our sensei! He's supposed to be on time!" Naruto insisted irritably.
"He'll be here," Sasuke repeated. "God, you're annoying."
"Screw you!" Naruto retorted.
"Hey, come on, everybody . . ." Goku interjected, trying to cool the rising tensions. "How about we all try to get to know each other a bit?"
Just then, a silver-haired man in the standard jonin uniform but with his headband covering his left eye and a mask covering the lower half of his face came in. "My first impression . . . I don't like you. Any of you. Come up to the roof with me."
Thus, they went up to the rooftop. "I'd like you all to state your names, likes, dislikes, hobbies, and goals for the future."
"How about you go first, sensei, so we know what to do?" Sakura suggested.
The jonin chuckled. "My name is Kakashi Hatake. My likes, dislikes, and hobbies are none of your business and the same goes for my future aspirations. Your turn."
"All we learned was his name," Sakura muttered. "I'm Sakura Haruno. My likes are . . ." She blushed when she turned to a disinterested Sasuke. "My dislikes are Naruto and Ino." Her tone turned harsh when she said that. "My hobbies are . . ." She blushed and looked at Sasuke again. "And my goals for the future are . . ." She kept on looking at Sasuke.
"I'm Naruto Uzumaki!" Naruto declared. "I like ramen and my best friend Goku, but I don't like the three minutes it takes for ramen to get ready! My hobbies are playing pranks, and my goal for the future is to be Hokage!"
"I'm Goku Sarutobi," Goku stated. "I like my best friend Naruto and ramen. I like Ino, but I dislike it when she gets really, really loud. My hobbies are practicing Water Style ninjutsu and fighting with my special staff. My goal for the future is to be the protector of the entire ninja world!"
"I'm Sasuke Uchiha," Sasuke stated grimly. "I have few things I like, and many things I don't like. I have little in the way of hobbies, and my goal for the future is to restore my clan's greatness . . . and kill a certain man."
"I really don't like any of you," Kakashi said.
"What did we ever do to you, you big jerk?" Goku asked.
Kakashi didn't say anything at first. "Meet me here at seven o'clock tomorrow morning. Don't eat anything before you come here; you'll just throw it up." He went off.
"Wow, what a grouch," Goku remarked. He turned to see Naruto on his way to ask Sakura out on a date.
"Hey, Sakura, wanna go out for ramen with me?"
"No," Sakura replied tersely.
"Aww, come on!" Naruto insisted. "You'll like it! I swear!"
"Naruto, no," Sakura replied. "I don't like you like that."
Goku appeared next to Naruto. "Come on, man. We'll have ramen together. See you around!"
After Goku and Naruto left, Sakura walked up to Sasuke, but Sasuke was already leaving. "Sasuke! Wanna go out . . . ?"
"No," Sasuke replied. "You're annoying." And then he was gone, leaving Sakura disappointed and dejected. Unbeknownst to her or the boys, Kakashi had been watching them in secret.
"This isn't a very auspicious start," he muttered, and then he left.
End Notes: And with that, the first chapter of "A Dragon's Will of Fire" is complete. I've been hearing suggestions from other people to include other DBZ characters within this story, and if I get enough positive feedback from all of you on that, I very well might do that. It'll take a few arcs before they're actually seen in the story, if I choose to include them. If you're wondering about the last few scenes being rushed, that's because I want to get to the good stuff as soon as possible, and there will be good stuff. You've got my word there.