A/N: I'M BACK! I suffered a massive writer's block when it came to this chapter, and it took rereading the Bleach Manga in ONE NIGHT to get my mind rebooted again. Not fun! Not fun at alll! UUUUUGH! I'm woking almost daily and I feel like crap, as to that effect. But nevertheless, despite this pesky little hiccup-I wanted to get word out any way I could, and since for some strange reason the site is being buggy, I wasnt able to work on this anywhere near as much as I would've liked. But thanks for sticking with this story!

I love you guys so much! *Cries*

Now, without further adeu...

...here we are!

"We have nothing to fear but fear itself. For I am fear. Terror incarnate..."

~?

Don't Fear the Reaper

Reiatsu.

Naruto bathed in it. Breathed it. Relished in it. It was him-and he it. He was a being of pure energy, his body shimmering sapphire and saffron. He stood at the crossroads between mortality and godhood, unseeing eyes absorbing a world's weight of information as one of his many clones dispelled and gifted him with still more information on the enemy. And he'd yet to lose a man.

It was the perfect plan.

The hybrid cackled and the spiritual pressure roared with him, raw reiryoku rising from every corner of his soul to lay claim to his domain. The hollow realm trembled around him, quaking beneath the creaking weight of his almight power, the very amalgamation of a hybrid. It was the power of a shinobi-turned-shinigami-turned-sinner-turned vizard reborn, now bristling outwards from his body, reaching out to remind the world that he was here, that he was not dead, that he was not going away.

And all the world trembled.

Much time had passed since his last bought with Grimmjow; seventeen months, to be exact. Just over four hundred days. Naruto had not been idle during that time, he had stood by patiently over the year and watched as events unfolded, all the while readying himself-his army-for the confllict that was certain to come. Stood by while Kurosaki Ichigo gained a Fullbring and then his powers, amused himself as Soul Society scrambled to address the rising Quincy threat, standing by silent, as everything he'd predicted came to pass. He had been busy, staying on the sidelines, repulsing wave after wave of enemy incursions into Hueco Muendo.

Indeed, he had witnessed the tactics of his enemy, and he had learned from them. Made them his own. It was fascinating really, that this Yhwach character could split his soul into so many fragments, thereby endowing his soldiers with such unique abilities, gits no one should be capable of possessing. And Naruto had learned well. It had been a novel experience doing the same with his own clones, creating living, breathing entitites he knew were incapable of being dispelled by anything short of outright death.

The proccess of making these clones, shards of his own self...had not been pleasant. Yet it was an overwhelming success. The enemy was none the wiser.

Dozens upon dozens of those dopplegangers had been seeded throughout Soul Society, disgusied as ordinary shingami. The proccess weakened him somewhat, yes, but the tradeoff was well worth it. They'd done what he'd made them fore, not only seeding the Seireitei in Hiraishin seals, but paving the way for his own entrance No one knew of it, this grand plan of his, not the invading enemy or even his own allies. Indeeds, not even old man Yamamoto was aware of the lengths he'd gone to ensure victory in the coming war. It wasn't that he didn't trust the old-timer, he just wanted to hold onto his freedom for as long as possible before the captain of the Gotei Thirteen tried to drag him back into service again. He figured if he did something grand enough, they'd leave him alone for good this time.

And what better way than to win a war?

"You look like you're enoying yourself."

"Of course I am. Its not ever day I get away with murder, ya know." Naruto didn't deign to turn as a pair of slim arms wrapped around his waist from behind, their warmth seeping through his white hakama. Halibel rarely showed open affection these days, but on the off chance when she did he knew better than to turn her away. They made for a strange pair, and even stranger parents, tending to their daughter by day -rather difficult considering the moon never set here- and running Hueco Mundo by night. But she wouldn't have it any other way he knew. Neither would he.

"Do you feel that?" she murmurred into his back.

