Disclaimer: I don't own Naruto

Warnings: Violence , Gore and Lemons(Much Later)

Credits: If I may have used some Ideas that are not my own, I apologize. Some of the Jutsu's were taken from The Legend Of Kyuubi's Profile page so credit goes to him

Chapter 17

"So what do we do now?" Mei asked her teammates, looking at Naruto's clone as Yugao was properly dealing with the Demon Brothers, as they had been known. They were former Kirigakure Chunin Ninjas that had gone rogue. Yugao had identified them from her interrogation and also from the Bingo Book that she had with her. She hadn't yet managed to recognize everyone in the book, only the ones that were equal to her rank and above; but she was working on it.

Naruto's clone rubbed the bridge of his nose, an action that reminded the three of Naruto. Yugao had seen that Naruto was as capable as herself in giving out thought through and sensible orders, and she had encouraged this practice, only stepping in when she thought that there was a better way to do things. She had to step in a lot at first, but was proud to say that such situations were becoming scarce lately. Naruto was definitely getting the hang of being a team leader. Naruto seemed to have realized this and was steadily prompting Mei and Sakiko for ideas, cultivating their leadership skills as well. After all, it was a skill necessary for Chunins, and Naruto was determined that they pass the next Chunin Exams together.

Naruto's clone looked at Mei and prompted, "Your thoughts?"

Mei gained a thoughtful expression on her face, and Naruto saw her biting her lower lip n thought, an action that Naruto found endearing, and distracting. He just couldn't resist kissing her thoughtless, but as soon as he thought that, he would slap himself out of his daydreaming. He hadn't kissed her properly yet, and didn't push much, fearful of making her uncomfortable.

"We could ask for Tsunade-sama's help. She knows that you are going to Uzushiogakure, I'm sure that she wouldn't mind helping us out for one mission." Mei said, though she herself didn't think that the idea would hold merit.

"That wouldn't work Mei-chan. None of us have a Summoning Contract and in order to successfully contact Baa-chan, we would need to return and run the risk of getting caught out. Me deciding to abandon my team mid-mission to go off on an unsanctioned solos mission would be considered as treason to Konoha." Naruto's clone said, gently refuting her idea.

Mei pouted. Naruto chuckled at the expression on Mei's face and turned towards Sakiko.

Sakiko pondered their situation for a while, she had thought of the same thing that Mei had, and at seeing it shot down, knew that she had to come up with something better, and then as if an idea had dawned on her, said "We could continue the mission, only that, we can time our arrival at Wave Country such that Naruto-kun can reach there at the same time as well. He can already sense our Chakra, so we needn't meet up at Tazuna-san's house. We could just arrive there together."

"That's a great idea Sakiko-chan. I assume that you won't mind Tazuna-san?" Naruto's clone asked with an expressionless face, a cool gaze locked onto Tazuna's nervous figure.

Tazuna couldn't meet the gaze of the young trio, that looked like mere children in his eyes. He knew that what he was doing was wrong, but desperate times call for desperate measures. As he was introduced to the team, he had almost called off the mission. He just couldn't bear to have the deaths of these children on his conscience, but remembering the pitiable condition of his country, he decided that any help was to be welcomed. Besides, they looked powerful enough.

As the two Ninjas had attacked him earlier, he had felt something that he hadn't for a long time. Hope. Hope that these Konoha Ninjas would help in bringing wave back to its feet. But as he saw the only boy in the team, look at him so dispassionately, his hopes dimmed. But hearing his question, he couldn't agree faster. Sure, his daughter might worry for a few days, but it would be better than returning empty-handed.

"That would be great! I don't have a problem with that." Tazuna said, bowing slightly in respect.

Naruto scratched the back of his head in embarrassment.

"So, Team 11, have you decided on our next course of action?" Yugao asked as she came out of the woods, where she had headed to dump the two bodies.

(Break)

Naruto was walking on the surface of the sea. It was a relatively short distance that separated the landmass from the island that comprised of Uzushiogakure. After an hour of solid sprinting, leaving behind a huge trail of dispersed water, Naruto arrived on the coast of the island, the sand a pearly white in colour. He was surprised to find some boats there, and they looked relatively new and in good condition. . .

