Lazyfox: Hi everyone I'm back again~ I've finally found my mojo again so now I'm going to try to produce a chapter a month. If I don't stick to that schedule I'll apologize my dear, sweet readers, but I'm only human.
Random: I thought you were a tiger demon hybrid?
Magic: *poofs in as his bear demon hybrid* You have a problem with my demon Nee-Chan? *holds claw to her neck*
Random: Nope. Please don't kill me T^T
Jurabi: I'm just going to assume that this is a normal thing here.
Lazyfox: *turns into her tiger demon form* Well yes I am that, but I'm mostly human. To answer your question Jurabi it does happen a lot here ^w^ I also like to thank you all very much not only for all the support over these past six years, but for just being here to celebrate and watch this story come alive with me ^w^ This story has over a 1,000 Favs and follows and has almost 1,000 reviews! I honestly don't have the words to express my gratitude to you all so all I can say is thank you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart and I hope you all enjoy this chapter~
Disclaimer: I LazyFoxLover do not own Naruto or any of the characters. All rights belong to its creator Masashi Kishimoto. Please support the official release and please do enjoy the chapter!
The finalist all looked focused trained on the Hokage's words as the sensei's of the finalist looked on proudly from the upper stands.
"As I mentioned earlier in the preliminaries you all will conduct your final round battle in front of everyone. Each of you will represent the battle strengths of your respective lands. So, we want you to fully showcase your various talents. And thus, the finals will commence one month from now!"
"Why one month from now?" Karui asked.
"Well for starters you each fought a hard battle and you each showcased what you are capable of in combat. Another reason is so we can send word to other leaders and lords men to come witness the finals for themselves. For this one month, it is wise for you each to train hard, improve and many even learn some new tricks to better help you against the opponent you face" Hiruzen explained.
"I get it. It's a stationary period for our bodies to recover essentially as well as do prep work so the next time we fight we're all on equal footing to give the lords and higher class shinobi a good show" Shikamaru said.
"Precisely. Now I would like to let you all go now, but first there's one last thing we must do for the finals. Inside the box Anko is holding are slips of paper. Each of you take one." Hiruzen explained.
Anko came around to each of the finalist pulling out a slip of paper until only two remained inside.
"Now then since everyone now has a number each of you will read of the number you have. Shikamaru-Kun will start with you and work are way down" Hiruzen said.
"Man, what a drag this is going to be" Shikamaru thought. "I got number..."
*End of Recap*
"Man, what a drag this is going to be," Shikamaru thought as he stared at his number, which was 7, with an annoyed look before he said, "I got number 7."
"I'm number 10," Naruko said.
"I have number 8," Omoi said.
"Number 11," Kauri said.
"I have number 1," Shino said.
"Number 3," Neji said.
"I got number 9," Temari said.
"Number 6," Gaara said in her normal lower feminine voice.
"Number 5," Dosu said.
Anko wrote all the names that were called with the corresponding number onto her clipboard. Hiruzen then reached into the box and pulled out the number 2 signaling that would be Sasuke Uchiha's number meaning Hinata Hyuga was number 4. When Anko finished writing everything down, she revealed to the gathered genin what she wrote.
Everyone looked at the clipboard and saw that their names were put on a tournament bracket. The first match was Shino vs. Sasuke, the second match was Neji vs. Hinata, third match was Dosu vs. Gaara, the fourth match was Shikamaru vs. Omoi, and the fifth match was Temari vs. Naruko vs. Karui.
Naruko and Temari both looked at each other with a hard glare in their blue eyes each thinking something different as they glared at each other.
"You got lucky with Kankuro, but against me you won't stand a chance," Temari thought fully committed to beat the blonde idiot into a bloody pulp, "Unlike your blonde friend, I won't stop until you're a pile of bloody flesh."
"So, I get the next sand sibling right off the bat," Naruko thought before she smirked, "Good. I couldn't ask for a better match up. I'm going to make her pay for what she did to Ino then I'll focus on taking out Omoi's teammate." Naruko thought unfazed by the thought of fighting against two tough opponents. To her, it was just a greater challenge to overcome.
Shikamaru gazed down at Naruko wondering if she was going to be okay or if she was going into the match with a level head or not. Sighing he grabbed her hand, but Naruko didn't break her glare with Temari.
"Looks like you have to fight Sunny and Sand's wind user, Karui" Omoi said glancing at his teammate.
"Yeah, but it looks like those two will do most of the battling against each other meaning I'll pick up the win easily" Karui said.
Omoi hid a smirk thinking his teammate was being just a little too cocky, but he had no desire to be punched by her again. Instead Omoi glanced over at his opponent wondering how his fight with Shikamaru was going to turn out. "Well, it looks like I'm going to fight Sunny's boyfriend. That'll be an interesting fight."
"So, I'm fighting against Sasuke Uchiha..." Shino thought knowing that fight will be difficult.
Neji looked indifferent seeing he was fighting Hinata on the outside, but inside he was pleased with the outcome. "Everyone's destiny cannot be changed. You are destined to be a failure Lady Hinata and that's what I plan to prove."
Gaara couldn't care less who she fought. To her the only thing that matter was feeding the sand more blood, but she couldn't stop herself from thinking about Lee and Naruko.
"I'm the last one standing huh? I wonder what Lord Orochimaru has planned for us now?" Dosu thought glancing at his red-haired opponent. "Guess it doesn't matter anyway. I'll move on to the next phase of the plan when Lord Orochimaru gives the word."