Naruto nodded and reached around to caress her cheek in hand. "The invasion's started." He spoke both of another incursion into Hueco Muendo as well as the attack on Soul Society; because he could suddenly feel the reaitsu of one Kurosaki Ichigo permeating his domain. He had half a mind to reprimand the boy for falling into that trap really. Perhaps he should do that. The boy was far too reckless for his own good. Charging into an enemy ambush was exactly the sort of of thing he expected from one so young.

But he found himself...distracted, as he glanced once more upon his beautiful wife.

Halibel was one of the select few he trusted with his life; he always had, ever since their first romantic tryst so long ago. Having a child with her-despite the fact that it should've been impossible-only served as another reminder of how blessed he'd been since escaping from Hell. She looked better since carving her mask away, the garrish jaw that often hid her face in her sealed state having been reduced to little more than a series of thin lines against her cheek. They rather reminded him of his own whiskers, really.

"Someone out there is hurting my sisters, beloved." Halibel smiled then and in some unknowable way that was more intimidating than the darkest glare or deepest growl. "Kill it."

"Yes, dear."

Yarinami hummed wrathfully in her sheathe, purring as his fingers curled around her hilt and drew her free. Long had she been sheathed, her edge left unbloodied against their enemies. But no longer. Today she would bathe in blood by the gallon; today he would have his fill of destruction. Yhwach and his little invasion both began and ended today.

He was going to enjoy every second of it.

"Grimmjow?" he called, his voice ringing out into the empty desert. "Nel-chan?"

A dull buzz of sonido answered him, the two espada responding to his summons with surprising speed. The former's sword was already drawn and glinting in the moonlight, his blue eyes brimming with the same savage intent. The latter remained reserved, her hazel eyes regarding him quietly as her emerald green hair swayed softly in the breeze. Momentarily, the blonde's mind dipped back into an old memory. He'd been surprised to encounter her at all in the wastes, but now he was glad he haid. It had been child's play to restore the rent in her mask, even less to restore her spiritual power. He'd gained another ally that day-one just as loyal as his beloved Halibel, and thrice as strong.

"Look after Las Noches while I'm gone." he instructed them. "You know the drill; any Quincy cross the border-

"Dead." the bluette grinned.

"As you will it, Naruto-sama."

"Quite." Naruto nodded, flicking his zanpakuto into its shikai state. He held it aloft for a moment, admiring his reflection in the weapon's pristine edge. Then he smiled.

"And the Lord said; let there be war."

A flicker of Hiraishin and he was gone.


"It took you too long...to scream captain."

Kirge Opie frowned down at the prone form of Loly, prepared to deal the final blow with his blade and end her feeble little life forevermore. Those last three had been troublesome to say the least, but they were nothing compared to the might "His Majesty" had endowed him with. Indeed, it seemed as though these arrancar were unusually weak; the titans that had repelled their last three incursions were nowhere to be seen. While the lack of their prescence worried him, he certainly wasn't going to ignore this opportunity. Now was the time to st

"Then why don't you start screaming?"

Kirge Opie stopped suddenly as his shoulder seemed to open itself, a fountain of blood spraying into the air. The man groaned and grabbed at his arm as he fell to his knees in pain, feigning weakness.

Then he slashed.

Taken aback by the sudden movement, his ambusher suddenly found himself with a wound of his own, his throat opening like so much butter beneath the blade of reishi.

Loly sprang forward, barely blocking the weapon as it swung down at her master's fallen body. Kirge smirked and swatted the petite arrancar aside within an instant, the razor-sharp edge of the blade opening a crimson trench across Loly's throat. The pale-skinned girl before him grasped at her neck in surprise as she staggered backwards, blood leaking from between her fingers.

"Gah!"

Kirge forced himself not to smile as Loly stumbled onto the ground. He walked over to Aizen's former aide, his blade once more reflecting in the moonlight. He looked down at the grimacing face of Loly Aivirrne, into the face of an arrancar who'd done nothing but protect her lord. Such fragile things, these hollows.

