Don't worry! I WILL finish this! I'm Irish, okay, I'll die if I don't, it's one of those stubborn things that comes with red hair. This will NOT be abandoned. That said, it is going to take a long time. My other story is… well, my other story that I'm actually going to make money for. Eventually. When I get the time. School is hard, I wish I could graduate already, live in an apartment, write all day and get a pet snake or cat.
I have very strange life aspirations, my apologies.
Note, I previously always included 'chan' and 'kun', but it has started to really annoy me. They're going to be less regular from now on. But I'm glad I got this in when I could, I'm doing NaNoWriMo, but I took a break for this, for you guys. You give the most eloquent and inspiring reviews.
'To the person who I said the next installation would be December, thank you! I felt so bad writing that I had to write more! '
Saru ran the toothbrush carelessly over his teeth and threw the stick in the sink. "Done!" He called out, rushing to the bathroom door.
"Oh, no you don't." Naruto growled, grabbing the three-year-old's collar, causing him to stop instantly. "Come back here and brush your teeth right, or I'll do it." Grudgingly, Saru came back, but when he did he looked pleadingly at his mother with round blue eyes and an adorable pout and said, "I don't wanna…"
"Unable to resist him, but knowing she should, Naruto sighed and sat up on the sink counter, picking Saru up so that he was on her lap. She looked straight into Saru's eyes and said, "Do you know why we brush our teeth?" Saru shook his head and leaned in closer to catch every word his mother said. "If you don't brust your teeth, bugs will grow in them." Naruto informed him.
Saru gasped in terror, "Bugs?" He repeated.
Naruto nodded sadly. "They will grow in your mouth… and eat your tongue!" Saru shivered with horror. "Then, when they're finished eating your tongue, in search of new food, they will eat your face!"
Saru wrinkled his nose and squinted in confusion, "Reweay?" He asked.
Naruto leaned in closer so that their noses were touching, and she whispered, "Where do you think Kakashi's face went?"
All disbelief vanished and Saru gasped again, "Window man!" He recognized, remembering all the times Kakashi had appeared with some sort of trinket or food to bestow upon them only to be chased out by his mother.
"And that's why you need to brush your teeth." Naruto told him. "If you don't you'll lose your face."
"I brush 'em now!" Sari said, jumping off of his mother's lap and grabbing the toothbrush. Satisfied, Naruto kissed his cheek, grateful for his presence to distract her from tomorrow's challenges.
The sun streamed threw her window, waking her up, even though she protested that with all her might. Naruto, sitting up, glared at the curtain-less window, and wondered why she hadn't closed it when she knew the light would come in and wake her up at an unseemly amount of time, when she heard strangled noises and cheers, looked to her left and saw her uniform, pressed and ready, her weapons gleaming on her dresser, and she realized that it was the day.
Today was the Chunin Exams.
With a start, Naruto jumped up, rushing to get ready. With half a heart she ran under the shower, but her hair was barely wet before she jumped out again, throwing her uniform on without drying off. Quickly, she made a clone, and then remembered that she wasn't supposed to waste her chakra, but she let the clone-Naruto braid her hair as she ran to wake up Saru.
"Honey, Saru-ouji," Naruto called out, a bit louder than she normally did and devoid of a sing-song voice, "Time to get up."
Saru buried himself in his blanket, which Naruto was forced to wriggle out of him painstakingly, as he moaned and, for a brief moment, cried, under her attempts. "Come on," Naruto said, forcing herself to be sweeter, "Mommy's got somewhere to go, so she needs you to go to Daycare and when she gets back she'll make you ramen noodles and ice cream."
Blearily, almost as if he were upset he was so easily persuaded, Saru sat up and held out his arms for her to pick him up with. After a brief combing of his hair where the majority of the already short time was spent dealing with a rather obvious cowlick, Naruto forced him into clothes, handed him his 'Socky-chan' and new samurai toy, then rushed out of the door, knowing that the Daycare workers weren't going to be happy when they realized they would have to feed him.
She dropped Saru off, her mind somewhere else, with a hug and a kiss. He pouted a bit, but she ruffled his hair as he left, not wanting to be distracted, repeating her promise of ramen noodles and ice cream.
Hands crossed, feet shaking, she left the Daycare, immediately starting to walk to the large building that had haunted her for the entire month, though it had previously been a sign of a dream. The thought of failure was one Naruto had to continually push back from her mind, so when someone she wasn't sure she knew she welcomed the intrusion even though normally it would bother her incredibly. The person was a woman, with fluffed up hair, pleasant wrinkles, and a happy smile on her face, with a hand on Naruto's shoulder, she'd stopped her, and now, with a pleasant smile, whispered, "Good luck, sweetie."