"Thank you all for your patience and giving it your all in this exam," Hiruzen said as he gave them a smile, "I am pleased to see how much you all have grown, and I cannot help wait to see how much stronger you all will get during this month. Until then, train hard and I will see you all in a month's time. If none of you have a question you are dismissed."
Shikamaru sighed before he spoke up, "Lord Hokage, I have quick question about the finals. Seeing as this is a tournament style setup doesn't that mean there can only be one winner? If so does that mean only one of us can become a Chunin?"
Hiruzen smirked knowing Shikamaru's intellect was as sharp as ever. "No, that will not be the case. For the finals, you all are going to be observed by noble lords, as I mentioned before. You are also going to be watched not only by me, but the Kazekage himself. Based on your performances, we will decide if you are eligible to become a Chunin or not."
"So, you're saying even if we lose in the first round we still have a chance of advancing? Meaning all of here can potentially become Chunin's," Temari asked.
"Correct," Hiruzen replied to her, "But that also means that the possibility that none of you will become a Chunin exists. If that is all, I wish good luck to each of you and I'll see all in one month. Dismissed!"
Naruko and Shikamaru were walking together down the halls of the medical infirmary. The two haven't really spoken since they found out who they're going to be fighting in the finals. Shikamaru rubbed his neck wondering what was going through his girlfriend's head.
"Before you say anything, Shika, you don't have to worry about me, you know," Naruko said not looking at him directly.
"Am I that easy to read," Shikamaru asked. "I can't help it ya know. I care about you too much not to worry about you."
"I understand how you feel, Shika. Going up against the sand witch and the redhead from Omoi team is going to be a tough fight, but I'll be more than ready to beat them in the ground for what they did to Ino and Lee." After saying that, Naruko put up her best confident smirk.
Shikamaru let out an amused smile, "Yeah, it sucks that I can't go up against that sand girl. I know how much of a good friend Lee was to you. Just be sure to watch yourself when you fight against Temari and Karui. I'd be heartbroken if I see your pretty face getting stained with a bruise."
"Oh, Shika, aren't you just the sweetest boy," Naruko said giving him a small kiss on the cheek as a small reward for his sneaky compliment, "I care a lot about you too, so I better not see a single cut on your handsome face when you fight," she said hugging his arm as they stopped outside Hinata's room. "Now you go check on Ino and Choji. I'll meet up with you afterwards."
"Okay. Tell Hinata I hope she gets better soon and good luck in her match," Shikamaru said before pulling Naruko close placing a kiss on her lips. When they ended their kiss Shikamaru pulled back from her to head down the hall. "See you soon, Blue-eyes."
Naruko had a goofy grin on her face as she watched Shikamaru turn the corner before walking into Hinata's room. When she walked in, Naruko saw that Hinata was sitting up in bed reading a medical scroll she gave her, "You're supposed to be resting Hina-chan."
Hinata looked over to her best friend and smiled, "I know, Naru-chan, but I thought I should read through these scrolls for a bit."
"I understand. How are you feeling Hina-Chan," Naruko asked pulling up a chair beside her bed.
"I'm sore, but it's nothing I can't handle. The medics told me I'll probably be in the hospital for three days, and then I'm on recovery with my burns for a week," Hinata told her.
"Yeah, those explosions weren't very nice to your body, but on the plus side you can still move and you'll be able to fight in the final tournament," Naruko said before getting a sad look in her eyes as she thought about Lee.
Hinata catching her friend's saddened look put the scroll down to look at her. "Naru-chan? What's wrong?"
Naruko looked up at Hinata with tears pooling into her eyes before she put her head in Hinata's lap crying. Hinata didn't know what was wrong so she just let Naruko cry as she ran her hand over her hair. When Naruko calmed down enough she explained to Hinata everything she missed and when she got to what happened to Lee Hinata was shedding tears too.
"Poor Lee-san..." Hinata said wiping away the last of her tears.
"I hate it Hina-chan. Lee fought so hard, but in the end, it wasn't enough and now he might never be able to be a Shinobi again," Naruko said. "I bet if Grandma Kaede was here she be able to heal Bushy-Brow no problem, but she's not and my medical ninjutsu is pathetic compared to everyone else."
"Naru-chan, you can't do that to yourself. What happened to Lee-san is terrible, but he knows if you could help him you would. Maybe we can find another medical ninja to help Lee-san. It can't be impossible to help him, right?" Hinata tells her holding her hand.
"You're right Hina-chan. I just feel so bad for Lee," Naruko said wiping away her tears, "But I promised him that no matter what it takes I was going to find a way to patch him back up. I'll look through all of grandma's journals if I have too," Naruko vowed.
"I'll help anyway I can Naru-chan," Hinata promised. "So, all of our team made it to the finals. That's an accomplishment, huh?"
"You bet it is! I had no doubts what so ever about all of us making it to the finals. In a month's time when we go to the finals were going to show grandpa and all the nobles what team Kakashi is all about! Believe it," Naruko cheered now that her mood was getting better after talking with Hinata.
Hinata smiled seeing how happy Naruko was now, "So who are we all facing in the finals? You didn't tell me that part yet."
"You're right. Well, the first match is going to be the Teme vs Shino. That's going to be an interesting match, I think." Naruko said.
"You think Sasuke-Kun will enjoy that challenge," Hinata asked.
"Yea. The next match will be you vs Neji" Naruko tells her.
