Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto, and thank god for that. Did you see the new ending for the anime episodes? It's just Hinata, but it barely even looks like here and it was completely pointless. If I did own Naruto, I'd probably kill myself if I agreed to put crap like that out.


Chapter 6: The Sound of Rain

"I-I-I w-was w-w-w-wondering i-if you w-want t-to... s-since y-y-your b-b-bag is d-damaged... i-if y-y-y-you w-would w-w-want t-t-to s-s-sleep w-with m-m-m-m-me i-in m-my b-b-bag!?"

"Y-you'd let me sleep in your bag... with you?" Naruto questioned as he stared at the bluenette in disbelief. "I've never even been invited to a sleepover by someone my own age, and she's offering to sleep in the same bed?"

The girl gave a nod in response as she grasped the bottom of her jacket tightly to try and manipulate her feeling of embarrassment.

"... Thanks Hinata... but I don't want to bother you with m-"

"I-It's not a bother!" She quickly claimed, surprisingly clearly before her stutter appeared once again. "N-N-Naruto-kun w-worked really h-hard today... You were u-using k-kage b-bunshin for so l-long, Anko-sensei e-explained how exhausting it can g-get u-using that jutsu. I-I know you n-need to r-rest w-well after something l-like that."

"But won't it be cramped for two people to be sleeping in one bag?"

"I-It's big enough f-for two, b-but if y-you want your o-own bag to sleep i-in, I c-can sleep o-outside a-a-and-"

"No!" Naruto cut in a little authoritatively. "You almost fell over a few hours ago, you need to sleep too Hinata!"

"B-b-but-"

"Agh, ok!" Naruto loudly whispered a little frustrated as he scratched his scalp with both hands for ideas. He wasn't angry at her, he knew she just wanted to help, but he couldn't think of a way to not be a nuisance and satisfy her need to aid him at the same time. "*Sigh*...We'll sleep in the same bag... thank you Hinata..."

"Wow... it's almost like you're reading right out of my book." A cyclopean man commented from behind the blonde, surprising both children, while his nose was dug into an orange covered novel. "You didn't take a peek at it when I wasn't looking did you Naruto?"

"K-Kakashi-sensei! Th-this isn't what it looks like!" The preteen, sporting a pink hue, protested after he turned around to look up at the man. "I-I'm not a pervert!"

"Calm down Naruto, I didn't say you were..." Kakashi casually said as he acted as if he licked his finger to turn the page, even though he was still wearing his mask. "Well as long as you don't continue on to page 68 and 69 that is..."

"Eh?" The confused boy asked since he hadn't figured out what the book was yet.

The silver haired man just gave the blonde a U shaped eye smile before ruffling his hair. "Just forget it for now... but you know, it's not really seen as proper conduct to force a boy and girl to sleep under the same tent. Women have a right to sleep in a separate tent if they want to under Konoha's laws."

Naruto looked a little relieved now that he had an excuse. "Alright... guess I should just find a nice place outside th-."

"Then again... she did invite you, so it's not considered being forced." The Icha Icha fan mentioned before giving a good push to the village outcast towards the heiress's tent.

"Kakash-"

"We're shinobi Naruto; death can come at us at any moment, so it's best to be at 100 percent... even if that means having to share a bed with someone." Kakashi said a little more sternly before switching back to a friendly tone of voice. "Don't worry; I'll wake you up before anyone notices."

"B-but-"

"I'll take Sasuke out now to do our shift, ja ne!" Kakashi notified as he walked away.

"What just happened?" Naruto mentally asked as his shoulders slumped in defeat.

"N-N-Naruto-kun?..." Hinata spoke in concern as she tried to get the boys attention. "D-did I do something wrong?"

The demon child just looked back over his shoulder at his only friend, and the expression on her face instantly made him regret how he acted. "She's just trying to help me like a friend, and the only thing I've done is think about how not to bother her by pushing her away... I really am an idiot." Naruto scolded himself, but then plastered on his regular fox like grin and scratched the back of his head as he walked up to the tent. "Hehe, well you heard Kakashi-sensei... I guess we should get to bed, sorry about this."

"He's bothered... maybe I really did do something wrong." Hinata noticed as she looked at the fake expression on the boy's face. "N-Naruto-kun... d-d-did I-... are y-you u-uncomfortable with-... you d-d-don't have to s-s-s-sleep with m-me if you d-don't w-want to N-Naruto-kun..."

"Why wouldn't I want to sleep with you? We're friends right? I'd do the same thing for you Hinata." Naruto reassured in a calm voice as he gave her a true smile.

"H-hai... f-friends..." Hinata repeated with a small smile on her face as she poked her fingers together. "He still wants to be my friend... I'm so happy."

The boy motioned for the heiress to enter first, and he followed after her. "It really is big..." Naruto observed when he saw the large sleeping bag. He then undid his forehead protector from his shoulder, and the bandage wrap on the same arm soon followed after... that is until he remembered what it had been wrapped around almost two weeks ago. "You're not a pervert! Stop thinking about Hinata's b-b-b-b- Argh!"

The image of her bare chest seemed to pleasurably haunt him every now and then, and he unconsciously looked towards the girl, hopping to see her covered chest, so that he could 'try' to replace the memory... However the sight of her pale smooth back was what met his eyes as she pulled her jacket over her head, unknowingly causing her undershirt to ride up along with it. A blush appeared on his face, and his hand instantly came up to cover his eyes. "H-Hinata, wh-what are you doing!?"

"Eh?" Hinata enquired after pulling the jacket off and looked over her shoulder at the boy, until she noticed the bottom of her shirt clinging to her shoulders. "Eep!"

With hands as fast as lightning, she pulled her shirt back down with one hand and unconsciously covered her chest with the other, even though it was still masked by the shirt and her wrappings. She quickly made it to the opening of the bag, and slipped in so that she could cover herself up fully to her nose to hide the blush. "G-g-g-g-gomen, I-I was just t-taking o-o-off m-my j-jacket s-so I-I c-c-could s-sleep p-p-properly."

"Y-yeah... so you could sleep properly..." The preteen reiterated as he calmed himself down. "What was I thinking? It's not like she was stripping down to her underwear like nee-chan or something... Hinata isn't that kind of girl."

"Oh god, Naruto-kun saw so much of me. I could just die!" Hinata thought feeling mortified as she sunk lower into the bag... not knowing that the boy had already seen much more of her before.

"Well... I guess I'll sleep on this side than." Naruto said as he hesitantly slipped into the bed.

With her entire body covered by the bag, she couldn't see the blonde entering. So the arm that accidently brushed up against hers, as he came in, was a total surprise which made her flinch away.

"G-Gomen, I couldn't tell where you were exactly and- GOMEN!" The boy adamantly apologized as he too had flinched away, and was now pressing himself to the side of the bag as far away from her as possible. His head was facing away from hers as he lay on his side with a blush.

"Th-there's n-nothing t-t-to a-a-apologize f-for... I-it was n-nothing N-N-Naruto-kun." Hinata stated with her own blush as she too faced away from the blonde.

Silence rained down on the two for quite some time. Neither dared to speak, and an awkward feeling between the two wouldn't allow them to fall asleep. Finally though, Naruto broke the tension by saying the first few words in a while. "... Thanks Hinata... for everything. You really are a good friend... well you're my only friend, right? Haha." Naruto joked a little bit as he finished up.

The shy girl felt happy with the praise, but objected to how the boy ended his sentence. "Th-that's not t-true N-Naruto-kun. Y-you have a l-lot of f-friends. A-Anko-sensei, Hokage-sama, Iruka-sen-"

"Well yeah, but they're all older than me. I wouldn't trade them for anything in the world, but... they still just look at me like a little kid." Naruto justified before a small smile appeared on his face as he continued. "You're different though Hinata. You always look at me differently than the rest of them... probably because we're the same age. It's always fun hanging out with you even if we're doing nothing. It feels like there's a bunch of other things too, but I don't really understand it all that well. If I compare you to everyone else though... I'd say you're my best friend Hinata..."

"Naruto-kun..." The heiress whispered to herself as she looked over her shoulder at the back of the blonde's head. She was speechless as her mind raced with a million thoughts, but one spoke out more than the rest. "N-Naruto-kun sees me as his best friend..."