"Die." was all the pity he could muster as he plunged his sword into Loly's stomach. The arrancar fell backwards, releasing the handle of her sword, leaving it embedded in the flesh of her otherwordly enemy. A thin pool of blood spread outward from her failing form, her gore-soaked hands feebly struggling to staunch the twin wounds even as she bled out.

Kirge stared up at the night sky, smiling happily as his eyes closed. Justice had been done.

"Are all your subourdinates this weak?" he asked, cleaning his blade of blood. The cooling body beneath him gave no response, its shoulders sagging.

"This is strange." Kirge remarked, re-adjusting his spectacles. "I thought you'd be stronger than that. He made as if to move away. A hand locked around his wrist. Kirge gave a small sound of offense, only lightly perturbed to realize that the shinigami had enough strength to restrain him. The Hunting Cpatain raised the opposite heel, prepared drive his boot into face of his shinigami opponent. It was only then that he detected the last remnant of the kido's incantation.

"!"

"Hadou number one," Naruto rasped out with a pleasant smile, grinning through blood-bleached teeth. "Shou."

Kirge's eyes flew wide in surprise when the spell did nothing but thrust his body away from his victim. It was enough. Naruto bolted upright fist connecting solidly with the jaw of his one-time tormentor. Before the quincy could recover, before he could unsheathe his sword from its scabbard, the blond drove a knee into the man's stomach. The effect was an immediate one; the hunting captain staggered backward bent double, his breath momentarily driven from his lungs. Just for a moment.

More than enough.

"Bakudo number twenty one," Kneeling like a pentinent priest, the shinigami spread his palms, flat against the earth. "Sekienton!"

Kirge Opie was not by any means familiar with the vast repretoire of shinigami kido; he tensed against a blow that never came. Imagine his surprise when a great geyser of red smoke burst before his vision, clouding his senses and blinding him to all else. He was still struggling to recover from the first attack; he didn't even consider that there might not be a second.

As the quincy stood, Naruto softly spoke another incantation, finishing it as he stood.

"Bakudo number sixty-two," his voice rang out calmly through the smoke, "Hyapporankan!"

Naruto had already formed the long staff of blue light by the time Kirge recovered; by the time he'd turned and looked up at him, he'd thrown the spell, the rod breaking into dozens of smaller spears; by the time the Quincy raised his hands to block, he'd been struck and thrown off the roof into a nearby pillar. Naruto quickly used shunpo to catch up to him. He softly landed on a thick bough and looked down at his opponent who was pinned to the pillar across from him. He looked slightly agitated, but turned his face to the vizard and smiled calmly.

"Kido?" He scoffed at the violet rods, even as he tore his sword arm free from the prism. "Is this all you have?"

"Bakudo number sixty-three," Naruto called out as he flashed into sight behind him, his amber eyes regarding Kirge coldly. "Sajo Sabaku."

The Quincy's eyes flew open in shock as the golden length of chain materialized from nothingness and surrounded his body, the thick kido links tightening around his torso like a python constricting a large rat. Kirge grimaced. Flexed his arms, began to wriggle within the chains, his reiatsu swelling and causing the spell to slowly disintegrate. However even as the chains begin to break, a second shadow fell upon him as Naruto raised his hand, fingers pointing outward.

"Carriage of thunder, bridge of a spinning wheel...

"!"

...With light, divide this into six!"

"Bakudo number sixty-one." As one, the golden spurs of light surged forth from his fingertips. "Rikujōkōrō." As one, they slammed into the Quincy's midsection, further immobilizing him. A cold bead of sweat stole its way down Kirge's face, curving along the length of his jaw before striking the sands. What devilry is this? While he could easily have broken free from any one of the individual spells and released his Letzt Stil, effectivly sealing the fight in his favor, the combined series of spells required time to break. Time not afforded him as his shinigami opponent chanted anew. This troubled Kirge. Why was the shinigami firing off so many different kidou, bakudou no less, one after the other? He had yet to release his sword. He refused to don his mask. Something was amiss. Something was wrong here. Terribly, horribly wrong.

