I don't own Naruto or anything else from any anime/manga, movie, show, book, or game.
I would like to thank everyone for all the reviews and ideas I received from everyone. I'm sorry for the late update. Some of you that read my other story will know that I was let go from my job. I have been unemployed for over a month and it has been a stressful time for me. I have not had the energy to write as much as I would like. Lately I needed to take some time way from the stressful job hunt so I wrote this chapter. I hope all of you this chapter, so please review and let me know what all of you think.
Naruto stood onboard the Uzumaki Clan's royal ship looking out at the endless ocean. Today they would arrive at the shores of Water Country. His uncle Kenshin and he were scheduled to visit both the Water Daimyo and the Mizukage. While this was supposed to be a diplomatic visit, Naruto couldn't help but feel uneasy for some unknown reason. His uncle had been acting unusual too; like he expected something to go wrong on this trip. He had been hovering over Naruto since his grandfather told them about it. He had been pushing relentlessly during training too; Naruto didn't know why.
The sound of armor clanking and heavy footsteps on the wooden floor made Naruto turn around. He saw Captain Sagara making his way to him.
"Naruto-Sama, we will be arriving to Water Country in less than an hour. Your uncle has requested your presence at his chamber to brief you on the plans for the trip. I will escort you there."
"I know where my uncle's cabin is Captain, I'm sure you have more important things to do."
"Nothing is more important than your safety, my prince" answered the Captain Sagara.
"You expect me to be attacked on our own ship?"
"One must always expect the unexpected; and exercise constant vigilance".
Naruto sighed. "Fine, let's go."
As Naruto and the Captain made their way through the large ship Naruto turned to the Captain and asked, "Do you know why my uncle has been in such a bad mood lately?"
The Captain looked uncomfortable with the question. "I don't know what you are referring to Naruto-Sama. Kenshin-Sama has not been in a bad mood lately."
"Yes he has, and I have the bruises to prove it. He's not his usual grumpy self; he's been very aggressive in practice. That's not normal for him. Something about this trip has him acting weird."
"I believe he is just concerned with your safety. We are going to a foreign nation that has been a known enemy of Whirlpool for decades. Water country is not a safe place to be. I hear the country is at a brink of civil war."
"Yes, I heard that too. My grandfather said that the Daimyo has been ordering the executions of every Bloodline-using clan in the country. How can he do that? Order the death of so many of his own people, and for something so stupid. And how could the rest of the country believe that all of their problems are the fault of ninja with Bloodlines. It's an obvious lie"
"People are always looking for someone to blame; the Daimyo and Mizukage gave them Bloodline users to blame and the people don't bother questioning. It's not right, but that's how people are."
"I guess" said Naruto as they made it to his uncle's room. Naruto bid the Captain goodbye and entered the room.
Kenshin was standing in front of a desk looking over several maps and scrolls when Naruto walked in the room. "You're here. Good. I was going over the plans for our trip."
"Ok, so what's the plan?"
"Once we arrive well will travel directly to the capital and meet with the Daimyo. We will remind him why it is foolish to seek conflict with our clan."
"So…basically you're going to threaten him? Cool!"
Kenshin sighed. "I'm not going to threaten him… well, not directly anyway."
Naruto chuckled. "So what are we doing after that?" asked Naruto.
"Then will be the part that has potential to be… hazardous. We will go to the Mist Village. Unlike the Daimyo, the Mizukage will not be easily intimidated. We will have to make sure that he understands that he will regret it if he seeks conflict with Whirlpool."
"Would Grandfather really go to war over this? It seems pretty extreme. The Mist should definitely pay; but war would cost many lives on both sides" Said Naruto.
"Father doesn't need to go to war to crush the Mist Village. The Mist Village is by far the weakest of the five great ninja villages. While the caliber of their ninja is higher than say, the Sand village; the number of ninja they have is nowhere near that of the Leaf or Stone. The Cloud village has both strength and numbers. The fact that Mist is on an island also limits their military's ability to threaten the villages in the mainland".
"It doesn't help that the number of ninja they produce each year is only a fraction of that of the other villages," said Naruto.
"Yes, that's true. But there is always the chance that the Mizukage will ignore all that and do something stupid to prove that his village is stronger than it is. It has happened before."
"Like when the First Mizukage attacked Whirlpool?"
"Yes, but I don't believe the Mizukage would be that foolish. He would try to attack our bases and businesses outside Whirlpool. He doesn't have the strength the First Mizukage had and would know he couldn't get past our defenses."