Hinata eyes widen in terror. "I..I..I'm fi..fighting Neji Nii-sama?!" she stuttered out starting to wring her hands together from nervousness.
Naruko grabbed her hands making Hinata look at her. "Hina-Chan listen to me, you are so much stronger than you give yourself credit for. You proved that when you believe in yourself you can win," she tells her. "Neji may say things that will make you doubt yourself, but you can't listen to what he says. No matter what crap he spews, you can and you will beat him! I know you can!"
Hinata tighten her grip on Naruko hands. "Thank you Naru-chan... I promise to do my absolute best."
Naruko smiled at her. "That's all I ask from you. Plus, I know if you bring out the power in your new gentle fist style you used in your fight, then rework that jutsu that protected you from that blast you'll win for sure."
"I don't know how I pulled those moves off, but with practice I might be able to do them" Hinata said thinking about it. "Speaking of training how do you think Kakashi-sensei is going to train all three of us this month?"
"Well, I honestly think Nii-chan is going to get each of us different sensei's," Naruko said. "With the teme needing to practice his Sharingan, Nii-chan is the perfect teacher for him."
"Probably so. I think I can get someone in the Hyuga compound to help me practice those moves. Hinabi might train with me." Hinata said.
"I'll see if Nee-Chan will train me if she's not busy. I haven't spent much time with her since she took over Nii-chan's spot as head Anbu" Naruko said.
"I'm sure if Cat-Sama isn't busy she loves to train you" Hinata said. "So, what are the other matches?"
"Right, so the third match is the sound jerk with metal arms vs the creep with the sand that hurt Lee" Naruko said making her eyes go cold. "I really hope I fight her in this tournament so she pays for hurting Bushy-Brow."
"Naru-Chan, I know that you're angry about what happened, but seeking revenge will only lead to more trouble," Hinata warned her.
"I know, but handing out a beating can't be that bad, right?" Naruko jokingly asked, but the stern look she got from Hinata made her sigh as she stretched over Hinata bed. "Fine. I'll be good. Anyway, the next match would be Shika vs Omoi."
"How do you think that match will go?" Hinata asked. "I didn't see how Omoi-Kun fights."
"Omoi looks to be about a long range to close range fighter. So, in those terms Shika is at a major disadvantage," Naruko said with a wide grin on her face. "But my Shika is a genius so he'll probably come up with something to stop Omoi from pulling anything on him."
Hinata smiled as she laid beside her friend on the bed. "I have faith in Shikamaru-Kun too. He has you most of all to cheer him on in the corner," She said with a giggle.
Naruko turned to her giggling too. "Always Hina-Chan, just like you. I'll always have your backs. Now the final match is yours truly vs the redhead from Omoi's team and the sand witch. I'm looking forward to my match," she said giving Hinata her fox like grin.
"Good luck Naru-chan. Fighting two opponents will be tough, but I believe in you" Hinata said squeezing Naruko's hand before she tried to cover up a yawn.
Naruko smiled back at her. "Okay back to sleep with you. I need you well-rested and healed because once you're better it's training time."
Hinata yawned again nodding her head. "I will Naru-chan. See you tomorrow?"
Naruko got up and stretched. "Count on it. Love you Hina-Chan! See you tomorrow" she said watching Hinata fall back asleep before leaving. "Okay, time to go see the teme then it's off to train."
Shikamaru walked into Choji's room after hearing his friend give the okay to come in. "Hey Choji how you feeling man?"
Choji was sitting on the bed with both his legs placed inside a lower body cast. "Pretty good considering both my legs are broken."
"Damn...I'm sorry about that, but at least it wasn't your spine," Shikamaru said taking a seat beside him. "Did the doctors tell you how long you'll be in this cast?"
"They're saying I'll be in this cast for six to eight weeks maybe more, if needed. After I get out of the cast I'm looking at possibly being in rehab for another one to two months. Overall I'm on the shelf for about four to six months." Choji explained.
"What a drag man. Team Asuma is going to be put on the back burner for a bit while you and Ino are on recovery. Asuma-sensei is going to be focusing on training me for the finals," Shikamaru said with a heavy sigh. "How troublesome."
"So, you made it to the finals? That's good. You saved us from getting a total earful from Ino at least," Choji said
"I wouldn't bet too much on that happening. I had to fight Sakura in my match and I kind of used her fear of water to win," Shikamaru said which made Choji laugh.
"Say goodbye to your hearing, man," Choji joked. "What else did I miss?"
Shikamaru let out a long sigh and told Choji about all the matches he missed, who made it to the finals and who they be fighting in the finals. Shikamaru also finally told Choji about him and Naruko dating.
Choji absorbed all the new information with his emotions ranging from impressed to angry to sad and back to amused. "Yep, you're definitely going to need a hearing aid when Ino gets done with you."
Shikamaru sighed again as he leaned back in his chair. "Ahhh don't remind me. It's already a drag that I had to hear Sakura nag at me for it, but now I have to watch my back for Blue-eyes's crazy sensei/older brother. Not to mention the chick from the sand village has it out for me because I turned her down and now she wants to hurt Blue-eyes. Dating is so troublesome man."
Choji laughed at his best friend again. "Good thing no girl is interested in me. Enjoy the spotlight Shikamaru" he teased.
As Choji said that there was a knock on his room door. Wondering who it was Choji gave the okay for them to come in. When the door opened Karui walked in catching Shikamaru and Choji off guard.
"Ah...Hey I came to see how you were doing? Karui said looking away from him to hide her embarrassment.