But what?

What was he missing?

"Walls of iron sand, a priestly pagoda, glowing ironclad fireflies." Naruto intoned harshly, trails of amber reishi worming their way between his clenched fists. "Standing upright and perpetually silent to the end. Come to me now! Fall upon me now! Descend upon the broken tower, and turn my foe unto dust!" Kirge Opie could only curse his own impotence as he watched five pillars of forged iron fall do just that; crashing down upon his arms and legs and chest with enough force to drive him into the soil with renewed fervor.

"Bakudō number seventy-five!" Naruto sneered, slowly raising his fists from the earth. "Gochūtekkan!"

Kirge felt the weight on his shoulders increase tenfold, nearly wrenching his shoulder from its socket as his body struggled beneath the renewed burden. For the most part his captor said nothing; refusing even to gloat as he approached his fallen enemy.

"You should be honored, quincy." Naruto said coolly, his sea-colored eyes looking down at his exposed face as he donned a small frown. "I never imagined I'd need this many bakuduo just to pin you down." Despite the overwhelming supeirority of his opponent, Kirge felt nothing but confidence. He just needed time to free himself. And once he did...

"You think this is enough to hold me?"

"No, I don't." Naruto remarked quietly, his exhaustion vanishing as he suddenly slammed his zanpakuto into the debris at his feet, Yarinami's edge sticking into the ground while pointing her handle towards the eternal night of Hueco Muendo. Naruto looked at Kirge with steeled eyes as he crossed the index and middle finger of both hands, lifting them slowly to his face and touching the tips of them together in front of his nose.

"Bakudo number ninety-nine, part one:" he said calmly as the Quincy in front of him stopped struggling against his bindings, mismatched eyes widening at the spell that was being summoned. "Kin."

The twin tethers of black sprung forward at him out of nowhere, slithering along the concrete like a pair of vipers approaching their unassuming prey. They quickly slipped up his legs, wrapping themselves around his thighs as they continued their ascent. When the two lines reached his neck, they wrapped around his throat before crisscrossing and darting forward as a set of iron pegs slammed into them. Kirge was quickly yanked downwards, the sudden pull thrusting his face into the sand, shattering his glasses.

Naruto calmly plucked Yarinami out from the sand and strolled over to his pinned opponent, placing the tapered tip of the zanpakuto under his chin. He lifted up gently against Kirge's face, the razor-sharp tip opening a small slice in the pale skin of his throat.

"I suppose I should thank you, quincy." he said flippantly, his face still serious despite the ever-friendly tone of his voice. "I've been wanting to test this spell out for quite some time now."

"All this time...!"

"Everything until just now was preparation," The hybrid clarified, fingers reaching up to his forehead. "For this instant." He smirked. "Do you fear the reaper, little man? You should. Because I'm going to cut you. Mince you. I'm going to destroy you so utterly that there won't be so much as a single scrap of your soul left for your "Majesty" to recover. Don't you think that's quaint? The great Ywhach can't keep his strength without war, cannot thrive without conflict. And if there be peace, his body will wither and die. So I'm going to end it all; everyone and everything, before he has the chance to grow strong off this conflict. Starting with you. You will be devoured. Made a part of me. And I will only grow stronger from it.

"Curse you, shinigami!"

Naruto said nothing more to that effect as he lifted his left hand up to the side of his face. With a swift movement, his mask grew as he waved his palm over it, the white bone moving like milk as it molded itself into a ghastly skull. Amber and black eyes burned on on the prone quincy ahead of him as he thrust a finger into the air and began an ungodly chant.

"Seeping crest of turbidity!" Black light swelled around the lone digit, usurping his light blue aura in favor, of a deep, seeping violet. "Arrogant vessel of lunacy!" Gathered there, in the palm of his hand, it began to grow. "Boil forth and deny! Grow numb and flicker!" The light in his hands did the exact opposite, expanding into a small, jagged cube. "Disrupt sleep! Crawling queen of iron! Eternally self-destructing doll of mud! Unite! Repulse! Fill with soil and know your own powerlessness!"