"Grandfather wouldn't let that happen, he would definitely retaliate" said Naruto.
"Yes he would. The rest of the world seems to forget that father is an Uzumaki. One would think after what happened last time he was angered, that the world leaders would know better" said Kenshin.
"What do you mean last time? I haven't heard of it" said Naruto.
"I suppose that Urahara thought it was something a family member should tell you. I guess it is better that I tell instead of father."
"Cool! So what happened?" asked Naruto.
"It happened about 20 years ago. I was about your age actually. Your mother was staying at the Leaf Village, when the Raikage did something very stupid."
"What did he do?" asked an excited Naruto.
"He had your mother kidnaped".
"Yes, he was after the Nine Tailed Fox, as well as our bloodline. He believed that with control of the strongest Bijju added to the Cloud Village, he would be strong enough to conquer the other nations."
"Your father, then only a Gennin, was able to save her from the kidnappers. The Leaf informed my father of what happened and… he was most displeased".
"I bet he was sooo pi-mad" said Naruto.
"I have never seen father so angry in my life. He has always been calm and collected, very impressive for an Uzumaki, we're usually quicker to anger. But this time it was different, I saw a burning rage in his eyes that frightened me. His anger was pushed to the breaking point when the Cloud Village had the audacity to deny everything. They claimed that the ninja that kidnaped Kushina were rouge-ninja acting on their own."
"It was a lie, right?"
"Yes, not that it mattered what the Raikage said. By that point the Yamanaka Clan had retrieved all the information from the captured ninja. It didn't matter to father if he could prove it or not."
"What did he do?"
"He declared war on the Cloud village and the Land of Lightning".
"Wow, even with the Leaf as an ally, it would have been a difficult campaign. The Land of Lightning is one of the largest in the continent, and they have a strong military. " said Naruto.
"Actually, the Leaf Village was not involved in the conflict. Father told them it would not be necessary."
"What? But Whirlpool alone would not have the manpower to fight both the Lighting Daimyo's armies and the Raikage's ninja" argued Naruto.
"You forget Naruto, that father was doing this to make a point to the world. That you don't mess with the Uzumaki clan" said Kenshin.
"So he had a plan then?" he asked.
"Yes, a simple but effective plan".
"What was it?"
"He marshaled all of Whirlpool's armed forces, leaving only the minimum here to defend the walls. He left one of the captains with me to defend the people should we be attacked while he led nearly 5000 samurai to the land of Lightning."
"He would have been outnumbered almost 3-1! And that would be the Lightning Daimyo's samurai alone; it would be even more if you added the Cloud Village ninja to that".
"Father knew this very well. That is why he placed a call to every mercenary, sell sword, and missing ninja out there to come fight for him. He offered money and asylum to any that came to fight for him. And they came. They came by the hundreds all seeking the riches and glory that war could bring them."
"Grandfather used the nation's endless wealth to strengthen his army… a smart move."
"Over 10,000 men and women joined Whirlpool's forces. While the vast majority were little more than cannon fodder, there were some that were of high caliber."
"Even with the increased number, it could not be an easy to take on both opponents".
"Easier than you might think," said Kenshin.
"How?" asked Naruto.
"Father and 20 of his strongest warriors sneaked into the palace of the Lightning Daimyo. Father himself killed the man. This forced his oldest son, who was leading the samurai legions, to rush back to defend their capitol. Once father returned to the camp he ordered 5,000 men to go and harass the samurai to make sure they didn't interfere with the attack on the Cloud village. He then led the rest of the army, which was mostly made up of mercenaries, to attack the Raikage."
"Did the Raikage bunker himself in the village? Or did he meet grandfather on the field?" asked Naruto.
"The Raikage did not dare let Whirlpool's armies reach the village. He led the ninja of his village and met father on the battle field. It was not much of a battle at first. On the first day father ordered a full frontal assault, but he only used the mercenary forces… they were slaughtered. This made the Raikage arrogant and he sent some of his strongest ninja, including a Jinchuriki, to press his advantage".
"And grandfather sprung a trap?"
"Yes, he was able to subdue the Jinchuriki of the Two Tails with a binding seal and he and his captains led Whirlpool samurai against the Cloud Ninja. With our armor and our seals our forces inflicted massive casualties to the Raikage's forces. After two days of bloody battle the Raikage realized that he would not be able to stop Whirlpool's armies from reaching the Cloud Village. So in an act of desperation, he ordered his troops to retreat while he alone acted as a rearguard to cover the retreat."
