The Forgotten Summons

"Normal Speech"




Chapter 4: A Bridge Too Far

It was late in the morning when Team 7 left to accompany Tazuna to the bridge. A light mist from the sea still lingered in the forest they walked through to get to the bridge. It wasn't very thick, but it was still enough to put them all on edge given the reputation of their foe.

The dry snapping of twigs, the crunch of pine needles underfoot, all served to increase the tension that seemed to permeate the air. Sakura was snapping her head around at almost every noise, her breathing getting heavier and more ragged as the thick silence went on.

She stiffened and then relaxed as Naruto laid a hand on her shoulder. Her head whipping around to see Naruto smiling softly at her. "Don't worry so much, we'll get through this just fine." She gave him a quick nod and seemed to calm down a bit. They continued their trek through the outskirts of town and finally arrived at the bridge.

Kakashi swore at the scene that greeted them. The ground was littered with the bodies of the construction workers. Most of them seemed to have escaped serious damage but the ones who had obviously run away were in a grisly state of dismemberment. Kakashi slapped one of the seal flares against the ground.

"All of you, take Tazuna and run! Get him back to the house and tell Asuma what's happening. But be careful, the hunter-nin is probably going to attack the house."

Naruto was the one who voiced their thoughts, "We don't want to leave you sensei!"

Kakashi smiled to himself at the determination in Naruto's voice. "No choice Naruto, there's not much you can do against Zabuza. If you want to help me, help finish off the hunter-nin and get Asuma here. Now go, that's an order!"

He reached behind him and gave Naruto a little shove. The blond genin stumbled away and raced to join up with the rest of his team at the end of the bridge. Kakashi gave his retreating form a glance before turning back to scanning the mist for his enemy.

"It's over Zabuza! In a few minutes my genin will lead Asuma here and we'll both finish you off. Just give up now and I'll let you live."

The heavy mist rolled forward to envelop Kakashi, the deep baritone of Zabuza's chuckle reverberated through the air. The water in the air muting it and making it impossible to pinpoint the voice.

"Such a fool you are, Sharingan Kakashi. For all your legend you miss the obvious so easily. Did you think I would not see your plans? I knew you would split your forces, so, I had Gato hire some extra help."

Kakashi's eyes widened as he whirled around to race off to his genin. The blade of Zabuza's massive zanbato appeared in front of his neck. Kakashi skidded to a halt as he felt Zabuza's breath hot against his neck. "You're dead Kakashi, try that again and I will cut off your head. Focus your attention for your fight is with me and I will make you see your weakness before I finish you."

Zabuza disappeared back into the mist. Kakashi steeled his mind even as a flare shot up from the forest he had just come from and burst into a bright light. He grit his teeth as another flare went off from the direction of Tazuna's house signifying the attack of Zabuza's mysterious help.

He turned from the bright flares and focused his mind. "Well then Zabuza, I guess I'll just have to kill you quickly."

Asuma swore as the cloaked ninja swung a huge bandage wrapped sword at him. He jumped backwards as the ninja slammed his sword into the ground and vaulted over the sword to kick off the blade and leap after Asuma, his sword swinging wildly at the bearded jounin.

Asuma cursed and twisted his body around to swing himself onto the massive sword swinging at him. He ran up the length of the blade and leaped forward to dive at the missing nin's throat with his knuckle blades outstretched. The enemy ninja leaned backwards in mid-air, swinging his sword to the side and using the momentum to hurl himself away. Asuma still managed to catch the edge of the kasa hat he wore, tearing it off to reveal the face of the missing nin.

They both landed on the water, Asuma quickly turned to face the figure, his breath hitching as he recognized the face from the bingo book. "Shit, so Gato managed to hire you Kisame. Guess he really likes the Seven Swordsman."

The blue-skinned swordsman chuckled softly before replying. "Apparently little Zabuza-chan couldn't deal with a few pesky jounin and their brats. He's really let himself go since we all tried to overthrow the Mizukage."

