Time for more complications!
Naruto was beyond bored as he leaned against the wall of the clothing store that Tomoyo had led them to for Kyuubi's clothing. The two girls were looking for outfits for Kyuubi to wear as said demon tried them on in the changing room. "Don't forget I said only four." Naruto reminded Sakura as she walked by with folded clothing in her arms.
"I remember. This is the last one." Sakura said as she set the last outfit behind the curtain, "Here you go Kyu-chan!"
"Stop calling me that!" Kyuubi yelled as Sakura exited the curtain with a nervous laugh. Kyuubi was already testy that she had to go through these outfits and the new "name" was not helping. Tomoyo had to help explain the point of certain female underwear and clothing earlier which didn't improve Kyuubi's mood. "I'll be glad when this day is over…"
Naruto rolled his eyes at this. He still had to find a place for him and Kyuubi to stay now, so their day was far from over. She couldn't hide in Sakura's house as well and Naruto wasn't about to leave her unattended in the city. That meant finding a possible apartment that would rent him a place to stay at thirteen years old. Naruto sighed as he ran a hand through his hair in frustration, "I'm glad I sent a few clones to scout around town…"
"For an apartment right?" Sakura asked, a bit sad when Naruto explained to her that he would have to move out with Kyuubi.
Naruto nodded, "Yeah. I make good money from that crazy old man's shop so affording a small one shouldn't be too much of a problem. Hopefully they don't ask too many questions…" Naruto said with a sigh, "Kyuubi will probably have to find a job as well at some point to help pay for things."
"Like hell I will!" Kyuubi yelled from the changing room, "I refuse to help you with anything Uzumaki!"
Naruto ignored Kyuubi as he pulled out his wallet and started to thumb though his yen bills. He had seen the prices on a few of the clothing racks and while it wasn't expensive clothing, it wasn't cheap either. "You know…" Sakura said as she got Naruto's attention, "If you ever need help with anything you can ask Tomoyo-chan and me. We'll always help out however we can."
"I know Sakura-chan. Thank you." Naruto said with a smile as Kyuubi slid the curtain open.
Kyuubi stood in a black t-shirt with an open hooded vest the same color as her hair. Knee length cargo shorts with knee high socks and black and white sneakers. Her hair was also tied up into a pony tail with a ribbon and her tail wrapped around the waist of her shorts like a belt. "Can we leave now?" She asked in an annoyed tone as her ears twitched. If anyone asked she would simply say she was wearing a "hairband" as Naruto had told the human at the front of the store clerk.
"Kyu-chan looks lovely!" Tomoyo said as she came into the changing area. Kyuubi only growled as she turned away from the humans as Tomoyo spoke to Naruto, "The clerk has everything ready to be paid for. All we need to do is pay up front."
"Alright then, let's get going. I need something to eat." Naruto said as Sakura picked up the clothes from the changing room.
"Kyu-chan… you folded everything?" Sakura asked in surprise when she found all the clothing folded neatly and the other pair of shoes set neatly in a row.
Kyuubi only scoffed, "It wouldn't serve any purpose to act like a brat. We would have to waste time cleaning up if I had been a slob, so I tidied up." She said before walking out of the changing room, "Let's go already!"
Once the clothes were paid for, Naruto carried the two bags as they walked down the street, "So, anyone have a preference for food?" Naruto asked as they walked.
"You humans and your stomachs…" Kyuubi said in scorn before her own stomach let out a loud rumble. She covered it with her arms as she tried to hide her embarrassment when Naruto, Sakura, and Tomoyo all laughed. Kyuubi had to worry about her stomach now as well.
"Hm… what about Korean barbeque?" Sakura asked as she pointed the restaurant across the street. With no disagreements voiced, the group walked over to enjoy a nice meal.
A short time later and Kyuubi watched as Sakura, Tomoyo, and Naruto enjoyed the food with Sakura sneaking pieces to Kero in her bag. She watched the meat cook on the grill and resisted the urge to drool over the smell of the food. Her body craved the food, yet of all the knowledge she held… eating like a person was not something she knew. She looked at the chop sticks that rested in her hand and back to the grill. She knew if she tried to simply pick the meat off, she'd burn herself but she also didn't know how to use chop sticks. "Kyu-chan, do you need help?" Sakura asked when she noticed Kyuubi not eating.
"Of course not! I just…" Kyuubi said as she tried to lie her way out help. Her pride simply wouldn't allow her to be helpless in anything. She already was annoyed about Naruto having to buy her clothing she needed, even if she hated having to actually wear said clothing.
Naruto sighed before he reached over and took her hand with the chopsticks, "Like this." He said as he showed her how to hold the chopsticks before Kyuubi could pull her hand away. He let go and showed her how to move the chopsticks by demonstrating with his own. Kyuubi stared at the chop sticks intently before she looked at her own and practiced the motion. Sakura and Tomoyo couldn't help the giggle they had as they watched Kyuubi practice.
"Today has been exceptionally smooth for us." Tomoyo said after she had finished her giggle, "Naruto-san was clever to tell the clothing clerk that Kyu-chan was into cosplay."
Naruto shrugged as he swallowed a slice of beef, "I just said what popped into my head. Probably from watching that travel program with Kero two days ago."
Kyuubi glanced at Naruto as she finally ate a piece of meat from the grill. "This world has changed you." She said after she finished the food, "You seem… smarter. More cautious as well."
"Really?" Naruto asked before he looked over at Sakura and Tomoyo, "I guess Sakura-chan and Tomoyo rubbed off on me." Kero seemed said something quietly from Sakura's bag which made the girl stuff him back inside angrily. Naruto judged it to be some type of insult since Kyuubi also had a chuckle, "At least I can say I'm smarter than Kero." A muffled yell came from Sakura's bag as the table shared a laugh. Naruto stopped laughing when the memories of one of his clones came back to him, "Well, I get to head to an apartment building after this."
"Your clone found one?" Sakura asked.