"The Raikage stayed behind by himself?"
"Yes, he fought our mercenary forces with all he had and held them back for three days."
"Three days! He held back an army of 10,000 for three days? How can that even be possible?"
"He was a very powerful man, and he was desperately fighting to protect his home. One can become monstrously strong when fighting to protect those that are precious to us. He essentially sacrificed himself to protect his village from a conflict that his own greed and thirst for power created. In the end it was father that ended his life, it was not and honorable battle as much as it was an execution. Father did this to show the world that the Uzumaki are to be feared, and that an attack on us will have severe consequences."
"What happened to the Cloud Village?" asked Naruto.
"They surrendered. Father threatened to burn it to the ground if they didn't. They still had the Eight Tails but they knew that it would only be a matter of time before the village fell. Father offered not only to spare the civilians, but the ninja as well. But they would have to sign a non-aggression treaty with Whirlpool. Father even returned the captured ninja that included the Two Tails Jinchuriki."
"Grandfather killed the Raikage and humiliated the Cloud Village. It was all to show the world the strength of Whirlpool".
"Yes Naruto. It appears that the Land of Water has forgotten, and needs to be reminded of our strength. Now come, I will explain our plan and your part in it" said Kenshin.
Several hours later Naruto found himself riding a horse alongside his uncle and their samurai escort. They had landed at the closest port to the capitol of Water Country. It didn't take them long to get there. Naruto had not been to many cities. The only place he could compare to this place was Aydindril, and frankly it didn't come close. Aydindril was a warm, inviting place, full of life and the people were happy and lively. This place was the complete opposite.
Firstly, it's cold! Naruto had never seen snow before, and it didn't take him long to determine that he preferred the white-sand beaches and warm crystal-clear waters of Whirlpool over the ice-covered lakes that covered Water Country. It was not just the weather either. The city seemed to be filled with a feeling of sorrow and misery. Lively was the last word you would use to describe the people that existed in this dreary place. There were no homeless in Aydindril, the Uzumaki Clan made sure that all of its citizens had, at the very least, food and shelter. It didn't mean they would let the people live off the government while doing nothing for themselves. But if a citizen needed some help to get back on their feet, the Uzumaki were glad to help their people.
This place had homeless and beggars by the hundreds from what Naruto had been seeing since they entered the city. Many of them were women and children; that broke Naruto's heart. Naruto remembered all too well what it had been like for him when he was kicked out of the orphanage. He couldn't help but feel sadness for the people that had to live their lives like that. It was as he was scanning the streets that he noticed something that drew his attention. He slowed his horse to get a better look.
Across the street from him, in one of the many allies of the city, was a group of three men. They were dressed in worn clothes like many others. What drew Naruto's attention was that they seemed to have cornered one of the many homeless children, a girl about his own age if Naruto had to guess. What happened next made Naruto's eyes widen in shock. One of the men grabbed the girl from behind while another punched the little girl in the stomach rendering her unconscious. One of the men then slung the unconscious girl over his shoulder and Naruto watched in shock as they carried her away. Naruto looked around to see if anyone else had seen what he just saw. The people around him either didn't see anything, or worse, they saw it and just ignored it. Naruto was about to call for his uncle but stopped himself. He knew what his uncle would say; his uncle would say that this was not their country and as such, it was not their problem. Well screw that! Naruto fell back until he was sure that nobody was paying him any attention. A quick water clone and replacement jutsu later and he was running through the streets in the direction he saw the men take the girl.
Haku felt like crying but no tears would come. It was hard to believe that only a week ago she had a happy life. She was from a small farming village not too far from the capital. Her family never had much and the work was hard but she was happy. Her happiness ended when she walked in to her home to find her mother lying in a puddle of her own blood… dead. That was not the end of Haku's nightmare, it worsened when her own father not only admitted to the murder but then tried to kill Haku as well. Just as he was about to, Haku was able to call upon the hidden power her mother had warned her never to use. That power saved her life. It killed her father, impaling him on massive shards of ice.