Asuma was stalling for as much time as he could manage. He had already used his flare tag and was hoping Kakashi arrived soon. He knew that killing Kisame would most likely cost him his life but if his fellow jounin showed up, they both might get out of this alive.

"So what was the deal with that anyway? The only thing the other villages heard was that the Seven Swordsman suddenly staged a coup against the government of Mist."

Kisame grinned nastily, "Sure, I'll humor your curiosity, you'll be dead soon anyway. It pretty much happened like you said, we all decided to overthrow the government and set ourselves up as the ruling power. I was tasked with killing the daimyo along with Kiyoko, another of my fellow swordsmen. Zabuza, Raiga, and Chojuro were supposed to kill the Mizukage while our remaining two brethren Genji and Benkei, were tasked with tying up those loyal to the Mizukage with our supporters."

Kisame closed his eyes momentarily, his face taking on a rare, thoughtful appearance as he relived the night. "I give Zabuza a lot of grief over his failure in the office of the Mizukage, but out of the surviving members of the seven, there is only one person I respect as much as him."

Kisame opened his eyes to stare at a tense Asuma, "We had a traitor in our midst. Chojuro had always been a loyal dog, just like the rest of us. But while the rest of us decided to bite back against the Mizukage, we never realized Chojuro was watching us for the Mizukage. Yagura was a bloody, ruthless dictator. We all assumed that if he ever got wind of our plot he would immediately act. The long wait with no reprisal made us confident, arrogant. That was our undoing."

(8 years ago)

Kisame cursed as yet another dragon made of water pounded the earth right behind him, showering him with chunks of earth and stinging water droplets. His sword shifted hungrily at the chakra permeating the air the dragon had passed through. He turned to where the feeling was strongest and dashed off through the small forest that made up the daimyo's garden. He quickly followed the slowly fading chakra trail and dropped out of the foliage to surprise the small team of ninja who had bombarding him and Kiyoko.

Once he was done, he jumped back out into the courtyard and resumed the chore of slaughtering the chunin and jounin who were attacking. He paused at a lull in the battle and looked back at Kiyoko who was kneeling down on the earth, one hand placed flat on the ground, the other forming a seal as she focused her chakra.

"Haven't you found him yet!" He shouted over the crashes and shouting of panicked guards and ninjas.

Kiyoko didn't even open her eyes as she replied. "It's not easy sensing his vibrations through all this chaos, I may have spent months memorizing his signature and voice but he's still surrounded by-" Her eyes snapped open and she smirked. "Found him. Seems he just screamed."

Kisame mouth twisted into a smirk that matched her own. "Well, we shouldn't keep a man of his stature waiting. Shall we?"

Kiyoko stood up and drew her butterfly sword from where she kept it at her waist. Slamming her free hand into the ground, she ripped out a huge chunk of earth and tossed it up into the air. Kisame leaped up onto it as it rose higher into the air, securing himself with chakra as the boulder fell. Kiyoko reared her fist back as it fell back to earth and let loose with a massive haymaker that sent the boulder flying through the air, Kisame safely aboard it.

The boulder rolled lazily through the air, the arc sending it high above the Daimyo's palace as Kisame stood up and secured his sword on his back. Once the boulder started to descend, he calculated it's trajectory and jumped off, his powerful leap sent him high into the air as he flew through hand-seals. He finished his jutsu at the same time the boulder crashed through the roof. Opening his mouth wide, he spit out a glob of water that quickly formed into a shark. Jumping onto it, he pulled his sword out and waited as it descended.

(Palace of the Daimyo)

"Where is our forces! Why isn't the Mizukage protecting me?" The Daimyo was shouting his head off to the six jounin who were guarding him. The task would usually fall to the Seven Swordsman but they were apparently rebelling, though the jounin were reluctant to tell the Daimyo that. "Why hasn't this rebellion been put down yet?"

"Sir, the Seven Swordsmen are the ones rebelling."