Naruto nodded, "Yeah. Good news is that it's only a few blocks away from your house Sakura-chan." Naruto said as he watched Kyuubi reached for more food, "It's only one room with a bathroom, but it should be enough space for us both."
"May we see it once we leave?" Tomoyo asked as Kyuubi continued to eat the food. By this point stopped paying attention to her.
"If you want too. My clone only made the call to arrange the meeting with the landlord so we still need the see the inside." Naruto said before he reached to the grill only to find all the food gone. He, Sakura, and Tomoyo all turned to Kyuubi, who swallowed the last bit of her meal.
Kyuubi stopped when she saw everyone looking at her, "I'm not apologizing."
Naruto only sighed a bit before he got up to pay. Living with Kyuubi was going to be a test of his nerves, he knew it. Thankfully he, Sakura, and Tomoyo had taken their share while Kyuubi was learning the ways of chopsticks. Once Naruto had paid for the meal, he led everyone to the apartment his clone had discovered. It was a simple two story building with what appeared to be three rooms. "The land lady who owns this place made a nice offer when I said it would be me and another person. Doesn't look too bad."
"Won't that be cramp?" Sakura asked as she looked at the building. If the window was any indication of the size of the space inside it was about the same as her room, possibly smaller.
Naruto shrugged, "I've lived in your closet space for the last half few months. While I'm thankful for you letting me stay there, anything with more space is kind of an upgrade at this point. Now where is that land lady…?" Naruto asked as he looked around for the person in question.
"There is someone walking this way from over there." Kyuubi said as she pointed to the street corner as her ears twitched. It was definitely the sound of heels clacking on the concrete ground. The other three turned to said street corner and waited.
Soon enough a middle age woman in business attire arrived. She paused when she saw the four kids waiting for her, but recomposed herself as she approached Naruto, "You are Uzumaki-san?" Naruto nodded as the lady looked at the girls of the group, "You informed me you would only have one roommate…"
"I will. Kyuu is the one that will live with me. Sakura-chan and Tomoyo are friends who wanted to see where I may be staying." Naruto replied to the woman with a shrug. It was a simple mistake to make.
"I see… I must say you are definitely younger than I imagined. Just how old are you?" The woman asked.
"We're both thirteen, we're orphans so we have no parents to ask, and I work in the metal shop down in town." Naruto answered while taking care of the future questions he knew would be asked, "We're both past the age where people will actually consider adopting us so we're striking out on our own."
"I see." The lady said with a sad tone. If what they said was true than she couldn't possible deny them the apartment so long as they could pay the rent. "These rooms are bare minimum so you'll have to buy your own appliances and furniture."
Naruto nodded again, "I remember. I'm already solving those issues."
"If that's the case, than let's begin the paperwork." The land lady said as she opened her briefcase and pulled out a small stack of forms.
"That was painful…" Naruto said with a sigh as everyone walked back towards Sakura's home. The sun was beginning to set and Tomoyo's body guards were meeting her there for her pick up.
"I don't think she was any more pleased at your lack of information as you were for needing it." Tomoyo said, "Still, she was very accommodating on the matter and willing to dismiss much of the paperwork."
Kero chimed in from his place in Sakura's bag, "It can't be professional to do that. Then again if it's her property I suppose it's no harm done."
"I just hope it doesn't come back to bite us…" Naruto replied as he straightened up, "Still, that's step one out of the way. Now I just need to get a table, appliances… So much for my savings…" Naruto added as he slouched over again in depression.
Sakura still seemed a bit dejected at the thought of her friend moving out, but she kept a smile on her face for support, "Are you going to move in right away? I don't mind if you take the time to get your furniture you need."
"I would stay if it was just me, but with Kyuubi…" Naruto said as he glanced over his shoulder at the bijuu in human form, "Its better if we get our own space now. Speaking of which, the ground rules." He paused as he turned towards Kyuubi, "No destroying anything, you will help keep it clean, no guests I don't know of, and I make the final call on any spending. Matter of fact, since I'm going to be bringing in the money, you'll maintain the house work."
Kyuubi looked rather irritated at the new list of rules, "I thought you weren't going to order me around."
"They're not orders. They're house rules. If you get a job and chip in then we can change the rules around as needed. Until that time comes, I'm in charge." Naruto said as he returned the stare at her. Kyuubi let out a low growl before she turned away with a scoff, giving Naruto a silent victory. After Naruto turned back around, Kyuubi grabbed the seal charm around her neck. It didn't seem to be glowing despite Naruto giving her an order. Perhaps it responded on his intention rather than just words. That would prevent accidental commands at least. Kyuubi remained silent for the remaining portion of the walk as the three children and the strange creature talked among themselves.
After bidding the girls and clow card guardian a farewell at Sakura's house, Naruto and Kyuubi returned to their new home. "I want to make something very clear." Naruto said as he shut the door to the apartment with Kyuubi behind him. He didn't even turn to face her as he spoke, "I could have ended your life when you first came out of the seal. Just carry you off somewhere private and slit your throat open, but I didn't. I'm giving you a chance at a new life. It may not be the life you want, but it's better than being stuck inside me in a cage. If you ever give me a reason to believe you'll harm Sakura-chan, Tomoyo, Kero, or anyone else…" Naruto paused as he wiped a kunai out and pointed it at Kyuubi's throat, "I will stop you, even if it means killing you." He said in a cold tone, one that took even Kyuubi by surprise.
Had this been any other situation, Kyuubi would have simply laughed Naruto off. However she knew Naruto was in a position where he could, and would, carry out his word against her. "Listen well Uzumaki, for I will only say this once." Kyuubi started as she folded her arms, "You are correct in one aspect. This is not the life I want, nor do I feel I deserve to have had forced upon me. However, while I may despise you and your very existence, I am not above showing gratitude for being free. You have my word that I will not attempt to harm anyone in this world. I refuse to help you in your endeavors with that human girl and the creature, but I will also do nothing to hinder you all. I simply want to live the remainder of my life in peace."
