Naruto Uzumaki and the Deus Ex Machina no Jutsu
Thanks to SpaceMary for planting this idea in my head. Blame her, not me. Her, it's all her fault!
Naruto faced off from Madara with a grim look. Everyone else was conveniently dead giving Naruto the proper amount of angst to face off the man who was responsible for making his life a living hell even before he was born.
Madara cackled as his plans to make Naruto into an emo kid had almost succeeded.
"Fool!" The masked Uchiha cackled. "You should have never stopped, because now I have the time to do THIS!"
"THIS?" Naruto asked as the betrayer of Konoha stepped up aside the masked mad Madara.
"Yes," Madara cackled, "THIS!"
The hand seals started and Naruto gaped in horror as he recognized the technique. It was a technique he knew because of some Mary Sue character from his cliché haunted past that had trained him.
"No! It can't be!" Naruto yelled in horror.
"Yes!" both Uchihas replied with an evil cackle. "Deus ex Machina no Jutsu!"
"No! Anythingbut the Deus ex Machina no Jutsu!"
And then everything faded to black.
And then Naruto woke up. He sat up and had an angsty "oh-my-gawd,-Konoha's-back-and-everybody's-alive-so-it-much-be-a-genjutsu-so-I'm-going-to-yell-'Kai'-a-few-hundred-times-to-try-to-dispel-it,-but-it-won't-work-so-I'm-going-to-accept-the-fact-that-I'm-five-years-old-again-for-no-apparent-reason-excepting-the-'Deus-ex-machina-no-jutsu'-that-Sasuke-and-Madara-used" moment. Then he looked in the mirror.
"Wait a minute," he said in a childish voice, seeing as he was currently a child it made sense. "If I'm a kid again, I can do two things: go all 'whiny-Sasuke' on everybody or I can chill and be a kid." He thought for a microsecond. "I'm a kid." Then HE cackled for a moment. "Soon, they shall all know the power of Prank-Fu!"
Konoha shivered in the night, not because of the cold, but because they understood the truth of true terror.
When the Third Hokage awoke, it was to a new world. There was a pounding on his door. It was rather insistent and Sarutobi knew he wasn't going to like what was on the other side. He tried to ignore it until his wife kicked him out of bed. The door slid open, and the older man saw nothing until he felt a tugging at his leg.
"Hey Old Man!" tiny five-year-old Naruto greeted with a grin.
"Naruto, what brings you to my bedroom at this unholy hour of the morning?" the Hokage asked in false cheer.
"This!" Naruto said before making a hand seal and conjuring up a Kage Bushin. "Look what I can do!"
"That's wonderful, Naruto, it looks like you're getting a head start on the Academy," the old man said rubbing the kid's head playfully. Then the clone poked the old man in the side.
"Me too, old man!"
Sarutobi froze for a moment. His highly analytical mind went into overdrive as he processed that Naruto was able to make a Shadow Clone at five years old.
"That's very good," the old man decided on. "Now, who taught you how to do that?"
"Nobody! I saw the lazy masked pervert do it, and so I copied him!" the tiny Naruto replied with an innocent grin. Naruto leaned in close and whispered. "I think he did it so he could read his book and work at the same time." Naruto made his eyes go innocently wide and nodded, keeping eye contact with the old man. "I speak truth."
Sarutobi knew clearly who the lazy masked pervert was.
'Copied the Copy Ninja, eh, Naruto?' the Hokage said to himself. 'You do take after your parents after all.' He grinned and gave the clone a pat on the head. "Now, that's very good. Why don't you head home and get a few more hours of sleep?"
"Sure Old Man!" Naruto said, giving him the five-year-old version of the "Nice Guy" pose before running off like a yellow and orange blur.
Bemused, the old man watched him go, pondering exactly how he managed to get inside without alerting ANBU, but decided that it was something to punish them for later. Giving his wife a kiss on the cheek, he crawled back into bed and fell asleep.
The first change was not offensive, but it was startling. Konoha didn't even realize anything was wrong at first. Then, about noon, when the sun was at its highest, they realized that the Konoha monument was in color. No only was it in color, but it was an "almost perfect" rendition according to those who knew the former Hokages.
Sarutobi waited for the complaints to come in, but they didn't. He waited for the paperwork from the Council demanding that the culprit be brought to justice. Nothing. He waited almost until the sun was going down. When nothing came, he grabbed his hat and pipe and prepared to go. As he walked out, he noticed a certain blond playing with the paper shredder.
"I fixed your paperwork problem, Old Man!" Naruto said with a grin. "Wanna go for some Ramen?"
"What did you shred?"
"The council was complaining that I added color to the mountain," Naruto said.
"You did that?"
"Yup! I think I did a pretty good job, too!"
Sarutobi paused a moment, considering if it should be punishable. He hadn't really harmed anything, just made something look more impressive. And maybe the touch up work could be a new D-rank mission for genin. And the paperwork couldn't have been thatimportant.
"Sure," the Hokage said, taking the boy's hand. "Let's go get some ramen. Good work, by the way, but next time ask first."
As soon as the two left the building, Naruto's clones took over. Most disguised themselves into ANBU of rare animals like platypus, komodo dragons and tapirs. This last one was because tapirs rock. The first clone, however, turned into a perfect copy of Sarutobi himself. He sat down in the chair and started puffing on his pipe. Almost on cue, the old dastardly duo of the council burst in.
"Homura, Koharu," Sarutobi-clone said in greeting as he puffed on his pipe. "What can I do for my old teammates?"
"Why have you ignored everything we sent you today?"
"I haven't ignored anything," the clone replied. "I haven't received anything urgent, just the normal paperwork."
"It's about the mountain," Koharu started.