The Daimyo stopped in his tracks before screaming. When he had calmed down he pulled the jounin leader back, "Even Kisame?" The shark man had always been his favorite guard.

The jounin nodded, "He seems to be the one attacking your palace, the other swordsmen are attacking Hidden Mist."

The Daimyo trembled in rage before opening his mouth to shout orders. An action interrupted by the giant boulder crashing through the roof.

The protective contingent to the Daimyo had been devastated by the giant piece of rock that had smashed into them. It had barely missed the Daimyo and had taken out three of the six jounin guarding him. The remaining three were pulling themselves to there feet when a cackling laugh drew their eyes upward. One of them was swept of his feet by a shark made out of water that caught him in it's jaws and chewed his chest apart viciously before slamming him into a wall, his chest exposed as his broken ribs stabbed painfully into his major organs.

The next jounin was hit by a blue-skinned ninja who hit the ground running and caught the jounin with his sword, the massive blade slamming into his side and bending him almost in half along his side. Kisame completed his running swing and threw the jounin through the roof. His sword shredding the jounin's side for good measure.

The Daimyo was shouting off his head for the remaining jounin to kill Kisame.

Kisame casually stepped to the side and caught the fist of the last jounin, "Yeah no." Was the last thing the jounin heard before Kisame buried his fist in the man's gut. The jounin bent over in pain only for Kisame to knee the jounin in the face and grasp his sword in both hands to slam the jounin through the floor.

Kisame turned to face the quivering Daimyo, he walked over and grabbed the man by the throat, "Looking for me your majesty?" His voice was low and dangerous as he walked the Daimyo over to the nearest wall and proceeded to bash the Daimyo's head through various objects.

Once the broken, cooling corpse of the Daimyo lay at his feet, Kisame jumped out of the hole in the roof and made his way back to the courtyard.

Zabuza was there. His kneeling panting form covered in blood, some of it probably his own, given the wounds he was bearing but it was hard to tell with that sword of his. Kisame ran up to him, giving a quick nod to Kiyoko as he did so. "Zabuza, what are you doing here?"

The wielder of Kubikiri Hocho was silent for a moment before he spoke, "We made it to the Mizukage's office un-harassed but when we got there." His breath hitched, probably in rage. "Kisame, Chojuro's a traitor. He's been telling everything about our plans to the Mizukage, Raiga ran the moment he found out about Chojuro. I barely managed to escape, got Chojuro good before I left though. Knowing him though, he'll probably pull through."

Kisame was struggling to maintain his composure, "What about Genji and Benkei?"

Zabuza had hot tears of rage flowing down his face, "Dead, Genji was already gone when I got there but Benkei used the last of his life to use a sealing jutsu on the Mizukage. The Sanbi is currently making its way out of Mist, I bet that'll slow down any pursuit."

Kisame's breath hitched, "You mean?"

Zabuza chuckled darkly, "Yeah, mission accomplished Kisame. Yagura is dead."

Kiyoko cried silently for her fallen comrades, "So what now? We go kill Chojuro and take over?"

Kisame slowly shook his head, "No, the Seven Swordsmen are second in respect and influence only to the Mizukage. But it's the organization people respect, not the members. Unless we had all living members on our side, it would just look like a dirty coup by malcontents. We would still be locked in a civil war, the sides would just have changed. Damn that Chojuro, I swear if I ever see his face again I'll kill him."

He stood up, "But, we should have a clear run out of the country. With the Mizukage and the Daimyo dead, not to mention the Sanbi, the ninja should be in disorder and it'll be a while before they start chasing us."

Zabuza shook his head slowly, "Sorry, I don't think I'll be coming."

Kisame stared at him for a while before nodding, "The whole point of this was to get freedom Zabuza, I'm not about to take that away by ordering you to do anything. Go do as you wish, but remember this. If we meet again, it will most likely be enemies. The world of the missing nin is a brutal one."