Haku ran away from her village. She traveled for a long time in the snow until she finally made it to the capital. Haku had been here for many days. Her clothes were torn, her skin was dirty, and she had been surviving on the scraps she was able to find in trash bins. She didn't think her life could get any worse; apparently she was wrong. She had been confronted by three men that said they wanted to help her; Haku may be young but she wasn't stupid. She knew these men were not out to help her, but before she could run away she was knocked out. When she woke she found herself in what looked like a warehouse. She was in a large cage… and she wasn't alone. There were four other girls around her age and older. Haku could see several other women in similar cages. Even for one as young as Haku, it didn't take her long to realize what kind of men had taken her. Slavers!
Naruto had followed the men and saw them enter an old and worn-down warehouse. Using the stealth skills that Shigure had almost literally beaten into him, Naruto was able to sneak up on the two guards and easily take them out. Once inside, Naruto stayed out of sight until he made it to the door that led to the warehouse's main storage area. Naruto could hear some men talking so he listened carefully.
"How many do we have ready to go out?" asked a man with an arrogant tone of voice.
"With the one we just brought in, we have 9 children and 14 women" answered a gruff voice.
"Great! They should bring us a good sum of money at the market. Get the cages ready for travel; we have to leave by tomorrow if we are going to make the ship to Earth Country."
"Yes, sir. We are going to…"
Naruto had snuck into the room as he listened to the conversation. Once inside he saw something that made his blood boil. All around the room there were several large metal cages, like the ones that Naruto had seen used for animals on trading ships. Except these cages were not filled with animals, they were filled with young women and young girls that included the one Naruto had seen abducted. Most of the women had little clothing, some didn't have any. Naruto could only imagine what had been done to them.
Rage… rage like nothing Naruto had ever felt before flooded every fiber of his being as he screamed at them.
Naruto saw them turn around to look at him. It must have been a real surprise to see a small blond boy dressed in an expensive kimono standing there with a look of hatred towards them.
"Who the hell is that kid? And what's he doing here?" asked the apparent leader.
Naruto didn't answer. Arashi, his sword, began to glow once Naruto's hand griped the handle. A light blue aura surrounds Naruto as his eyes began to glow. Naruto drew the legendary sword slowly, almost as if his body was moving of its own accord. Once the slavers saw the sword they didn't take any chances, this kid could be a ninja for all they knew. The leader called for his men to come and soon Naruto was staring at 8 men with his glowing eyes.
"I don't know who or what that kid is but whoever kills the punk can keep that fancy sword as a reward," sneered the leader. Several of the thugs smirked but before they could charge at Naruto they were taken by surprise as several glowing chains sprang out of Naruto's back at an incredible speed and impaled most of them through the chest. The chains throw the thugs off with a contemptuous flick as the couple of slavers that weren't killed turn and run for their lives. The leader who was still frozen in shock by what he just saw finally reacts.
"You're one of those bloodline freaks, aren't you?" he asked as he starts to step back in fear. The only answer he gets is that the chakra-chains wrap around his arms and legs, immobilizing him. Knowing escape is impossible the slaver drops to his knees and begs for mercy. "Please don't kill me! Have some mercy, I beg you!"
When Naruto speaks, he doesn't sound like himself. Naruto speaks with a far off voice, it as if someone or something is speaking through him. "You have a wicked soul. You have preyed on the innocent and ruined many lives to satisfy your lust and greed. You are evil. To show mercy to the evil is to condemn the innocent to a life of suffering and death." Naruto then stood in front of the slaver and took a standard battojutsu stance.
"No, plea-" the slaver's pleas were ended; in a motion faster than anybody could follow with their untrained eyes, Naruto was standing behind the man. Less than a second later, the slaver slumped forward, his severed head rolling across the floor.
Several of the women were screaming and crying because of what was going on. But not Haku; Haku looked on in awe as a boy that looked no older that she was, showed power she had never dreamed of. The blond boy walked towards the cage that held her while still holding the blood covered sword. The eerie blue glow around him began to dissipate as he cut the metal chain that was keeping her cage closed. Before Haku can thank him the glow disappears completely and the boy falls to the ground. Haku rushes to him to make sure he's ok as the sound of footsteps fills the room. Haku watches as several men wearing armor and carrying drawn swords enter the room. A scary looking man with long red hair spots Haku and the blond boy with her. Before Haku can blink the man is kneeling in front of her checking on the boy.
"Thank Kami" Haku hears the scary man whisper. One of the armed men makes his way towards them.
"Is Naruto-Sama injured?" the soldier asks in a worried tone. The red-headed scary man stands and answers him.
"No, Naruto is unconscious but uninjured. It appears that he stumbled in to a slave ring operation."
"Yes, but we have no authority over this city."