"Yes, it's rather nice isn't it, a tribute," Sarutobi replied. "I do look rather dashing with my old hair color, don't I?"
The Hokage's old teammates shared a worried look. This wasn't going the way they had planned.
"So you aren't going to punish whoever did this?"
"I'm going to find out who they are, yes," Sarutobi replied. "But I'm not going to punish them."
"One, they're honoring us Hokage by doing that, and two, they've revealed a hole in our security."
"One you do intend to fix, right?" Homura asked hesitantly.
"But of course," the clone said in an insulted tone. "A Hokage must do these things, after all."
They left after things were settled, but soon Danzo burst in demanding action.
"Yes, Danzo, what is it this time?" the clone asked in Sarutobi's tired voice.
"You need to do something about that demon-er-the Uzumaki boy," Danzo demanded.
"Danzo, there's something you need to know," the Clone disguised as the Hokage told him. "And that Everybody was ninja fighting!"
Suddenly the room was filled with ANBU with skimpy clothes dancing to the music.
"That kid could be fast as lighting,"
And while the Fox was a quite bit frightening,
Future prospects are brightening!
"He's a diamond in the rough,
A brilliant ball of clay,
And he'll need to be trained,
If he'll be Hokage.
Danzo looked on in horror at the song and dance routine in front of him as Sarutobi sung the praises and high hopes he had for the demon container. And ANBU were singing and dancing with perfect timing.
"Naruto will always do what's right,
And not take the easy way,
He'll do what he has to fight!
And it'll make my day
"Cuz' he's gonna be ninja fighting!
That boy will be fast as lightning!
Danzo couldn't take any more and passed out in the middle of the chorus. The singing and dancing ceased almost immediately as the clones gawked at him. They briefly considered writing on the Root leader's face, but snickered, deciding that it was more interesting to make everyone think the old war hawk was going insane. With a wink, the whole group dispelled themselves, leaving Danzo unconscious on the floor of the Hokage's office after hours.
After having a great conversation with Naruto about the boy's plans for the future over a steaming bowl of noodles, Sarutobi walked back to his office, realizing that he had forgotten his favorite book written by his most like-minded student. What he found was an old comrade passed out on the floor. A snap of his fingers, and ANBU was there to take the man to the hospital.
"What happened, Doctor?" the Hokage asked later.
"We think it was a psychotic break caused by stress," the doctor said. "He's not a young man and he swears he saw you and some ANBU singing and dancing in your office. We tested him for illusions and such, but found nothing."
"I was out with Naruto eating ramen all evening," the old man replied. "Did he say which ANBU?"
"Uh, yes," the doctor said, looking at the chart. "Um...Tapir, chinchilla, platypus and something dragon."
"We don't have ANBU with those masks, although I've toyed with the idea of having a tapir added," Sarutobi replied. "Because tapirs rock."
"That's what I thought," the doctor nodded sadly. "Although I agree about the tapirs."
That night, Naruto leaned back on his bed and grinned.
"Phase one accomplished," he said aloud. As he let his mind wander, the thought about everything he could do. "You know, my life has sucked so much, I think I deserve a harem."
And that was put in for no intelligent reason, but these things just tend to happen out of no where with no exposition when one goes back in time, no matter what happened before.
Two weeks later, Orochimaru received a plate of fresh made brownies. After eating the first ten he became really hungry and didn't really care about doing human experiments anymore, although they did make him giggle. He looked at the young child on the table and then at the plate of brownies.
"Dude," he said, thinking he was talking to his snake. "Wanna brownie? I've totally got the munchies."
"Um..." said the test subject. "Oookaaay?"
Two Hours Later:
"We are the world!" Orochimaru and his test subjects and thirty-seven snakes sang at the top of their lungs on the roofs of Konoha. "We are the children!"
"Orochimaru!" the head of the Uchiha police force called out through a megaphone. "For the last time, people are trying to sleep!"
And that's when a high-as-a-kite Orochimaru decided that it was a good idea to go streaking through Konoha riding a snake the size of a medium sauropod, still singing at the top of his lungs and waving his underwear like a flag behind him.
"My eyes!" Fugaku Uchiha said, rubbing his sharingans. "My eyes!"
At the Academy, Naruto was kicking ass. Not literally, or at least not all the time, only in official sparring sessions, but he was at the top of his class, something that annoyed most teachers and more than a few parents. Naruto, however, just did the Hammer Dance in front of them as revenge. The students were quite impressed with his ability, especially since Naruto was always willing to help others improve. Little did anyone know, Naruto could make more than just the one Kage Bushin and most others had missions to accomplish.
Ten clones transformed and took jobs in the village. These did little but make money for the boy. Three did nothing but practice control exercises until they dispelled themselves, after which Naruto just summoned some more. Five searched the training fields continuously for abandoned equipment, keeping the good ones and selling the rest as scrap to a blacksmith. Two thought up ways to be friends with people outside Konoha whom Naruto had only met post-academy. Five kept a certain snake summoner supplied with sweet chocolaty-goodness with a "secret" ingredient. Twenty-five did little but cause trouble, always making sure to transform themselves and dispel if caught. There was an unknown prank master in Konoha, one who could turn every roof orange in a single night. One who could escape ANBU like it was a group of toddlers "playing ninja." It caused the Council no end of worries and complaints.
These twenty-five troublemakers did two things: cause trouble and report their findings to the Hokage via anonymous tips. Security was tightened, practice expanded and new methods used. And Naruto was practicing infiltration and assassination skills. If Naruto had used slightly different methods or tools, the pranks he pulled would have been devastating assassinations.
A great example of this was about 5 months after the blond boy started at the Academy.