Kisame turned around and walked off with Kiyoko at his heels. Zabuza hauled himself to his feet and walked off in another direction. The last sight Kisame had of Zabuza was his back as he disappeared into the trees.

The memory was just as painful now as whenever Kisame dwelled upon it. He quickly tore himself away from his past and gripped his sword tightly in preparation for the fight ahead. Asuma raised his trench knives in front him in response to Kisame's tension.

The shark-nin seemed to glide along the water, one powerful thrust after another of his legs propelling him along at a fast speed. Asuma leaped to the side as Samehada slammed the water where he had been standing. Lashing out at Kisame with his knives, he managed to cut a slice across Kisame's arm before the shark-nin could leap away.

Kisame looked down at his sleeve, the cut was bleeding but seemed to have missed anything potentially important. He grinned at Asuma, "I thought I dodged that blade entirely, looks like I'm getting sloppy in my old age."

Asuma didn't get a chance to reply as Kisame jumped straight at him, sword swinging. As he ducked and dodged he could only hope he managed to survive this fight.

"Come on Tazuna, you have to keep up."

Tazuna panted as he tried to keep up, Sakura's comments weren't helping, despite her best intentions.

"I'm doing my best girl, I am pretty old you know."

Sakura at least had the decency to look embarrassed. She quickly doubled back and began to help Tazuna along while Sasuke and Naruto took point, their heads swiveling back and forth in constant vigilance.

It was this vigilance that saved them. A hail of senbon flashed out of a tree, causing Naruto to shout out a warning and dive for cover behind a tree as Sakura dragged Tazuna to the ground and hauled him over to a tree. She shoved him down against the base of the tree and held a finger up to her lips. Tazuna shakily nodded as Sakura opened up her pack and began setting some basic traps around Tazuna. Not speaking, she pushed him to the ground and pulled the dry leaves and loam around on top of him.

Once he was basically covered, she hopped up into the trees and activated her flare tag before taking up an overwatch position. Naruto seemed to be running interference with Shadow clones, periodically sending them out in different directions. They never got too far before a senbon would flash out to nail them and disappear in a puff of smoke.

'Why is he just sending them out one after the other? It serves no purpose, unless.'

Sakura's thoughts were cut short as something flashed off in the trees. She barely got a glimpse of Sasuke as he ran along a tree branch. The area was still for a moment before Naruto sent out a fresh wave of clones. The senbon flashed again and the clones fell to the ground, the senbon sticking out of them clearly for a moment before they dispelled.

Sakura barely breathed as the forest grew quiet, she looked off into the trees as she saw Sasuke jump down from a tree branch, his form cloaked in shadow, his movements silent, his form perfect. Both of his kodachi were held downwards in preparation to stab their attacker.

He disappeared behind a tree trunk and a short series of blade clashes rang out through the forest. Naruto leaped up the tree trunk he was standing on and halfway up, he leaped off the trunk just as the masked form of Haku flew out of the foliage, her hands blurring as she threw senbon at Sasuke who jumped out after her, his kodachi blurring just as fast as he deflected the needles.

Naruto twisted upside down in mid-air and hit Haku's back like a sledgehammer. He wrapped his legs around her neck and twisted his body around to hurl her to the ground where she hit with a dull thud. Naruto reached out to Sasuke who grabbed his hand and threw Naruto down after Haku.

Naruto dropped from the sky like a lead weight. His right leg drawn back as he prepared to drive his knee into Haku. She looked up at the blond ninja plummeting down at her and cursed. Her form dissolved into water and sank into the ground just as Naruto hit the ground, his knee sinking several inches into the hard ground.

Haku rematerialized behind him, three senbon clutched between her fingers in preparation to drive them into the blond's neck. Still, she couldn't help but be impressed with the damage he would have done if he hit.

'If that had connected, my neck would have snapped like a dry twig.'

Her surprise attack was foiled as Sasuke appeared between her and Naruto, his hands lashing out, one of his kodachi sheathed as he attempted to grab and hold her long enough to get a critical blow in.