Choji shook his head to recover from his shock. "Oh, um I'm fine. Doctors told me I'm probably won't be up training or going on mission for a couple of months" he tells her. "Oh, Congratulations again on making it to the finals."
"But our match didn't end fairly. I might not have been the one to make it to the finals if you didn't protect me from the boulders" Karui said.
"I told you it was my decision so don't make too much of a fuss and worry about making it through the tournament. Naru-chan is no push over and that sand village girl is pretty strong so be sure to train hard and make it a good match," Choji tells her with a smile.
Karui cheeks flush, but she refused to admit to herself that she found his words to be really sweet and encouraging. "I don't need luck. I'll show you I can beat those blondes into the ground. So, you better get well enough to come watch the fight or else fluffy!" she said before turning away to walk out the room cupping her mouth unable to believe what she just said.
Choji was left looking very confused. "Did I say something wrong?"
Shikamaru just shook his head and patted his back. "Choji just let it go man. Men will never understand women and it's too much of a drag to try too."
Naruko was walking back to the entrance of the hospital after she was told Sasuke was not allowed visitors. "Wonder why I couldn't see the teme?"
"It's a safety precaution Imoto. With foreign ninja in the village it's best that we protect the Keki genkai user in our village safe" Kakashi said suddenly popping up behind her.
"Ahhh Nii-chan! Don't do that! You can literally give me a heart attack, you jerk!" Naruko yelled punching his arm.
"Consider that a small punishment for keeping your relationship a secret from me," Kakashi said giving her a serious look.
Naruko smiled nervously at him. "Umm did I do that? Ha-ha whoops I thought I told you I had a boyfriend..."
"Naruko..." Kakashi said using her regular name to show his displeasure.
Naruko sighed. "I'm sorry Nii-chan. Shika and I were going to tell you honest we were. We were just worried you be angry at us, Shika most of all, but can you blame him? You get way overprotective sometimes."
Kakashi sighed too. "I can be over the top I know, but it's because I care about you way too much for you to ever get hurt. I know I won't always be there to protect you, but if I am there I want to prevent any and all harm. I didn't always protect you when you were younger like I should have so I want to make it up to you."
Naruko hugged Kakashi tightly. "Nii-chan you were a perfect older brother to me. I got hurt occasionally, but you always made me feel better afterwards so it's okay. I love you so I can forgive your protective tendency just as long you keep it to a minimum."
Kakashi hugged her back. "I love you too Imoto that's why I will allow your boyfriend to live, but he does one thing to hurt you I'm Chidoring him into oblivion"
Naruko laughed a little at his threat. "Yes Nii-chan I understand and trust me Shika not that kind of guy."
"I know, but he doesn't have to know I somewhat approve of him. Have to keep my image up so he knows not to hurt you," Kakashi said ruffling her hair. "Anyway, I didn't get to say this earlier, but congratulations on making it to the finals. I was going to stop in to see Hinata to congratulate her too."
"I just saw Hina-Chan she's asleep right now, but I filled her in on what happened. We also talked about how our training for this next month was going to go" Naruko tells him.
"You're right," Kakashi said rubbing his head, "Will all three of you passing the preliminaries, I'm going to have a lot on my plate."
Naruko smiled at him. "No worries Nii-chan, Hinata and I agreed that it be better if you trained with Sasuke for this month so he can have better control over his Sharingan. Hinata is going to train with someone at her family compound and I'm going to ask Nee-Chan to train me."
"Well, aren't you two the helpful students. You two won't mind me training just Sasuke?" Kakashi asked a bit relieved that he didn't have to ditch his little sister and shy student to train their male teammate. Kakashi was still very bothered by his earlier encounter with Kabuto in Sasuke's room to leave him unguarded with Orochimaru still on the prowl for him.
"Yes, we'll be okay. Now I need to go find Nee-Chan I haven't spent time with her in forever~" Naruko said dramatically.
"Imoto don't set all your hopes on Yugao training you. She was promoted to head Anbu when I took over as your sensei so she might be really busy" Kakashi warned her.
"Okay Nii-chan well then I better ask and see then. If I don't see her today will you tell her for me when you see her at home?" Naruko asked.
Kakashi then remembered he hasn't told Naruko about his break up with Yugao. "Imoto about that... Yugao and I broke up. We both discovered we cared about other people. I wanted you to know that after the Chunin exam I'm sorry for not telling you sooner."
Naruko was shocked to hear they broke up thinking the two loved each very much, but to hear they might love other people was news to her. "You both found somebody new?"
"Yes. Yugao has started her new relationship and I agreed that it was in our best interest to move on. I'll let her tell you who she is dating as for me, mines still a work in process" Kakashi said scratching the back of his head.
"Who have you fallen for?" Naruko asked.
Kakashi smiled at her as he patted her head holding a finger to his masked lips. "It's a secret. Good luck on you training Imoto I can't wait to see how strong you'll get" he says before he Shushin away.
"Don't worry, Nii-chan, I'll do everything I can to make you proud." Naruko said.
Naruko was walking around the village now looking sad. Yugao said she was happy to have Naruko ask her for help, but she said with the work load she had she barely be able to train her.
"I'm not really all that sad about the missed training as I am about not spending time with her... I miss being able to hang out with Nee-Chan" Naruko said sighing as she walked to the bath house. "I might as well go soak in the hot spring and look for a new sensei to train with in the morning."