Naruto froze, in absolute shock, and could only manage a small nod. As she was standing, another person, this one was a male ninja, and he merely grumbled, "Good luck."
As Naruto drew to the door of the stadium, yet another person, this one shouting, "Good luck, Naruto-san!", wished her luck, and she was overwhelmed by that time, and so she ran to the door in the site of the foyer to the stadium, the door that bore the legend 'Authorized Personnel Only'.
In a moment, almost before she had time to look at the bleak grey interior of the stadium that apparently no one bothered fixing, since the visiting dignitaries weren't going to see it, she was greeted by a person she hadn't seen in a month.
"Kakashi-sensei!" Naruto shouted, smiling brightly, "I missed you."
Kakashi nodded, eye-smiling, tilting his head ever slowly, "I heard you found your own teacher, a Sannin nonetheless. Congratulations. I'm rooting for you and Sasuke."
Naruto grinned. "If Sasuke and I end up fighting each other in the finals, who would you root for?"
"You," Kakashi said seriously, "Sasuke needs to be brought down a peg."
"Sasuke?" Naruto squinted in confusion.
"You only saw the best of him." He informed her. Kakashi frowned, "Now's not the time, now is the time for you to get ready. Like all of my students, you are late, therefore you don't have much time, go into the contestants box, drink a water, and just start breathing."
"But, but I am breathing."
Kakashi shooed her off, declaring that he was late, he had to wash a horse, to which Naruto responded that Kakashi didn't own a horse, and Kakashi said that that was true, so he'd have to buy a horse first.
He gave her scarce directions which didn't make much sense, and then disappeared.
Naruto turned left following his directions, and found herself in a dark, dank metal hallway. "You'd think they'd find some yen to light this place," She frowned. Walking past a long pipe, she found a set of stained stairs, and so, nervously, she walked up them.
She opened a door and blinked at the sudden contrast. Naruto was confronted with brilliant light and polished floors, as she walked into a huge balcony, filled with people and even a table of water and sandwiches, which opened onto a giant field. "Naruto!" Two people yelled at the exact same time.
Ino got to her first, and surprisingly gave Naruto a huge hug, shouting nonsense about being excited and happy, and then Choji, limping slightly, but only having a few bandages and a large brace on his right leg, came up to her next and hugged her as well, shouting "Good luck!" into her ear, which left her ears ringing.
As Choji stepped back, Naruto saw that he wasn't exactly looking at her, his gaze was drawn to something else, and she followed his eyes to see a red-haired boy sitting in the shadows, glaring into space. Gaara, seeming to sense her gaze, looked up and the two locked eyes.
"Have you seen Sasuke?" Ino was asking, "I thought I saw Kakashi, but Sasuke isn't here."
Naruto shook her head quickly, and successfully tore her eyes away from Gaara's haunted tiel orbs when a large, bearded Konoha ninja Shunshin-ed onto the balcony and announced that even if they're ninjas, people who aren't contestants are not allowed in the waiting box.
"'Bye!" Ino said cheerfully, hugging Naruto again, and then three other people before leaving by a different door than the one Naruto had just stepped through. Choji said goodbye again, not hugging her, which Naruto appreciated because she wasn't used to the gesture and had already had more than her fill. Shikamaru, too, smiled at her and waved, which was apparently too much trouble for him because he them sighed very loudly as they turned to live.
The large, bearded Konoha ninja asked if the contestants needed anything else, but the only suggestion came from Choji who asked for chips, so he didn't bother bringing anything.
"Who's first?" Choji asked right as he was leaving.
"Naruto," Shikamaru said, sneaking a glance at the girl in question as even he left.
First? Naruto wondered, and then remembers that she is. She'd been informed of that through a letter a few days after she'd run away from the hospital. Her gaze sweeped the room until it landed on another genin, who was leaning a pillar, looking out onto the field. The genin turned, his harsh face frowning and pupil-less eyes flashing.
Oh right, Naruto remembered, the Hyuuga genius.
A few people in all of Konoha were not at the Exams, and those who weren't were doing things they couldn't normally do with a crowd of people, like solitary bathing at the bath house or quietly walking through the park.
There was, in particular, one empty street. A commercial street, normally filled with vendors and open shops, it was particularly lonely. Soft wind gave the illusion of life to curtains and scattered advertisements for the Chunin Exams that had been thrown on the ground. Nothing moved, or even seemed to breathe, until the arrival of two figures who seemed to just appear out of thin air, and although one actually did, the other had merely been hiding.