Naruto lowered his arm as he watched Kyuubi carefully. Her face showed no obvious signs of lying and she hadn't paused once during her statement. "Alright, as long as we're on the same page… Let's get some sleep. It's been a long day." Naruto said as he went and simply laid down on the futon, not even bothering to change since the rest of his clothing was still at Sakura's house.
Kyuubi couldn't disagree with Naruto as she looked at the bags containing her clothing. It had been an extremely taxing day in her mind. She followed Naruto's lead and simply laid down on the futon. To her surprise, it was comfortable, "He didn't cheap out on the futon…" She thought to herself before she closed her eyes in an attempt to sleep. After she finally managed to leave the conscious realm, she did something she hadn't done in quite some time. She dreamed.
It was just past noon on a calm winter day based on the color of the cold air blowing, and Kyuubi was jogging down the sidewalk of Tomoeda by herself with a bag in her arms. "Damn I'm late…" Kyuubi said to herself after she checked her watch as she rounded the corner. She was meeting up with the others for lunch for a day of fun and relaxation after the chaos the last card had caused. Once she arrived at the café where Naruto, Sakura, Tomoyo, and Kero were waiting for her, they all ordered their meals where they talked about their morning.
After a nice lunch, the five departed for a festival that was being held at a nearby shrine. There the five enjoyed the games and food until the sun started to set. Kyuubi never questioned why the day flew by at such a rapid pace or why she seemed to forget everything everyone said as soon as they said it. She was just enjoying her time with her friends. That's when she paused. "Friends…?" When did they all become friends? She hated them all just moments before. She despised her human like appearance yet now she flocked among the species like she had always been one. The more she questioned her settings, the more Kyuubi was sure something was off.
Before she could say anything on the matter however, she felt something cover her feet. She looked down to see water up to her ankles with almost all the light in the area gone. She quickly looked around to find herself in the one place she didn't want to be above all else in her life, the seal. Worse off she was still shaped like a human! She ran to the bars of her jail and screamed, "You liar! You said you would let me stay free if I followed your rules!" Silence was the only response Kyuubi got before she screamed more, "Answer me you brat! I know you can hear me!" Again more silence filled the room. Kyuubi was alone in the seal. She continued to scream, to pull at the bars, to get some sort of response from her host but nothing. Slowly she dropped to her knees as she hung her head. For the first time in centuries she felt an emotion she hadn't felt since the passing of the sage of six paths, sadness. "Why must I always be locked away like an animal…"
"Kyuubi!" Naruto's voice echoed faintly from the sewers of his mind.
Kyuubi snapped her head up and looked around,"Uzumaki?! Where are you so I can rip out your lying tongue?!
"Kyuubi!" Naruto's voice echoed again, "Wake up already!"
Wake up? What did he mean wake up? Was she… asleep? Kyuubi looked at the entrance of the seal only to be blinded by a bright light.
Kyuubi gasped as she bolted up only to slam her head into Naruto's. The two rolled around on the floor holding their heads in pain. "Geez… last time I wake you up from a nightmare…" Naruto said as he and Kyuubi sat up rubbing the sore spots.
"A nightmare…?" Kyuubi asked as she looked around the one room apartment, "Just a nightmare… What a relief..." Kyuubi wasn't sure what annoyed her more at the moment, that her first dream in years was a nightmare or that her mind had considered being "friends" with those brats for a moment. Once she caught her breath, she looked at Naruto to see him watching her. She glared back for a moment before she turned away, "Thank you… for waking me up…"
Naruto scratched the back of his head in shock. He wasn't expecting any form of gratitude from Kyuubi of all people," "Um… you're welcome." Naruto replied as he sat there. A moment of silence passed between the two before a large crashed echoed through air outside. "What the hell was that?" Naruto said as he rushed to the window and looked around outside. After seeing nothing out of the ordinary, Naruto hopped onto the window seal, "I'm going to check it out. Try to get some more rest Kyuubi." Naruto said before he took off into the night.
Kyuubi flopped back down onto the futon with a sigh. Thanking Naruto left a sour taste in her mouth but she refused to become like the selfish humans she knew of. He could have simply left her to wallow in her own fears after all. Kyuubi wiped her brow with her arm only to look disgusted as she felt the sweat on her skin. She needed to take a bath. She stood up and move to the bathroom. Once inside the washing part of the bathroom, she looked at the tub, faucet, stool, and buckets, "I do not know how to use any of this…" Kyuubi thought as she stood there.
Meanwhile, Naruto had found the source of the crash that had gotten his and Kyuubi's attention earlier. He scratched the back of his head as in wonder, "… Who hates the King Penguin slide?" He asked himself as he looked at the now upside down slide and clubhouse. This was definitely the work of a Clow card if he had seen one. "I'd better fix this and head to Sakura-chan's house in the morning… This is going to take a lot of clones." Naruto complained before he got to work turning the King Penguin slide back upright. With a large pyramid of what had to be at least fifty clones, Naruto managed to get the slide back into place within twenty minutes. "That damn thing was heavy…" Naruto complained as walked back into his apartment, "What kind of card has the power to turn something like that over? Though it's not so surprising since the shadow card threw a statue at us." He muttered to himself before he noticed Kyuubi wasn't in the room, "I told her not to run off!"
Kyuubi response from the bathroom was immediate, "I'm trying to bathe!" She yelled in an angry tone. Naruto cringed a bit in guilt at immediately assuming Kyuubi had run off before he paused. How does someone "try" to bathe? "How does this damn contraption work?!" She yelled again followed by the crashing of wooden buckets on the floor. Naruto barely managed to keep his laugh contained. The great and powerful Kyuubi, being thwarted by something as simple as a bathroom. The thought was just too entertaining. Still, as tempting as it was to leave Kyuubi to her own devices, Naruto didn't want to risk her breaking something in anger.
"Hold on I'll show you what to do." Naruto said as he walked into the bathroom only to stop when he saw Kyuubi was still fully clothed, "Well first off you don't bath with your clothes on."