As Naruko was heading to the entrance to the hot spring bath she noticed a familiar sunglass wearing Jounin walking away from the nearby washroom. "Ahhh you're that super perv sensei of Konohamaru!"
Ebisu who heard Naruko called flushed in embarrassment as he ran over to the girl and slapped his hand over her mouth. "Will you shut up! Don't call me such a despicable name in public!"
"Well it's not my fault you're a closet perv. What are you doing here anyway? Are you trying to sneak a peek at the woman in the hot springs?" Naruko accused.
"Why I never! I have a lot more respect for women than to degrade them in such a manner" Ebisu said hotly as he pushed up his glasses. "I was asked here to check out the area because the owner of the hot springs said they noticed someone watching the woman in the springs and they wanted me to consider it."
"Un huh... How do they know it's not you that's being the peeping tom then?" Naruko asked.
"Because I give my word as the Honorable grandson's trainer and sensei that I am not the culprit and I will bring the perpetrator to justice" Ebisu swore.
"Okay I believe you. I know how much being Konohamaru's sensei means to you so I know if you're willing to swear by that then you aren't the peeping tom, but you're still pervy sensei to me" Naruko said honestly cracking a smile at him.
Ebisu felt touched by Naruko's words minus the pervy sensei part, but touched all the same. "Well, um thank you for believing me. So, what brings you to the hot springs tonight? I was informed that you and your team was competing in the Chunin exams."
"We are. All my team made it to the finals so for the next month we're training to fight in the finals. As for why I'm here, it's because I wanted to take a soak in the hot spring to clear my head because I have no sensei to train with since Nee-Chan is busy with her work and Nii-chan is going to train Sasuke-teme."
Ebisu smiled. "Then may I offer my teachings to you?"
Naruko looked at him weird. "Your offering to train me? Why?"
"The honorable grandson talks highly of you. Seeing as he plans to make you his wife someday I thought I be nice to offer my assistance in your training." Ebisu tells her.
"I'm not his future wife! Geez that brat can't take no for an answer man..." Naruko said looking annoyed. "What can you teach me pervy sensei?"
"Well, for one I must ask you how well are you at controlling your chakra? From the reports, I read over from your academy days you have a very poor control over it even with you limited medical ninjutsu training," Ebisu explained.
"I manage it, but it does take me a long time to get it under control. When I use my medical Ninjutsu for my mystic palm technique it's useable, but lately it's kind of been fluctuating on its own" Naruko tells him.
"I see. Well, I can show you a way to control that chakra of yours. It'll be similar to you're walking up a tree exercise I'm sure Kakashi-sensei taught you. This training will require you to walk on water" Ebisu tells her.
"Walk on water?" Naruko questioned.
"Yes. Here follow me I'll show you what I'm talking about." Ebisu said as he walks over to a free area of the hot springs. "The first step is to gather Chakra into the bottom of your feet. When you believe, you have a good balance you walk out onto the water like so."
Ebisu then proceeded to walk over the hot water until he stood in the middle of the spring. Naruko watched thinking it looked cool remembering how Kakashi looked battling on the water during her first mission.
"That's so cool! Okay My turn to try!" Naruko said getting ready to go.
"Wait a minute Naruko-chan. For this exercise, you must remember that you cannot just maintain the chakra you are using, but you must also release and control the flow of chakra you are using. Water is not stable like a tree so to continue standing on top of the water you must move with the water as well" Ebisu explained.
"Okay. Alright here I go!" Naruko cheered taking her first step on the water only to flop right into the boiling water. "Hot! Hot! Hot!" she screamed getting out of the spring.
"Be careful now. This water is 140 degrees Fahrenheit so it's best that you don't take too many dips into the water if you don't want to be boiled alive" Ebisu warned.
Naruko gritted her teeth as she sent chakra back into her feet. "So, it's another battle of wills huh? Well, I'm not giving up I can do this!" she thought walking back onto the water only to fall back in.
Ebisu watched Naruko practice the technique impressed by her determination. He thought back to his training session with Konohamaru and how the boy learned that there were no shortcuts to being Hokage and that is he wanted the title he had to work hard for it. He remembered his student telling him he learned that from Naruko and saw why his young student admired the blond girl now.
"Hey, pervy-sensei, I think I'm getting better at this" Naruko said wobbling a little bit on the water with her feet submerged a bit.
"She's getting the hang of the exercise this quickly? That is most impressive I must say. I see that I have misjudged you my young friend. You seem to be the wiser teacher and much more than the fox demon's hostess. You, my young Kunoichi, are performing impressive feats for a Konoha ninja!" Ebisu thought.
As Naruko continued to wobble on the water she spotted something that made her blood boil. "Hey you stupid perv! What the hell are you doing over there?!"
Naruko's sudden question snapped Ebisu out of his train of thought, "Watching you practice your chakra control, of course. What did you think I was doing?"
"No, not you, pervy-sensei. Him!" Naruko yelled pointing to a white haired man before losing her balance and falling back into the boiling water.
Ebisu looked behind him to see that there indeed was a man looking into the woman's bathing area. Pushing up his glasses, Ebisu charged over towards the white haired man.
"I don't know who you are, but that behavior is unacceptable!"
The white haired man turned towards the charging Ebisu and scoffed. "Are you an idiot?" the man questioned before turning around performing a quick hand sign that summoned up a medium giant toad that he stood on.
Ebisu paused in his charge recognizing who the man was. "You are..."
Before he could finish his sentence the toad shot his tongue out wrapping it around Ebisu before picking him up and slamming him into the stone bridge knocking him out cold.