One was clad in a conspicuous black, but he had long silver hair that draped over his eyes, so, in a ninja village, one would see the black and the flash of silver and not think twice about it. He was awkward, however, almost nervous in his manner, and his hands shook as they lowered a hood he was wearing so the other person could see him.
The other was a woman, she wore clothes that covered everything, but did little to hide her figure, and it was absolutely evident that she was beautiful. Long, ebony hair with hidden curls at the tips hung around her shoulders, and bright green eyes brilliantly contrasted a tanned face.
"Hello," the awkward black figure said, "You're looking particularly beautiful today, assassin."
The assassin's brilliant green eyes glared at him, "You fool," she growled, "An idiotic yes-man for Orochimaru who can't even avoid defeat at the hands of genin, aren't you, Sakon?" She frowned and the black figure shriveled under her gaze. "The only reason you're not jailed with the others and on this mission is because Orochimaru needed someone to fill Jirobo's place, and he couldn't afford to hire another person like me. It's your teammate's fault for putting revenge on the Nine-Tailed Jinchuuriki over his mission."
Sakon was surprised, and he couldn't manage to keep that from showing up in his features. "Jirobo is dead?" Sakon asked, "How?"
She rolled her eyes with thinly-veiled contempt, "The Frog Sannin is back in town."
Sakon tilted his head and frowned in confusion, before realization came to him, and he said, "Don't you mean the Toad Sannin, Jiraya, Orochimaru's old comrade?"
"Old comrade," the woman smiled, "in more way then one. While Jiraya may be considered the strongest, there's no doubt he's growing older, our Lord Orochimaru and the Lady Tsunade have beaten him in that respect. You'd think one of such strength would be able to avoid wrinkles."
Sakon then grinned at her, his face splitting wide. "Really? I thought you just said Jiraya was watching over the Nine-Tailed Jinchuuriki, don't you have to be stronger than the one you guard? And if, no contest, the Toad Sannin is stronger than the Ninth Jinchuuriki, I'm fighting on the other side of the village during the coup."
The woman smiled, "Actually," she grinned, "It's your job to distract the Sannin, with your genjutsu."
"MY genjutsu!" Sakon gaped, "He'll see through it in a moment, and without my brother on my back I'm half my strength!"
The assassin shrugged, pity issues such as fear having lost their meaning for her long ago, "Just show him something he'll never doubt."
"Like what? What could possibly fool a Sannin?"
The woman rolled her eyes and, looking like it was painful for her to say something so vulgar, replied, "He writes Icha Icha…" She spat the name out like a curse. "Just show him a woman in a shower and make it steamy."
Before Sakon could filter himself, his brother tended to be more cautious with things like this and he was only half of himself without Ukon, Sakon asked, "Are you volunteering?"
The woman glares at him, "Really?" She hissed. "I will be busy killing the Hokage."
Sakon backed off.
"Good dog," The woman snorted, and began to walk away to inform the hidden ninja at the gate of their plan something she would have to verify was ready before returning to her position in the crowd at the Chunin Exams.
Naruto was nervous, her hands were shaking and she gripped the sides of her jacket to calm them down.
She was standing, in the middle of the stadium, and her eyes could barely register what she was seeing.
Over two thousand eyes looked down at her, all the attention Naruto thought she'd ever want but realized in this moment she should never have dreamed about. The sun was almost blinding if she stretched her sight to look in the Hokage box, and she couldn't make anything out over that, even though she was certain the Hokage and the Kazekage would be up there, so she didn't need to worry. Naruto couldn't make a single person she knew out of the crowd, as she was completely unused to dealing with that many people.
The earth she was on was overly perfect, artificially created to include earth, sand, a tree, some rocks, and a stream, just in case anyone knew elemental jutsu even though that was doubtful at their level. She hated the entire layout, the artificial plan of it was definitely throwing her off. It was strange, that even though she'd lived in a city her entire life she couldn't handle this pretend-nature.
Naruto looked at the boy in front of her, who, to add to the slight awkwardness, was staring straight back at her. For the life of her, she could not understand why she was nervous. Naruto charged into fights head-first, and yes, the public scrutiny was annoying, but it was not terrible. She knew for a fact she was having no attack of stage fright, and she was not afraid of her opponent, Neji Hyuuga. Still, although intellectually she found no reason for it, she could not shake the feeling that something was enormously wrong and she was frightened of whatever it was.