"I know, but that doesn't mean we are leaving these women in cages. Have your men get them out. If they have homes or families then we will arrange for them to be escorted to wherever they live. If they have nowhere to go than they can come to whirlpool with us. We will take them to our ship so they can be treated for injuries."
"Is that wise? It can-"
"I know what problems that can bring Captain Sagara. But if I don't help them I will be hearing it from Naruto the rest of the trip. I would prefer to deal with whatever grievances the Daimyo can come up with than listen to Naruto complain for days about how heartless I am."
The Captain smiled. "He is a wonder of wonders isn't he?"
I a rare moment Kenshin smiled too. "Yes, he is."
The next couple of hours flew by for Haku. The men, who she now knew were samurai from Whirlpool Country, asked her if she had a home to get back to. She had told them no. the men had found food and warm clothes for all of them. They had led them to a hotel and acquired rooms for them. Haku heard from some of the women that anyone who wanted would be allowed to go to Whirlpool country when the samurai returned home. It didn't surprise Haku that nearly all of the women and girls had agreed to go. Haku made her way to the room that held the blond boy that had saved her. Haku had been told that the boy was actually the prince of Whirlpool Country and heir of the Uzumaki Clan, Naruto Uzumaki. She had no idea why a prince would risk his life to save her and the other women but she wanted to thank him. As Haku was near the door that was guarded by two samurai she could hear two voices arguing inside the room.
"Well I did what I thought was right. You know you would have told me wasn't our concern and you know it!"
"You can't just start attacking people of another country Naruto"
"And I told you that I don't remember attacking anyone"
"All of the women saw you, and they said some of the slavers that escaped also saw you".
"I don't remember, honestly…" said Naruto more subdued.
"I believe you Naruto, but from now on please don't do anything rash. And stay close to me no matter what, ok?"
"Yes uncle" answered Naruto. Both Naruto and Kenshin turned to the door when it opened. Naruto recognized the girl that entered. It was the girl he had seen taken. She was now wearing a pink kimono and Naruto was impressed, she was very pretty .Though he still felt that Hinata-Hime was prettier.
"Hello, I'm Naruto" said Naruto.
"Hello Naruto-Sama. My name is Haku; I came to thank you for saving me from those men".
"You're welcome Haku-chan. But you don't have to call me Sama; I don't really care about that stuff."
Haku was confused. "But you're a prince!"
Kenshin reminded the children he was still in the room. "My nephew tends to forget his station all too often. Something I have to keep reminding him about. Father told you to get used to it Naruto because it's not going to go away."
Naruto just crossed his arms and huffed in annoyance which made Haku giggle. That brought a smile to Naruto's face. Kenshin left the children to talk with each other while he made plans to have the women escorted to the ship. Kenshin thought it was about time Naruto spent time with someone his own age.
The Next morning the women were escorted to the ship, all of them except Haku; who refused to leave Naruto's side. Kenshin relented before Naruto started going on about how it was his responsibility to make sure Haku-Chan was ok. Frankly it wasn't worth the hassle; Kenshin could just say that Haku was a servant or vassal if anyone asked any questions about her. Once they had purchased a formal kimono for Haku they made their way to the daimyo's palace.
Naruto wasn't impressed; compared to the People's Palace this place was a dump. The delegation from Whirlpool was greeted by several high ranking officials. Naruto's party was told that the Daimyo was ready to meet them whenever they were ready. Since they were already a day behind because of the slaver incident, Kenshin wanted to meet the Daimyo immediately. Naruto, Haku, Kenshin and Captain Sagara were led to the throne room. Kenshin noticed a considerable number of samurai and Mist Ninja guards. He was not worried much because none of them would be much of a threat to him, and with Captain Sagara here; Kenshin wouldn't have to worry much about Naruto's safety since he trusted Sousuke to protect Naruto and Haku with his life. Kenshin had wanted to leave Haku with the other samurai because he was only allowed to bring two guards or servants to the meeting but Naruto gave him a look that he had seen on his elder sister many times… Kenshin never won an argument with his sister once she got that stubborn look on her face.
When the group entered the throne room Naruto got his first look at the Water Country's Daimyo. He was sitting on his throne with two samurai on each side of him. The Daimyo was a man in his forties with long black hair. He was wearing a white and blue royal kimono and Naruto could see the man was very nervous. The daimyo's eyes were fixed on Naruto's uncle… he was afraid. Naruto had noticed how people would look at his uncle Kenshin; it was eerily similar to how the people in the Leaf Village would look at him: like he was a monster.