It was mostly coincidence, but the day after Fugaku talked with the Uchiha elders about a possible coupe, they woke up as usual. They got up, went to the bathroom and looked in the mirror. It wasn't until that moment that they realized someone had drawn a Sharingan eye symbol on their throat in permanent red ink. Fugaku's eyes widened as he stared at the mark. Pulling his collar up high to hide the childish scrawl, he meandered over to his neighbor's house only to find them hiding the same mark. In fact, the entire Uchiha council of elders was bearing the mark as well as any Uchiha of Genin or higher.
Perhaps talking about rebellion was not such a good idea.
There was another instance where a prank made a massive difference in history. Like when Naruto's clones spiked every meal for a week with Ex-lax at the Kumo embassy. It was a lot harder to kidnap a Hyuga when you've got the runs.
"I wanna help Gaara," Naruto said one night. He remembered the plots his clones had come up with some involving issuing a challenge, others involving having ramen delivered to the Suna boy's house. Neither were really practical. So there were two other options: find an agent to send, or send a clone.
"I'm gonna do both," Naruto said aloud, making a clone which outfitted itself for a long trip through the desert. Just to be on the safe side, it transformed into a squirrel which hopped and ran along its way. Another clone had a different mission.
"Your missing, should you choose to accept it, is to infiltrate Water Country, and contact the Missing Ninja, Zabuza and give him this scroll," Naruto said, handing the scroll to his clone. The clone saluted and ran off in the vague direction of Water Country.
It took several months, but eventually the clone found Zabuza, only to be decapitated, leaving only the scroll and some weapons behind. Confused, Zabuza had Haku open up the scroll and glance at it.
"Dear Mr. Zabuza-big-sword-guy,
"My name is Naruto Uzumaki and I'd like to make you an offer," the note read. It gave an address and included several coupons for places to stay along the way.
"Just use these coupons to redeem your stays at these inns," the letter continued. "I'll also pay you a lot just to listen."
"Thank you for your consideration, Naruto Uzumaki."
"The handwriting's like a little kid," said Haku. "What are you going to do?"
"Humph," Zabuza grunted. "Well, it pays and it's a profit just to listen even if the guy's got bad handwriting." He unrolled the scroll some more and saw a seal. Activating it, two bowls of steaming Ramen popped out with chopsticks. Haku and Zabuza's stomachs growled. Picking up the chopsticks in one hand and the ramen in the other, Zabuza shrugged. "I like this guy's style."
Five weeks later, the two approached the gates of Konoha. The chunin at the gate tensed, but Zabuza and Haku made no threatening movements.
"State your business," demanded one of them.
Zabuza handed them the scroll. "I've got a meeting at some place called...Ichiraku?"
"Oh, yeah, that's the best place to eat in the city," one of the guards said.
"Only if you like Ramen," argued the other. "Plenty of places better."
"So, uh, can we go in?" Zabuza interjected because it looked like a fight was going to break out.
"Oh, uh, right, let's get your escort," the first chunin said. After sending off the message, he looked back at the man. "Has anyone ever told you, you look a lot like Zabuza, the Demon of the Mist?"
Haku and Zabuza sweatdropped.
"Uh, yeah," Zabuza said. "I get that a lot."
After a short while, ANBU escorted him in to where he was to meet the client. What he found was a tiny kid in orange with a bright yellow burst of hair. The Demon Swordsman of the Mist turned to his young charge and told the ice user to order. "I'll just wait for this Uzumaki guy to show up."
"Uh, sorry to interrupt, but you're sitting next to him," Teuchi put in. Zabuza gawked at the man, glanced down at the grinning blond boy and gawked at him. Naruto gave him a V for victory.
"You're the Uzumaki I'm supposed to meet?" the Demon Swordsman of the Mist exclaimed, unable to hide the confusion in his voice.
"Yup!" said Naruto cheerfully.
"You're a kid!"
"No I'm not! I'm six!" Naruto said, holding up six fingers. His face was full of protest.
"Okay, fine, but why'd you pick me?" the swordsman asked as Teuchi placed Ramen in front of the cute kid-Haku.
Zabuza gaped as Naruto pulled out a Bingo Book with a bookmark on Zabuza's entry.
"They've got lots of strong ninjas in here," Naruto said. "So I ordered you."
Zabuza, Haku, all the ANBU escort and even Teuchi gaped at the boy.
Naruto glared at him angrily.
"Right, uh, not-a-kid," Zabuza continued. "You do know the Bingo book isn't something you just order from, right?"
"It's not?" Naruto gaped, even if inwardly he was laughing his ass off.
"er...not, not really," Zabuza replied, squirming inwardly. "How'd you get one of these, anyways?"
"I borrowed it from Orochimaru's apprentice, Anko-chan," Naruto replied. "She's kinda pissed off, because her teacher's gone all lazy these days and he really likes brownies. All he really does is say 'Dude' and eat a lot after a few of those brownies. Well, he doesn't really say 'dude' as much as he says 'duuuuude!' instead. He really likes brownies. He was even talking about making a bakery."
"er...right, anyways, so what did you want me to do for you?" Zabuza said, changing conversational tracks.
"I want you to be my lawyer!"
Even more silence.
Extra Shocked Silence.
"WHAT?" Zabuza bellowed. "I'm a ninja, the Demon of the Mist. I'm a master of silent killing and you want me to be a lawyer?"
"Well, yah, I figured if you were as scary a lawyer as you are a ninja, I'd never have any problems," Naruto said excitedly.
"Um, okay, now, how much does this pay?"
Naruto handed him a note with many zeros.
"Uh, okay, are you sure you can pay this?"
"Yup, my publisher says my books really took off," Naruto replied.