The coughing Jonin finished reading their rights, and then said, in a loud voice, "Begin!"
Neither genin moved.
Gaara watched the scene with an almost complete apathy. He certainly wasn't nervous, about anything, there was only something disturbing, that hurt his head, as he watched the blonde jinchuuriki stand, every muscle tense, ready to fight, all alone as she watched her opponent.
It wasn't for any particular reason, he was sure of it, that he was disturbed by that. It was just the fact of her alone-ness in particular that bothered him. Gaara couldn't exactly put a finger on it, because it wasn't tangible, it was just one of those ever present, highly annoying feelings that he sometimes got which he liked to analyze, find their source, and then destroy so he didn't have to worry about it again.
After all, he knew this as well as only almost eight other people did, a jinchuuriki's life was meant to be a lonely one, so it shouldn't disturb him at all.
Unless, of course, the feeling stemmed from a belief that he should be down there, with the other jinchuuriki, which was a completely useless feeling to have at a gladiatorial event such as the Chunin Exams. Gaara sniffed, again being forced to smell the disgusting, slowly molding Konoha cheese as he sought to identify the scent of the jinchuuriki.
Her scent was almost the same as his, uptight and nervous, but from a scent he could not tell why exactly that was. It likely could have everything to do with about to fight a supposed 'genius' with a crowd of people from your hometown watching you, but of course, she was a jinchuuriki so naturally she couldn't have any fear of actually loosing.
She took a step forward, toward her opponent, and Gaara leaned forward, his eyes fixed on what was happening. What was her name again? Gaara wondered, and then remembered, Ah yes, 'Naruto'.
Naruto stepped forward. She remembered, in her unconscious thought, something that Jiraya had told her about her opponent, and she squinted, desperately trying to remember it.
The scene was slightly peaceful. Naruto was breathing hard, after a long practice, and it was one of those summer days everyone likes where it's hot and humid, but there's a constant, cool breeze which makes up for it. Jiraya was sitting down, almost perching on a rock in front of her, and she was sitting cross-legged in front of him trying not to fidget. Seriously, he told her, "Your opponent is Neji Hyuuga."'
Neji snuck a jab at her, but instead of continuing her charge she backed away. Something in her told her to avoid Neji's glowing hands, only because it was a typical instinct of basically everyone to avoid glowing hands on a person who wants to hurt you. He tried to jab her again, this time in the stomach, but she sucked in her stomach and took a slight step to the side to throw him off, managing to get one punch to the side of his head before jumping away.
The Hyuuga's are famous for close-range fighting, even outside the village. There's a counter to their move, but it requires chakra control and such enormous chakra ranges that only a few people outside of Hokage's can counter it.
Neji looked up, eyes full of hate, as if he could barely believe she'd got that close to him.
Naruto jumped back yet again, balancing herself on a side of the tree for the slim moment the chakra would allow her to, and threw a number of kunai. Without even batting an eye, Neji Hyuuga blocked it, twirling around like it was nothing more than child's play. Naruto grimaced at the sight.
Neji Hyuuga may not be in the pure line, but he is a genius, a prodigy. Which is a pity, because he's so much stronger than Hinata and her sister but he won't be clan head unless he marries one of them, and since their fathers were twins, that's illegal, even though they are only cousins.
'You can marry your cousin?' Naruto had asked.
Jiraya had shrugged, 'It used to be common place, and it still is in smaller villages. But mostly among the clans which don't tolerate outsiders. I think only the Hyuuga's, the late Uchiha's, and the Amaya's did that in Konoha, but the Amaya's aren't a ninja family.'
'What are they?'
Neji glided after her, running but somehow swimming threw the air, jabbing his fingers with the clarity and the grace of an artist who practiced pointillism. Naruto, backing up, trying not to think 'wax on, wax off' as she headed off his attacks, could not help but wonder if it was a mark of the inbreeding that those three clans were crazy. She'd met an Amaya before; he was bald with an excessive amount of nose hair and mumbled about oatmeal cookies and pink paint. And Hinata could never even speak, but was dating Kiba, the loudest kid in the class. And Sasuke was…
She couldn't really bring herself to think something negative about Sasuke, even while fighting for her life.
Except, well, her gaze swept the stadium, that Sasuke wasn't here.
Neji was standing still, in the center, glaring at her. "Going to fight, or just run away, little girl?" He asked, raising his eyebrow, his thick voice sending the jarring, condescending words.
Naruto's mouth opened in shock, which, as her lips turned upward, turned into a snarl. "Says the bad-blood Hyuuga."