He was filled with hope, thinking that some members of the Village might have survived and made the island as their home. He suppressed his chakra as best he could, and cautiously made his way deeper into the dense woodlands that surrounded the beach. As he went deeper into the forest, he came upon a huge wall that was made of stone and would be impossible to leap over. He tried walking on it using Chakra, but to his astonishment found that as soon as his Chakra covered foot came in contact with the wall, it was seemingly absorbed into the wall, making climbing over it impossible. Naruto was confused, but theorized that the wall must be infused with seals that would absorb Chakra when it came into contact with it. Marvelling at the ingeniousness of the construction, he started walking along the wall, searching for an entrance.

He soon came upon an entrance, though it wasn't a conventional one. The wall was blown apart. He walked through the destroyed section of the wall, and walked into the Village.

The sight that greeted him was heart wrenching, destroyed homes, broken windows blowing in the non-existent wind, torn up roads and the worst of all, rotting skeletons. That was all that was left of the Village that the Uzumaki Clan had originated from.

Naruto just took in the sight mechanically, refusing to let his emotions hinder his mission. Finding whatever Zangetsu was talking about was more important to him right now, he would grieve later. Kyuu-chan was important.

Repeating that in his head Naruto headed deeper into the ruins of the once proud haven of the Uzumaki Clan.

(Break)

As Naruto neared what he presumed was somewhere near the centre of the village, He heard sounds of civilization. Quickening his steps, he came upon a sight that filled him with burning rage. Bandits. Lots of them. There were about 20 odd bandits that were seemingly using his homeland as a base or a resting spot.

Naruto ground his teeth in anger. 'How dare they use this island as a mere bandit camp? They will pay; I'll make sure of it.' Naruto was too far gone in his anger to even register the joyous cackle that resonated through his head. But it was this very sound that woke up Kyuubi from her slumber.

"Naru. . .to-kun?"

(Break)

In Wave Country, a man was getting annoyed. The reason for his annoyance was a very short man, immaculately dressed in a stylish and expensive business suit. The man was named Gato Himawaru, legally known as one of the richest businessmen in the Fire Country and the owner of the Gato Shipping Corporation. But in reality, he was a swine of a man. Gato was a corrupt businessman, characterized by extreme cruelty and greed. If he had even the slightest chance of getting profit, nothing would stop him. He constantly prioritized financial success over any other motives and emotions. Thus the man was very wary of him, despite being temporarily employed by him.

"Have you killed the bridge builder like I asked you to . . . Zabuza?" Gato asked arrogantly. Why should he show respect to anyone that was under his employ.

"I have sent some people that should take care of him. I will tell you when the job is done." Zabuza replied. His tone sounding bored and dripping with carelessness.

"WHAT! I paid you to do the job. And what do I find? You sitting around leisurely, while I spend my money for NOTHING?" Gato screamed.

Zabuza was a man who seriously didn't like being talked to with anything but respect. So his flowing action was not entirely unexpected to someone who knows him. Zabuza picked up his humungous sword, and before Gato could register an action, Zabuza's sword was held dangerously close to his neck.

"Like I told you, I will tell you when the job is done. Now get lost, you're annoying." Zabuza said, his tone changed to a cold drawl. He focused a little KI at Gato, to make his point clear.

Gato couldn't walk away any faster. 'I'll get you for this Zabuza.'

After Gato had left, another figure walked in front of Zabuza and bowed to him.

"Any word from the Demon Brothers, Haku?" Zabuza asked his aide, and servant.

"Not yet, Zabuza-sama." Haku replied.

(Break)

Tsunade narrowed her eyes as she heard a knock on the door. Naruto and his team had left this morning on a C-Rank mission, a mission that Tsunade knew was very important to Naruto. She had thought of accompanying him, but it would be too suspicious and she didn't really want to endanger Naruto. She knew that many of her own enemies still held grudges. Shizune was at the hospital, and wasn't supposed to back until later this evening. Which meant that the person at the door was an unknown. She didn't really want to answer the door. It wasn't that she was afraid to, oh no, in order to answer the door, she would need to get up and more importantly interrupt her drinking session!