"My Jinchuriki Rangers Nine series, they're a best seller and almost a household name," Naruto replied proudly.
"You wrote those?" Ayame demanded in surprise, but blushed as she saw everyone looking at her. "uh, I mean-er, rather, those kids books...that I've seen people read...other people...not me... ... ...I'll stop now."
"Wow! They've outsold Icha Icha Paradise three months in a row now!" Teuchi exclaimed. His daughter gave him an incredulous look. "er...not that I've ever read those books, certainly not...because I'm a father...and father's don't read smut like that..."
"...riiiiight." said all the ANBU.
"Uh, for those of us who have been missing ninjas living off the land and not settling down, what is the Jinchuriki Ranger Nine?" Zabuza asked.
"The nine demon containers who protect the villages from the demons while at the same time fighting the machinations of the evil, immortal named Mad Madara Ukiha and his evil team of Ah-Cat-Ski," Ayame replied. "urk...not that I've read them mind you, because they're for kids..."
"...riiiiight." said all the ANBU.
"What's your favorite character?" Naruto asked.
"Oh, it's either Maelstrom of the Leaf, because he never gives up on his friends and he never goes back on his word, or Love-Kun, you know, the redheaded kid from Suna who was an outcast until his friends arrived, his little sand animals are soooo cute," Ayame replied before she realized what she had said and caught herself. "That is, it would be, assuming I'd read them, because I haven't...because they're for kids...and I'm not a kid..."
"...riiiiight." said all the ANBU.
"So, anyway," Zabuza said. "Where do I get Lawyer training?"
"The court of the Fire Lord, maybe?" Naruto suggested.
In Suna, a certain redheaded boy put down his copy of Jinchuriki Rangers Nine and looked in the mirror at the symbol for love tattooed to his forehead. Hearing someone come in, Gaara turned and saw the assassin coming towards him. Gaara attempted to smile like Love-Kun in JRN, gave a V for victory and said: "Love and Peace" in a disturbing monotone.
The assassin ran terrified from the house and didn't stop until he reached the nearest bar in Earth Country.
In another part of the world, a certain masked madman growled at his copy of Jinchuriki Rangers Nine.
"Hey!" Madara Uchiha growled. "It's Mangekyō Sharingan! Not Mary-Sue Steal-Again!"
"Three months," growled a certain self-styled Super Pervert. "Three months I've been outsold. Jinchuriki Rangers Nine, this means war."
Unfortunately, this declaration of intent was overheard by the ladies on the other side of the peephole. A certain Toad sage did not have a very comfortable night after that.
In Kumo an eight-tailed ox was talking with a two-tailed monster cat.
"Damn, I said, knock on wood, this guy's intel is wicked good," the oxtopus said as he flipped through the book. "He even knows about the mole on your-"
"Finish that statement and you'll be waking up in the hospital," the container of the cat growled back.
"So, do you think I should take the job?" Zabuza asked Haku.
"I don't know, I'm just a kid," the brown-haired child of confusing gender replied with a shrug. "But we don't have to move around anymore, right?"
"That is a good point," Zabuza commented.
And that was why Zabuza Momochi went to law school, graduating near the top of his class.
"Naruto, what are you doing?" Iruka asked.
"Chakra exercise!" Naruto proclaimed proudly. The rest of the class gaped at the image. What Naruto was really doing was holding up a desk on his forehead just like the other kids who were holding leaves without hands. And it wasn't a small desk, either, but one of those school desks designed for three people. And he had it stuck to his forehead.
"Very good, Naruto," Iruka said with a wince, thinking about what that was doing to the boy's neck. "Class, keep practicing. Naruto, why don't you come with me?"
Outside, Iruka nodded to Naruto. "We're going to try tree walking."
"With or without hands?" Naruto asked. "'Cuz, I can do both! Believe it!"
'Great,' Iruka grumbled silently, 'another genius.'
"Hokage, Iruka from the Academy is here to see you."
"Send him in," Sarutobi said. The man in question walked into the room and sat down across from the Hokage. "What has Naruto done this time?"
"Well...I've decided that the real problem isn't lack of intelligence or ability, but more...he's bored sir," Iruka replied.
"Yes, it's like he's been through the academy three times and he just wants out," the chunin replied.
"Well, you know how we have that exercise where we put a leaf on the forehead for Chakra control?"
"Well, I caught Naruto doing that with a desk as a joke."
"Yes, a school desk."
"One of those set up for three people in a row?"
"Oh dear," the Hokage said.
"So I tried him on Tree climbing," Iruka continued. "And he already knew how to do that. So I tried him on water walking, and he could already do that, too."
"So basically you think he might need to advance in grade?"
"Probably might as well send him right to genin," Iruka admitted. "I hate the g-word, but in his place I think it applies."
"The council isn't going to like this," Sarutobi said with an evil smile. "How is he with his classmates?"
"Pretty good," Iruka replied. "He's friendly with Nara, Akamichi, Inuzuka, and Aburame. He's also paying quite a bit of attention to the Yamanaka, Hyuuga, and Haruno girls."
"I'll slip in his promotion under the radar," Sarutobi muttered half to himself with an evil chuckle. "They won't know until it's too late. Saves on paperwork, too."
"Thank you, sir," Iruka replied before turning to leave.
After having been promoted, Naruto pulled out a new scroll to send to a relative.
I just found out that we're related and I wanted to get to know you. Ends up your grandmother was an Uzumaki as was my mother, Kushina Uzumaki. I'm six and a half and I just got promoted to Genin. As far as I know, I don't have any other family except for some guy named Nagato in Rain (I've never met him before, but I hear he's a Pain). I have blond hair and blue eyes like my father, but I guess I get my temper from my mother. I live in Konoha in a studio apartment on the top floor in the middle of the village.