Neji's eyes opened wide.
The thing about Hyuuga's are, they're very proud. A few years ago, maybe eight or nine, now that I think about it, someone called a Hyuuga in the Second Brand a 'Bad-Blood' and the Hyuuga killed him in cold blood. The Coucil, despite the Hokage's objection, ruled it self-defense and the Hyuuga got away. Never call a Hyuuga 'Bad-Blood' unless you want to die.
"Come on, or are you too afraid to fight a little blonde orphan girl?" Naruto asked, lips curling into a pout.
Neji's hands suddenly clenched, and the glowing blue increased; wordlessly saying 'You're going to regret that'.
Naruto made a clone. "Let's dance, girly boy." Naruto grinned, and the clone settled itself by her right hand.
They both moved toward each other at the same time.
"Ah, Jiraya, nice to see you," Kakashi said. He was sitting in a normal seat, next to one of the only empty ones in the stadium, and he offered it, thereby forcing the Sannin to sit next to him.
"Same here Kakashi," Jiraya mumbled, squirming in the seat, trying to keep his eye on the match.
There was a very long awkward silence, where they both tried to drown out the voice of the commentator, who was telling them all about the long history of the Hyuugas, still continuing his beginning rant, even though his introduction of Naruto had been 'An orphan rookie'.
"How come you never told me?" Jiraya asked.
Having expected a less-than-serious conversation, Kakashi frowned, but his gaze followed Jiraya's and he looked down at Naruto, who was surrounded by thirteen clones which were getting picked off by Neji Hyuuga one by one.
"I couldn't find you," Kakashi said, "And before you say I should have looked for you, may I remind you that except for, one time, sending 'him' a stuffed bear on her birthday three months late, you never interfered in her life."
Jiraya seemed burdened by a dark cloud, and he struggled to reply, "She's my…. my goddaughter, don't you think I should have been told that she was… was… with child?"
"No one knew she was pregnant, no one guessed, the other students called her 'Pudgy-chan'." Kakashi shook his head, "We thought in that bastard we had found someone to take care of her, when no one else wanted to."
Jiraya frowned, almost angry with himself, and then he asked, in an uncharacteristically small tone, "Why didn't you?"
"I was fifteen, I wasn't old enough to take care of a…" Kakashi immediately stopped himself.
"But she's old enough, at twelve." Jiraya wasn't saying this to Kakashi, despite the way it fit into the conversation, he was saying it to himself.
"She'll be thirteen in a month, and she'd kill anyone who tried to take her little prince away from her." Kakashi informed him, "Besides, I have this strange feeling that she's a far better parent than mine were, or anyone I could think of."
"Naruto's making it up, that's why," Jiraya said, "And she doesn't care about him being a ninja, only that he's normal."
"Have you met him?" Kakashi asked, but he didn't wait for an answer, adding, "He's Konoha's most famous secret, ANBU and Jonin are asking me about him all the time, the Council feigns disinterest but you know they're curious. Everyone wants to know about the very first child of any of the Nine-Tailed Jinchuuriki's. It's quite a burden on him, and her for that matter, not to mention poor Sasuke."
Jiraya shifted again in his seat, Naruto and Neji were again at a stand off, the two of them slowly circling each other like deadly cats. "Why Sasuke?"
"She hasn't mentioned him?"
"No," Jiraya mumbled, "Just in passing, I didn't guess anything unusual from it; don't all the girls in Konoha have crushes on that lucky dog?"
Kakashi smiled, prepared to shock, "Yes, but Sasuke is enamored with her. He's annoying, spiteful, and stubborn, but whenever he'd try to take a break training or I found him dwelling on something that reminded him of that… massacre, I'd mention Naruto and he'd jump back up. I think, despite their differences, they do have things in common, and it gives him hope, to think about actually having a family of his own." The cyclops nodded, watching Naruto and Neji trade quick blows, neither of them managing to hit each other, "Sasuke admires her, for what she does with Saru, and it help him stop dwelling on his parents, he wants to have his own family."
"He's supposed to be married, isn't he? When he's fifteen?" Jiraya noted, and then whistled, "The Council sure isn't going to like his choice."
"No, but every ninja in Konoha will be rooting for them." Kakashi said, "Besides, I can't imagine anything better than Sharingan, coupled with Naruto's naturally ridiculous chakra, and backed up by whatever powers a child of a jinchuuriki would have."