"Crap did I say something stupid? I can't even hear her breath anymore! Shit, shit, shit! I didn't want to screw this up. I have to fix this!" Naruto panicked as he turned around to face the lightly tinted red faced girl before trying to repair the damage. "A-ano... I-If it bothers you, y-you don't have to take it seriously. It was a joke. Yeah that's it, a joke! Haha! So just forget what I s-"

"N-No!" Hinata protested as she too turned around to face the boy with the same frightful look that was on his face not too long ago. Her blush went a little darker when she realized how loud she was, and she quickly calmed herself down as she spoke. "I-I d-don't w-w-w-w-want t-to f-f-f-f-forget."

"Wh-why?" Naruto asked flabbergasted.

"W-was it t-true? D-d-do you really th-think of m-me as y-your b-b-best f-friend, because... b-because I..." Hinata started to divulge as her face became crimson and both of her hands came up to cover her face. "b-b-because I-I th-th-think o-of y-y-y-you as m-my b-b-b-best f-f-f-f-f-f-friend t-too N-N-N-Naruto-kun."

Naruto just stared at the bluenette with his mouth agape. After a half a minute of silence, Hinata looked between her fingers to see the strange expression on the blonde's face, that she assumed was negative, and instantly moved her digits so that she could hide behind them once more. "Oh no! He really was just joking! Why did I say that? He doesn't want me to think of him like that and now he won't want to even be my fr-Eh?... Eep!"

Her little shout was only a mental one as her voice box didn't seem to work at the moment. Two hands had gently grasped hers to pull them away from her still cherry coloured face so that she could see the serious look, which contained a little hope, on the boy in front of her. "I-is that the truth Hinata? Do you really think of me as your... best friend?"

The heiress could only nod since she didn't trust her voice.

A single droplet began to build up in the demon child's left eye, but he quickly wiped it away on his shoulder as he laughed a little in happiness. "Hehe, this is awesome. We were both thinking the same way."

Hinata's mind began to race as she registered what the boy had said. "So then that means... he really does see me as his best friend... I'm Naruto-kun's best friend!" Hinata inferred as she tilted her head down to hide the shy happy smile on her face before she commented. "H-hai, it r-really is... awesome."

With her moon like orbs looking at him through her bangs, Naruto seemed to stop all motions as he stared back at the heiress. The coolness of her hands in his felt soothing while he unconsciously rubbed the back of them with his thumbs. He could smell her scent of lavender and cinnamon as it penetrated his nose, and something else that caused the hairs on his neck to stand up. Faster and louder his heart beat until he could hear it, and his breaths became shallower and shallower. It was as if he was in a trance, completely captivated by the shy girl in front of him.

"W-why is Naruto-kun looking at me like that? I've never seen him make a face like that before..." Hinata thought a little worried. He hadn't said or moved anything except his thumbs for a few minutes now, but she couldn't help the rosy hue darkening on her cheeks as his intense stare locked on her and made her feel as if she was revealed. "N-N-Naruto-kun?"

"Huh?" Naruto asked a little surprised as he snapped out from his zoned off state. A pink blush appeared on his face when he noticed that he still had her hands in his grasps, and how his thumbs seemed to glide over her smooth delicate skin. Flinching away as if he touched hot iron, he quickly turned around, back to the side of the bag so that he could face away from her and hide his whiskers that now had a pink backdrop. "W-we should go to bed already, it's getting late... goodnight Hinata..."

The girl was confused by his actions, but complied anyways as she agreed with his statement. "A-alright... g-goodnight Naruto-kun."

The blonde could hear the girl shuffle around as she did the same thing as him and faced away once more. However it barely registered to him anyways as he grabbed a fist full of his hair and pulled on it a little as he thought of his problem. "Crap, what the hell was I thinking just a few minutes ago? Why can't I remember!? Argh, and this thing is back up again! Just think of Sakura-chan, think of Sakura-chan and not Hinata's soft white skin, THINK OF SAKURA-CHAN!"


[Middle of the night]

After an hour of trying to fall asleep, the heiress was finally starting to enter her own world built by her unconscious mind. She was sitting in a plain room of a very homely house, wearing nothing but a silk white robe as she sat peacefully on the couch sipping some warm tea. Unfortunately it didn't last that long when she heard a sound coming from the distance.

"The baby is crying again." The heiress noticed as she got up and followed the noise. It didn't take her long to walk into the child's room where she saw it laying in a cute little crib. "Shhhh, it's ok... okaa-san is here now."

The babies cries instantly quieted down when he heard his mother's voice and saw her face when she walked up to his bed. With gentle hands, Hinata reached down and picked up the bundled up child that only had its face visible. She smiled lovingly at him when both of their pearl like eyes met.

"You must be hungry, you always eat so much." Hinata giggled a little at the end as it offhandedly reminded her of someone. Her free hand soon pulled the robe she was wearing off her shoulders and let it dangle around her elbows so that her bosom would be released for the hungry baby. Guiding his head to her breast, the newly born latched his mouth over his mother's swelling nub so that he could suckle the built up liquid contained inside.

"He's so cute when he's eating... I still can't believe how much I love him." Hinata thought smiling warmly as she watched her child feed from her. However, the child's arms started squirming from inside the confines of the blanket that was wrapped around him, and the bluenette slightly loosened it up for him so that he could stick his arms and head out. "There you go, is that bet-"

Now that it was no longer swaddled, her voice was caught in her throat when she noticed her child's features. "B-blonde hair... b-blue tinted eyes... b-black thin lines on his cheeks... like whiskers." Hinata saw as her eyes got wider and wider. "N-N-Naruto-k-Eep!"

"You called for me, koishii?" Naruto asked after hugging the shy girl around the waist from behind. He pecked her on the cheek before he rested his head on her bare shoulder with a loving smile. "Does our baby want a little daddy time, or are you just inviting me for the show?"

"Our... Our baby? Mine and Naruto-kun's... BABY!?" Hinata mentally screamed as she looked back and forth between the child and his father with a face redder than all the angry faces of the Hyuuga council if they ever found out.

"Hey you know, maybe after you feed the baby you can let me have a little too." Naruto suggested before his hand reached up to gently squeeze her free breast.

"!!!"


[Back in Hinata's tent]

"I HAVE NARUTO-KUN'S BABY!!" She screamed in her mind as she woke up from the (debatable) pleasant dream. She would have jumped up but something seemed to be holding her down. "Why do I feel so heav-...!!!" That's when she felt something resting on one of her breast, and a hand cupping the other. Looking down, she saw a mop of golden locks on her chest and her hand resting on top of it as if holding it there. "N-N-Naruto-kun... s-sleeping... on my b-b-b-b-b-b-b-"

She didn't get to finish her thoughts as she heard mumblings coming from Konoha's most surprising ninja.

"Mhmmmm... ramen..." Naruto dreamed as he lovingly slurped up the noodles in his mind. However, it caused him to unconsciously slurp Hinata's breast, effectively sucking on it as he dampened up the shirt and bandages covering her peak with his saliva.

"EEP!"

"... tasty..." The ramen lover said after the heiress passed out.


[Inside Hinata's mind, a little earlier]

Lieutenant Hinata was performing her inspection of the ship as she walked towards the command center. There was only a dim light throughout the ship to conserve energy as the majority of the crew was asleep at this time. However, when the doors slid open, an eerie glow of light came from the large monitor at the front of the room. Her eyes had to adjust from the increase in light, temporarily blinding her somewhat, but she could still see the form of a person slaving away behind one of the keyboards.

"Captain?... Is that you?" She guessed, blinking a few times.

The captain's head whipped around like a frightened squirrel when it notices someone sneaking behind it. Her eyes widened when she realised who it was. "O-oh, lieutenant! What are you doing here... at this time... when there wasn't supposed to be anyone in here? Hehe..." The captain enquired a little panicked as she covered the small monitor she was working on.

"I'm doing the weekly inspection today." She answered after her eyes finally corrected themselves. The strange movements and the hesitant voice of her captain didn't go unnoticed, and she turned her eyes, with a raised eyebrow, to the large screen which displayed the ship's dream of breast feeding a baby. "... What are you doing here captain?"

"Uh well, you know, I couldn't sleep so I thought I'd come here to watch the show, and pass some time... Want some ice cream?" The captain offered as she pulled out the chick flick delicacy that was already half eaten with the spoon still inside it.

"Captain, you know it isn't appropriate t-" The lieutenant stopped what she was saying when the image of a blonde haired baby appeared on the screen. "Why is there a child in the ships dreams that looks so much like the enemy?"