"Don't make such a loud racket. If you get us caught you'll scare off all the beautiful ladies" the white haired man smirking at the knocked out man.
Naruko who was crawling out of the water looked on in awe. "That guy just knocked out Pervy-sensei... How strong is that guy?" she thought before rushing over to Ebisu's side. "Yep this guys totaly out cold, but good thing he doesn't have any serious damage done."
Getting up Naruko sent a glare to the pervy white haired man. The white haired man was watching Naruko too wondering where he's seen her before.
"Hey you sitting on top the giant frog! Just who do you think you are huh?! You just knocked out my sensei who's supposed to be helping me get ready for my big fight in the Chunin finals!" Naruko yelled at him.
The white haired man smirked as he took a dramatic stance. "Good question little girl! I am the holy toad sage who hails from Mount Myoboku! I'm the honorable and most handsome Toad sage Jiraiya!"
Naruko stared at him like he was an idiot. "...Toad sage..?"
Jiraiya dispelled his toad summons and looked at the little blond haired girl. "That's right. Sorry about knocking out you trainer over there, but he was interrupting my very important research."
"Research? What kind of research involves looking at women bathing you pervy sage." Naruko asked.
"I'm a writer my dear. I'm the brilliant genius that created this masterpiece here!" Jiraiya bragged showing Naruko a copy of his make out paradise book.
Naruko looked at the cover of the book recognizing it immediately. "Ahhh that's the stupid perv book Nii-Chan reads!"
"How dare you call my masterpiece a stupid perv book?! This is a work of art that everyone enjoys!" Jiraiya yells at her.
"You mean it's a book for pervy old men like you!" Naruko yelled back. "Research my butt! You just want an excuse to look at naked women you pervert!"
"Me admiring the beautiful ladies in the springs gives me inspiration for my novels! I can't expect a child like you to understand and get my genius!" Jiraiya yelled at her.
"I don't care about your excuses! What I do care about is how you're going to handle my training!" Naruko yelled.
"You're training? You talking about the walking on water exercise?" Jiraiya asked.
"You the know this drill?" Naruko asked before getting a hard look in her eyes. "Okay, pervy sage than as payment for knocking my supervisor out you have to take over his role and become my new trainer for the next month"
Jiraiya stared at Naruko like she was crazy before busting out laughing. "Are you kidding me kid? I don't have time to babysit a snot nosed brat like you! I have important research to attend too! Besides you're not the kind of girl I like to hang around with so no deal"
"What's that supposed to mean you damn pervert?!" Naruko yelled. "I need someone to train with for the Chunin finals and you basically took out the one guy willing to help!"
"The Chunin finals? A little greenhorn like you is in the Chunin finals?" Jiraiya said not believing her though as he takes a another look at her she was starting to look like someone he should remember. "Sorry kiddo can't help you, I don't hang around brats. Plus I'm great and powerful sage what makes you think I'll listen to a little greenhorn like you?"
Naruko was started to peeved off, but got a wicked idea that made her fox like grin come out. "Are you sure there's no chance of anything changing you mind to help me train for the finals?" she asked sweetly as she prepared her hand seals.
"I'm absolutely positive. Now will you leave me alone so I can finish me research in peace now?" Jiraiya said getting annoyed with the pesky familiar looking blonde.
"Not even for..." Naruko started to say before a cloud of smoke appeared around her. As the smoke disappeared an older bustier version of Naruko wearing an orange bikini appeared. "Me?" the newer version of Naruko asked.
Jiraiya lost all composure as he got a lecherous look on his face as blood dribbled out his nostril. "OH BABY! NOW THAT'S WHAT I'M TALKING ABOUT!"
"What an idiot pervert..." Naruko thought as she watched Jiraiya check out her new form.
"Now this is definitely the type of gal I like. All the right curves and all the bounce rolled into one! W..what's the name of this jutsu?" Jiraiya said examining her fully.
"Um I call it my ninja centerfold or sexy no jutsu" Naruko tells the perverted man.
"It's genius. A simple masterpiece my dear. You got all the curves perfectly and the bounce you have is simply divine" Jiraiya complemented.
Naruko was starting to twitch in irritation, but kept her cool. "So, does that mean you'll train me?" she asked sweetly making her eyes sparkle and to push her enlarged breast to get him on her side.
"You bet I will kiddo, but if I'm going to train you I'm going to need you to stay in that form" jiraiya said with a perverted grin on his face.
Naruko dispelled her jutsu looking pissed off as she suckered punched him in the gut. "I knew it! You are a no good old pervert! You're sick pervy sage!"
Jiraiya held his stomach kind of impressed by her strength. "This girl has a punch, but she's no Tsunade yet" he thought with a smirk. "You got me all wrong kiddo. I'm no ordinary pervert!"
Naruko was getting more ticked off with him. "Quit screwing around! If you're not an ordinary pervy sage than what the heck do you classify yourself as?!"
"I'm the mega pervy sage!" Jiraiya declared proudly.
Naruko tried to punch him again, but Jiraiya dodged her this time. "YOU HAVE NO SHAME!" she yelled glaring at him.
Jiraiya watched her and just laughed at her. "All kidding and joking aside. I will be your trainer for the next month, but as a fair warning kiddo I'm not an easy sensei and I will make you work hard. So, tomorrow morning meet by the river with the waterfall in the forest near training ground five."
Naruko cheered up. "Woohoo! Thanks a lot pervy sage! You won't regret training me I swear! Dattebayo!"