She was rarely granted the opportunity to drink with Naruto always in the house. He didn't rebuke her or even tell her to not drink, but the reproachful look that he would direct at her was a total buzz-kill, and she would be left feeling guilty afterwards. Damn that brat!

Hearing the door being knocked again, much more insistently this time; Tsunade walked towards and angrily opened the door. She was greeted by the sight of a Cat masked ANBU. "Hokage-sama wishes to speak with you urgently Tsunade-sama." He said with a courteous bow of the head.

"Reagarding?" Tsunade asked. While it was true that she had mellowed out slightly in her anger towards her Sensei, she still didn't like meeting with him.

"All I know that it was an urgent matter." The ANBU said, and promptly left with a sunshin, not wanting to incur Tsunade's wrath.

"Tch." Tsunade clicked her teeth in frustration. Figuring that she might as well go and see what her Sensei wanted, she sealed the estate and made her way to the Hokage tower, taking her own sweet time. She wasn't above petty annoyances after all.

(Break)

"NARUTO!" Kyuubi screamed. She could fell a foreign presence wash over Naruto's mind, and she didn't like it one bit. It was simply put, a feeling of remorseless bloodthirst. It represented all the things that Naruto preferred to avoid. And it was taking over him. Kyuubi tried flooding her Chakra through Naruto, but the feeling only intensified as she did that, leaving Kyuubi feeling helpless.

Pitch black Chakra, with taints of red began swirling around Naruto's form. His eyes bleeding into the fully mature form of the Sharingan, gifted to him by the Kyuubi. But anyone who had seen Naruto fight could attest to the fact that the look in his eyes was not normal for him at all. It wasn't the usual hardened, intimidating, calm and collected gaze that Naruto sported. Currently Naruto had a look in his eyes that could be described in a single word. Insanity.

Naruto swept his hand out lazily, Zangetsu materializing in his hands in a burst of Chakra. He looked at the blade gleefully, and then brought his hand up to his face, concentrating his Chakra on his hands. Naruto swept his hand downwards, a black mask, covering the top of his head, hiding his blonde hair from view. As Naruto finished swiping his hand down his face, the whole of the mask that covered his face was revealed. Four vertical white lines, starting from the back of the mask were imprinted on the mask. Two stopping just at his forehead, its ends pointed. And the remaining two going down the whole length of his face, interrupted slightly by the hollow sockets for his eyes, that were gleaming an eerie yellow in colour, branching sideways, just glancing the ends of his jaws. The mask was structured such that Naruto's ears were not covered by it, nor were his angular cheekbones. In the place of his mouth were jagged serrations that were the representation of the teeth, the teeth of a predator.

As the surge of Chakra died down, Naruto was seemingly admiring his own body. He clenched his fist tightly, and seemingly satisfied, let out a sinister chuckle.

"Finally!" Naruto said. His voice coming out dual-layered, with a hint of vibration, sounding utterly demonic.

The sound of shouting and what sounded like an alarm reached Naruto's ears. No doubt, the bandits had discovered that they weren't alone in their little camp. Naruto or rather Yami, watched the antics of the bandits amusedly. He lifted Zangetsu, and draped it casually on his shoulders as he began walking towards the camp.

Yami revelled as he took in the fearsome looks that the bandits were directing at him.

"Yo!" Yami drawled lazily.

"W-who . .What are you?" one of the more braver bandits screamed at him.

"Hmm . . . I guess you can call me . . . hmmm . . . Yami, Yami no En (Enforcer of Darkness)" Yami chuckled.

"W-why are you h-here? What d-do you w-want?" the same bandit questioned again. He was standing the closest to him,Yami figured he was the leader.

"The only thing that I desire . . ."

There was a sudden sound of buzzing static and Yami disappeared from sight, and almost instantly reappeared in front of the apparent leader, his hand impaled through his torso. Yami leaned in close to the leader's ears, and whispered, " . . . is blood". Saying that Yami, swiftly took out his hand from the rapidly dying man, bleeding freely through the gaping hole in his chest.

Seeing this, the rest of the bandits backed away in fear, and as Yami turned his gaze towards them they started running away in the opposite direction, screaming pathetically.