Eyes glazing over with the sheer might of what he was about to summon, Naruto cast his hand, and the kidou with it, at the Quincy. Kirge inexplicably stiffened, his mind nigh but frozen with fear as the four walls rose up around him, towering over his head. Still higher they swept, black buttresses threatening to blot out the eternal moonlight itself.

"This is...!"

"Hadou number ninety-one." Naruto hissed out the last of the incantation, his words black with fury. "Kurohitsugi."

Naruto didn't even watch as the black sarcophagus rose from the ground to take Kirge Opie's life. He opened his mouth and inhaled forcefully, drinking deep of the Quincy's soul even as it struggled to flee from his body and escape to Yhwach. The reverse happened, the screaming soldier's soul was sucked down into that open maw, his power flooding the former sinner and burgeoning his already massive well of spiritual pressure. He'd not linger to tend the wounded, a simple blink and a pair of solid clones were sent to tend to Sun-Sun, Apache, Mila Rose, and all those who had suffered injuries.

Then, once again, he was gone in a flicker of Hiraishin.


If it had been hot earlier this morning, it was absolutely hellish now by midafternoon.

Kuchiki Byakuya found it ironic that he would reflect on the humidity before his death. His body bled from dozens of wounds, his will was faltering, all his attempts to defeat the eerie adversary before him were proving to be utterly fruitless. All for naught. Despite a valiant effort to resist on his part he could feel the fear creeping up on him, staining his every thought, hindering his every movement. Strikes that had once been precise and powerful now growing weak and erratic as his adversary battered him from all sides. Even now he could feel the slicing wave tearing at his body, threatening to bloody him into oblivion.

Damn.

It was maddening; the man had stolen his bankai the moment he'd activated it, leaving him all but powerless. All the while his eerie adversary continued to batter at him, tearing into his flesh with power that wasn't his with the power of-

"Bankai."

A V-shaped swell of water suddenly erupted between him and the onrushing attack, the tidal wave crashing down and drowning the petals; intercepting the thousands of tiny blades as though they were mere blossoms of the Sakura tree, drowning the smaller attack out in a flood of hardened moisture.

"Well, well!" a jovial voice called. "Looks like I'm right on time."

Naruto landed in front of him, his hardened sandals clicking gently against the ruined veranda that the Kuchiki had just stood upon. His once pristine white uniform was slightly tattered, and his cowl all but gone. A trickle of blood trailed from his temple and down to his cheek, the crimson liquid curving along his well-defined jaw-line. His left fore-arm was bleeding as well, thick, droplets of blood seeping from the tiny cuts that he'd accidentally garnered while guarding himself and the captain against his stolen bankai.

"Uzumaki Naruto?" Byakuya balked at the sight of the recluse.

"Yo." the blonde raised a hand, grinning merrily. "Long time no see, Byakuya-boy. You look like shit."

The Kuchiki made a squelching sound at the sound of his old nickname. Schooling his face into a mask of impassivity, he forced himself to stand in spite of his pain, his spine straightening as he addressed the exile. It would not to show disrespect to the man who'd just saved his life. Another few seconds and he might not be standing at all.

"Why are you here?"

"Other than saving your ass?" he said it so nonchalantly; the nobleman had difficulty believing he was even remotely serious in his actions. "I'm really only here for one reason." Then he smiled. There was something in that grin that sent shivers shooting down Byakuya's spine, cold tethers of ice touching at the base of his brain.

"To end this war."

Byakuya opened his mouth to reply-

Wordlessly did a wave of blades surge forward, the cascading wall of pink rushing towards the pair of shinigami with a deadly force. Soon their forms were completely eclipsed by the mass of blades, unable to be seen in the storm of pink petals that had consumed their bodies. Or so one might think.