"Bah. So many rules with clothing…" Kyuubi said as she started to undress in front of Naruto.
Naruto grabbed her hand as she attempted to lift her shirt over her head, "Just wait until I show you what to do. Basically you get completely undressed and put your clothing in a hamper. Since I don't have that yet, I'll clear a bag for you to use." Naruto said as he made a shadow clone to do that exact task. "You'll fill the tub with water and turn the heat on. While that warms up, you use the water from the faucet and a bucket to rinse and clean yourself with soap. Good thing I had a clone run and get a few important things earlier…" Naruto informed Kyuubi as he pointed at the bottles on the shelf, "The red bottle is shampoo for the hair, and the other bottle is body soap. Rub which ever you use first over yourself and when it gets all sudsy you rinse it out. Just don't get any in your eyes or mouth. Trust me on that." Naruto said before he straightened back up and went to the bathroom door, "You should be able to handle the rest. My clone put a couple towels in the cabinet over there." Naruto said before he shut the door.
Kyuubi sat on the floor in silence before she turned back to the faucet, "… This shouldn't be too difficult." She said before she started to strip. Once her clothes were off and folded in the empty bag she sat on the stool in front of the faucet, "First turn on the heat to the bath. Then just turn this nob… fill the bucket and… COLD!" Kyuubi yelled at end as her body felt the shock of the sudden chill. "You didn't say it would be cold!" Kyuubi yelled as she reached for the shampoo and soap.
Naruto's laughter was heard through the door for a moment before he replied, "Cold water won't hurt you! The tub will if you turn it up too high though!"
Kyuubi only scoffed and resumed her bath. Sadly she learned exactly why Naruto had told her to not get any of the shampoo in her eyes. "It's stinging my eyes! Why does it sting?!" Kyuubi yelled as she tried to rub the shampoo from her eyes.
"Just pour water onto your eyes." Naruto answered before he rolled over on his futon as he attempted to return to sleep.
Kyuubi quickly did as instructed and washed the suds from her eyes. "Stupid humans! Why on earth do they use something that can cause pain to clean themselves…" She muttered before she closed her mouth when she remembered Naruto's warning. The last thing she wanted was to feel that annoying pain in her mouth. Once her hair was rinsed and body cleaned, she climbed into the tub, "Damn body… why is it so sensitive in some places?!" She thought as she looked down at her chest, washing there and between her legs felt so awkward. "Though… the hot water is a bit nice…" Kyuubi thought as she relaxed in the tub.
Meanwhile Naruto sighed from his position on his futon, "She finally stopped complaining…" He said to himself before he rolled over to sleep. Teaching Kyuubi how to do everything humans did would be a long process, he knew it. On top of that there was a new card to deal with.
Kyuubi, in a clean pair of pajamas, sat up with a yawn as Naruto finished getting ready for his day. Her hair managed to go off in every possible direction through the night. "Didn't you dry your hair last night when you got out of the bath?" Naruto asked when he saw the mess.
"Dry it with what?" Kyuubi replied with a sour stare as she stood up. Naruto hadn't informed her of that little step before he drifted off to snooze land.
"Oh..." Naruto said as he acted on his head rubbing habit, "Crude, I forgot about that… and Sakura-chan has school today… Okay here is what I'll do. I'll send a clone to get you some things to fix that mess on your head while I go discuss the card situation with Sakura-chan. After you get straightened up… You can join us at the school or explore the town."
Kyuubi did not look entertained by either idea, "So stay with you or wander around aimlessly. My options are so lovely…" Kyuubi said, her voice laced with sarcasm.
"Hey, it's not like I have books for you to read or a television. Right now that's all you can do." Naruto answered as he made a clone. The clone disguised itself as a random person before heading off to buy what Naruto felt he needed for Kyuubi's hair, "I really hope that someone in one of those stores can help my clone…" Naruto thought before he went for the door. He paused for a moment before he reached into his pants pocket and tosses his cell phone to Kyuubi, "I'll be hanging around Sakura-chan, so you can use that if you need to reach me. Just press the talk button in the top right corner then the star button on the bottom and one or two. That will connect you to Sakura-chan or Tomoyo. Four will call Kero so unless I don't answer the other two don't use that one. Anything else won't do anything. That should be everything, take care Kyuubi and if you do explore, be back by sundown." Naruto said before he left the house. Once he was outside he made a couple more clones who took off to a nearby rooftop, "A little extra insurance." Naruto thought before he sprinted off to the school.
Kyuubi simply remained on her futon as she stared at the cell phone, "… Humans make such strange contraptions." Now all she had to do is wait for the clone to return with whatever would help tame this mess of human fur. Despite how much she despised looking human, her dignity wouldn't allow her to look a slob.
With Naruto, Sakura, and Tomoyo:
"Are you sure leaving Kyu-chan alone is a good idea?" Sakura asked concerned for both Kyuubi and the other people of the city.
Naruto shrugged a bit, "After the night we had, dragging her around didn't seem right. I do have a couple clones watching her in case anything happens she can't handle. Besides, seeing the town might do her good. We all know her stance on being friends with us." Naruto said as he leaned back on the tree, "We should focus on the Clow card running around anyway. I didn't see it last night, but it's powerful to rip a slide out of the ground and flip it over."
"Since we didn't see any news on this incident, is it a safe bet to say you corrected the problem Naruto-san?" Tomoyo asked. Naruto nodded as her, "Hm… The last card we encountered that could move something so heavy was the shadow card. Could it be another card like that one?" She questioned as she cupped her chin.
"We won't know with either running into it or Kero to tell us." Naruto answered as he pushed off the tree, "I'd call him but I lent my phone to Kyuubi in case she needed me. Speaking of which, Sakura-chan can I borrow your phone until your classes end?"
"Uh, sure." Sakura answered before she dug the phone out of her bag and handed it to Naruto, "Does she know how to use the phone?"