"Now that's just rude." Yami stated, his expert gaze sweeping over the fleeing bandits. He counted their numbers, and rapidly went through handsigns, finishing all 36 of them within a second. He placed his hands on the ground below him, calculating each bandit's location, and cackled.

Raiton:Kaminari sāji (Lightning Release: Lightning Surge).

Black coloured Lightning, surged forward from where Yami's hand rested on the ground, and almost immediately, all 16 bandits screamed as they were encased in a pillar of black lightning. Yami enjoyed the thrilling, pain filled screams that ripped forth from the throats of the dying bandits. He kept on pumping Chakra into the technique. So lost was he in his pleasure, that he missed the tell-tale puff of smoke that characterized the completion of the Summoning Technique.

(Break)

"Why have you called me here Sarutobi?" Tsunade asked, slurring her words slightly, as she slammed the doors of the Hokage's office. On her way here, she had come across an open bar, and couldn't resist downing a drink or seven.

"Ah, Tsunade. I'm glad you could make it, please have a seat." Sarutobi said calmly. He was definitely not looking forward to the coming conversation, but he had to know something. But he winced slightly at the sight of his drunken student, which would only complicate matters.

"How have you been doing Tsunade?" Sarutobi asked pleasantly.

"Cut the crap, Sarutobi and get to the point already, I have better things to do." Tsunade said, glaring slightly.

Sarutobi narrowed his eyes at her disrespect. If it were any other ninja he would have put him on probation immediately, but Tsunade was one of the Sannin of Konoha, and any action taken towards her would need a solid backing.

"Very well, I need to ask you something about Naruto." Sarutobi stated.

Tsunade as soon as she heard Naruto's name, immediately focused all her concentration on the conversation. She sent a burst of Chakra, converting it into Medical Chakra, and purged the alcohol out of her system. T left her head throbbing n pan, but it soon subsided.

"What about him?" Tsunade asked coolly.

Sarutobi immediately noticed the change, but ploughed on with his next question.

"How is he doing? Does he have any problems; I read that their last C-Rank mission was a bit hard on the team?" Sarutobi questioned. Naruto was the container of the Kyuubi, and was the only Jinchurikki that was in the possession of Konoha. It would not do if he was traumatized. Sarutobi cared for him like his own grandson, but there was a fine line that he had to walk in order to perform his duties as the Hokage and also care for Naruto.

"Naruto is more than capable of handling a few bandits Sarutobi." Tsunade answered shortly.

"So, what exactly is Naruto capable of, Tsunade?"

"Dunoo . . . haven't sparred with him for a while. Why don't you ask him yourself?"

"I think that his Sensei would be more adequate to answer this question Tsunade, and you have been training him, haven't you?"

"Nah . . . the brat trains on his own; I only give him some advice when he asks for it. But I can tell you about Sakiko if you want." Tsunade smirked.

"I'm sure that Sakiko is doing just fine under your tutelage. I'm just glad that she is a part of a family now." Sarutobi said, playing the emotional card now.

"Yes, too bad the council gave Sasuke control over the Uchiha clan at such a young age." Tsunade countered.

Sarutobi winced inwardly. That was a decision that he was regretting to this day. The arrogance of the boy was astounding, and he thought that the boy was delusional. Any demands that he made of the council were lapped up by them.

Things continued in the same manner for a few minutes, and Sarutobi was growing increasingly tired of the half-answers that Tsunade was providing him with.

"Tsunade, I realize that what I did was unforgiveable, but you must realize that I, too, care for Naruto."

"You have a pretty funny way of showing it, Sarutobi"

Sarutobi sighed. Tsunade was as headstrong and stubborn as he remembered. He knew that he wouldn't get any answers out of her today.

"Very well, thank you for your time, Tsunade."

Tsunade simply got up, and walked towards the office doors. Just as she was about to open them she heard a soft and tired voice coming from her Sensei.

"Does he . . . hate me?"

Tsunade pondered if she should answer him honestly or not. A vindictive part of her wanted to tell him that Naruto did hate him, but she quashed down her impulses. She knew Naruto cared deeply for the Hokage, even if he didn't show it anymore, and it would further strain their relationship. Naruto would be unhappy, and that was something that she simply couldn't accept. She cared for him as his mother, and couldn't bear to see him sad.

