Hellllllloo ALL! This is Kishiko-Chan's latest story, and the first one since she had come out of her very, very long hiatus. This story is my main focus right now, so the updates for the others aren't exactly going to be coming anytime very soon, but soon enough. Please enjoy, and REVIEWS are loved! (and they will determine whether or not this story should continue!)
Disclaimer: If I owned Naruto, Minato Namikaze and Kushina Uzumaki would still be alive.
Now, I am proud to present to you…
Chapter I- Friend
"Minato!" a tall, blonde-haired man exclaimed as he reached his hand out to a seemingly calm young boy. The boy had blonde hair as bright as the sunshine, similar to the man's, and bright cerulean eyes that seemed to pierce deep into your soul. The boy turned toward his father and gave him an inquisitive look.
"Are you ready for school? We should go soon before you're late! Your mom would have never—"
"—wanted me to be late to the Academy. I know, you've told me a lot of times already, tou-san!"
The young boy gave his father a bright smile and took his hand. His father promptly swung him up and placed the small boy on his shoulders.
As they were walking through the village, the older blonde constantly received praise from the villagers, along with several pats on the back, and adoring gazes from young women who wanted to make the widowed man theirs.
"Tou-san…" the young boy started, before his father cut in.
"When I grow up, I hope I'll be as strong and respected as you one day!"
The father stopped, lowered his son to the floor, and bent down to put himself on eye level with him, and said with a stern voice,
"Minato Namikaze, you are already top of your class, already earning the respect of many people!"
"But I want to make you proud! I'll become Hokage one day!"
The father stood back up, looked down at his son with a crinkle-eyed smile, and responded with, "You would make a great Hokage, Minato. Just keep working hard." He gave him a reassuring squeeze on his hand, and continued walking along toward the Academy.
As soon as they had arrived, the older man ruffled his son's hair, and gave him a little push.
"I need to see the Hokage for a mission now, so I'll see you as soon as possible!"
Minato sighed. "He always walks me to school when he's about to leave me for missions. Sometimes, I wish I'd have him all to myself for a few days… But this is his duty, and it'll soon be my duty, to be a great shinobi!"
He waved and smiled weakly at his father, who turned and leapt away, jumping quickly toward the Hokage tower for his mission.
"MIIIIIINAAAAATOOOO!" shouted a loud, obnoxious, young Inoichi Yamanaka.
"Good morning, Yamanaka-san!" replied the more polite blonde.
"Aren't you excited? We're going to take the examination to become Genin tomorrow! Today's one of our last days sitting behind these desks and listening to a teacher!"
"I suppose so! It seems very exciting to get out of a classroom and start to train to become stronger, to become a better shinobi!"
The young, black haired teacher stepped into the room and raised his voice, practically yelling,
"ALL RIGHT CLASS, SETTLE DOWN! Due to the fact that we are testing you all tomorrow, I'd like to take today to have each of you talk about your goals and aspirations for the future. Uzumaki-san, since you barely joined us earlier this week, would you like to speak first?"
A young girl with flaming red hair nodded slowly and stood up, taking a deep breath and surveying the classroom. The whole class was quiet, looking at her as if wondering what would come out of her lips.
Minato turned his head up in interest, this girl had been…different. Since she had arrived this week, she had already beaten up half the guys that were in their class, mainly because they kept calling her "tomato," due to her round face and red hair. He, of course, was too smart, and too much of a gentleman to ever say anything that derogatory to her. She was strong, and he respected her for it and treated her with kindness. Still, her brashness and violent nature made her unapproachable to him, as he would rather stay with his group of friends rather than risk being beaten up by an enraged redhead. And frankly, Minato Namikaze had no idea how to talk to girls, other than being his polite self.
His reflections were cut short by a phrase that was shouted by the young redhead:
"I WANT TO BECOME THE FIRST FEMALE HOKAGE!"
His eyes widened at the exclamation, but then closed them as he tried to block out the hushed whispers, insults, and snide comments that were already surrounding him caused by this girl's statement.
"Who does she think she is?"
"That little tomato head, she'll never be strong enough!"
Finally, someone with guts shouted at her, "QUIT DREAMING!"