Naruto joined the fray as well, his opportunistic attacks only exacerbating the confusing melee. Haku finally jumped back, disengaging the two talented genin as she panted slightly.

"It's been a while since I was challenged this much. That was extremely clever how you force me out of hiding. But I have to ask, how did you manage to pinpoint my location by the direction in which my senbon were stuck in the clones?"

Sasuke smirked slightly, his eyes flashing into the red irises of the Sharingan. "Nothing escapes these eyes. The half-second before the clone dispelled was all I needed to figure out where you were attacking from."

Haku nodded slightly, "The infamous Sharingan. I suppose I should feel honored to see one. They are increasingly rare these days."

Sasuke growled low and vanished, reappearing behind Haku and lashing out with his single drawn kodachi, Haku spun around and delivered a high kick that knocked the kodachi out of his hand. She grabbed his now empty hand and twisted it around behind the genin's back and delivered two quick kicks to his knees. Sasuke was forced to ground and Haku deftly caught the kodachi from the air.

She leaned forward as she pulled back on Sasuke's arm and twisted it out of its socket. Reaching around his screamig form, she raised the kodachi to Sasuke's face and held it up level with his eyes. Pressing the blade slightly into the bridge of his nose, she whispered into his ear.

"Time to remove those pesky eyes." But she had focused too much on her opponent and before she could slash out Sasuke's eyes, she was caught by Naruto who hit her with a lariat, his curved arm catching her across the neck and hurling her into a nearby tree.

Sasuke panted as he popped his shoulder back into place and picked up his kodachi, which had dropped from Haku's hand when she was hit. He was enraged that this bitch would dare threaten his bloodline and he was prepared to take it out of her however he could.

Haku was angry now, she couldn't seem to get them. Whenever she seemed about to finish one off, the other would interfere. She just had to get faster than them. Her hands blurred through some hand-seals and a dome of ice mirrors appeared around her, enveloping the two genin.

Sasuke cursed as her image appeared in each mirror, her voice seemed to mock them as she spoke. "You were good, but you're outmatched. No one has seen this technique and lived. Goodbye."

Sasuke's head spun around as senbon flashed towards them. Naruto yelped and started dodging as best as he could. Sasuke sheathed his blade and he blurred through hand-seals before breathing out a ball of fire towards the nearest mirror.

The roaring ball of fire impacted the mirror, it hissed for a moment before melting partially. Sasuke almost let out a cheer before he saw the melted portion of the mirror reform at blinding speeds and Haku let loose another couple of senbon at him.

Cursing, he dived to the side once again. The only difference was that Haku had shifted her attention to Naruto now and Sasuke's Sharingan finally saw the secret to her jutsu. He gave Naruto a quick jerk of his head when the blond genin looked over at him. Naruto reached into his pocket and withdrew a handful of smoke bombs.

Quickly throwing them to different areas to cover the entire dome, Naruto ran over to where Sasuke was as the bombs went off and the dome filled with white smoke. "What is it Sasuke?"

Sasuke leaned in and whispered, "I saw the secret to her jutsu. She uses the ice mirrors to move blindingly fast from mirror to mirror. I can try to catch her with a fireball, but if I miss, she's going to target me. You got anything that might stop her?"

Naruto bit his lip as he tried to think fast before the smoke bombs dispersed. Haku would know if they tried to break through a mirror, if only they had some way to catch her when she flitted about. He hissed silently as he pulled out some of the senbon. They were more annoying than damaging, like an annoying insect.

He brightened, he did have a way to trap Haku! "Sasuke, I have a way to catch her. But once I do this, you need to get out of the dome fast. I can give you some cover but it'll be up to you to melt a mirror and jump out. Here's some explosive tags, tie them to kunai and focus on one."

Sasuke nodded and prepared the kunai. Naruto went through the short sequence of hand-seals for summoning. He held his hands in the last hand-seal and focused his chakra as much as possible. This was going to take quite a bit. He closed his eyes and focused inwards until he heard the dripping of water.