"I told her how to use it, but that doesn't mean much." Naruto said the warning bell rang for all students to head to class. The three looked at the clock tower before Naruto spoke again, "You'd both better get to class. I'll hang around out of sight and send a few clones to scout the town. If they find the card I'll let you know." The girls nodded and proceeded off to class. Once they were gone Naruto took a look around, "I'm surprised the brat isn't trying to harass me today." Little did Naruto know that Syaoran was skipping class that day to go after another matter. One that peaked his interest yesterday.
Back at Naruto's apartment:
"That hurts!" Kyuubi complained as the clone brushed another knot out of her hair.
"It's not my fault. The saloon lady said this had to be done. Spray with the bottle to dampen the hair and brush out the tangles. Boss will show you how to use that blow dryer thing when he gets home."
Kyuubi snatched the brush from the clone, "Just leave me to my own hygiene! I need to learn this anyway. Go away now you insufferable copy!"
"Geez… talk about a mood swing." The clone commented only to be dispelled by the annoyed fox girl with a jab of the brush.
"They're almost worse than the original…" Kyuubi thought before she continued to brush her hair straight. Once brushed and properly dressed in one of her outfits, Kyuubi was on her way out the door to explore the town since it beat sitting inside. Kyuubi's outfit this time could be considered on the more feminine side than her last outfit. A sleeveless red sun dress that reached a little bit above her knees with a black ribbon tied under her breasts and simple flats on her feet. Once Kyuubi rounded the corner of the apartment fence, one of the clones rushed to the apartment to lock the door as the other secretly followed Kyuubi.
Kyuubi looked around at the neighborhood with curious eyes. "The humans here are more generous with land it seems…" She thought as she took note of the homes with a fenced yard. In Konoha only clans had any land to call their own. Any smaller families made due with simple housing that they could afford or was provided to them. Though the settlement of humans seemed quiet for the amount of homes that were here. "No doubt because the humans are doing their daily rituals." Kyuubi continued here exploration for over an hour, making it many blocks away from her home before her ears twitched to the sound of someone walking behind her. At first she paid it no mind, until it persisted over a few minutes. Not only did she have the sound to go off of, the person following her seemed to have a strange aura to them. She hastened her pace to see if the person was truly following her. When the footsteps behind her quickened as well. She broke into a run in order to lose the person tailing her, quickly heading towards the faint scent of other humans in the air. If this person was as cautious as Naruto and the brats he called friends, they would risk public exposer on any abilities they have.
Sure enough, once Kyuubi reached a public street the footsteps behind her stopped. She walked down the both observing her surroundings while keeping an ear out for any other suspicious sounds. Her walk only lasted a few minutes however before the smell of freshly cook bread entered her nose and made her stomach grumble. At first she attempted to ignore it, but additional scents of various foods only made her stomach grumble more. "I need food… and in order to get food…" Kyuubi pulled out the cell phone Naruto had given her. In order to get food, she needed money since stealing would violate the rules Naruto had set, and since she had no money… She needed Naruto's help. A growl escaped her lips as she looked at the phone. She despised needing that idiot's help, but accepting assistance he offered was tolerable. Directly asking for help however… it made her sick to her stomach. This would be different from asking about how to work the bathroom. She had shouted in frustration more than requesting help, and Naruto gave the information she needed. This time… she would have to request his help directly. "The button at the top right...Star then… one." Kyuubi thought as she dialed the buttons.
The phone rang only once before Naruto answered, "Yeah Kyuubi?"
"I… need your… help…" Kyuubi muttered under her breath to the phone with a struggle to get the words out.
"Huh? You'll need to speak up." Naruto replied since he couldn't make out what she wanted.
Kyuubi growled a bit before she took a deep breath and tried again, "I need your… help." She said, nearly choking on the last word.
"With…?" Naruto asked.
"Food… I'm hungry and have no way to buy it…" Kyuubi answered as she gripped the phone tighter. This was so humiliating to her.
"Oh… crap I was in such a rush I forgot to give you some. Just stay put and I'll be right there." Naruto said before he hung up the phone.
"Wait you brat! I'm not at the apartment!" Kyuubi yelled at the phone only to be met with dial tone. She would have sworn more, if her ears had not picked up the unique sound of a clone popping out of existence. She looked around at the rooftops and sure enough saw a puff of smoking fading from sight. "That… insufferable little… He was watching me the entire time!" Kyuubi considered running off at that very moment just to cause Naruto grief. She decided against the idea however, considering the repercussions of said action would simply tie her down to whatever Naruto commanded her to do. No she would simply chew him out with guilt for spying on her.
It only took a few minutes for Naruto arrive on the scene, "Hey. Sorry about forgetting to give you some yen… What?" Naruto asked when he noticed Kyuubi was glaring at him.
"You were spying on me." She said angrily as she pointed at the roof where the clone had disappeared from.
Naruto only smiled as he folded his arms behind his head, "Oh that clone wasn't so much to spy on you as it was to look out for you." He said, earning a puzzled stare from Kyuubi. "It was nothing more than a safety net in case you ran into trouble really. This world is new to you and if turns out anything like my time, having someone to lend a hand is helpful. I knew you'd never agree to a clone of me following you around, so I hid them."
"That… is pretty smart…" Kyuubi admitted as she looked away. She hadn't considered what would happen if she had run into problems with other human or what their terms of punishment were.
Naruto only shrugged before he handed Kyuubi over a sum of yen, "That should get you through the day. Just call again if you need more. Try not to need too much though… I still have to buy things for the apartment later." Kyuubi took the money without question and placed it in one of the dress pockets. Naruto gave a wave since his business was concluded, "I've gotta head back now. I have another clone hanging around if you run into trouble. Just signal it when you need something." Naruto said before he sprinted off down the street.
Kyuubi watched Naruto leave and sighed a bit, "It's just as bitter as I thought it would taste… having that boy's help…" She muttered before she walked down the opposite way from Naruto in order to find food.