Please reply soon,
He then transformed a clone into a bird and had it fly to the closest gambling town. It took three more towns before the blonde woman was discovered and the scroll delivered.
Tsunade was hesitant at first. Normally the people who wanted to contact her were debt collectors. Unrolling the scroll she gawked at what she saw. Shizune waved her hand in front of her teacher's eyes, getting no response. She poked the woman in the arm with a finger with no response. Shrugging, the dark haired woman pulled the scroll out of her teacher's hand.
"Huh," Shizune muttered. "How did he know your grandmother was an Uzumaki?"
"I have family?" Tsunade muttered.
"Uh, yes, maybe," Shizune replied. "Although most of the Uzumaki clan was destroyed after Whirlpool was destroyed in the war, so it's hard to tell."
"I have family?" Tsunade muttered again.
"Yes, you just said that, Tsunade-sama," Shizune replied. "Maybe we should go visit?"
"Yeah," Tsunade replied numbly. Taking that as a response, the bird gave a little salute with his wing and dispelled himself into a ball of smoke.
Back in Konoha, Naruto felt the information sink in.
"Hell yeah," Naruto said as his plans were coming to fruition. "Hmm...this deserves a celebratory prank. Hmmm...what would be a good one? I know!"
It was a dark night in a village that knows how to keep its secrets. But there was one newly minted genin still trying to find out the answers to life's persistent questions: Naruto Uzumaki, prank master of Konoha.
He was lurking on the rooftops, dressed in black and using no chakra, so as to not alert anyone to his presence, especially in the area of the village dominated by the Hyuuga clan. This would be a true test of his abilities.
He crawled along the ceiling of the complex, careful to keep to the shadows so the occupants still awake wouldn't think to use their Byakugen eyes which could see pretty much everything. His plan was pure genius. He would replace all kimonos owned by the main house with Hawaiian shirt style kimonos and a special second part.
The first part was easy, all he had to do was sneak into the rooms, replace the clothes with those he had sealed away, seal away the stolen clothes, and sneak out. The second part was going to take more effort to get right.
Sneaking into the Branch Family section, Naruto dropped down from the ceiling like a spider, and took out a special brush and special ink.
Neji Hyuuga woke up feeling quite nice. Then he went to the bathroom to freshen up. When he looked in the mirror he screamed in surprise and glee. His father ran into the room, only to have the same reaction at his appearance. Hearing them both, Neji's mother ran in only to have the same reaction as her husband and son. Soon all three of them were hugging.
On the other side of the house, the Hyuuga Elders also woke up and screamed when they looked in the mirror, only for them it was in horror.
Hiashi Hyuuga, the current family head, was awoken to the sound of his father screaming in his ear. The volume was so high that it took the stoic man's best effort to acclimatize to the offensive sound.
"Father, what is going on?" Hiashi demanded when the old man finally needed to take a breath.
"Look!" his father growled, pointing at his forehead. "I demand that you remove this!"
"I see nothing out of place on your forehead, Father," the Hyuuga head replied. And to his eyes, there wasn't, that was the ingenious part of the prank. The older Hyuuga almost exploded at rage. "However, why are you wearing neon orange floral print?"
The old man was about to reply when Hiashi was tackled by his oldest daughter.
"THANKYOU-THANKYOU-THANKYOU-THANKYOU-THANKYOU!" Hinata said.
"Of course, Daughter," Hiashi replied. "Now, what exactly are you thanking me for? I do hope it isn't the purple print kimono, because that wasn't me."
And that was when his daughter explained exactly what happened to the branch family and how proud she was of her father ending the Caged Bird Seal practice.
"I did what?" Hiashi asked a moment before his twin brother pulled him into a near bone crushing hug.
"THANK YOU BROTHER!" Hizashi yelled in a style comparable to a certain spandex clad Jonin.
"I did nothing," Hiashi protested, keeping his stoic act up even if he was completely confused inside.
"But you did! You've breathed new life into our clan!" his brother declared, giving his twin an extra squeeze,
"Yes, Hizashi," Hiashi replied. "But I need to breathe too."
The entire event left the Hyuuga head utterly confused and not quite clear on what was actually happening.
Three days later, Naruto, whose Jonin Instructor was still unrevealed, was summoned to the Hokage's office. He walked in just as the Hyuga elders were walking out and they looked pissed. And that was in both the American and British definitions.
"Ah, Naruto, have a seat," Sarutobi instructed, gesturing to an open seat. Three members of ANBU were present, but otherwise they were alone. After the boy made himself comfortable, Sarutobi leaned back in his chair and took a long drag on his pipe. "Now, be honest with me, did you remove the Cage Bird Seal from the Hyuga Branch House?"
"Yup!" Naruto said with a foxy grin. Sarutobi sighed inwardly since the six-year-old boy's expression was best described as "proud as punch," and the old man didn't have the heart to punish the boy.
"You do know that you made a lot of people angry," Sarutobi told his pseudo-grandson.
"Sure, but I made more people happy than got people angry at me," Naruto said.
"True, the Branch House does outnumber the Main House three to one," Sarutobi hesitantly agreed.
"And they'll only know it was me if you tell them."
"And it's not even the whole Main House, just the old farts," Naruto corrected.
"So why do they all think the Caged Bird Seal was placed on them?"
"I tried to make a technique, but it's not that great, all it does is make anyone who looks at those specific mirrors see their reflection with the seal," Naruto replied. "It's more prank than anything."
"Then why won't they believe that they don't have it?"
Naruto shrugged. "I dunno, maybe there's not enough ramen in their diets?"
"That- Naruto, that's a silly thing to suggest."
"It's pretty good practice," Naruto commented, ignoring the slight to his favorite food.