Just then, the image of Naruto popped in. "Hehe, um funny thing... it's because it's his child... well our child."

"This is illogical... why is the ship having a dream about the spawn of our enemy? I thought we put up measures to stop such things two weeks ago when she had those fantasies of children."

"W-well actually... we never got around to putting those in... or even finishing them in the first place. Also, I kind of maybe possibly edited the dream a little." The captain admitted before dream Naruto cupped the ship's free breast. "Ok... maybe a lot."

Just than the floor shook as if it was hit by an earthquake, and all the lights turned on.

"The ship has activated." The lieutenant stated a little surprised, but barely showed it as she kept her demeanour. Her eyes then shifted to an icy cold glare as she looked back at the other girl. "As captain of this ship, how could you justify such inexcusable actions?"

"Have you seen Naruto-kun? How could I not do these things when he just presents himself in front of us... all hot and defenceless!?" The captain posed when she pointed back at the screen which now showed the real Naruto resting his head on Hinata's bust.

The lieutenant's eyes widened when she saw the yellow spikes and the ships hand entangled between them. "This is unacceptable! You have allowed your emotions to influence your mind to much captain. As lieutenant, I deem you unfit to command the ship, and will be relieving you of your post effective immediately." She ordered before turning around and making her way out the room.

That is until the captain ran up and caught her from behind. "I can't let you do that lieutenant." The captain said as she cupped her hostage's breasts from underneath the shirt and then turned her back around to look at the monitor. "Are you just going to stand there and tell me you feel nothing for Naruto-kun?"

"You don't know what you're saying captain, you've been infected with the doki-doki virus." Lieutenant Hinata reasoned, even though her cheeks held a slight tint of pink while her eyes were closed to not see the embarrassing screen in front of her.

"Hey, I didn't say you could close your eyes. Look at Naruto-kun. That's an order." The captain commanded before squeezing the girl's chest, making the victim's eyes open up in surprise. Her hands continued to massage the supple mounds as she now whispered in the girl's ear. "Don't you like Naruto-kun? I've seen the way you glance at him every time he comes up on the sensors. Don't you wish to see him more often and maybe a little more... revealed?"

"Wh-why would I want to see Naruto-k-... the enemy's hard chest more often?"

The captain only smirked when she felt the lieutenant's nipples stiffen. "Oh I don't know, but I'm sure you could come up with a perfectly logical reason." She mocked before pinching the hardened flesh.

"Aaaah! N-N-Naruto-kuuuunmhmmm." Chibi Hinata moaned as her legs became weak. Luckily, her body was supported by the person behind her.

Just then, the speakers started working as they heard mumblings coming from said boy in the outside world. "Mhmmmm... ramen..."

Both chibi Hinata's blushed furiously as they watched the scene... until the ship blacked out causing all the lights to do the same after hearing the "Eep!"

The lieutenant couldn't take it either, as she followed the ships example, and the captain was about to join her after a final thought went through her mind. "That sexy bastard... maybe we're the defenceless ones..."

"... tasty..."


[Almost morning]

In less than an hour, the sun would soon rise from the horizon. All throughout the night, two preteens had shifted in their sleep until they found a comfortable position... facing one another... in each other's arms. Both were sleeping on their sides, with Naruto's arm laid out for Hinata's head to rest on, while the other arm was wrapped around her waist, holding her tightly to him. The Heiress wasn't all innocent either as she had one leg between the village outcast's thighs, and both hands lightly grasping the fabric of his shirt as her chest pressed up against him.

However a small look of irritation was on the shy girl's face... until it was remedied by her snuggling even closer to the boy around the base of his neck. A sigh of warm air left her lips and grazed against Naruto's skin, causing a delighted shiver to run up his spine. It seemed to be enough to slowly wake the boy up from his unconscious state.

"Mhmrrr... Is nee-chan in my bed again?" Naruto presumed when he felt a source of warmth close to him. Blue eyes fluttered open and quickly processed the light entering it. "This isn't my room..."

As he looked around, he noticed he was in a sleeping bag and a tent that he didn't recognize, but what really made him curious was a large indigo coloured object under his neck. "Nee-chan's hair isn't blue... nee-chan isn't this small... nee-chan isn't even here..." His eyes widened in realization. "THIS IS HINATA!"

Quickly he tried moving back, but Hinata's hands reflexively held on to him tighter, not willing to let him go. "Crap crap crap! Why the hell am I holding on to Hinata! Argh, I blame nee-chan for this! I'm probably used to it now or something."

Once again Hinata had to nestle closer, due to Naruto's slight shift, causing her thigh that was already between his legs to press up against him. That's when he noticed his first case of morning wood. "What the hell!? I just woke up, why is it like this!?" Naruto thought with a blush as he looked frantically around for an escape. "I-I can't let Hinata wake up and catch me like th-"

"Hmm... Naruto-kun..." Hinata blissfully whispered as she slowly woke up. That is until her mind started functioning normally and she took in her surroundings. "Wait... Naruto-kun... shouldn't be... next to m-... !!!"

The two teens instantly separated to the opposite ends of the bag as they took up the same positions they did before they slept.

"G-gomen!"
"G-g-g-gomen!" They both apologized with similar mortified expressions... one obviously stuttering more than the other.

"I didn't mean to-"
"I-I w-w-wasn't-"

"Um..."
"A-ano..."

"Oh, so you're both awake." Kakashi intruded with his head peeking through the opening of the tent while giving his unique smile. "Well that saves me some time. Good morning."

"Wh-what are you doing here Kakashi-sensei!?" Naruto tried to shout but kept it as a whisper to not alert anyone else.

"I came to get you Naruto. I thought it would be a good idea for you to get some fresh air, you know... before everyone else wakes up." The silver haired man casually answered before retreating back outside. "Unless the both of you want to sleep in a little longer, I don't care either way. See you later."

Identical blushes adorned their faces at the thought of staying in bed... with each other... awake.

"M-maybe I should get some fresh air."
"I-I-I'll w-wait f-f-for y-you ou-ou-outside." They both hurriedly said as they got out of the bag and grabbed their things.


[In the forest, some time later]

The group was now once again walking towards Waterfall country, with the Konoha party up front, while the client and his guards walked a couple meters behind them. Shibuki was able to keep his cool now that he was in the company of so many shinobi.

*Snap!!!*

"AAH! Don't hurt me!"

... except whenever a loud sound from the forest startled him.

"Oh would you cut it out already yah big baby!? It'll take us twice as long to get there if you keep getting scared by every little thing!" Kiba shouted over his shoulder as a vein bulged at his temple.

"Hey, you don't have the right to talk to Shibuki-sensei like that!" The green haired teen angrily defended.

Shibuki quickly stood straight and unwrinkled his shirt as he composed himself. "Now, now Fuu, I was just testing the capabilities of the other ninja here to see how skilled they are."

Kiba's eye twitched as he heard the lame excuse. "I've already got a lot on my mind as it is, and I don't need an annoying distraction like this asshole."

The source of his major irritation at the moment was on the other side of Kakashi, where Naruto and Hinata were walking with a noticeable gap between them and slightly flushed cheeks. For some reason the dog owner could smell a stronger scent of Hinata off of Naruto and vice versa. "I've practically been watching Hinata the whole time, and they didn't smell like this when we went to camp. I know that idiot didn't lay his hands on my girl... is it just because he's always trying to stand close to her?"

Noticing the infuriated state the Inuzuka was in; Kakashi stuck out his arm to stop the boy from crossing over to his other side. "Don't break formation now Kiba. I need to stay in the middle. You know... in case anything happens. It's easier to watch over you all like this." The erotic novel lover said while still reading his book seemingly without a care in the world. "Also, it's not good to yell at the client."

"I don't care! I'll yell at that scaredy c-"

"Mah, mah, I wonder how Kurenai will think when she finds out how you represented Konoha to such an important client?" Kakashi enquired as he glanced at the child with a raised eyebrow and a knowing look.

"Shit, anything but that bitch!" Kiba thought as he instantly started to sweat from the hidden threat. "Hehe, yell? Who's yelling? There's no reason to yell... heheh."

"Good." Kakashi happily said with his signature U shaped eye smile.

"Important client? What's so important about that guy Kakashi-sensei?" Naruto asked. It was the first thing he said since he left the tent that morning.