However from the shadows a pair of amber eyes watched Kyuubi closely, "So she does know to that demon… I can sense similar magic from her so she is no ordinary person either." The owner of the eyes, Syaoran Li, thought as he watched Kyuubi. Syaoran moved out from behind the building he watched Kyuubi from and followed her silently. From what he managed to gather from this day alone, this girl clearly despised Naruto. If that was the case, Syaoran may be able to earn an ally in taking the Clow Cards from Sakura. Still, he couldn't discuss this with the mystery girl until she was out of the public eye.
Kyuubi however wasn't ignorant to her follower. It wasn't hard to pick the boy out of the crowd thanks to his magical aura. "He's at it again…" Kyuubi thought about signaling the clone and simply leaving it to deal with this problem, but that would be relying on Naruto again. Not to mention it would only hinder herself in learning on how to "interact" with humans. He had yet to make contact with her on his own however, so she could only guess he was waiting for something. Whatever that something was, she wasn't too concerned with at the moment for she wanted food. "Now… what shall I attempt to stomach first?" Kyuubi questioned to herself before she stopped in front of a simple sandwich shop, "This seems as good as any place." She said even though the smell coming from inside the building made her salivate.
As Kyuubi entered the shop she was greeted by a cashier, "Welcome! How may I help you?" Kyuubi stared at the menu on the wall as she walked up to the counter, which got a giggle from the clerk, "Are you new to this shop?" Kyuubi nodded in silence, which only made the clerk smile more, "Well may I recommend today's special? It is a sandwich with sliced ham, turkey, lettuce, tomato, egg, and our special sauce."
Kyuubi only nodded, not sure what else to do. Food was food at this point and her stomach was making the decision for her. Once Kyuubi had her sandwich and paid, she was on her way again. As she walked she looked at the change she was given for her order, "Human customs are always so strange…" She said as she put the money away. Now she just needed to deal with that brat following her before she could enjoy her meal. An annoying little boy that had yet to stop following her. Syaoran watched as Kyuubi turned off to a smaller street and quickly ran after her. He was surprised by Kyuubi waiting for him. Kyuubi only glared at the boy ass he folded her arms, "What do you want, child?!"
Syaoran returned to glare when called a child, "I felt a strange magical power spike yesterday, but it vanished before I could investigate. That same magic power is coming from you, but smaller."
"Coming from me? Does that mean I still have chakra at my disposal?" Kyuubi pondered for a moment. It was possible since she still had a physical body, and if that was the case… "I can get my power back with enough time." She would have to test if she still had access to chakra first when Naruto or his clones weren't watching. First however, "That magic is none of your concern."
"It is my concern when that demon is involved. He's helping Kinomoto gather the Clow cards. Those cards by rights belong to my family as the decedents of their creator." Syaoran replied to Kyuubi with his fist clenched in front of him.
Kyuubi wasn't amused by Syaoran's answer, "I don't care about that. I have no intention of getting involved in any of your human disputes."
"Human disputes?" Syaoran questioned only for a moment as Kyuubi's tail moved behind her.
Kyuubi rolled her eyes in annoyance, "I simply don't care to be involved is what I mean. I have no interest in assisting Uzumaki and his friend on gathering these Clow Cards, or anyone else for that matter. I'm simply stuck with that idiot for the time being. Now if that is all I'm going to go enjoy my food."
Syaoran's eyes narrowed for a moment before he asked, "Fine, but one question. What are you? You don't seem to be human."
Kyuubi scoffed before she turned and started to walk away, "As I said before, it's none of your concern. Now I've humored you enough. Leave me be."
Syaoran looked irritated at Kyuubi's treatment of him, "She didn't deny my claim..." He would have to look into her more closely. If her relation to Naruto was more than she had let on, the counter measure Syaoran had been working on for Naruto may work against her as well. "I'll see if all that research into demons bears fruit soon enough." He thought as he left for his home. Another Clow card was bound to act up soon.
Once Kyuubi felt the Syaoran's presence finally disappear from her radar, she found her way to the nearby park to enjoy her meal. "Humans are so unbelievably irritating…" She thought as she took a seat on a bench. Being stuck in such a state and having to learn how to interact with this species would grate her, she knew it. If it had been the shinobi nations she would at least have a basis of what to expect. "Although they would attempt to seal me away again without a second thought… At least as it is now, I have some freedom to work with." Kyuubi paused in her thoughts to take a bite of the human invention known as a sandwich. Her eyes widened as the food made contact with her tongue, "… This is actually… tasty." She quickly tore through the half of a sandwich in her hands before she licked her fingers clean, "My power may be gone, but if what that boy said is true than it is only temporary. However the big question is what I do afterward." Kyuubi was simply tired of humanity as a whole. Tired of their lies, betrayal, and wars they waged all while treating herself and her kin as tools. They spit on the very message the sage of six paths, basically her father, had set for them. Kyuubi scoffed as she reached for the second half of her sandwich, "As much as I despise admitting it, Uzumaki is the closest human to his lessons I've ever see." He was a reckless idiot who didn't always think his actions through, but Naruto was the only human Kyuubi new that was willing to befriend anyone given any circumstance.
Before Kyuubi could continue her pondering however, the ground shook violently out of the blue and startled the fox girl which caused her to drop the remains of her sandwich. Kyuubi watched in horror as her delicacy fell to the dirt and scattered apart. She reached for the food in hopes of salvaging it, only to watch as it was crushed by dirt and rock as an invisible force left a small crater. Kyuubi quickly went from shocked to angry as she stood up and glared at where she could sense the invisible creature standing, "I don't know what you are, but you will pay for ruiNING…?!" She started to say only to yell in surprise as she was effortlessly picked up and thrown far through the air. Thankfully before she could hit the ground, the second clone of Naruto's rushed in and caught Kyuubi.
It made sure to land far away from the crater with Kyuubi in its arms, "Man it is a good thing boss made us watch you today. You'd be in a tight spot without me here."
"Don't rub it in!" Kyuubi yelled before she and the clone turned to the craters to see whatever was attacking them rush forward, leaving more craters in its wake.