" . . . No." Saying that Tsunade left , leaving Sarutobi lost in his thoughts, reminiscing about the happier times that he shared with Naruto.

"I'm sorry, Naruto. I'm sorry." Sarutobi whispered to himself.

(Break)

Miki was a relatively young summon creature. Born just about 20 years ago, she had just finished her apprenticeship in the Summon Clan's form of combat, and couldn't wait to begin her duties. She was surprised however to find out that for her first mission, she had to venture into the Human realm, and her mission was to report any unusual activities at the place that she was supposed to watch over.

She could honestly say that it was the most boring mission that she had ever thought of. The island was uninhabited, and the only thing that kept her company were the animals that were there in the forest. But even then, she couldn't exactly play with them. They would flee, as soon as she would show herself.

Being a dragon has that effect on others after all.

The Dragon Clan was a very unique type of Summons. While they were a very powerful Clan, on par with the Toads, Slugs and Salamander Clan, they had a very unique ability. Each and every Dragon had a human form that they could shift into, and they preferred it over their battle form.

After a week of boredom, she had immediately went to her father to complain, who quite conveniently, happened to be the Elder of the Dragon Summons. She had ranted for about half an hour of how boring her mission was, and how she had nothing to do, and how nothing interesting had happened all week.

Her father had then sat her down, and explained the significance of the mission that was handed to her. She listened with rapt attention as her father told her of the Dragon clan's allegiance to the Uzumaki Clan. She was amazed to hear that the Uzumaki clan had kept their existence a secret from the rest of the world, even though they were on the brink of extinction, the Clan Head had strictly ordered the Dragons not to interfere.

Miki had asked her father why that was, but seeing the pained and sorrowful look on her father's face she had relented. The dragons had, ever since the destruction of Uzushiogakure watched over the lands, bringing the various scrolls and artefacts that had survived the assault on Uzushiogakure with then, for safekeeping.

This had confused Miki. Why watch over the lands if there was nothing to protect? She had asked her father this very question and her father had fixed her with a piercing gaze. She had held her gaze with her father's for a long time, determined to understand their clan's history.

She would never forget her father's next words.

"As the whirling comes to a standstill,

The royal blood awakens,

Blessed with power unknown,

The founder's blade will find its master,

Riddled with strife, he will come . . .

And the world shall be shaped to his whims."

A Prophecy. That was the reason that the Dragon Clan continued their vigilant watch over the Ruins of Uzushiogakure. Waiting . . .

Miki had then realized the significance of the responsibility that had been put over her. She hadn't ever complained since. Bandits came and went, but she still didn't interfere. They were of no consequence.

And today, she finally had something to report. She walked purposefully towards the Elder's house.

"Touda-sama, there is something that you should know."

(Break)

"Very good. We will proceed with the mission." Yugao said, and Team 11 again started on their way.

Naruto's clone, was walking behind the client, with Yugao at his side. Glancing at Mei and Sakiko, he immediately noticed that they were tense and it was only because he knew then so well that he could discern that they were worried.

He walked over to them, and gently placed his hands over their shoulders, noticing that they jumped up slightly at the contact.

"Don't worry Mei-chan, Sakiko-chan. I'm sure that Boss will make it to Wave in time. Besides, Yugao-chan, who is an excellent Kenjutsu Master, you both are no slouches either. I was really impressed by the way that you took down the Chunins, I'm sure you both are more than capable of handling yourselves on this mission." Naruto said gently. He squeezed their shoulders slightly, offering whatever comfort he could. 'I just hope Yami doesn't start acting up again.'

Both Mei and Sakiko visibly brightened at Naruto's words, and smiling slightly nodded their thanks. Even if Naruto's clone didn't have the soothing, calming presence that Naruto did, they knew that he would never lie to them.

They continued on towards Wave, unaware of the thoughts that were running through the Clone's head.

(Chapter End)

A/N:- So. . . how was it?

Regarding Naruto's mask, it is the same as Ichigo's final hollow mask just there is a color change and the absence of horns. Yami's character will be explained . . . . and the main characters for the Dragon Summons are from a different Anime, I invite you to guess which one . . .

Review your guesses.