Okay, this is the last chapter. I knew what I wanted to do with this chapter and I like how it turned out. It took me a few minutes to figure out how I wanted to write it, so it eventually turned into this. Thanks so much for reading Nightmare guys!
Sitting in the spiky, rocky, hair of the Yondaime Hokage, Naruto mulled over the question Kakashi had asked him two days before. Why had he called him 'dad'? What does a 'dad' do? He knew his friends had dads, but he didn't know what dads were supposed to be like or what they were supposed to do. What was a 'dad'? Naruto had many questions, but few answers. Sighing, he muttered, "Man. My brain hurts." The wind blew, sounding like an amused chuckle. The Jinchuriki got to his feet and slowly made his way off the monument, thinking all the way.
As he made his way through the village, he failed to notice the glares and remarks aimed at him. He also failed to notice the again concerned looks of his friends and their Jounin sensei. The boy wanted answers, but didn't know where to get them. He didn't dare ask any of his friends for fear of how they would act. So, he took the alternative approach and watched his friends and their parental figures.
Shikamaru and his father were almost exactly the same; the difference was that Shikaku worried about his son and often discreetly checked up on him, despite knowing that the young Genin was now a shinobi. Choza, Choji's father, was a big man who deeply cared about his son and taught him that kindness can be a virtue even in the danger-ridden shinobi world. Ino's father, Inoichi, was a man who worried greatly about his daughter, but knew well enough not to try and convince her not to be a kunoichi; though that didn't stop him from talking with Asuma to check up on her progress.
Shino and his father were hard; but Naruto had no doubt that Shibi cared for his son. Kiba had no father from what he knew of. Hinata's father, Hiashi, was very strict and didn't act like he cared. The ramen-loving boy had a feeling that dads shouldn't act like that.
From all of the "data" he had gathered, Naruto came to the conclusion that 'dads' were supposed to be kind, loving, and worrywarts. None of that applied to Kakashi from what Naruto knew of him. But what if the silver-haired Jounin had been hiding it? Naruto inwardly growled with frustration. None of it made any sense!
"Naruto?" The said blonde yelped and fell out of the tree he had been perched in. Damn Jounins and their sneakiness! He glared up at an eye-smiling Kakashi. The glare quickly vanished as he said quietly, "Kakashi-sensei?"
"What is… a 'dad'? I mean…I've watched the others when they were with their fathers, but each one is different, yet similar. So, what's a 'dad'?" Kakashi blinked his visible eye. His gaze softened, unnoticed by his student. The ex-ANBU captain had no doubt that this wasn't the first time he had wondered what a parent was, but it was the first time he had actually asked someone.
"A 'dad', Naruto, is someone who loves you unconditionally and takes care of you, no matter what. They raise you to be a good person; teach you rights and wrongs; how to take care of yourself; but most of all, they teach you love and bonds. It's all indirect, of course. A child learns these things subconsciously. But there also those who are like dads, but can't take the place of the child's birth parent; they are called surrogate parents," the man explained. Naruto wrinkled his nose and said, "You used four big words in there."
With a chuckle, Kakashi said, "Unconditionally means completely or absolutely; indirect means not direct; subconsciously means that you pick things up without realizing it; and surrogate means a stand-in or a replacement."
"Oh." Naruto was silent for a moment as he thought things through. Kakashi waited patiently as he watched him. Finally, he looked up at his sensei and said, "I still don't understand completely, but…I had no one to teach me those things until Iruka-sensei came along. But I think he's more of an older brother. I think…I'd want you…to be my "surrogate" father. But I don't want to think of you as a replacement, but as an actual dad." Kakashi stared at his normally hyperactive student, a warm emotion growing inside his chest. But before Kakashi could go further into the subject, an ANBU member appeared, with an urgent message. Sighing, he said to Naruto, "We'll talk more later." The blue-eyed boy nodded.
Two days later, Kakashi was walking towards the huge gates of Konoha, having been told to go on an A—possibly S—rank mission with two others. Missing-nin had been spotted in the surrounding wilderness. As he was reaching his companions, Mitarashi Anko started to growl at him, but stopped at the sight of something.
"Isn't that the demon brat?" asked Ebisu. Reflexively, Kakashi was about to reprimand the man when an orange blur slammed into him. The Jounin blinked down at the boy before a small smile crossed his lips underneath his mask. He ruffled the golden locks as their owner said, "I'll miss you…sensei."
"I know, Naruto." The boy let go and watched as the three leaped away. As they did, Kakashi swore he heard the boy's voice say, "Good luck…Dad." Kakashi grinned. It truly did feel nice to be a 'father'.
"Is this how you felt…Minato-sensei? Is this what it's like to be a parent? I can't replace you, nor do I intend to, but I will raise Naruto as if he was mine. I wonder what he'll say when he finds out you—his idol—is his father," he thought.
"Hey, Kakashi?" He looked at Anko.
"Is the gaki your student?"
"Yes. But he's more like a son." She blinked in surprise and then grinned.
"Heh, can't wait to tell everyone else that the great Sharingan no Kakashi has been adopted by the Uzumaki brat." Kakashi said nothing. He didn't care. Naruto needed him—both as a sensei and as a father—just as Kakashi need Naruto to remind him that it was time to stop living in the past. It didn't matter what anyone said; it didn't matter if they never said the words "father" or "son"; all that did matter was that they were family in spirit. And because of that…Kakashi would keep Naruto's nightmares at bay.
I love Parental!Kakashi and Naruto stories, don't you? It's always nice to read stories like that. One story you should read is Naruto Hatake by Agent-G. THAT is a good story. It's fantastic! And it's a NaruHina story ^.^