Naruto jumped to his feet as the memories of his clone returned to him, "Damn it! Of all the time for the Clow Card to act up! Henge!" Naruto shouted as he transformed into his school ghost persona. He quickly rushed inside of the building and pulled the first fire alarm he found before he returned outside. Sure enough students soon poured out of the classrooms along with their teachers. Naruto scanned the crowd for Tomoyo and Sakura and eventually found them near the back of the student body, "Makes things easier." Naruto thought before he made a few shadow clones. One clone took off for Sakura's house while the other clones transformed into copies of Sakura and Tomoyo and nodded to the original before all three races into the crowd at full speed.
The number of students behind Sakura and Tomoyo weren't sure what had happened in that moment. A blur whizzed in front of them and made Sakura and Tomoyo vanish with a yell for a mere moment. Most rubbed their eyes only to shrug when they saw Sakura and Tomoyo still in the crowd and acting like nothing had happened.
"Naruto-kun!" Sakura yelled as she and Tomoyo were set down behind one of the school buildings, "Don't do that! What if someone saw you?!"
"Sorry, but I didn't have time for anything else. That Clow Card I talked about earlier is wrecking the park. It was going after Kyuubi for some reason and my clone got hit in the crossfire." Naruto explained before he peaked around the corner, "We don't have a lot of time before everyone gets back to their classrooms. I made a couple clones to fill in for you both so we need to be gone before anyone notices us. One more clone is on its way to snag Kero." Sakura and Tomoyo nodded as Naruto made one last clone before he and it both kneeled down in front of the girls to give them a piggy back to the battle. It only took Naruto and his clone a few minutes to cover the distance to the park while they avoided being seen by other people. Once safely on the ground again, Naruto and his clone set both the girls down before the clone disappeared. The three of them looked around at the destruction in the park. Craters filled the ground along with a couple trees toppled over. "Geez this card is going nuts!"
"We need to hurry and seal it away before anyone comes to investigate!" Sakura said before she summoned her sealing wand, "RELEASE!" Once the staff was secured in her hands, Sakura closed her eyes in order to try and sense the presence of the card. Once she had a lock onto its location, she sprinted down the pond walkway, "This way!"
Naruto and Tomoyo immediately followed Sakura towards the direction of the Clow card. It only took a moment for Kyuubi to come into view running from something that would cause an eruption of dirt and rock as it stepped. "I'm on it!" Naruto shouted as he kicked it into max speed towards the fox girl and magical card. Without warning, he plowed into the invisible Clow card. The two rolled to the ground as Naruto wrapped his arms around whatever it was that was causing the mischief, "I got it!"
Kyuubi slowed to a stop when she noticed the card was no longer chasing her. She panted heavily as she glanced at Naruto and the card, "Took… you… long enough…"
"Kyu-chan, are you alright?!" Sakura asked as she and Tomoyo ran up to her.
Kyuubi simply dusted some of the dirt off her clothes as she straightened up, "Just put... that damn thing… away already."
Sakura nodded and turned to the card with her staff raised, only to blink in shock as Naruto sailed right past her through the air into the pond. Before she could check on her friend however the card gave chase after its new target in the pond. "Sakura!" A voice yelled before Sakura could act to help Naruto. She turned to see Kero fly over to her, "Tell me what's happened so far!"
"The card destroyed the park and just went after Naruto-kun after it threw him into the pond! We can't even see it!" Sakura recapped before she pulled out a few cards to help her friend.
Kero looked around at all the destruction the card has caused, "The card did this… and threw Naruto away? Then it must be… Sakura, try this!" Kero said before he whispered into her ear.
Sakura looked puzzled by the suggestion before she looked at Kero like he had lost his mind, "Are you crazy Kero-chan?! I can't possibly beat it at something like that!"
"But if we do not do something soon, Naruto-san may be hurt!" Tomoyo exclaimed as she watched the water erupt as Naruto was thrown out of the pond near them.
Naruto landed on his feet and coughed up some of the water he had inhaled in the pond. After he wiped his mouth clean, he turned to the others, "Someone tell me we have a plan to beat this card!"
Sakura nodded, "Kero-chan told me what card it is but… I don't know how to beat it."
"Just use Naruto to do it." Kyuubi said spitefully as she looked at the group, "He can easily match its strength with numbers." Everyone besides Sakura turned to Kyuubi, surprised by her sudden answer. She simply crossed her arms at the stares, "What?!"
"It's just… you said you wouldn't help us." Naruto answered, "I'm fine with the idea, just surprised."
Kyuubi only huffed as she turned away, "That card destroyed my food. Since I can't destroy it, having you take care of it is the next best thing."
Sakura was lost in thought on Kyuubi's words, "Numbers… That gives me an idea! Kero-chan, the card is only so strong right?!"
Kero nodded, "Of course. The card may boast about its strength, but even that has a limit. Why?"
Sakura only smiled before she leaned over to Naruto and whispered into his ear. Naruto seemed confused for a moment before a mischievous smile creeped onto his face, "Sakura-chan that's devious! Let's do it!"
Sakura nodded and stepped forward towards the pond, "That's enough! You're the POWER card right! I challenge you to a test of strength!" The card seemed to accept the challenge as it charged at Sakura as she yelled, "I challenge you to a special weight lifting contest!" The card immediately stopped at the edge of the pond as it made itself visible. Power's visible form appeared as a tiny, pink, little girl in a sleeveless, pink dress with baggy pants. She wore her pink hair tied in two high buns in the back with long ribbons ending in ball ornaments, red eyes, two large, studded bracelets on her wrists, a red choker on her neck, a yellow gem on her dress, three pink gems on her forehead and pink, ball earrings. The card folded its hands together as it awaited instruction on the contest. Sakura smiled that the card had stopped its destructive rampage so easily before she gave the instructions on the contest, "My friend Naruto-kun is able to make copies of himself. If you can lift all the clones he can make over your head, you win. If you can't, then we win."