"Soren Sokatsui!"

Two voices barked and a wall of blue fire obliterated the swarm of traitorous katana in a sea of sapphire. Naruto was the first to emerge from the shattered storm, his body still shimmering with reaitsu. Alas, Byakuya was not so fortunate. Using such a high-level spell without incantation, even with the aid of a fellow shinigami, appeared to have taxed his remaining reserves beyond measure. A flick of the blonde's wrist summoned a wall of water to wisk him and the exhausted Kuchiki away, retreating to a safe distance in the face of the enemy threat.

"My apologies." the younger man rasped. "It appears my injuries have caught up to me."

"Well, shit." Naruto muttered, taking in his disheveled state. "I didn't know you were that beat up."

"My deepest apologies, but I would prefer it if you didn't ignore me." Nodt drawled from behind them.

Naruto turned, regarding the Quincy with a noticeable frown. A single flash-step put him squarely between the Quincy and his prey.

"You're fight is with me, now." a mantle of oppressive reaitsu settled over their shoulders, dark and angry.

"So it would seem!"

With a wave of the medallion Senbonzakura Kageyoshi roiled forward, only to be forestalled against another buffer of marine wrath. Naruto wasn't smiling. Not anymore.

"I must admit," He seemed to noticeably inhale before speaking further, "Your skills are impressive. Quite sharp, really. You're able to wield a bankai that isn't yours with almost perfect mastery despite never having fought a shinigami in all your life. I would be impressed, if you weren't so hellbent on killing my friends." Water swirled around him, curling aroung the khopesh clutched in his hands. "I hope you're happy now, you've gone and got me really pissed."

Nodt blinked in surprise.

"Your bankai," he murmurred, a faint note of surprising trickling through his snakelike voice. "I can't steal it."

"Yeah, she's a naughty one." he sighed , scratching at the back of his head with a hand. "Even I can't control her sometimes. She's also pissed to all hell right now." Just like that the jsester was gone, replaced by the veteran who'd slain thousands of hollows in his prime and once competed with the Captain Commander himself. Blue eyes glittered angrily at him from across the yeard, more akin to winter fields than the sapphire skies for which they were known.

"I'm going to give you once chance," he warned. "Lay down your weapon and surrender."

"I'm afraid I can't do that, shinigami."

"Then you die like the rest!"

Naruto barked out a laugh and vanished in a fresh flash of shunpo, Nodt quickly recovering and following suit with his hirenkyaku. He reappeared first scanned his surroundings, contemplating the sudden lack of shinigami and finding only open air.

"A most cowardly retreat, to be sure." he spoke to the rubble. "It seems you're all talk after all-"

"Is that so?"

Now it was Nod's turn to groan as the scythe bit into his shoulder. Naruto was suddenly past him, twirling his weapon as though it were but a simple stick in his hand, utterly unfazed. Then his adversary surprised him by doing the inexplicably; he laughed. It was a soft, whispery sound, and it instantly set the blond on edge.

"Are you afraid, shinigami?"

"The hell I am, thorn boy." came the snarky reply. "You should be afraid of what I'm about to do to you!"

"Fear can be overcome." Nodt intonted. "This is what experienced fighters tend to believe. 'Fear with a reason' is gentle. You can stop it with experience and with your willpower. If you know the reason you can wipe it away by eliminating the source. But real fear doesn't have a reason. Because it's not a feeling, it's instinct. Real fear has no reason and no limit. It's like a horde of bugs crawling up your body. We cannot escape it nor can we evade our instinct."

"Instinct?"

Naruto glanced sidelong at his enemy. Instinct. Years of training when he was alive, decades of honing his skills to a knife's edge. In death he had taken his skills even further, learned to react at the drop of a hat when he finally became a shinigami. And in his long tenure as a sinner, running and dodging his captors day in and day out...instinct. His very life was built on that singular word, his existence paved upon years of action and reaction, strike and counterstrike. And this man...

