The sun shined brightly on Konoha, the wind blew gently through the streets and everything finally looked to be back in shape from Orochimaru's attack with the help of Suna. The last of the repairs were underway and very one was happy. Almost everyone.
"Suna still can't be trusted" Danzo said as he looked at Tsunade "we need to send someone there to spy on them."
Tsunade nodded; she didn't like the idea, but she agreed that it was the only way to know for sure if Suna was done with Orochimaru. They say that they were deceived by Orochimaru because he was posing as the Yondaime Kazekage. It was hard to say if she believed them or not; Orochimaru is capable of doing that, but did he actually deceive them.
"Who do you have in mind?" she asked him.
"I've been personally training someone in my program for this type of mission" as the door to Tsunade's office opened and a pale boy walked in "this is Sai…"
"No" Tsunade said cutting him off "he'll stick out like a sore thumb. If we're going to send someone in, it needs to be someone that can blend in almost perfectly."
Tsunade thought for a minute; only one person came to her mind. If she were to suggest him though, the council would have to approve; especially with what he did. Even with the council's approval, many would question if he would actually do as they say.
"Are you still holding HIM?" with a sad tone.
"I BEG YOUR PARDON, LADY HOKAGE" Danzo said in fear "you can't seriously be thinking about letting HIM roam free after what he did. It was treason!"
"I'm well aware of what he did" looking at her desk "but right now, he's the only one with nothing to lose if the mission goes sour, and everything to gain if it's a success."
"Godaime Hokage" one council member said "are you drunk again?"
The council member was making reference to when the one she had requested be sent on the mission was first put in ANBU headquarters' solitary confinement. She showed up drunk to four meetings, almost in a row; those days the council saw firsthand how dangerous her Taijutsu and alcohol was when mixed.
"I'm perfectly sober" Tsunade said in response "I think he'd take the chance to start a new life where no one knows him and he could be treated fairly."
"He killed the only person that could bring back the Sharingan to our village" another council member said "and in cold blood!"
"He's lucky we haven't decided to have him executed" the first member added.
"I agree with Lady Tsunade" a third member spoke up "while he might not report any useful information to us; at least he can live a normal life."
"Lord Hyuga" the second member said "I still don't understand why you bother supporting that boy. Even when he nearly killed someone in your clan."
"The Yondaime would've wanted HIM to have a normal life" Hiashi said looking at a picture on the wall "he cannot achieve that here. Not with how many remember the attack. I agree with Lady Tsunade, HE should be the one to go to Suna and act as our spy."
Danzo escorted Tsunade through ANBU headquarters towards a solitary confinement cell. Many seals had been placed on the door to keep the one inside from being able to escape and start 'killing in cold blood'. He still didn't agree with the council's or Tsunade's decision to let the prisoner walk out of the village without anyone escorting him; or even letting HIM be conscious while they did. But he had been showed the paperwork with every council member's seal on it and had no farther say in the matter.
"I'll talk with HIM first" Danzo said "I don't want HIM trying to kill the Hokage the first chance he gets."
"Just don't lash out at HIM" Tsunade said sadly "HE's had enough of that over the past month."
Danzo removed the seals and opened the door; the one held in the cell was chained to the wall and had many chakra suppressor seals on him. When he stepped in the door slammed closed and the room went dark; a few seconds passed and lights flicked on and the prisoner covered his eyes from the pain of the blinding light. Danzo showed no fear when the captive gave him an evil look and tried to attack him.
"You know that's pointless" he said as the boy reached the end of the chains and nearly ripped his arms out of their sockets "now sit down so we can talk."
"FUCK YOU" he shouted "WHY WOULD I TALK WITH ANYONE OF YOU JACKASSES? NONE OF YOU BELIEVED ME WHEN I TOLD YOU WHY I HAD TO KILL SASUKE."
"Watch your anger" trying to remain calm "I don't want to have to get more seals to put on you on top of the ones you already have and the Gogyou Fuuin; Naruto Uzumaki."
"PISS OFF" Naruto shouted at Danzo.
"I come in here to speak with you as an equal" as he opened the door "and you practically spit in my face" he heard Naruto spit in his direction "and now just about literally."
"Get back here and we can make it literally" Naruto snapped as he stood at the end of the chains.
Danzo closed the door and Naruto was left alone, again. He sat down and got back into a ball against the wall. This wasn't much different from what he was used to on the outside of the walls that held him here. Only the chains, and darkness was newer to him.
'There, there my Kit' he heard in his head 'I'm still here for you.'
Those words made him smile; he wasn't completely alone. While he hated the Kyuubi that was sealed inside him, he didn't mind her company over the past month. Her voice lulled him to sleep on some nights, and kept him thinking positive when he wanted to just end the suffering.