Jiraya froze, his eyes seeing something that wasn't actually there, and a slow smile crossed his face, "Kami," he whispered, and then he cursed. "They're on the verge of breeding the most powerful clan yet."
"Hopefully," Kakashi said, "As long as nothing stupid interferes."
Orochimaru grinned in his seat, watching the jinchuuriki and the Hyuuga, finding them both evenly matched. The show of power at such a young age, the slight hints that he could barely make out of the jinchuuriki knowing the Rasengon and the totally blatant Kage Bunshin was enough to make him either incredibly nervous or incredibly happy, and he was certainly hoping incredibly happy.
With everyone at the games, and those who weren't supposed to be at the games also at the games, there would likely be no one watching over the weakest point in Konoha, and as the saying goes, a chain is only as strong as the weakest link. And the weakest link in Konoha was not their walls, or their citizens, but was their jinchuuriki; since everyone knew, that if you could avoid it, you don't make a jinchuuriki female, but if you have to, you definitely don't give it a child. He doubted there was anyone watching over the boy, but he only had to wait to find out.
"Neji Hyuuga is one of our prodigies," Sarutobi said, his old voice grumbling just because. He was trying to be friendly, "My lord Kazekage, Naruto Uzumaki is just one of our youngsters. She's very good with hands on training, the most improved."
Orochimaru nodded, the Kazekage hat tipping respectfully, and he licked his lips in anticipation, unable to wait to kill the man beside him.
Naruto's arm suddenly went numb, and she groaned aloud. It was bad enough that with the stupid Hyuuga poking her over and over she couldn't concentrate enough to bring out the Rasengon, but now her arm went numb.
Neji Hyuuga, triumphantly, stopped for a moment, "Don't give up now, you cannot hope to win. I am stronger, faster, and smarter than you could ever hope to achieve."
Naruto glared at him, panting heavily to catch her breath, wit being thrown out the window. She admitted, she had fun pushing her opponent's buttons, but suddenly she was getting very serious.
"You are a simpleton and a simpleton like you cannot know the drive to win," Neji informed, "You know nothing of hardship or family, you fight only because you want to, but there is nothing backing you. I have been forced to go threw horrors you cannot imagine, and I have come out strong. Don't think you can beat me, it is your destiny to fail."
Naruto stared at him, and then she bared her teeth, eyes flashing red.
Neji stepped back, surprised.
Her face was contorted, to some strange, ethereal pace, and the loose hairs about her face waved. Fangs, dark whiskers, and red eyes adorned her, though, strangely enough, it did not make her look any less beautiful, but it added an unearthly, frightening appearance to her, something he could almost feel. "You think you're smarter than me?" Naruto growled, "Fine, I'll give you that, I was never much of a genius anyway."
Fifteen clones appeared from nowhere, surrounding Neji, all with the same expression on their faces, and somehow Neji knew that they would be far harder to beat than she had been previously.
"You say you're stronger than me, just because you're a boy? I don't think so," Naruto said, and she and her clones stepped forward, two of them coming to stand by bother of her hands, "You think your faster than me, you really should see me run.
"And then, you think I'm a simpleton," Naruto narrowed her eyes, "Fine, I'm a simpleton, I don't belong to any special family like you. But I do have a family, I do know hardship. I have quite a lot backing me right now."
Three clones jumped in, attacking him, and Neji took a few moments to defeat them, and then immediately went into his stance, but the clones were just beyond his comfortable reach, so he stayed still.
"But, I have a pretty vivid imagination, and I'm pretty mad at you right now, so I can easily imagine all sorts of horrors for you," Naruto grinned darkly, and chuckled softly, "And if something you've been through has made you stronger, than I am a thousand times stronger than you are, because I have things in my past you could ever imagine."
"You were never a ghost, sir genius, I was," Naruto frowned, and then she reached, up with her two hands, which were holding strange, rotating balls of purple chakra.
The clones immediately closed in, and Neji spun around quickly, trying to create his defense. Successfully he blocked the attacks, but he knew another was coming, he fended off the strange, furious clones, but more and more came.
Naruto, pointing the Rasengons at him, closed her hands together with a resounding clap.
Neji, the clones, and everything disappeared in a sudden, white flash that blinded her. She blinked rapidly to clear her eyes, falling down onto the ground as she was unable to see, her features resorting back to their original selves, breathing hard from the sudden exhaustion draining her.
Finally, after a long, moment, where all she could here were faint whispers and her own panting, she whiteness cleared.
Neji Hyuuga stood, in the center of the clearing.
He took a step forward, and then three steps back, dropped to his knees, and fainted.