"Yeah, I figure if I can sneak in and do a prank on the Hyugas of all people, I won't have too much trouble with other places," Naruto said. "It's like last year when I snuck into the Uchiha compound and wrote on everybody's faces with red marker."
'This boy is going to be the death of me,' Sarutobi thought to himself.
"I call it applied training," Naruto continued. "Just substitute a few things, and it's a perfect mission. And to top it all off, I did it wearing bright orange. If I can sneak in wearing that, I can sneak in anything. Also makes people underestimate me, so that's cool." He trailed off after a while. "So what did you call me in for? I like small talk, but let's get to the real meat and potatoes."
Sarutobi sighed and kept himself from showing outward signs of annoyance. Someone needed to control this kid.
'That's it!' the old man thought with a slightly evil grin.
Four hours later, the Hokage was handing over a folder to a young Jonin who had just been removed from ANBU for the team. The young man flipped through the pages.
"Surely you can't mean this?" he told the Hokage.
"Of course I mean this," the Hokage replied. "And don't call me Shirley."
"He's really ready for this?"
"Yes, Itachi," Sarutobi said with a grin. "Naruto will be replacing Kurenai as your team's third genin, as she just made chunin and you'll be taking over as their Jonin instructor. Their instructor requested a different posting (preferably something involving long term undercover work in another country) when I suggested that Naruto would fill the empty slot."
"Hokage-Sama, permission to speak freely?"
"You are an evil, evil man," Itachi Uchiha stated flatly.
"Thank you," Sarutobi said with a smug puff of his pipe. "Thank you very much."
The next day, Naruto was ordered to Training Ground 7 so he could meet his new team. Once there he met two boys each about eight years older than him. It took him a moment to recall their names, but he almost gawked when he recognized them: Izumo and Kotetsu as genin.
'There is something wrong with this,' Naruto thought. 'My fox sense is tingling.'
And he was proven right when the familiar form of Itachi Uchiha walked out on the field.
"It's official," Naruto said. "Life hates me."
"You and me both," Izumo commented.
"Ditto," Kotetsu agreed.
"Good, you're all on time," Itachi said as he arrived. "You have a half hour to pack for a two-week long mission."
Naruto raised his hand like the over eager kid he was.
"How do I do that?"
Itachi looked at the boy like he just grew a second head. Which, since he was an Uchiha, was remarkably like his normal expression with a slightly squinting of the eyes.
"Just go get your gear and we'll sort it out," the newly minted Jonin Instructor said flatly.
One half hour later, Naruto brought a collection of weaponry and survival gear that was somewhere between junk and crap. Some was even bordering on trash. This was, of course, totally intentional, as Naruto liked to mess with Uchiha heads.
"Why don't you go get your good equipment?" Itachi inquired as he glared at the horrific excuses for ninja tools before him. He recognized some of them as being made before the Second Ninja War from the forger's marks. The Kunai were bent; the ninja wire rusted and charred, obviously already been used once before; the shuriken were bent at ninety degree angles and utterly useless for their intended task.
"This is my good equipment," Naruto replied helpfully with as innocent a face as a six-year-old could muster. "The best I could afford."
"How much did you earn from your stipend on your last book?" the Jonin asked.
Naruto replied with a rather large number that should have supplied twenty-three Jonin going on months long infiltration missions into enemy territory. He also implied that he had spent it all on the pile of crap between him and Itachi.
Had he been anyone other than Itachi Uchiha, he would have been visibly burning with rage. However, he was Itachi, so his rage smoldered inside him like a furnace. Twenty minutes later, his true feelings were made clear when he informed the Konoha Economic Council that he would kill them all if they didn't supply his team properly.
Needless to say, by the time they left, Naruto had grade A gear.
"So where are we going?"
"To the northern boarder," Itachi replied.
"How long does it take to get there?"
"Twenty minutes less than the last time you asked."
"Are we walking there all the way or are we going to take the river boats?"
"We are walking there all the way."
"What are we going to do when we get there?"
"We're going to fight bandits who are attacking over the border from Kumo."
"So we're going into Kumo?"
"No, because that would be an international incident, just like the last time you asked."
"If we see famous Ninja, can I get them to sign my Bingo book?"
"No, because they will probably be trying to kill us."
"Will you sign my Bingo book?"
"No, I'm not in the Konoha version."
"I have one from each of the Big Five. You're in four of them."
"When are we going to sleep?"
"When we get there."
"And so where are we going?"
Naruto might, might, have heard Itachi grumble in annoyance under his breath, but it could have been all in his head.
An intimidating man walked up to the gates of Konoha dressed in a blue pinstriped suit with his sword strapped to his back and a forehead protector with the symbol for "Law" written in paint the color of blood. He carried a briefcase in one hand and a folder in the other.
"Halt and identify!"
"Here are my papers," the intimidating man said, handing the folder over. The poor chunin guard took the papers and opened them up, glancing at the front page for only a moment before giving an involuntary shiver.
Zabuza Momochi, the Demon Lawyer of the Misty Leaf, had arrived.
Oddly enough, he had taken to his studies in law quite easily when he realized that the only group more feared than rogue ninja were lawyers of all sorts. He practiced heavily for two years and graduated in the top 25% of his class, an impressive feat, if he did say so himself. Then he spent six months job shadowing the Fire Lord's personal lawyer and gained a bit of a reputation. So far Zabuza hadn't lost a case, although that might have been primarily due to the fact that he carried his greatsword with him everywhere.
Having finished his training, the man returned to fulfill the tasks given to him by his first client.
Sitting around the family's kitchen table, the Demon Lawyer of the Misty Leaf opened his briefcase and opened a scroll.