His eyes opened up once again and his gaze fell upon the ridiculed young Kushina Uzumaki, and a pang of sympathy hit him as he saw her tear up while proceeding to scream,
"I'M GOING TO SUCCEED! JUST YOU WATCH!"
He smiled at her determination, and looked down once more. Other students were called, but none of them really caused as big of a commotion as Kushina did.
He rose and looked at the class, stating,
"I want to become a Hokage that everyone in the village will respect."
Kushina's eyes narrowed at the blonde.
However, unlike the reaction the class gave her, there were nods of approval, and murmurs of the definite possibility. Dozens of girls swooned behind her, and she simply rolled her eyes.
"That WIMP thinks he can become Hokage? I don't think so! How come he can get people to believe him? Why isn't he ridiculed?"
Her eyes teared up once more as she thought the last comment, but she shook it off as she loosened up and continued to listen to her other classmates' goals.
The bell rang for dismissal and the students filed outside to eat their lunch. As soon as the bell rung, the young redhead sped outside with her bento box and sat on the swings on the lonely outside of the playground, hot tears streaming down her cheeks as she stared at the ground.
A big, boisterous boy and two others approached her and shouted,
"Oi, Uzumaki! You think you're hot stuff, huh? You're worth NOTHING! You don't belong here, you stupid, ugly, TOMATO!"
Her tears spilled out faster, but she clenched her fists.
"WHY DO YOU CALL ME TOMATO? HAVEN'T YOU LEARNED FROM THOSE OTHER BOYS I BEAT UP?"
"Ha, those boys were weaklings. Besides, they re-named you the Red Hot-Blooded Habanero, and I don't think you're feisty enough to live up to that nickname."
Her bento was snatched away from her, while the young boys were laughing at her.
She looked up darkly as she pulled her clenched fist back, and punched the leader of the group right across the face. He fell down, but then was helped back up by one of his cronies. The other one held her back before she could inflict further damage. The leader grabbed his cheek with one hand, and took the bento box from the other boy. He proceeded to give her a scathing look, and flung the box in front of her, the contents spilling out messily on the dirt floor. His cronies proceeded to shove her down, turned around and walked away, purposely kicking up dirt as they left.
She brought her knees up to her face and cried silently. Little did she know that there was a young blonde who had witnessed the smashing of her bento box while passing by. He walked up to her quietly, and extracted a light blue handkerchief from his pocket and handed it to the crying girl.
"Uzumaki-san, I don't know about you, but Konoha's first female Hokage shouldn't be sitting on the floor crying."
He stretched out his hand and looked down at her with a small smile.
Her violet orbs widened as they met his cerulean ones, with her taking his hand to pull himself up. She let go and walked to the swings. He sauntered over and sat down at the swing next to her, pulling out his own bento and opening the lid. Inside, some crudely made riceballs were displayed, and he offered it to her. She lifted a shaky hand and picked one up, munching on it.
"Sorry if they're not very good, my father was busy last night, so I had to make it myself."
"They're fine! I'm starving!" exclaimed the redhead, her mood changing drastically.
He gave her a weak smile as she gave him a cheeky grin, and finished her riceball. She hopped off the swing and said,
"Thank you, Minato!"
"You're welcome, Uzumaki-san! It's the least I could do."
"Call me Kushina!"
"Why are you so formal! You know, when you said your goal today, I really thought that you were just a wimp, and that it could never happen. In fact, I still think that!"
His face faltered slightly, as he looked at her.
"…BUT, I think you could possibly prove me wrong."
His face brightened up immediately, and he nodded.
"But you're competing with me, dattebane! SO… you better prove me wrong FAST!"
She gave him that same cheeky grin, and moved ahead, with a definite spring in her step. She skipped, ran, twirl, and cart-wheeled with such grace and fluidity that it surprised him because he always thought he was a brash girl.
She stopped, then turned facing him and frowned.
"Aren't you coming?"
His eyes widened.
"Where are we going?"
"Well, I can't leave my first friend here by himself! I'll show you around my neighborhood!"
He nodded and ran up next to her, following along as she chatted loudly about her former home, Uzushiogakure, and all the things that she used to do there. It seemed like such a long story, with her talking, and stopping every few minutes because she would ramble on and forget what she was talking about. And after what seemed to be like an hour (but in reality only twenty minutes), Minato's head jerked as the two of them stopped.