"Greetings prince Kenshin. It is an honor to have one of the Roku Kyoshu in my home. How was your trip? I was expecting your arrival yesterday" said the Daimyo. He did so with a slightly nervous tone of voice.
"I apologize for our late arrival, but there was an incident that delayed us. My father is in good health and as strong as ever" said Kenshin, making sure stay polite. "May I introduce my nephew, Naruto Uzumaki, crown price of Whirlpool and future Daimyo of Whirlpool" he said motioning to Naruto who gave a small bow.
"Ah, yes. I heard that the lost son of the princess and the Fourth Hokage was found. You look like your father. It is a pleasure to meet you young one."
"Thank you, the pleasure is mine" answered Naruto.
"I don't mean to be rude Daimyo-dono, but I believe we should speak about why we are here" said Kenshin.
"Yes, of course" the Daimyo answered nervously.
"A vessel of Whirlpool was attacked by ninja belonging to your nation. Any other country would clearly see this as an act of war…"
"War? Surely you exaggerate. It was a minor misunderstanding."
"A ship was damaged and its cargo was lost, and several citizens of Whirlpool were killed. This is no minor misunderstanding" answered Kenshin in a forceful tone.
"You have to understand, my country is on the brink of civil war. The Mizukage assured me it would not happen again. And after all, your samurai killed many Mist ninja too."
"My samurai defended their ship from an invading force that had no authority in international waters."
"A misunderstanding, true. But what you ask in return is unacceptable…"
"We don't believe that paying for the ship and goods lost as well as surrendering the ones responsible so they can stand trial for the murder of our people unacceptable".
"You're asking for 10 million Ryo! Even if I was willing to pay so much money, the Mizukage would not willingly surrender his ninja to stand trial for what he believes was justified. The rebels have been smuggling weapons and supplies. Those bloodline freaks are preparing to start a war, I'm sure of it. However, to show your father that I mean no ill will to Whirlpool, I am willing to pay 2 million Ryo as an apology for this unfortunate incident"
Kenshin narrowed his eyes. "You do realize that the Uzumaki Clan is a bloodline wielding clan."
"Oh- y-yes. How silly of me. Yes, I remember. You possess the bloodline called Celestial Chains. A unique way of manipulating chakra that gives your clan several abilities." The daimyo said in a guarded tone, he didn't want to insult Kenshin but it was clear he felt all people with Bloodline abilities were scum.
"And don't forget the infamous Uzumaki temper. I can guarantee that your apology would be considered an insult to my father. And I'm sure you can remember what happened to the last Daimyo that insulted my father" said Kenshin in a tone that left no doubt about what he meant.
The Daimyo visibly gulped. "Y-you wouldn't dare" he said.
"Funny you should say that. It was exactly what the Lightning Daimyo said before my father killed him" said Kenshin. That put all of the guards in the room on guard, they all readied their weapons but didn't draw them. "of course you are much smarter than him. You know that we WILL destroy you and your country if we go to war. You're not very popular with your own people, and the rebels of this country would join us by the thousands and you know it."
The Daimyo gritted his teeth, "Fine, what you want?" he spat.
"You will pay the full 20 million Ryo, and will not interfere with our actions against the Mist Village. If we go to war, it will be only with the Mizukage, you and you're civilians will be left alone" said Kenshin.
The Daimyo glared at Kenshin. He knew that there was nothing he could do. If a full scale war with Whirlpool happened, he knew the rebels would use it to kill him and his family. He hated to be manipulated like this but had no choice but to agree. He would much rather pay an obscene amount of money than lose his country. The Mizukage was responsible for angering the Uzumaki, so he could go to hell for all the Daimyo cared. "Fine, I will have the money transferred to one of your accounts by tomorrow."
"Then I thank you for your hospitality. My men and I will leave immediately and head for the Mist Village to speak with the Mizukage. If all works out, this can be resolved without the need for bloodshed" said Kenshin.
"Fine, you're welcome to leave if you wish" said the Daimyo. He was in no mood to keep the Uzumaki here any longer than needed. The sooner they left the better.
Within the hour the Uzumaki left the capital and headed for the Mist Village and their meeting with the Mizukage; a meeting that would prove to be one that nobody would soon forget.
Hidden Mist Village
"So, the Daimyo has chosen to save his own skin. It's unfortunate, but not completely unexpected."