He opened his eyes to find himself in front of the bars that held Kyuubi. He shouted into the darkness, "Kyuubi! I need your help. Please loan me enough chakra to protect my friends. I need to summon one of your minions but it's going to take a lot out of me."

Kyuubi looked over her shoulder from where she had been resting against one of the bars in her human form and smiled nastily at him. "Well well, look who's come crying to me for help. What happened to all that bravado you had when we first met? Need the help of a demon to save your friends? Can't do it all on your own?"

Naruto nodded slowly and quickly reached through the bars to grasp her hand. By doing so, he crossed a line that he could never go back from. He knew that if she wished she could shred his consciousness if she chose to do so. Kyuubi looked down in shock at the first physical contact she had had in twelve years. The same thoughts ran through her head as Naruto squeezed her hand while staring at her eyes. "I know Kyuubi, I admit that I need your help and I trust you to help me when you can. I think I can call you a friend after all our talks and I think you want to call me one as well."

Kyuubi looked down from where Naruto's eyes bored into hers, a few tears escaped her eyes as she smiled softly. "Make sure you don't go and get yourself killed alright? I don't want to be stuck somewhere alone anymore."

Naruto smiled brightly at her, "Alright! It's a promise, I'll always be down here for you to yell at me. After all, if I didn't who would?" And with that he disappeared.

Kyuubi sighed as she felt some of her power separate and funnel itself through the seal. Settling herself back against the bars to think she smiled softly again, 'He really must be rubbing off on me. Only a few weeks ago I would've ripped him to shreds. What a kid.'

Naruto snapped his eyes open as a wave of chakra flew out from him. He yelled out as the smoke from the bombs blew away in a second.

"Now Sasuke!"

With that he slammed his hand into the ground, the explosion of smoke filled the entire center of the dome as Sasuke threw his explosive kunai at a mirror and flew through the seals for the Grand Fireball jutsu. The distraction of Naruto's chakra and the large summon allowed the kunai to hit their targets freely. The explosions went off as Sasuke blew out a huge fireball.

He leapt out of the dome just as Haku turned her attention back to him. She quickly let fly senbon that hit Sasuke in the legs, causing his muscles to freeze up. He landed with a painful sounding thud and let loose a cry of pain.

Sakura jumped down from where she had been observing the fight and grabbed Sasuke's arm. Grateful now for her recent physical training, she hauled him onto her shoulders and pulled him up to her perch where they could observe the fight.

Naruto cursed as he heard Sasuke's cry of pain. He turned to the hunter-nin, his mind clouded with rage by the Kyuubi's chakra and growled, "I'm going to kill you."

Haku gasped as he seemed ready to make good on his threat. The malevolent chakra combined with the giant spider behind him intimidated even her. Naruto turned to the Dokufu behind him and fixed it with a stare, the Kyuubi's chakra still swirling around him. The Dokufu chittered loudly and shrunk down on all 8 legs. Naruto quickly ran forward and glued himself to the underbelly of the armored spider.

The Dokufu worked quickly, it's large form spinning around to weave webbing across the mirrors until the dome was thick with the sticky strands. Haku tried to disable the beast with her senbon but found her efforts futile due to the creature's armor, her lack of knowledge about the spider's anatomy, and the creature's surprising speed.

All too soon, she found herself the master of a dome of ice mirrors she could not move between. Cursing, she decided to retreat to fight another day. Dispelling the mirrors she leapt off into the trees.

Naruto let go of the Dokufu's belly and quickly spoke, "Get her, I don't care what you do with her but don't let her get away." He henged into Zabuza and spoke once more, "This is her companion, you know what to do."

The Dokufu chittered once more before skittering into the treetops. Naruto dispelled the henge and turned to his team. He walked over to where Sakura was slowly pulling out the senbon. She looked up at him and looked behind him. "Where is she? Did she get away?"