"I am here because the head of the Uzumaki Clan wishes to revive the connections his clan once had with Konoha," Zabuza explained.
"Connections?" the pink haired woman asked. "I'm sorry, but we're a civilian family and don't have much to do with the ninja side of things, even if my daughter is in the Academy."
"Two Hokage have married women of the Uzumaki Clan, the First and the Fourth," Zabuza explained. "Both were brought here from Whirlpool to strengthen the union between Konoha and that clan."
It was a bit of a diffusion of the truth, but it worked well enough.
"Oh, well, I'm sorry, but I just have my daughter," the Haruno woman said.
"Actually she is precisely why I'm here," Zabuza replied, pulling out a preconstructed marriage contract. "The current head is hoping to strengthen his line with the whole village, not just the Clans, and feels that a marriage with your daughter would work."
"I'm not going to have her marry an older man," the woman grumbled.
"You misunderstand," Zabuza said. "The current Uzumaki Head is turning seven this year."
"Oh," the Haruno woman said.
"And he's rich."
The woman thought for the briefest of seconds before signing the contract. Zabuza smiled as he noted the woman hadn't read through, and the devil is in the details.
'Sakura will understand when she's older,' the woman mused.
Zabuza smiled shark-like under his mask as he put out several other papers for the woman to sign. A half hour later, he snapped his briefcase shut and nodded to the woman as he stepped out the door, whistling evilly as he went. This was more fun than decapitating a team of genin.
Sakura Haruno's mother pondered what she had just done. She was happy that she had just arranged for her to be rich, but there was something bugging her. Uzumaki was a familiar name for some reason. By the time she remembered the identity of the only Uzumaki residing in Konoha, the Demon Lawyer of the Misty Leaf was already out of sight, but his evil cackling echoed throughout the village streets.
"Hello, welcome to Yamanaka Flowers-YOU!" Inochi bellowed, pointing at Zabuza as he walked in the doorway.
"Me?" Zabuza asked, pointing at his chest.
"Let's not turn this into a running joke," the blond man said. "You're Zabuza Momochi!"
"Well, that saves me the trouble of introducing myself," the man replied. "And no, I am not here to physically harm you or your family, so put down that kunai."
"You're in the Bingo books."
"Yes, and so are you for that matter," Zabuza replied, flipping open his identification for the older ninja to peruse. "But however, I'm no longer a missing-ninja."
"'Zabuza Momochi, Ninja-Lawyer in the service of the Court of the Fire Lord?'What kind of game are you playing?" Inochi demanded.
"Before we begin, I'd like to remind you that using mental techniques on a Lawyer will result in stiff penalties including, but not limited to, public embarrassment, fines and imprisonment," Zabuza said with an evil grin that even reached his eyes. Inochi deflated; as an interrogation specialist he was quite familiar with the legal code. He was stuck. "Wonderful, now that we've got that out of the way, I'd like to get onto the primary subject."
Once again, the man pulled out a folder and placed it in front of the parent. "The head of a certain clan wishes to renew his clan's connection with Konoha, and nothing is better than a marriage of state to do so. The wives of the first and Fourth Hokages both came from this clan, and it would be best for everyone involved to have a connection to the clans of Konoha.
"Why my daughter?"
"She has quite a bit of promise as a ninja," Zabuza said.
"I won't let her marry out of the village, and I certainly won't allow a marriage contract to a foreign clan," Inochi replied. "And you haven't said what clan."
"The Uzumaki clan formerly of Whirlpool," was the reply.
"She is my only heir," Inochi commented.
"According to the Uzumaki head's request, she would continue to be so, but would add his own bloodline and clan techniques to yours," Zabuza replied.
"What kind of bloodline?"
"Greatly increased vitality and lifespan," Zabuza explained.
"The Uzumaki clan is famous for their talent for Sealing techniques," Zabuza replied.
"I will think on this."
Zabuza nodded and left. This would be the hardest one to crack.
Next he went to Hyuga residence.
"Wait," Hiashi Hyuga said, holding up a hand to prevent the man from continuing his shtik. "The only Uzumaki in Konoha is Naruto Uzumaki."
There was a sudden purple blur into the room.
"Na-Naruto wa-wants to marry me?" Hinata squeaked.
"Yes," Zabuza replied simply. Hinata turned on her father and used her eyes for a technique that few fathers could resist: puppy-eyes attack. If things had gone more like the original time line, he might have been able to resist. However his wife was alive; his brother was alive; and Kumo hadn't even caused trouble, so there wasn't any real reason for him to be a pissy asshole (except that it kinda came naturally).
After a few uncomfortable moments of attempted resistance, he crumbled.
"Fine, just give me the paperwork," Hiashi grumbled.
Zabuza grinned at the pained look on the face of the Hyuga Family Head. Finally, after years on the run, he was causing people pain and getting paid for it again. Life was good.
On the Kumo boarder, Team Itachi had chased the Boarder Bandits (as they called themselves) back into Kumo where they were unable to go. However, just as they reached the boarder, they encountered a Kumo team a little too far into Fire territory. Three genin, perhaps five years older than Naruto, wandering along without an instructor in range.
Naruto conveniently recognized them from his future memories as Team Killerbee, minus the eponymous leader.
"Hey, Itachi, I got this," Naruto said.
"No," Itachi said.
"Yes," Naruto countered.
"No." Itachi said.
"Yes." Naruto countered.
"No." Itachi said.
"Yes." Naruto countered.
"No." Itachi said.
"No," said Naruto.
"Yes," said Itachi. Suddenly realizing what had happened, he slapped himself on the forehead.
"Alright!" Naruto said, rubbing his hands together. "I'll need to do this quick before their teacher gets back."