The card nodded and walked towards Naruto. Naruto simply held up a finger in front of the card, "One minute." He said before he made a single clone. The clone transformed into a large flat circular platform that appeared as if it could hold around fifty people comfortably. "Something for you to lift us on." Naruto said before he walked onto the circle, "Multi shadow clone jutsu!" Everyone aside from Kyuubi watched in amazement an enormous pyramid of clones appeared on the platform. The clone army smiled at the Power card, "Alright, come and try us!"
Power nodded as it grabbed the edge of the platform and started to lift with extreme strain. All of the clones shifted for only a moment before they used chakra to stick to the platform and each other to not fall over. Kero however was surprised to see Power struggle to lift the platform, "Wow! I don't think I've ever seen the Power card not be able to lift something straight away!"
"Naruto-san must have made quite a number of clones to make the Clow card struggle." Tomoyo said impressed by the display. While she could see how many clones Naruto made, being able to count them all at once was another story. Kyuubi stayed silent throughout the contest, though her distain for the card was evident by her glare towards it.
Power was making its way under the center of the tilted platform, however the shaking of her arms and legs made it seem like she wouldn't be able to lift the entire legion of clones on her own. "I feel bad asking Naruto-kun to do this… But I couldn't think of anything that I could beat a card strong enough to topple trees over at…"
"Well it's not like you can clone yourself to begin with. Besides you shouldn't feel bad about such a good idea Sakura." Kero said as he came to a rest on Sakura's shoulder, "One thing to remember is that power over all doesn't always comes from one's self. It can come from the aid of others too. Only by working together whether it is you and Naruto or together with the Clow cards in your possession can any obstacle be overcome."
"Stupid humans… So easily distracted." Kyuubi thought as she overheard the conversation between the girls and guardian. "Pay attention child. That creature is about to lose."
"Hoe?" Sakura said with a glance at Kyuubi before she looked back at the Power card. While she had finally managed to get the entire platform off the ground, she had been unable to stand back up straight. Her knees shook violently as the she struggled under the weight before, sure enough; Kyuubi's words came to pass. The platform and all the clones toppled over as Power collapsed.
Once the smoke from all the clones cleared, Naruto was seen standing next to Power with his hand out, "You lost fair and square. Time to go back."
The card nodded sadly and accepted the help to her feet. She walked up to Sakura with her hands folded together. Sakura felt a bit sad as she pulled her staff but raised it none the less, "Return to the guise you were meant to be in! CLOW CARD!" The magical card shape appeared below Power and the card dropped into it. Once sealed away again, the card shrank back down to its normal size and flew over to Sakura's hands. Sakura grabbed the card with a puzzled look, "Why did it come to me?"
"It was your plan Sakura-chan." Naruto said before he looked around, "We'd better get out of here before someone shows up. There is no way we could lie our way out of this." Once everyone quickly made their way a safe distance from the park and its destruction did the group take a moment to rest, "That's once less card out of the way." Naruto said joyfully as he folded his arms behind his head, "I'd better get you two back to school now. I'll use a couple more clones and have them help you slip in during a free period."
Sakura laughed nervously since she knew free period could range from lunch to Naruto's clones causing chaos around the school. "Just… try to make your clones not to break anything please? Our teachers are probably going to be on edge after pulling the fire alarm."
"I promise to keep it tame. In the meantime, Kyuubi you'll be coming with me." Naruto said with a small grin.
Kyuubi only glared at Naruto with a suspicious stare, "Why…?"
"You helped us out, even if it was for a selfish reason, so I'm gonna do something nice for ya!" Naruto answered with a smile before he made a pair of clones to take the girls back to class, "You said the card ruined your food, so I'll treat you to a good meal!"
Kyuubi opened her mouth to tell Naruto off, but the thought of another meal stopped her. It was true she was still hungry and no doubt Naruto knew of more food places to eat from. "Naruto-kun, be careful not to make Kyu-chan like Kero-chan."
"What's that supposed to mean?!" Kero asked angrily.
"That you're a glutton." Sakura replied with no hesitation, causing the guardian's ego to deflate since he couldn't argue against the claim as others shared a small laugh at the matter. Soon enough everyone parted back to where they needed to be. The girls returned to school with the help of the clones and Kero flew off to finish his latest game.
Once alone, Naruto turned to Kyuubi as they walked, "So what do you think of this place after your first day out and about."
"The humans annoy me, all the pathways are confusing, and some brat with a grudge against you bothered me before I started to eat my meal… but compared to the shinobi nations it wasn't too bad." Kyuubi answered earnestly. She would hold onto her judgement of this world. It was too soon to tell but for her… it may not be a bad place to live
Okay some things to explain about this chapter in case some didn't pick up on my points. This chapter was meant to show three things:
1.) That Kyuubi, despite its age and wisdom, would not immediate know how to act human. It's never had to live like a human before so I don't see why she shouldn't have to learn instead of immediately knowing. However I also wanted to show that Kyuubi also isn't an idiot, which is why she is perfectly capable of dressing herself, dealing with people, etc.
2.) Another Kyuubi statement; that she isn't going to blindly just hate the new world. It isn't the world that sealed her away for generations, or ignored the teachings of essentially her father. While she doesn't essentially like humanity, she at least giving the world a chance to make an impression. This is why she also tolerates the presence of Sakura and Tomoyo.
3.) That Kyuubi isn't just going to be a bystander. I'm sure that one was obvious but I felt like it needed to be addressed.
If you are also wondering why Syaoran didn't make too much of an appearance this chapter, it's because I couldn't think up a good conflict scene. Since it wasn't a tug-of-war contest and Syaoran didn't have the Time card, his place was more or less removed. I considered a scene but Syaoran, while a prick early on, doesn't seem dumb enough to risk pissing off over 2000 Naruto clones.
One last note, Naruto weighs 40.6 kg (89.50768 lbs). 2000 Naruto clones equals to 179,015.36 lbs, just under 90 tons. I figured that was a safe weight that even the clow card couldn't lift XD