"Weren't you listening yesterday? He's the leader of the shinobi village in Taki, baka." Kiba insulted in a low voice so the group behind him wouldn't hear. "No point for that asshole behind us to start getting a big head."

"Well yeah I know that, but he doesn't look all that much." Naruto elaborated in the same volume. "Wait, why the hell am I whispering too?"

"Whether he looks like it or not, he is the current leader." Kakashi informed his curious student. "Konoha and Taki are in an alliance, so we have to stay on his good side."

"Well if the shinobi there are anything like him, why do we need an alliance? Isn't Konoha way stronger than them?" Naruto questioned with a dumbfounded look on his face until a light turned on in his head. "Oh wait I know, we have an alliance with them because they're weak, so we have to protect them."

"Yes and no Naruto." Kakashi said, sending the blonde back to that uncomprehending look, before he went into a rare state of teacher mode. "It's true that they have an alliance with us because they're not as big as one of the five great shinobi nations, but we don't have an alliance with them because we want to protect them. We have an alliance with them because we want to protect ourselves."

"Eh?"

"Out of the five major villages, the two strongest are Iwa and Kumo. Kiri and Konoha are in the middle while Suna is the weakest. Since they have the most military strength, the Stone and Cloud are able to defend themselves easily from any attacker. The Mist on the other hand may not have enough strength to attack either of them, but it would still be suicide to try and attack the Mist on home ground when their surrounded by their element. Unfortunately the Leaf and Sand don't have such an advantage, that's why they formed an alliance with each other, and with the countries bordering them, so that they would have enough power combined to defend themselves from any of the other villages."

"But I thought Konoha was the strongest village... I think Iruka-sensei said something about us beating the hidden Stone village or something." Naruto tried to remember as he wracked his brain for the entire lesson.

"Yes that's true. We did defeat Iwa in the third great shinobi war." Kakashi educated, and then closed his book as he took on a more serious look. "However... we suffered many losses, but we were still equal in strength compared to Iwa afterwards."

"Then why are we weaker than them now?"

"The Kyuubi..." Kakashi stated flatly, causing Naruto to unconsciously place a hand on his stomach as his skin turned a little pale. "It attacked Konoha a little over 12 years ago after we just defeated Iwa. We were caught by surprise, and many of our skilled shinobi lost their lives that day."

The cyclopean man closed his lone eye as he remembered his sensei, and opened it back up before he went on with his tale. "It may not have been the direct cause of Konoha's state today, but the day of its attack did mark the start of Konoha's greatest depression."

He let out a sigh as he prepared what he was going to say next. "Konoha used to be the wealthiest and strongest village in the continent, but during the sixty years that it has been around, we have gone through three great wars, and many small battles with lesser countries. That's at least one major war for every twenty years. After the first war we were at our strongest, but the two that followed made us start to feel the effects as it cut our power in half."

"But we we're still as strong as Iwa, right?" Naruto said, showing that he was paying attention from the start.

"That's right, but when we were attacked by the Kyuubi, a lot of the village's money went towards rebuilding Konoha. Also because people lost so many loved ones after the attack and the war, they left the village... many of them being some of our strongest Shinobi." Kakashi said as he reminded himself of Jiraiya. "What followed afterwards almost devastated the village. Many clans left, taking their own wealth with them, and settled within other parts of fire country with the daimyo's permission. Other clans suffered... losses, which was a big blow to the strength of the village."

The experienced jounin noticed the quick glare from the Uchiha as he felt the small pang of killing intent coming off the boy, but it didn't stop him from talking. "With the village practically bankrupt, it took us almost 5 years to become fully stable after that day."

"How did we do that? Did the Fire lord give us the money?" Naruto asked.

"He gave us some, but not enough. It was the same amount as the majority of the other daimyo's gave to their villages, but the problem is, Konoha has twice the population of any other village so there isn't enough to cover us all. Plus because of our low amount of skilled ninja, we can't take enough of the high paying missions we want to fund the village properly."

"So then how?"

"We got... donations..." Kakashi answered as he rubbed his temple. "... from certain individuals."

"Individuals? Who are they?"

"You might know them as the civilian council."

"Those assholes?" Kiba interjected a little shocked and angry. "My mom is always complaining about those pricks."

"Yes, well, they're the ones that bailed out the village... for a price."

"What did they get?"

"The creation of the civilian council itself."

"What do you mean? Wasn't there always a civilian council?" Kiba questioned, completely confused.

"Idiot..." Sasuke chastised in his regular brooding voice. "What place do civilians have in a village of shinobi?"

"About as much as my foot up your ass if you don't shut up!" Kiba shot back, glaring at the rookie of the year who wasn't even registering it as a threat.

"Hey, hey, calm down now." Kakashi tried to diffuse, as he brought up both palms flat and gestured them to stop. "What Sasuke said is somewhat true, before there wasn't a civilian council, just a jounin council. The old system was just the Hokage, the heads of major clans within the village, and one representative for the rest of the jounin. The main purpose of this group was to discuss and give rulings on certain issues that affected the village. If it was something the council couldn't decide on, or something too important, they would let every jounin within the village vote on what should be done."

"So how is it done now with the civilian council?" Naruto asked, actually interested in a lesson for once.

"The same way as before, except with civilians now taking up 2/5ths of the council. Most of them are business men, but there are some wealthy shinobi in there too that aren't considered being a part of a major clan, and because of their... contributions, they now hold the same amount of power as any other major clan, other than the five founding clans of course."

"Wait, so you're saying they have as much power as my family? That's just a load of bull!" The Inuzuka shouted in outrage, with a bark from Akamaru backing him up.

"Well don't worry. They don't hold a majority so they can't really do that much, and even if they did, Hokage-sama has the final say."

"Does jiji really hold that much power?" Naruto thought, as the other genin had similar disbeliefs.

"You all just doubted Hokage-sama didn't you?" Kakashi quizzed, causing them all to flinch. "Well enough talk for now. I want to know what happens next in my book."

"So when I become Hokage I have to deal with things like that huh... Well it doesn't even matter if I can't deal with the problems I have now..." Naruto thought as he looked at the shy girl that still wouldn't turn her head towards him. "She hasn't said anything after we left the tent. I really screwed up didn't I..."

Even though there was an air of awkwardness between them, they were at least walking beside each other four feet apart, never willing to be separated more than that. The heiress however still couldn't stop the crimson blush that seemed to take up residence on her cheeks. "My leg was touching Naruto-kun's hard p-p-p-p-"


[Mid afternoon]

After running for most of the day, the group could actually hear the sound of a waterfall.

"The waterfall is along that cliff up there; we shouldn't be too far from it." Fuu pointed out as the top of the natural barrier could now be seen through the canopy. "Then you guys can finally leave us."

"Actually, it probably would be a good idea for us to stick around." Kakashi recommended, still reading the red covered book. "You know, to investigate these rumours that have been going around."

"Rumours?" Shibuki curiously asked.

"It may be nothing, but there have been indications that some missing-nins have plans for your village."

"Rumours like that are always going around. We're between two major countries so we're targeted a lot." Furukawa, the other guard, said as he looked at Kakashi sceptically.

"Come to think of it, didn't the last leader of your village have to fight off men like that?" Kakashi enquired as he looked over his shoulder towards Shibuki.

The man just lowered his head when he was reminded of his father, but eventually gave a nod to confirm Kakashi's statement. Fuu seemed to get closer to him, but couldn't comfort her sensei in fear of doing the wrong thing.

As they got closer to the cliff, the forest became thinner and thinner until they reached a small lake with the tallest waterfall they had ever seen pouring into it.

"Wooow... That's the biggest waterfall I've ever seen." Naruto gaped as he slowly tilted his head up, trying to see where it all started from.

"It's beautiful..." Hinata whispered in awe, her stutter gone as she forgot her problems at that moment.

It didn't go unnoticed by the blonde, who was standing next to her, as a smile appeared on his face and hope filled his eyes. "She talked! Maybe she'll start talking to me again!"

"Yes it really is impressive." Kakashi said in a relaxed tone, having seen the body of water before.

"Yeah... but it really makes you want to go pee." Kiba complained as he grabbed himself between the legs to try and hold back the fluids. The majority of the party looked at him with a raised eyebrow at that comment. "What... it's true!"