He stared at the desolate building ahead of him.
Everything about it seemed dark and gloomy. The old walls of the building certainly have not been kept well, with the paint peeling off in some places and huge cracks in others. The windows were old and shabby, with some of them broken—acts of vandalism, most likely—and some of them completely replaced with wooden boards. The door was basically a piece of wood with a handle placed in it, with the edges of the door so crudely cut that it barely fit into the hole where a door was supposed to be. Minato was not rich, but he had enough to suffice, and this was nothing like the comfortable, modern house that he had lived in all his life.
Kushina must have caught him staring, because she turned to him and started explaining in a dark tone.
"As you can see, it's not one of those nice, quaint houses that the other villagers and shinobi live in, and that's because right when my family was about to move to Konoha, our village was destroyed…completely. We lost most of our prized possessions and money. Everything and everyone that we have left…is in this building."
Minato looked warily at the building; it was very tall, having several stories, but the condition it was in made him wonder how much people it could actually support.
"But even though we live in this shabby house, it's enough for me!" Kushina smiled, giving him a thumbs-up and then proceeding to open the door.
After seeing the outside of her house, Minato had expected the inside to be just the same. However, he was dreadfully wrong. The interior of the house was lively and vibrant, just like the redhead that had brought him there. The walls were painted bright yellow, with a huge cerulean blue Konoha sign painted nicely on the right wall, while a red Uzu village sign was painted on the opposite wall. No one seemed to notice him as there was hustle and bustle all about, as many other people he had never seen before moved around, making adjustments to the interior of the house. Paint was being transported up the stairs, wooden furniture was being made, and sometimes it was hard to tell who was real and who was a kage-bushin made to help out.
"You see, we've only been here a month! The old man Hokage offered us a nicer house, but us Whirlpool shinobi can handle anything! So we decided to liven up this old house and create it to be better! Although the outside's hard to fix, we'll work on it right after we're done with the inside!"
The young blonde let out a sigh of relief—Kushina would not have to live in such a bad house after all. The warmth and love that practically exuded from the walls was enough to keep anyone happy.
"Well, it's time for me to go help out now! You should go! I don't want you here to see me do all this dirty work!" she said with a wink, rolling up her sleeves.
Minato laughed slightly and said, "No, no! I want to help! Just tell me what to do!"
She led him upstairs carrying two cans of paint. He insisted that he held them, but she wouldn't hear of it. They reached the third floor, third room on the right. He opened the door for her and then followed her inside.
"Ahh, this is my room!"
It was empty, nothing there at all except for a pile of wood at one corner ("To make our own furniture!" she exclaimed), and a futon on the other.
"YOSH, LET'S GET STARTED!"
She painted the walls as he cut, sawed, sandpaper-ed, and painted what was to be her desk and drawers. Every so often, they would stop from their work and just sit down to rest for a few minutes, then get back to what they were doing. After a few hours, Kushina's room was complete.
The color of the room was bright yellow—sort of like Minato's hair—and the color of all her furniture was red, much like her hair. Though it was still quite bare, with nothing personal being put on her walls or on her drawers, she loved it all the same.
"Thank you so much for the help today, Minato!" She grinned at him, and gave him a quick hug to thank him.
"Not a problem at all! Afterall, anything for a friend, right?"
"Of course!" Her smile widened at the sound of the word, "friend."
"Alright, it's getting dark! I need to get home!"
He gave her a quick wave and a small smile, and jumped out her window as he sprinted back to his home. She returned the wave and smiled at his back as he lept away.
Minato Namikaze…my friend…
…still a wimp.
She smiled as she prepared to go sleep.
Hey everyone! So what do you think of my story so far? After reading the most recent Naruto chapters, I completely fell in love with Naruto's parents! They're so selfless and adorable, their personalities complement each other's, AND, they're so funny to write about! My favorite couple, for sure. I just received my password in the e-mail, after MONTHS of requesting it, so I'm glad that I'm able to upload this for you all! School's about to start for me, so I don't know how fast I'm going to update, but then I'll try to write as many chapters as I can over this summer, and then update it…bi-weekly? I'm going to post this up, and if the reviews are good, then I'll continue the story. If not…then I'll probably just stop writing it.
The next chapter will be posted up as soon as I get some positive feedback about this story! :D