Naruto gave her a grim smile, "She won't get far. Dokufu are just as good as hunter nin."

Haku panted as she leaped down into the small clearing where Zabuza ordered her to meet up with him if something went wrong. She settled back against a tree and pulled off her mask, she hissed through clenched teeth as she started treating her wounds. The cuts were shallow, but she had a rather nasty burn from where the Uchiha had almost gotten her with his fireball.

She whirled around as a twig snapped, senbon clutched between her fingers. Her hand dropped to her side though as she saw Zabuza stumble out from between the trees. His chest was bleeding from a nasty gash and his form was littered in bruises. She rushed over to him.

"Zabuza-sama!" She caught his body as he collapsed to the ground. She quickly began to look him over before pausing. A black, twisting group of fibrous material was sticking out of his back. She looked at it and followed it with her eyes up to where it ended in the treetops.

The Dokufu hung above her in the treetops, it's two front legs coming together in front of it's body, manipulating the black cable that sprung from it's mouth like someone would a puppet. The form of Zabuza in her arms melted into a tangle of black fibers that moved like lightning to grab her hands as the Dokufu held on to the trees with it's four middle legs and swung it's abdomen down to slam into her stomach.

The stinger punched into her quickly, delivering it's payload of paralyzing poison. Haku fell back under the force of the blow, the stinger pulling out of her with a wet squelch. Her body thudded to the ground as her hands trembled their way up to her bleeding wound. The Dokufu reeled up it's fibers into it's mouth and started its descent down towards Haku.

Her eyes were wide with terror as the Dokufu picked her up and began wrapping her up in it's webbing. The poison was working fast until she could barely move her neck. The Dokufu wrapped her up until her body was wrapped up to the neck completely in white webbing. Before her mouth was paralyzed she managed one last scream as the Dokufu leaned down to start feeding.

Naruto looked up from where he was sitting against the base of a tree as a scream rang through the forest before suddenly cutting off. The ensuing silence was just as terrifying to Sakura as she turned towards Naruto.


The blond genin stayed quiet for a moment before he sighed, "It's done, she won't be hurting anyone again."

Sakura fell quiet at the thought of the dead ninja and busied herself with helping Tazuna from his hiding space and Sasuke who was getting his legs working again.

It was probably fifteen minutes before Naruto looked over at Sakura, "Kakashi's coming."

Sure enough, the masked jounin leapt into the clearing and looked around before walking over to the genin. "Everyone okay?"

Sasuke slowly stood up before nodding quickly, "I'll be fine."

Sakura nodded and Naruto followed suit before reporting, "The masked companion of Zabuza is terminated Kakashi-sensei."

Kakashi looked at him with some surprise in his visible eye before smiling. "I'm very proud of you all, you held out in your first fight against a missing-nin and came out victorious. Not many can claim that you know. Now let's get you patched up and back to the house."

Sakura spoke, she had seen the signal flare go off near the house. "Isn't Asuma-sensei fighting someone?"

Kakashi slowly shook his head, "Asuma's opponent arrived just as I was about to finish off Zabuza. He hit me pretty hard and picked Zabuza up before running off, he didn't say why."

In truth, Kisame had said why. After the explosion of demonic chakra that doubtlessly came from Naruto, Kisame had arrived to warn Kakashi that they would meet again as the Kyuubi was too important to be left in the hands of Konoha. Soon afterwards, Asuma had arrived and relayed the news that once they felt the Kyuubi chakra, Kisame had abandoned their fight and ran off.

Kakashi focused back on the present as he led his team back to the house of Tazuna. It was time to finish this damn mission.

Gato scrambled back as his bodyguards fell to the ground dead. Kisame stepped forward, a furious Zabuza close behind him. "Unfortunately for you Gato, our organization requires a great deal of money and secrecy. Both of which can be accomplished on your death."

Zabuza growled low, "I haven't agreed to your offer just yet Kisame. Don't call it our organization just yet. I have to find Haku."