Shibuki at this point stomped over to the front of the group as he snapped at the Konoha-nin. "Alright you got us here! You mission is over! So go do you business in the woods, and then leave!"

"What!?" Naruto protested as he looked at the client a little angrily.

"You heard me. There's nothing keeping you here, so go away."

"We just dragged your ass all the way over here and you're just gonna send us packing even though it's almost night time!?"

"Alright, we'll leave." Kakashi complied in a monotone voice. He then turned around and gestured for his team to follow.

Naruto didn't believe what he was hearing from his teacher. He turned around and tried to reason with him. "But Kakashi-sensei, we-"

"Don't you get it dobe?" Sasuke said as he started following the jounin. "The secret entrance to their village must be close by... They don't want us to see it."

What the Uchiha said completely confused Kiba, so he decided to interject before Naruto could speak. "Wait, aren't both our villages' allies? Kakashi said-"

"Yeah, so what!? What if one day we aren't allies anymore? What's to stop you from betraying us?" Shibuki countered as he crossed his arms.

"Why you..." Kiba growled, only to be interrupted by his dog barking. "Not now Akamaru, can't you see I'm busy?"

As the Inuzuka ignored his dog, two other noses twitched soon after.

"Huh... why do I smell someone different?" Naruto thought as he stared at the waterfall.

"Everyone, guard the client!" Kakashi commanded as he ran back up to the front of the group, faster than they could see. The silver haired man looked over his shoulder to the client's guards. "You two, stay with me!"

The two from Taki hesitated, but when they saw a squad of shinobi jumping out of the waterfall, they quickly moved. "... Hai!"

"Shit they noticed us. Let's end this quick!" The apparent leader, with dark grey hair and a green rectangular tattoo across his nose, ordered as he grabbed a hand full of kunai like the rest of his party, and sent a hail of metal towards the three ninja.

Without even thinking, Fuu ran up front towards the attackers and onto the water. Her hands quickly ran through some seals before she lifted up her right foot behind her as if she was going to kick a ball. "Fuuton: Kiatsu Kai - Ashi!" (Wind Style: Foot - Air Pressure Release!)

Kakashi had to close his eye from the large force of wind that seemed to expel from behind Fuu's heel. All he could hear was her foot making contact with the water, but it went by in an instant. He was only blinded for a second, but when he opened up his eye again, the sight of a giant wave took up almost his entire view.

The three story tall wave was strong enough to block and engross the weapons. When the enemies landed on the lake, they couldn't do anything as it started crashing towards them, except for the leader that is.

"Suiton: Mizu Heki!" (Water Wall) The leader shouted as water rose up like a reverse waterfall to shield them from the oncoming attack. It seemed to be effective as it stopped the wave, but what he didn't account for were their kunai that passed right through because of the force of the crash.

Since they weren't properly aimed, the kunai practically just pelted them, giving them shallow cuts or bruises. Only two of the goons were actually stabbed by the weapons, and it only hit the arm or leg. "Damn that bitch, I didn't think about the kunai." The man scowled as he looked at the green haired girl.

"I'll take care of their leader. Fuu and Kakashi-san, take care of the rest of them." Furukawa ordered as he took on a more authoritative role.


[Back with the genin and the client]

At the sight of enemy shinobi coming out, almost everyone froze up at the thought of having to fight. They were only broken out of their stupor when Fuu made her first move.

"Holy crap! Did you see that? How was she able to do that? She's really amazing!" Naruto praised, astonished by the flashy performance not too far away from him.

"Of course she is, I trained her remember?" Shibuki gloated even though he was cowering behind the blonde's back.

"Then as her teacher, shouldn't you be the one taking care of the enemy and not your student?" Sasuke coldly posed as he looked at the man with judging eyes.

"Hey I would, but you see... I'm the client remember? I have to be protected... yeah that's right protected, so that-umph!" He wasn't able to finish his sentence as a whip made out of water wrapped around his arms and torso, and swiftly yanked him back into the depths of the forest. "AAAAAHHH!"

"Shit." Sasuke cursed under his breath as he ran after the client. "I'm not going to allow myself to have a failed mission."

"Wait, Sasuke! Shouldn't we get sensei and..." Naruto called out, but when he looked back to see Kakashi's group fighting what seemed like an extra squad, he gave up that solution and chased after the boy. "Damn it. I'm not going to let you do this yourself while I do nothing!"

"N-Naruto-kun..." Hinata said in a somewhat frightened voice as the boy raced off into danger. She paused to look for a jounin to help, but seeing the same thing Naruto saw, she chased after the boy. However, she was caught in her tracks by a hand clutching her wrist.

"W-w-wait Hinata, you j-just can't go i-in th-there! There's another n-n-n-ninja there!" Kiba pleaded in a terrified voice. His legs were trembling, and his pupils were dilated in fear. "I-I don't want to be left alone!"

"I-I have too. Th-they're fighting i-in th-there. Let go of me!" Hinata shouted at the end as she ripped her arm from his grasp. Only one thought went through her mind as she ran into the forest with her doujutsu activated. "I have to help Naruto-kun!"

With no one else around, other than Akamaru, Kiba was left alone. Frantically he looked back and forth between the tree line, and the battle on the lake. After a couple of minutes, he couldn't take the strain on his mind any longer, and decided to join the other genin. "Fuck! Why do I have to get in messes like this?"


[Deep in the forest]

"There, are you comfortable?" The man mockingly asked as he tightened up some metal wire that he was using to bind Shibuki to the trunk of a tree. The client could only mumble in fear as his forehead protector was lowered to cover his mouth. "Heh, I can't believe Murasame is having trouble with a couple of ninja. Well he's making a decent distraction now that I sent those pieces of fodder that woman gave me to help him. Good thing I didn't need them, taking you from those weak little genin was too easy... speaking of which."

Just then, the sound of footsteps stopped, and a haughty voice spoke out. "Hn, I know you're here. Come out." Sasuke wasn't bluffing as he noticed the wire wrapped around a tree a few meters away. "This guy waited for a time when we were distracted, and attacked from a distance in the dark. He ran in the forest because he knew it would be full of shadows now that the sun is so close to the horizon. If I want to defeat him, I have to at least get him into the light."

"Heh, so you think a little genin like you can take me on? Well you're brave, I'll give you that... or maybe you're just stupid." Kirisame, a man showing as much facial features as Kakashi, ridiculed through his mouth mask as he stepped out from behind the tree.

As soon as he came into view, Sasuke instantly sent a kunai flying his way at an impressive speed. However, instead of making contact, it just went right through the man. "That's not possible! Is this a genjutsu? No... I just saw him; he hasn't had the time to place a genjutsu on me. So that makes this a nin-"

"Oboro bunshin no jutsu." (Haze Clone Jutsu) The man said giving a smirk as copies of him started forming out of thin air. "You looked a little confused so I thought I'd clear things up. How do you like i-"

"Oi Teme! Why did you run off by yourself!?" Naruto interrupted as he came up behind the Uchiha. His nose twitched, and he instantly brought up a hand to pinch it closed. "Aw man, what's up with this place? It stinks!"

"Hehe, I knew one of those kids had a dog in their group, but this one seems to be sensitive too. Good thing I prepared this place beforehand." The abductor thought as he looked at the new arrival.

"Dobe shut up. Can't you see I'm busy?" Sasuke posed in his cool demeanour, but the way his eyes were frantically racing from side to side said otherwise.

"Eh?" Naruto intelligently replied and then noticed for the first time the amount of enemies surrounding them. "Holy crap, when did they get here!?"

"Hehe, that runt is your back up!?" Kirisame laughed as he pointed at the blonde. "There's no way that little shrimp is a ninja."

"Shut up..." Naruto said menacingly as he glared at the man. His fist started to tighten up as the man laughed louder and louder, until he couldn't take it anymore. "I said shut up!"

The boy went charging at the man with his fist cocked back, ready to punch. His anger blinding him, he punched at the man's chest with all his weight behind him, and hit... nothing. With no resistance pushing against him, the hand went right through the image, along with the genin that followed it as he started to lose balance.

That's when, from the corner of his eye, he saw a kunai coming towards him. His hand shot out to grab a tree, stopping his decent as if he were frozen in place while the blade zipped by a few inches from his nose. "I-I almost died."

"Idiot, get back!" Sasuke warned as he nonchalantly pulled back on the blonde's collar, forcing him to the ground. This time a hand full of kunai had passed by from the opposite direction and imbedded themselves in the tree Naruto was standing beside just a second ago.