Jiraiya's eyes widen when he heard that phrase. Looking at Naruko more closely now he noticed the heart shaped locket she was wearing and he finally remembered who the girl reminded him of, but he had to make sure. "Hey Kiddo what's you're name?"
Naruko faced him with her face splitting smile. "I'm Naruko Uzumaki and someday I'm going to become the Hokage so remember that name pervy sage because you're going to be the sensei of a future Hokage!" she declared before checking the sun position and noticed it was time to go home. "See you tomorrow pervy sage!"
Jiraiya watched the young blonde headed girl run off feeling like he could have kicked himself for not recognizing her sooner. "Damn I know I've been gone a long time, but I should have at least recognized my own god-daughter. If Minato or Kushina where here now they kick my ass from here to the Snow village" he thought shaking his head. "You're daughter is really something else though..."
Jiraiya watched as Naruko disappeared from sight before going over to Ebisu and checking on him. Seeing that the man was still knocked out he picked him up and decided to look after him until he woke up.
Temari was sitting in her team's room polishing her giant fan watching her little sister Gaara as she sat by the window seat staring up at the moon. After being dismissed from arena she went to check on Kankuro and found out he was doing okay for the most part. His Jawbone was broken so he wasn't able to talk much and his femur was cracked, but other than that he was fine. Gaara didn't go with her so she assumed she had just gone back to their room and when she walked in to find Gaara sitting in the window seat she was right.
The shoulder length red headed girl didn't even give her older sister a second glance when she walked in. Gaara couldn't stop thinking about her fight with the green jumpsuit wearing boy who was able to punch through her defenses. She realized if the match had continued she could have very easily have lost. Losing though had no meaning to her what did unsettle her was the look in the boy's sensei when he saved him from her final blow.
"Because he's my student... But because he's also someone very precious to me..."
Gai words were echoing in her mind and she didn't understand why. Why was someone who lost their match considered precious to someone else? The more she pondered the question the more her head hurt, but she didn't leave her spot from the window. Tonight was a full moon and the monster inside her was stirring, looking for blood.
Kakashi sat on a tree branch from the tree that grew in the ninja academy school yard watching Iruka finishing up his afternoon paperwork. The silver haired man knew if anyone else could see him they think he was being creepy, but he wanted to talk to the brunette man to let him know how the Chunin exam was going so far like he promised he would. Plus he knew it was unwise to disrupt Iruka when he was in the middle of paperwork.
Iruka could sense he was being watched, but wasn't scared about it because he recognized the chakra signature. Fighting back the smile it brought him the academy teacher got up and walked over to the window opening it. "Kakashi-sensei I know you're up there. You're free to come inside you know?"
Kakashi smiled under his mask as he poofed over to the window sill. "Yea, but the last time I interrupted you when you were working on your paperwork you threw a book at me."
"Well, yes I did and that's because you popped in on top of said paperwork making me have to redo some of the reports" Iruka fired back. "But, seeing as you're here now means something has developed in the Chunin exams. So, how did Naruko-chan and the others handle the preliminary rounds?"
Kakashi gave him the thumbs up. "All of Team seven made it to the finals. As well as a representative from all the rookie teams as well as one from Gai's team."
Iruka smiled happily. "That's wonderful! I'm glad they passed. To think all the rookie teams has a representative in the finals. You Jounin must be proud of your students" he said feeling proud of his former students,
Kakashi tapped Iruka on the head. "I told you before their our students meaning they just as much yours as they are mine, Asuma and Kurenai's. Besides you brought them to be amazing students that liked to learn. You did the hard part we just take the credit afterwards."
"Thank you Kakashi-sensei. Well, you have your hands full the most if you're training all three of your students for the finals." Iruka said smiling at him.
"According to my two female students they have already decided I don't have to worry about them, but instead I have to focus on training Sasuke" Kakashi lets him know.
"Well, that was thoughtful of them. I hope they find themselves a good replacement for you then for the month." Iruka says going back to his desk.
"I do as well. My training with Sasuke starts tomorrow, but I decided to stop by and give you the report like I promised. Seeing as I have I'll be taking me leave now" Kakashi said getting ready to leave.
"Take care Kakashi-sensei don't strain yourself too much. Sasuke-kun is the type to over train himself so if you can't keep up with him there no shame in admitting defeat" Iruka teased smiling at him.
"Yea, yea I'm not that old that I can't keep up with a kid yet. See you around Iruka-san" Kakashi said giving him a masked smile before leaving the academy teacher to his work.
Shikamaru was heading home after visiting Choji and Ino who finally came out of surgery. Shikamaru sat outside her room waiting for the doctor said it was okay to visit her. When he walked in he notice the sad look on Ino's face noticing that she was twirling her chopped hair. He told her she looked fine and that her hair would be long and beautiful again which perked her up a bit. Ino then teased him about if he said such sweet things to Naruko like that he end up getting together with her faster. Thus he began to tell her everything she missed and like him and Choji predicted she chewed him out for everything he was worth.
With a heavy sigh Shikamaru walked into his home. "I'm home!" he called alerting his mother and father of his return.
Yoshino rounded the corner with a stern look on her face at seeing how filthy he was, but her stern facade broke as she rushed over giving him a hug. "Welcome home Shikamaru! I've missed you. How where the exams?"
"Just as troublesome as I expected them to be. Now I have to train for the next month so i'll be ready for the finals. Man what a drag that's going to be" Shikamaru said.