"What are your orders Lord Mizukage" asked a masked ANBU.
"The Uzumaki think we can be threatened and dictated to. Well its time that our village pays the Uzumaki back for the humiliation we suffered in the past. They will be here by tomorrow evening, so let us prepare a proper welcome for them" said the Fourth Mizukage.
"Yes, Lord Mizukage" said the ANBU as he disappeared in a swirl of water.
The next day Naruto and the rest of the party from Whirlpool were making their way to the Mist village when a lone figure appeared in the road in front of them. Naruto, who had been riding next to Haku, was immediately flanked by Captain Sagara and other samurai. Kenshin, who didn't look very concerned, dismounted his horse and walked forward to meet the person. The person was a woman wearing an ANBU style mask and armor but didn't have a Mist Village headband or any sings or insignia associating her with the Mist Village. The masked woman had long ankle-length auburn colored hair.
"Who are you, and what do want?" asked Kenshin in a no-nonsense tone of voice.
"I am one of the many that has had enough of the Daimyo's and the Mizukage's bigotry. I am member of the resistance against the unjustified genocide of every bloodline-bearing clan in the nation."
"So, you're one of the rebels the Daimyo is to terrified of. What do you want?" asked Kenshin.
"To warn you that the Mizukage intends to kill you once you reach the Mist Village. He has an ambush already in place."
Kenshin's grip on his sword tightened in anger. "Is Yagura truly that stupid? He is no match for me. Even if he somehow managed to kill me, what does he think my father would do to this country if he killed my nephew?"
"The Uzumaki Daimyo would lay waste to all of Water Country. That is why I have come to warn you. I hope you can prepare for it or turn back if possible. Those who are against the oppression in our country are almost ready to fight back. We will end the senseless slaughter of innocents or we will die trying."
"We will not turn back. An Uzumaki never runs away, we never back down. If the Mizukage thinks he can threaten my family than he will learn his mistake at the end of my blade" said Kenshin.
"The Mizukage has not been himself. He has been acting strange, has grown more ruthless and bloodthirsty than ever before. I am not sure but some of us believe it's because of an outside source."
"That's irrelevant; he is either an enemy or a pawn being used by one. Either way he needs to be dealt with. I thank you for the warning, if and when you are ready to take back your country know that the Uzumaki and Whirlpool Country will help you in any way we can" said Kenshin.
"Thank you. We will soon be ready to begin an open rebellion" she said as she removed her mask. "My name is Mei Terumi, and we would welcome any help we can get" she said.
"Then don't be afraid to ask. Now I have to say farewell, I have an appointment with the Mizukage".
Kenshin returned to the group and informed his men of what the Mizukage was planning. The members of the Guardian Core were ready for battle even though they would be heavily outnumbered and in enemy territory. With Kenshin leading them they were ready and willing to face anything.
In a remote village near the Hidden Mist a young boy with white hair sat in a cell. He heard the sound of footsteps and looked up to see his clan leader.
"Kimimaro, the clan has need of your skill. We attack the Village Hidden in the Mist, come".
Kimimaro stood without questioning; killing was his only purpose.
As the Whirlpool Samurai were nearing the Mist Village they were prepared to fight if it was needed. What Kenshin had not expected when they arrived was to see the Mist Village already under attack by an unknown enemy. Kenshin knew this was an opportunity and he chose to act on it. He left Naruto and Haku with Captain Sagara and his men while he infiltrated the village alone.
Naruto didn't know what was going on but he and Haku could see the Mist Village was under attack; there were sounds of battle and fires everywhere. He almost missed seeing it as a boy with white hair jumped from one of the village walls and ran into the woods. Naruto didn't know why, but before he knew what he was doing he was running after him.
"Naruto-Sama, comeback here!" Naruto heard several samurai yell at him as he continued to run after the boy. Naruto ran as fast as he could but had lost sight of the white-haired boy. Naruto was looking around when he felt danger. Out of reflex he drew Arashi just in time to deflect a strike from a white knife that looked to be made of some type of bone.
"What the hell?" yelled Naruto as he saw the boy he had been chasing drop down from a tree. He had another bone knife and was ready to attack when Naruto yelled at him. "Wait! I'm not here to hurt you!"