"That first kunai was used to set off a trap... He must have figured that carrying a body would slow him down to much, so he set this area up in advance. We're probably surrounded by traps, and they're all facing towards here." Sasuke deduced as he tried looking around for the hidden contraptions. "There's no way we can get to them and disarm them from in here... Cheh, if only the dobe was outside, he could have disarmed them while I distracted the enemy."

Naruto at this point was staring, wide eyed, at the now porcupine like tree from his place on the ground. He could feel the fear running up his back, telling him to run and hide. However, when his right hand came down to push himself back up, he saw the bandages that Hinata had put on him. Images started racing through his head, but none more than the Kyuubi and her red eyes.

"That's right... this is nothing compared to then." Naruto remembered as his nerves calmed down. He was now standing up straight, and slowly brought both hands up into a cross shaped seal. "I shouldn't be afraid... there's always something I can do! If all these are fakes, then I'll just have to run through them all until I find the real one."

"Kage bunshin no jutsu!" A dozen copies of the orange clad ninja appeared, all waiting for their signal. "Let's get him!"

"How does a genin know a jutsu like that?" Kirisame wondered as he saw the small group barrel through his copies. Although it didn't stop the small smirk that appeared on his face as he readied his kunai. "Well it doesn't matter. He won't be able to find me, so I'll just take care of them and waste his chakra."

One by one, the sound of bunshin popping could be heard, but Naruto continued making replacements.

"Now's my chance... while Naruto is distracting him, I can run out of this place and destroy the traps." Sasuke thought as he ran in the opposite direction from where most of the clones were. Unfortunately it was a mistake. The many shadows of the forest concealed a wire on the ground, and he hadn't noticed the danger until he tripped it. His eyes looked down fast to see an exploding note. "Shit."

Quickly his hands came together as the paper started to fizzle.

*KABOOM!* The bomb exploded, and as soon as the dust settled, the scene of a chard log could be seen where the Uchiha once stood.

"That was too close. He even placed traps to keep us out if we tried to run. Probably so we don't try to get help." Sasuke thought with a noticeable sweat on his brow. The spot he had replaced himself from emanated heat from the small fires it caused, and that's when he became aware of something. "If only we could find the real one, but all these copies are-..."

He observed as the enemy's clones near the flames started to waver, or parts of them completely disappeared. "They can't hold their form in the heat. They're probably made up of the air itself, that's why they can stay up even though a regular bunshin would get disrupted from just touching it." The rookie of the year realized, and then looked towards his one ally. "Naruto, cover me!"

The blonde's head whipped around at the sound of his name, and the sight of the proud Uchiha running through some hand-seals met his eyes. "Katon: Gyoukakyuu no jutsu!" Flames streamed from the boy's mouth, and attached themselves to a large tree to fuel them. Expelling his chakra, the fire wouldn't stop coming from his mouth as he concentrated on making it as hot as possible.

"What the hell is that little twerp trying to pull? Oh well, he's wide open." Grabbing a couple of kunai, the man sent them flying to the unguarded child, or at least so he thought until the boy was shielded by a group of orange genin. "Shit..."

"How did those ones come from below?" Naruto wondered after he parried the flying weapons. Forgetting that thought for now, he looked back to Sasuke who was finishing up his jutsu. "Why the hell are you burning a tree for?"

The flames stopped, and Sasuke grabbed his knees as he panted, trying to catch his breath. "Just... *pant*... shut up... *pant*... and look for... *cough*... the enemy... *pant*... dobe."

Even when the Uchiha was tired he still had the strength to mock Naruto, but he listened to him none the less. "Note... pull stick... out of his ass. Now, where the hell is this asshole?" As he looked around through the bunshin, it became apparent to him the state the clones were in. "There's no more copies close to us for a couple of meters, and the rest look all messed up. Why are they all bending towards us?"

That's when he felt a cool breeze pass by him and up towards the burning tree. "No... they're all bending towards the fire. So this is why Sasuke did it..." Naruto reasoned as he took in the smell of burning wood. "It's even getting rid of that nasty smell from before."

"Cheh, that brat figured out the weakness to my jutsu. Hehe, at least he's tired now, and even if they can tell which clones are fakes, they'll still never find me." The man mentally jeered from his place underground. Ever since he had created his bunshin, he used a jutsu to move underneath the earth itself, and only peeked out within the concealment of the shadows to assess the situation or attack.

Even with such a large source of light now illuminating the forest, it still created large pools of darkness, darkness attached to the genin themselves. "I think I'll start with mister winded here." Kirisame smirked as his kunai equipped hand came out of the ground within Sasuke's shadow. "Die!"

"Sasuke, watch out!" The Uchiha didn't even have time to respond before Naruto tackled him out of the way of the weapon flying by.

"Fuck... how did that kid know I was going to attack?" The assaulter was irate with the mystery until he remembered how the boy reacted when he first came into the battle field. "He smelled me... that stupid fire got rid of the skunk smell I put around the place. He might not be able get a whiff of me underground, but every time I want to attack, he'll know in advance."

With only one option left, the man sprung out of the ground with some distance between himself and the two boys. "Cheh... I can't believe two brats are making me fight in the open. I thought I'd be nice and kill you in an instant when you weren't looking, but now... now you're going to feel some pain."

"You're the one that's gonna feel some pain ass wipe!" Naruto proclaimed as 4 blondes ran towards the man.

"You don't get it do you..." The man said as he placed his hands in a single seal. "Mizu no Muchi. (Whip of Water)"

Before Naruto could get to him, the tendril of water formed in the man's right hand, and he instantly used it to lash at the clones and pop them into smoke. "I was going easy on you before, but now I'll hold nothing back."

"Then I won't either." Naruto said as he replaced the 4 clones. "Try and stop us all!"

Kirisame just sneered before he created another whip for his left hand. "With pleasure." The clones came at him, and he made quick work of half of them until they decided to spread apart. Even then, he was still picking them off, but when he hit flesh on the cheek that didn't pop, he found his mark. "Got you!"

This caused a cut to be formed, and when Naruto composed himself, he was met with the same whip coming towards his waist and wrapping around him. Franticly, he grabbed a kunai and tried to cut the water, but it only resisted.

"It's pointless. This whip can't be cut by ordinary weapons or strength." The man gloated as he tightened his hold. However he was soon distracted by the other clones attacking him from behind. With one arm occupied, he knew he wouldn't be able to fend off the attack, so he opted to protect himself, but at least damage his hostage. Using both arms, he flung Naruto into the oncoming attack, unravelling him from his binds as he did.

The bunshin safely caught their creator, but many of them were dispelled from the impact. A laugh could then be heard coming from the former captive. "Haha, what was that about it being pointless?" A confident smile appeared on the boys face as he placed his hands in his favourite seal. "If I couldn't get to you with that many, then I'll just have to triple it."

"Kage bunshin no jutsu!" Naruto shouted as three dozen blondes appeared.

"Where the hell is this kid getting all this chakra? I've been popping them one after another, and he makes more as if it was nothing. I can't let this go on for much longer. I have to look for a way to escape or end th-..." That's when his eyes fell upon the Uchiha, and a grin emerged from his face. "Perfect..."

With the flick of a wrist, the whip snared the boy, and then roughly yanked him in one pull to the feet of his kidnapper. "I wouldn't be so quick to attack, or your friend here might die." Kirisame said as he dispelled the other whip. As soon as his free hand grasped the tendril of water, electricity ran though it and shocked the boy in its grasp.

"Stop!" Naruto pleaded as he heard Sasuke trying to hold back the screams of pain and failing.

"Then get rid of your little buddies here."

Naruto just glared at the man, but brought up his hands as he begrudgingly complied. "Fine..." The clones popped away into nothing, and only one blonde could be seen left standing. "Now let him go."

"Idiot, now we're both going to d-" Sasuke stopped his train of thought when he noticed something in the forest a few meters behind his captor.

"Baka! Who would believe the word of their enemy!?" Kirisame laughed as a whip reformed in his free hand again and quickly lashed at the boy's other cheek, knocking him to the ground from the force. "Haha, now you'll pay f-"

*Puff*

"A bunshin? But when did he- what!?" His thought process was disturbed by the feeling of something wrapping around his shins. He looked down and saw Sasuke's legs locking him in place like a crab's claw. "You little shit, let me go!"