"Why?" Izumo asked.
"Because their teacher is the Oxtopus," Naruto replied. Itachi just looked at the boy like he was crazy, but Izumo and Kotetsu, both fans of Jinchuriki Rangers Nine, recognized that as the secret identity of the Eight Tailed Ox. And having been old enough, both genin knew Naruto was really Maelstrom, and since 9 beats 8, it shouldn't be a problem.
They expected some epic fight, like what happened on Chapter three of JRN, but what they got was Naruto dancing and singing a ninja variation of "Can't Touch This" by MC Hammer. He even used a Transformation technique to give himself parachute pants. He made about 50 clones who transformed into dancers and provided back up and base line. It was so unpredictable, so out of the blue, that Itachi's jaw hung low as he gaped at the sight of the three Kumo Genin running back across the boarder with tears in their eyes. Whatever technique Naruto used, it certainly was effective.
"See! I told you I'd take care of it, and this way, there's no international incident!" Naruto said proudly with a "nice guy" pose. He even let his teeth gleam. "Now we just need to get out of sight before they run back and tell Killerbee what I did."
"THAT WAS KILLERBEE'S TEAM?" Itachi bellowed in horror.
Across the boarder in Kumo:
"Killerbee! It was horrible!" Samui bawled as she hugged her teacher.
"Yeah!" said the lolly-pop sucking boy with similar tears.
"What happened, yo! I gotta have sumptin tuh show!"
"We-" they paused for a moment as a sob caught in their throats. "We got totally served!"
"Totally," bawled the third member of the team.
And there Killer Bee, better known as the Oxtopus, swore revenge on the blond boy who totally served his cute little team. Next time they encountered each other, it was rhyme time.
He was going to use his rapping skills to the max when he encountered the Boarder Bandits heading back to their Kumo hideout. They were the perfect chance for him to work out a little stress.
When they arrived back in Konoha, Itachi marched right into the Hokage's office and demanded an explanation.
"I demand an explanation!" Itachi demanded.
"About what?" Naruto asked.
"How does Naruto know the Killerbee's team on sight? How does he know the perfect technique to make them run away? Why is he so damned annoying?"
"Well, to answer the first one, I have pictures of all the characters for my books," Naruto explained from beside the irate Jonin.
"I write the Junchiriki Rangers Nine series," Naruto replied. "And you already know about them, you asked me about them before we left. Or are you only interested in me for my money? I have feelings you know!"
Itachi fell into a facepalm and didn't say anything more.
Both Izumo and Kotetsu held out their copies of the latest volume for autographs.
"And everybody knows Killerbee's obsessed with rap," Naruto said as he signed them.
"That's not actually common knowledge," Itachi said.
"Yes it is," Naruto said, opening up his Bingo book, "it says he's obsessed with rap right here on his entry. That makes it common knowledge."
"So why are you so annoying?"
"I was bored," Naruto said with a shrug. "Next time, give me something to keep my mind occupied, like mastering some nearly impossible technique that only three people have ever mastered before, like the Rasengan or something."
"And that would keep you occupied?"
"Yeah, until I master it, and then you'll need to teach me another one," Naruto replied.
"Fine, I'll teach you something," Itachi replied with a slightly evil grin of anticipation before walking out of the office. Sarutobi watched them leave as he puffed on his pipe.
"They didn't need me at all," he mused with a slight grin. Yup, having Itachi responsible for Naruto prevented either of them getting into Danzo's clutches. "I'm a genius," he said as he attempted to pat himself on the back. Some days it's good to be Hokage.
"So, we've got the weekend off?" Naruto asked.
"Yes, although I suggest you do a few D-Rank missions," Itachi told his genin. Truthfully, he was going to go copy some nearly impossible jutsus so he could keep Naruto occupied. "You will need the money."
"So it's just about the money?"
"What other reason is there to do D-Rank missions?" Itachi asked.
"So, I guess I'll make some money this week," Naruto agreed.
Two hours later there were posters up all over town for a Tiger Rodeo with options to join in, or place bets. Naruto dragged six of the biggest, meanest, toughest, nastiest, most ill-tempered giant tigers out of the Forest of Death and put them in the arena normally used for the 3rd stage of the Chunin exams. People paid to get in; they paid for good seats; they paid to ride; they paid for food; they paid for medical care; and they paid a fee to place a bet.
By the end of the day, Naruto made a very hefty sum even after taxes. The Konoha Revenue Service, having realized that this one act almost balanced their budget, decided to have the boy host one ever three months.
Judging by the veins pulsing on Itachi's forehead when he got back, this was not what he had in mind when he instructed the boy to make some money.
Author's exposition and other comments:
As a general rule I don't like "Time travel as an excuse to retell the entire story again" fics. There are a few good ones, but they are few and far between. (I almost wrote far and few between, which would mean something slightly different). SpaceMary got this stuck in my head and I don't think I'll ever continue it, but I did have some ideas for the future like Naruto becoming a Jonin instructor, Naruto's exams and a Parent Summoning No Jutsu (which allows Naruto to summon up the chakra imprints of his parents that are stuck in his seal and power them with his own chakra so they don't use up their last bits). I wrote this for fun and to play around with things.
On a slightly unrelated topic, I think a tiger rodeo is a great idea and would pay big bucks to see one happen.
This probably won't get updated often, as I've got other more pressing projects (stupid thesis) so just be aware that it won't be for another long while.
I don't own Naruto, Masashi Kishimoto does. I also don't own "Kung-Fu Fighting" because that was done by Carl Douglas and others and shamelessly stolen and transmogrified to my own use, but I still don't own it. Nor do I own "We are the World" and neither does Orochimaru, even if he's so high that he thinks he does.