The boy, who looked tired and injured, hesitated but didn't stop his attack. He moved with impressive speed and Naruto was barely able to block his strikes. But it was obvious that this boy was far more experienced in battle. Naruto was being overwhelmed; this boy who only looked a couple years older than him, fought with a fierce intensity Naruto was not accustomed to. Naruto had to focus so intently on his defense that he couldn't focus on his surroundings. Naruto lost his footing on a root and tripped to the ground. The white haired boy was about to capitalize on Naruto's mistake when a wall of ice suddenly materialized in front of Naruto blocking the boy's attack.
Both boys turned around to see a furious looking Haku. "You will not hurt Naruto-Sama!" she growled at him. The boy prepared to attack Haku but Naruto was already up.
"Stop! We are not here to hurt you. We just want to know what's going on" said Naruto. As this happened several of the Whirlpool samurai arrived. Kimimaro knew that he could not win a fight against all of them. He was almost out of chakra. He accepted that he would die and readied himself.
"My name is Kimimaro Kaguya. My clan attacked the Mist Village for some reason. I was not told why, only that I had to fight. We caught them by surprise and caused lots of damage to their ninja because their strongest didn't show until we were deep into the village. When I saw the last of my clan die I decided to escape. When I felt you were following me I attacked because it thought you were Mist ninja."
"We are not Mist ninja. My name is Naruto Uzumaki, this is Haku-Chan. And they," Naruto motions "are samurai from my country, the Land of Whirlpool. We were told that the Mizukage planned to attack us once we got here, so your clan saved us. What do you plan to do Kimimaro?" asked Naruto.
Kimimaro looked confused. "I don't know. My only reason for living was to kill for my clan. Now my clan is gone. I have no purpose" he said.
It was Haku that answered him. "I was similar to you Kimimaro. Only days ago I felt that I had no reason to live. But then Naruto-Sama saved me. I believe my purpose now is to serve and protect him. You can too; you are strong and can help protect him. Naruto-Sama is a kind person that cares for others. There is no better purpose in life that to protect someone like Naruto-Sama".
Kimimaro stared at Haku who smiled at him. He then looked at Naruto intently as if trying to see if what Haku said was true or not. Kimimaro looked into Naruto's eyes and saw they were nothing like the eyes of his clan members. He was intrigued by the passion that the girl named Haku seemed to have for this blond haired boy. He wondered if he would be able to feel the same about him. "Very well, I will serve you if you'll have me" said Kimimaro.
Naruto was very confused. A few minutes ago Kimimaro was trying to kill him and now he says he will serve him? His uncle was not going to be happy about this. "A-ah, sure…sure…no problem. You can come with us to Whirlpool but my grandfather will have to decide if it's ok" said Naruto.
Kimimaro nodded and Haku smiled. Captain Sagara just knew he was going to get yelled at for this. But seeing Naruto and Haku smiling at a confused looking Kimimaro almost made it worth it.
In the Mist Village Yagura looked at his village in frustration. They had been taken by surprise by the dammed Kaguya. The savages had killed many of his ninja and set fire to many buildings. It would take obscene amounts of time and money to recover from this. Yagura was so focused that on the village that he hadn't noticed a presence nearby until it was too late. Out of the shadows several glowing white chains wrapped around him. The chains completely immobilized him and suppressed his chakra; he couldn't even draw on the Three Tails that was inside of him.
"You! You planned this?"
"No, but I admit it was a better situation than I had planned" said Kenshin as he stepped out of the shadows.
"So you think you can assassinate me? How will that look to the other nations? It will bring war to your precious country."
"Maybe, but if it happens, I will defend my home with every fiber of my being." Kenshin drew his sword, and with an economical flick of his wrist, severed Yagura's head. "And at least you will not threaten my home again". Kenshin then disappeared into the shadows. He didn't notice that a man with an orange mask and a single Sharingan eye had witnessed the entire event.
Kenshin rejoined his men and was mildly surprised that a white haired boy was now riding on Haku's horse while Haku was riding with Naruto. He looked at Naruto and Naruto only gave him an embarrassed smile while scratching the back of his head.
Kenshin just shook his head. "I don't even want to know about it right now. Let's go. It's time to go home" he said. And the Uzumaki made their way back to the ship. It would be interesting to see what life was like with the new additions to Naruto Uzumaki's retinue.
Well there you have chapter 10. Please review and let me know what you think. I will try to have the next chapter out as soon as I can. I will have more of Hinata and the Leaf Village on the next chapter. Well until next time, thank you for all the support.
As always I would like to thank my friend JS for the help with spelling and grammar.
Lord Rahl Master of D'Hara