"Naruto now!" Sasuke shouted.

"I know teme!" The village prankster retorted, running up from behind the attacker.

Kirisame only had enough time to turn his head over his shoulder, and find a blonde haired genin jumping towards him with a readied fist. "Eh!-Umph!"

A crack could be heard when Naruto's knuckles landed on the man's cheek and was sent flying a couple of feet because of bad footing before tumbling to the ground. The whip that held Sasuke dissolved into nothing as the concentration to the jutsu was lost.

"Hn, not bad..." Sasuke somewhat praised as he got back up on his feet.

A small smile appeared on Naruto's face from being acknowledged.

"For a dobe that is."

... and it was gone, just like that.

"Oh and I'm sure all your fan girls would have loved to see you tied up and defenceless like that." Naruto shot back, causing the Uchiha to glare at him a little from the corner of his eye.

"You two little fucking shits!" Kirisame shouted after getting back up. He lowered his mask and spat on the ground showing that there was blood in it. "I'm going to fucking kill you!"

The two genin just looked at each other and nodded before running through some hand-seals.

"Katon: Housenka no jutsu!" (Mythical Phoenix Fire jutsu)
"Kage bunshin no jutsu!"

Clones and fireballs raced after the man, but he didn't move from his spot and stood his ground.

"Tajuu Mizu no Muchi!" (Multi Whip of Water)

Five whips of water formed on each hand, one connected to every digit, and with a swing of his arms, he was able to quench or disrupt all jutsu flying at him. An evil grin came on the man's face from his triumph as dark clouds started to fill the sky. "Now you're mine!"

They couldn't stop the whips, and in an instant they became securely entangled on all limbs and even around the neck. With a hard pull, he toppled the genin to the ground, and gave out a laugh. "Enjoy the afterlife." He then slapped his hands together, and an electric current started running through the water.

"No!" A feminine voice interjected and was soon followed by a shadowy figure running between the man and his captives. As it did, the tendrils were cut one after another and dropped lifelessly to the ground.

"What the... how the hell was my jutsu cut?" Kirisame asked in shock as the water slipped from his fingers, and then looked towards his opponents when he heard a sound coming from there.

"N-Naruto-kun, are you o-ok!?" Hinata asked in a panic as she ran up to the boy.

"Uh... Hinata?" The blonde groaned as he lifted up his head to see if it was true. He had been slightly electrocuted along with Sasuke, but it luckily didn't last for very long. Hinata let out a sigh of relief when she heard him respond.

"You little bitch! Never interrupt me!" Kirisame shouted in a rage as he formed the whips on his hands again, and this time sent them towards the Hyuuga. He couldn't tell it was one because her back was towards him, but he still caught her like he did the boys before. "I don't know how you cut my whips, but I'm not letting you do that again!"

"Hinata!" Naruto frightfully shouted as his eyes widened. "Anything but Hinata!"

"Hooo... now that's a reaction you haven't shown me. This one must be more important to you... let me guess, is she your girlfriend?" Kirisame taunted as a foul grin surfaced. Even though his body was still in pain, Naruto got up, and tried to reach Hinata until the man chocked her slightly. "Now now, don't even think of trying anything, or I'll kill her right now."

"Let her go..." Naruto threatened as his fists tightened up so hard his knuckles turned white. His focus only left the man so that he could check on the girl, but when he did, he saw her pleading for him to stop with her eyes, while her hand grasped one of the tendrils.

"Haha, oh how scary. What? Have you run out of trick-...!!!" Kirisame wasn't able to finish his mocking as he felt a large amount of pain in his gut. His arm started to tremble before the whips in his hand disconnected and turned into simple water. He held back a cough that contained a lot of blood, and it leaked from the side of his mouth before he threw it up on the ground. "Wh-what the hell just happened... it feels like I was hit on the inside?"

As soon as Hinata was free, Naruto moved to stand between her and the attacker protectively as she gasped for air.

"Cheh, these stupid kids just come one after another... I'll have to forget about the target for now." Kirisame reasoned while Naruto created some clones. He looked around for an escape, and when he saw the clouds over head, he had his answer. "Suiton: Kuikorosu Ame!" (Devouring Rain)

Before the jutsu could start, the man grabbed a smoke ball and threw it to the ground. The water in the sky soon condensed and an early down pour hit the forest. It wasn't any normal rain either as it began to eat away at the chakra of the clones Naruto had created until they lost their stability and dispelled. It was also heavy enough to put out the Uchiha's fire, and clear up the gas from the smoke ball. However when it diffused, Kirisame was gone.

Even with the man's scent masked by the rain, the blonde would have chased after him, but he couldn't leave his two allies while they were vulnerable. Pushing back his anger, he turned around and tended to them. "Hey teme are you alright?"

"Something like this... can't stop me." The Uchiha said in a strained voice as he slowly got back up. "We were going to die... I didn't see Naruto do anything, but the enemy was damaged. What the hell happened?"

Naruto's expression then turned softer as he addressed the next person. "Hinata... are you ok?" He couldn't even wait for her to answer before he put his hand on her shoulder and turned her around to face him.

"H-Hai, I-I'm fine Naruto-kun. M-My forehead p-protector spread the f-force, so it d-didn't hurt that m-much." Hinata spoke as she touched the piece of metal hanging around her neck. "I-I'm sorry I d-didn't get here s-sooner... A-after the two o-of you w-went in, a lot o-of traps were a-activated and I-I had t-to disarm th-them to get i-inside."

The blonde just fell to his knees, and held on to the bottom of Hinata's jacket as he dropped his head and let out a sigh of relief. "It's fine... I'm just glad you're ok."

Hinata couldn't help the blush on her face from having is hands on her waist. "W-what a-about you N-N-Naruto-kun? Are you h- Naruto-kun, y-your cheek!"

Naruto heard her concerned voice and brought up a hand to touch the damaged area. "Oh this, it's nothing. That jutsu he shocked us with hurt more than this."

"B-but it's b-bleeding, l-let me t-take care o-of it." Hinata pleaded as she bent done to take a closer look at the cut even though her Byakugan was still active.

"Sure." Naruto agreed with a small smile, but was soon interrupted by a pissed off voice.

"Oi baka, get your hands off of Hinata!" Kiba shouted a good distance away as he ran up to the group.

"Huh?" Naruto questioned before he looked back and noticed one hand still clutching Hinata's jacket. "Ah! G-gomen Hinata!"

"I-it's ok N-Naruto-kun." Hinata reassured as she shyly brought up her hand with slightly bent fingers so that she could run her soft nails over her lips to comfort herself from the embarrassment.

Naruto felt at ease until he noticed something. "Wait... why do I have to listen to you Kiba, and where the hell were you all this time?"

"You have to listen to me because she's my teammate, and I tried getting here as fast I could, but I couldn't find you guys until that nasty smell left." Kiba half lied. It's true that when he did decide to go after them and he followed their scents, but was stopped by the awful stench. After he emptied his bladder in a bush, he saw the smoke from the fire Sasuke made, and ran into the area. Luckily it was the same place Hinata had gone through so there were no traps, but he came in around the time the rain started to fall. When he saw two down allies and Naruto still on guard, he was too afraid of getting any closer in fear of an enemy still lurking around, what with the rain rending his nose useless.

A figure then jumped down from the trees and landed in the middle of the group. Everyone jumped back in fear of another attack, but when they saw who it was they relaxed. "So this is where you guys were." Kakashi said with a smile. His hair was a little damp, but still mostly defied gravity.

"Shibuki-sensei! Thank god you're safe!" A female voice said from a distance, which they guessed was Fuu's.

"Looks like you guys did your job. Good work. Now let's get out of this rain before we get sick." Kakashi commended before getting some nods.


[Inside the Waterfall village]

"What do you mean you couldn't capture Shibuki?" A middle aged man questioned, he had really dark spiky grey hair that was held back by a bandana and went down past his shoulders.

"Yes Suien-sama... *cough*... new arrivals continued to come in and stopped me." Kirisame reported as he coughed up a bit of blood.

"Cheh... get yourself to the medic."

"Hai." The man said before disappearing.

"Well what do you think Hisame?" Suien asked as he looked towards the female strategist with light brown hair and provocative clothing.