"So, you made it to the finals huh? That's pretty decent for a rookie. What about Naruko-chan did she make it through?" Shikaku asked playing his one man shogi game that Shikamaru took over when he sat down before him.
"Oh yea. Blue-eyes made it to the finals and has to face two opponents at once because of the uneven finalists. I however have to face a troublesome strong opponent in my match" Shikamaru tells his father making his move.
Shikaku examined the board before making his move. "What makes your opponent troublesome?"
"He's a powerhouse from the Kumikarkage village. He specializes in frontal and long distant electrical attack" Shikamaru tells him.
"That does sound like a troublesome opponent to have. I might be able to help you a bit by teaching you a few new jutsus" Shikaku tells him making his move.
"That would be helpful and with Asuma's help in combat I might make it out the match to where Blue-eyes doesn't chew my ear off too much if I lose" Shikamaru said making his move.
"Well, I don't want to hear my son sell himself short. You're going to win that match you hear me young man" Yoshino said placing their dinner plates beside them.
"Yes ma'am" Shikamaru said watching as his dad beat him again giving him a smug look. "Che, troublesome parents" he sighed before giving them both a grateful smile.
Together the little Nara family sat down and ate their dinner. When they were done eating, Shikamaru played another game of Shogi with his day. When he lost again he bid his parents a good night so he can go take a bath and get ready for bed.
Mikoto and Shisui where sitting at the dinner table waiting for Sasuke and Naruko to come home when they heard that the Chunin exams were on hold for a month. The two wanted to hear how the exam was going so far and to hear if the two had made it to the finals or not.
"Father do you think Naruko-chan and Sasuke-kun will be home soon?" Mikoto asked her father.
Shisui took a sip of his tea. "I'm sure they be home soon dear" he tells his daughter as the front sliding door opened.
"Mikoto-san! Shisui-ojisan! I'm home!" Naruko called from the front area taking her shoes off by the door.
Shisui smiled over at Mikoto. "See what I tell you? Naruko dear where in the dining area come join us!"
Naruko walked into the dining room smiling at them. "Its feels so good to be back home! I've missed you're cooking Mikoto-san!"
"We've missed you to Naruko-chan. It seems I don't get to sit down with you and Sasuke-kun to have a proper family dinner anymore" Mikoto said passing out dinner plates and the food.
"I know. Sasuke-teme and I have been missing coming to dinner to, but where ninjas it's just apart of our jobs now" Naruko said taking off her ripped up orange jacket.
"Yes, being a ninja is time consuming, but it is nice to be able to sit down and enjoy a meal with family when possible. Speaking of which, where's Sasuke-kun?" Shisui asked noticing his grandson was not with Naruko.
"Last time I checked he was in the hospital recovering from his battle, but knowing the teme like I do he probably went off with Kakashi-sensei to start training for the Chunin finals for next month." Naruko said waiting for Mikoto to sit back down so they could give their thanks before eating.
"So Sasuke made it to the finals? What about you and Hinata-chan?" Mikoto asked eating her rice slowly.
Swallowing her food Naruko gave them a huge smile and victory pose. "We're both in the finals too. As well as Shika, Shino and that jerk Neji. My friend Omui and his teammate Karui who are from the cloud village moved on to the finals. This sand witch and her red haired sand devil little sister made it too I don't like them very much. Plus a creep from the sound village that attacked us on the forest of death made it too."
"Wow that's exciting news to hear you're entire team made it through. I'm very proud of you all for getting as far as you have" Mikoto praised.
"As well as I. To think my little grand kids are just little rookies fresh out the academy and already made it to the Chunin finals" Shisui said.
"Thank you Mikoto-san, Shisui-ojisan. I promise to do my best and make it all the way to the top! Dattebayo!" Naruko cheered.
Together the little trio sat around the dinner table with Mikoto and Shisui listening to Naruko recount her adventures in the Chunin exam. When dinner was done Naruko helped Mikoto with clean up with the kind woman sending her off to bathe and get ready for bed. When Naruko was bathed and dressed for bed she laid her head on her pillow she was asleep immediately from the strain her body's been through. Tomorrow marked the start of her training with the pervy sage and she couldn't have been more excited.
Lazyfox: That marks the end of this chapter ^w^ I so very happy to be back here writing again. Sorry this chapter wasn't long as normal, but I'm still trying to get my groove back.
Magic: Awww the ShikaNaru moment was so cute and bad pervy sage you should have recognized Naru-chan from the beginning!
Random: Good old pervy sage he never changes. I laugh every time I see him and then I cry when I remember he's gone... *goes to emo corner to cry*
Lazyfox: Geez you just had to go and remind us all about that didn't you?! Anyway thank you guys all again so very much for the last six years of support. I know I'm couple day late, but I tried to get this done and out on the 13th but I got sick so what can ya do. I also like to thank again my best bud Espada. 4 Jurabi for hanging out with me and checking over my mistakes. You're the best dude ^w^
Jurabi: Oh it was nothing. I honestly didn't do much except look over you're writing for errors and stuff, but I enjoyed just watching you write your story.
Lazyfox: *hugs him* Love this guy here guys I really do. Anyway thank you all again for reading, reviewing, following and favoriting the story. Like I said I hope to post monthly if I don't I'm sorry, but I'm gonna try cuz I'll be working on this story and my co-op story with Jurabi. So if I go amoth without updating this one that means I'm working on that one, but it means I'm working lol With that being said until next time...