Kisame turned around, "The girl? She's dead. Got eaten by a giant spider summoned by the blond brat of Kakashi's."

Zabuza choked, his eyes filling with rage. Kisame smiled nastily, "The same boy that is targeted by Akatsuki for being the container of the Kyuubi. If you join, I can guarantee you get in on the capture of him."

Zabuza was trembling with rage by the time he nodded his agreement. Kisame smiled before adopting a look of comic horror, his mouth wide in shock. "Oh no! I've said too much around someone else. Sorry Gato but your lack of deafness has sealed your fate. We might be tided over by all your money though."

Gato nodded his head furiously and went over to a safe in the wall before quickly opening it and pulling out sheafs of papers and packets full of account numbers and locations of his company assets.

Kisame happily took them, "Ah yes, Kakuzu will be very happy with this. Now, Zabuza, mind tying up this loose end?"

Gato squeaked in terror, "No! You said I was fine."

Kisame frowned at him and shook a finger at the businessman. "Now, now, no one likes a whiner. Today is simply not your day my friend. Zabuza, he's all yours, go ahead and vent a bit, I'll be waiting outside."

Kisame walked out whistling some tune, a stack of papers containing information on potential millions under his arm as Zabuza grabbed Gato by the throat and slammed him through the desk. Zabuza grinned behind his bandages, "God I love therapy."

Back at Tazuna's house Kakashi sighed as he rubbed the bridge of his nose. "So you say you need to go to the temple of some strange religion that's here in Wave and find the summon for this scroll and defeat him to gain control of the contract. And you expect me to take our team with you and risk all our lives on something that will benefit you and none of us. You expect me to risk my status as a jounin-sensei and endanger the lives of Sasuke and Sakura just so you can complete your collection! Just like that!"

Naruto answered, "Yes."

Kakshi sat down from where he had stood up menacingly during his rant and blinked once before speaking in a resigned tone. "Oh all right then."

"You had better have a good reason for calling us all Kisame. We don't all need to hear that you completed your mission."

Kisame smirked, despite the threatening tone in the Pein's voice. "Oh I have a great deal of good news."

He held up the stack of papers, "I have here the entire financial details and secrets of the Gato corporation. Access numbers, account information, assets, deposit boxes, warehouses, contacts, and the details and keys on a nice little resort mansion and spa he keeps in the capital of Fire country."

Kakuzu was salivating by the end, but he wasn't about to let anyone know so he simply said, "Excellent."

Pein nodded, "Indeed, good work Kisame, I assume Gato is not in a state to protest our utilization of his resources?"

Kisame shook his head, "No, but it wasn't me who finished him off. It was a new recruit for Akatsuki I found. Momochi Zabuza, another former Swordsman of the Mist. He's a little rusty but that's only brought him down to A-class. Pair him up with Kiyoko and she'll whip him back into S-class shape in no time."

Pein nodded again, "Excellent work Kisame, I must say it is nice to have three of the original Seven Swordsmen working for us. Get him a cloak and have him meet up with Kiyoko. She can fill him in on the rest while he gets back into shape."

The second female member of Akatsuki nodded and flicked her glance over at Zabuza who stood a few feet behind Kisame.

Pein continued, "Now if there is nothing else."

Kisame spoke up again, "Ah but I have one more piece of news that completely overshadows both of my other reports."

Kakuzu snorted, "Unlikely, something that overshadows millions of ryo and another Seven Swordsman? Stop trying to make yourself look good Kisame, nobody buys it and you just look like a fool."

Kisame grinned nastily, "I just so happened to find our missing Kyuubi jinchuriki."

The silence in the room could be cut with a knife, even Zetsu hadn't been able to find the Kyuubi jinchuriki since the beast disappeared. The secret had been so tightly kept by the Third Hokage that no one could discover the identity of the last jinchuriki.

Kakuzu was stunned speechless as his partner turned to him, "Ha."

Kakuzu growled low, "Shut up Hidan."


And end of the Chapter 4 rewrite.