"Hmm, having escorts from Konoha with them was unexpected. They were able to take care of Kirisame which wasn't a big surprise, but to overpower Murasame with the extra power shows that they have some skill." The woman thought out loud as she crossed her arms under her chest. "If they send word to Konoha and get backup we could have a problem, but before that they have to assess the situation to justify it. So far all they know is two squads of shinobi with Rain hatai-ate on are in the area. They're allies with both villages, so they wouldn't be so quick to judge."

"So as long as they don't know we're missing-nin they can only use the shinobi present."

"Hai... I think it would be best to move the hostages to another location and let them come in here. Then we can block the only exit leading to fire country and trap them inside."

"That seems like a good plan..." Suien agreed as he rubbed his goatee in thought. He then looked to another woman hiding in the shadows. "Is that ok with you?"

The woman stepped out of the darkness with an evil grin while her forehead protector, which had a music note etched on it, shined in the light. "I like it."


[Back with the group.]

They had all walked back to the lake and out of the rain, but were now discussing what to do.

"Those damn Ame bastards! They've always wanted to take over our land!" Furukawa snarled as he looked at the waterfall.

"Well we don't know that... remember like I said, there were rumours of rogue ninja in the area, and not all of them had Rain forehead protectors." Kakashi reminded. "Either way though, this mission is too much for my squad. We were just ordered to find you and escort you safely back to your village. This new mission is at least a high B rank, if not low A rank now."

"What are you talking about Kakashi-sensei, the mission isn't over!" Naruto protested as he stood firm.

"Are you an idiot, didn't you hear Kakashi-sensei?" Kiba retorted as he faced the blonde.

"Oh he did. The dobe is right... the client isn't back in his village yet, right sensei?" Sasuke said with a smirk.

"We'll pay you for the rank up in the mission." Furukawa offered. "It would be best to have the copy-nin helping us if there is more trouble."

"Mah, I guess you're right." Kakashi said after looking at the resolve in his two students. "We'll help you guys out... with the extra pay of course."

"Really! Thank you!" Fuu happily said and then turned to the man beside her. "Isn't that great Shibuki-sensei?"

"..." Shibuki didn't respond as he kept his focus on Kakashi. It wasn't until he had the man's attention did he speak. "I'll only allow you to come into the village if you promise to keep its entrance a secret..."

"I've already visited the village before so I know where it is, but I'm sure my genin will also keep it a secret, right?" Kakashi said as he turned to look at the children and received nods from all of them. "Perfect. Then I suggest we take a fifteen minute break before we head inside. We're all a little tired from our fights."

"Agreed." Furukawa said, and everyone started spreading out to find a place to recuperate.

When Naruto made to move though, he felt someone tug the back of his shirt. "Huh? What is it Hinata?"

"I-I still h-haven't bandaged y-your cut Naruto-kun." Hinata said in a quiet voice.

"Oh yeah... um, let's go over there." Naruto said, pointing to a large rock near the lake that he could sit on. Hinata nodded and followed the boy.

Taking out a piece of cloth, she dipped it into the lake and wiped it over Naruto's cheek to clean off the blood. "It's already starting to scab." Hinata noticed as no extra blood seeped through. She then took out her ointment and spread a bit of it over the cut before she covered it with a large band-aid.

"There, a-all better." She happily said before she kissed Naruto's cheek under the eye. She froze in place when she felt her lips touch flesh, and after what felt like eternity she jumped back and turned around in embarrassment. "Eep!"

Naruto was stunned until he felt her touch leave his face. "H-H-Hinata... did y-you just k-k-k-"

"G-g-gomen, i-it's not wh-wh-what you th-think. M-my m-mother u-u-used to k-kiss me every t-time I h-hurt m-myself, so wh-when you w-w-were h-hurt I k-k-k-k-k-k-Gomen!" Hinata abruptly finished before she ran away from the spot.

His hand came up, and his fingers hovered over the tingly feeling the shy girl had left behind. "She kissed me like her mother did... so this is how it's like to have a mother?" Naruto thought as he tried to remember the feeling, but every time he did he was more focused on the fact that it was Hinata that did it, and a blush appeared on his face before he felt a strain in his pants. "God dammit! Think of Sakura-chan, think of Sakura-chan and not Hinata's soft lips, think of Sakura-chan!"


Next chapter: Nowhere Else to Run

Appologies/begging: Sorry, sorry. This chapter was really hard to write, other than the constant distractions of the holidays and Iranian new year, I kept on getting really bad writers block after Naruto and Hinata fell asleep in the bag. Although the hardest part to write was the fight scene... I'd get three sentences in and then stop for an hour or so T.T Please forgive me!

A/N: I Hope you all liked this chapter. I've had to rewrite so many parts and I still feel it's not one of my best chapters, but I still like it. As you can tell, Hinata is slowly coming around, and I hope I put enough fluff in there for the people that got blue-balled last chapter.

I really liked the fact that I finally started a fight scene... my other stories were so far back that I didn't even get close to even the smallest of fights. Oh and if any of you are wondering what happened to Kirisame near the end there, just think of Neji's fight against one of the sound four. If you review, please comment about the fight. I can't tell whether or not it's bad, good, or just basic, and if I should maybe make them brief, rather than something long like this one.

Now to get to the part that might get me flamed. I believe some of you are not going to agree with my assessment of the strength of certain villages, so for you dear readers, here are the stats on said villages according to the second data book. (Which puts it around the time after Sasuke left the village but before Shippuden.)

----------------Population-------Military Strength-------Economic strength

Konoha ------Lvl 5--------------Lvl 3----------------------Lvl 2

Suna----------Lvl 2--------------Lvl 2----------------------Lvl 2

Kiri-------------Lvl 2--------------Lvl 3----------------------Lvl 2

Iwa------------Lvl 4--------------Lvl 4----------------------Lvl 2

Kumo----------Lvl 3--------------Lvl 4----------------------Lvl 5

As you can see, in terms of strength Konoha is not the strongest (and damn, Kumo is fucking rich). Like before with the chakra level thing, I consider each level to be double that of the previous one. So if I were to give them points.

----------------Population-------Military Strength-------Economic strength

Konoha------32-------------------8--------------------------4

Suna-----------4-------------------4--------------------------4

Kiri--------------4-------------------8--------------------------4

Iwa-----------16------------------16--------------------------4

Kumo----------8-------------------16------------------------32

It makes more sense this why when you look all the alliances Konoha has. So, if you consider Konoha having 8 points in military strength + the 4 points of suna's strength = 12 points, the last 4 points that are needed to be on par with Iwa and Kumo, come from Ame, Taki, Kusa, and Oto. I consider these villages to have 1 or 2 points in military strength (Ame probably having 2 or 3 because they have Hanzo... which turns to Pain later on anyways.) So that puts them over the 16 points, but not by a lot.

Now some of you are asking why the hell I'm even mentioning this... well I got a flame saying that I was doing so many cliché things for a Naruto fanfiction story and I didn't really pay it any mind except for the 'civilian council' part. It's true, there's no civilian council in Naruto yet there are many fanfictions that include it, and then I fell upon this data and I'm like "YES! EXCUSE!" So I made up a possible reason as to why there could be one =P

(I had plans for the civilian council, and with what I'm going to do with this, it just makes them even more evil.)

Jutsu

Fuuton: Kiatsu Kai - Ashi! (Wind Style: Foot - Air Pressure Release!):
Rank: B
This jutsu creates a high pressure of air to be released from the back of the foot. It can be used to increase the strength of a kick to earth shattering power, but if the user was to hit anything hard like a boulder, they would have to have the leg strength required to kick it and not break their bones. This jutsu can also be used to enhance the user's speed, but gives little control, making it almost impossible to turn, stop where the user wants, or just plain not crash into anything.

Suiton: Mizu Heki! (Water Wall)
Rank: C
Just a flat wall of rising water. Can protect the user from many things, but has a weakness against solid objects like earth jutsu.

Suiton: Kuikorosu Ame! (Devouring Rain)
Rank: B (Difficulty to perform lowers to a C if there are rain clouds in the area)
This jutsu causes the rain falling from the sky to dissolve all chakra that is outside of a person's body, making it great for dispelling jutsu. However the down side is that the user too can no longer most ninjutsu or genjutsu, leaving them with mainly Taijutsu. Once started this jutsu cannot be stopped until all the water has left the clouds.

All other jutsu you should know, or can use common sense. (Like the multi whip of water one... self explanatory)