When he found out the Kyuubi was a female, he nearly died laughing. The King of Demons was actually a Queen; the irony wouldn't let him stop laughing when he thought about it. Sure the Kyuubi couldn't keep him physical company, but she was still there with him; bound in a cage with chains just as he was.
Although they couldn't meet in the chamber where they had first met, because of the Gogyou Fuuin, they could still have conversations. Their conversations would last for hours, and once they had one that lasted for three days. The past month might've been hell for him, but it was also the most enlightening to him. He had found out that he was the third Jinchuuriki of the Kyuubi, his mother being the second, and Mito Uzumaki, relative to his mother in a way Kyuubi wasn't sure of, was the first.
'Could you tell me about my mother again?' he asked her.
'Of course my Kit' Kyuubi said as she began the story.
"He doesn't seem to want to talk" Danzo said.
"You're just not using the right words" Tsunade said as she reached for the door.
"I can't let you enter Lady Hokage" as he grabbed her hand "he'll try to kill you."
"Stop assuming those kinds of things about him" as she forced Danzo to release his grip "that's why he hates just about everyone in the village right now" as she opened the door and walked in.
Before Danzo could follow her, she slammed the door shut; she clearly wanted to speak with Naruto alone. He knew that she could handle herself if Naruto tried to kill her; but she'd only kill him if there were no other alternatives. That was something that any ANBU would love to watch; the Hokage kill the Demon-Brat.
Tsunade looked at the pale Naruto that was in a ball against the wall. The lack of sun light had taken its toll on the boy; the pigment in his skin was beginning to fade. Even though this kind of confinement could break some of the most powerful shinobi, the blonde in front of her looked like he was still holding on to his sanity.
"Oba-chan" Naruto asked without looking up "why won't anyone believe me when I told them Sasuke wouldn't stay in the village? That he was bent on going to that Snake-teme on a blind quest of revenge. He was like a brother to me, I didn't want to do it; I had no other choice."
"I know Naruto" as she walked over and kneeled next to him "I'm sorry I didn't bring any ramen for you this time but I can offer you something better. It will get you out of here and give you a chance at living a normal life in another village where no one knows about the Kyuubi."
Naruto listened; the offer to go somewhere and be treated as an equal was what caught his attention. Not many in Konoha ever treated him as if he was a human, let alone an equal. Sasuke, his closest friend, was one of the ones that looked at him as at least a human and someone to stay one step ahead of. But now, he was gone; there was no one else in the village that was his age that looked at him as a human being, almost no one.
He heard Hinata's voice several times over the past month; she wanted to see him, but the guards refused. Always telling her to 'let the Demon rot in its cage'. He'd give anything to see her, to be treated as a human by someone; to be loved again. More than that though, he wanted to tell her how thankful he was that someone remembered he was human.
Iruka-sensei had stopped by once or twice with some ramen for him. He'd tell Naruto about how hard Tsunade, Kakashi, Jiraiya, and him were fighting to get him out of the hell hole he was in. To his surprise, Iruka had even said that Hiashi Hyuga was trying to get him out of there. That made him think of Hinata and often caused him to smile.
"What do I have to do?" he asked.
"Go to Suna" Tsunade explained "we need to know if they willingly helped Orochimaru or if what they claim is true. You'd have to go alone, but no bounty will be put on you for leaving the village; no one will chase after you or try to kill you. Then, once the mission is done, you can go to any village you wish and start a new life. It's a chance for you to be happy."
"Will I be able to see Hinata before I go?" as he looked at Tsunade with a sad look.
"I'll see if she would want to" with a soft motherly smile "if she does, I will personally escort you to her so you can say good-bye."
"Thanks" as tears began to flow from his eyes.
Tsunade wrapped her arm around the crying boy; she had never seen Naruto shed tears before. He always seemed to be the type that would find another way to feel better. It was a wonder though, how a twelve year old boy managed to keep his sanity while locked up in an ANBU solitary confinement cell.
Naruto couldn't stop crying; he had just been told he could get out of the hell hole he had been locked in for the past month with only one person having the authority to let someone see him. What made the news even better though, was the fact that he'd be able to see the only one his age that looked at him as a human before he goes on his last mission for the Hidden Leaf Village.
Even Kyuubi was happy that her Kit could finally go somewhere and be treated fairly. Not like he was a Demon to be feared and hated. Her Kit would be able to find happiness in his life; if she were physically next to Naruto, she'd be crying just as much as him.
"I'll go get all the paperwork done" as Naruto managed to stop crying "I'll have Kakashi come and escort you to Hokage Tower. I'll make sure to have plenty of ramen for you."
When Tsunade mentioned doing paperwork, PAPERWORK, he knew she was telling the truth about letting him out. If there was one thing she hated more than Orochimaru, or even Jiraiya's peeping, it was paperwork.
"Thanks Oba-chan" Naruto said with a smile "for everything."