"You know nothing of instinct."

Äs Nödt staggered backward, a fountain of blood leaking from his lips as Yarinami sank to the hilt in his stomach. He blinked and the pain was gone, his body unharmed and whole. What was that, he wondered? Was it a vision of some sort? An illusion, meant to deceive his senses? If so then he'd best be wary-yike!

"Water Celebration!"

Brambles bristling, he swept the highly focused blast aside as it swooped down from him, its watery edge shaving into his thigh before retreating. Naruto stood there, unfazed, his body bristling with untold wrath, arm still extended from his last attack. Despite himself and all the power he'd gained from the shinigami he felt...no. Was this fear he felt? No. No. No! No, that shouldn't be possible! He was fear! He did not feel it! Did not experience it as lesser creatures did! So how-HOW-could this man inspire such ardent terror in him?!

"How?" He sputtered. "How can this be? How can you not be afraid of me? What are you?!"

"Oh, I am afraid." Naruto raised a trembling hand. "Terrified, really." With that quivering hand, he reached up to his face, fingers clenching into a claw. "But not of you." Instead of the mask manifesting, golden armour slicked its way across his frame, the shining skulls manifesting upon his head and shoulders. "I'm afraid of losing. Losing everyone, everything I love. Compared to that...compared to you," Nodt frowned behind his half mask as a wave of scarlet reiryoku poured outward from the blond, exuding the most unholy of reaitsu. A crimson fox snarled into existence over his head, its fangs bared in a ghastly cackle.

...is nothing!" Naruto growled, his voice becoming warped and distant, unholy in its temerity. "Now," he growled, "Allow me to introduce myself properly! Uzumaki Naruto, former shinigami. Unadulterated badass. Ally to good. Nightmare to you. I am not a God, nor a Demon...I AM THE REAPER!"

The power was not that of a shinigami, he realized, watching as blond hair stained itself white, tan skin become sickly and pallid. Nor was it that of an arrancar. It was something else entirely. It was...

Death.

As Nodt was staring at a reaper in the literal sense of the word. Not a paltry being like a shinigami, but the actual force behind shinigami, but Death itself. Naruto's very prescence signified an existence he couldn't hope to comprehend in this lifetime. He could no longer feel his adversary's reaitsu; it was as if he'd transcended Life and Death itself, ascended to different plane of existence. Dark, magenta eyes judged him and found him wanting. Unworthy. The being that he'd become stood above Nodt, looming over him bathed in a cyclone of power that all but threatened to steal the very breath from his lungs.

Naruto grinned and all the souls of hell, all their power, grinned alongside him.

"Now, little man, let me show you true fear."

Fear. Fear Terror pain dying stop hurts stop pain agony breaking dying stop can't breathe stop stop stopstopstopstopstopstopSTOP-

It was suddenly everywhere, flooding his every pore, encompassing his body as he arching backwards gagging. Because his arms were suddenly gone, torn away, tumbling helplessly end over bloody end. Visions of his death, a thousand deaths, a million deaths flooded the mind of As Nodt, breaking him in an instant as he was forced to experience the life of a man who had once been mortal, forced to live death itself, in moments. He was no longer aware of his body being torn limb from limb, of his soul being eviscerated, swallowed, absorbed into the terror that savaged him. There was only the raw terror consuming his body.

Indeed, last thing As Nodt knew before the Shinigami took him into its stomach and stole his power was thus.

Fear.

A/N: And I'm back at last! With a vengeance! Not really much to say this time just this; the next few chapters are going to be a wild ride! Romance! Violence! Lemons! We'll have it all! But for now I give you the destruction of the Stern Ritter incarnate! Enjoy!

So...in the Immortal Words of Atlas...

...Review...Would You Kindly? And of course, enjoy the preview!

(Preview)

Naruto grinned, staring down Bazz-B, his next victim.

"I wonder which is stronger," he mused aloud. "Fire or Water? Shall we find out?" A wave of his hand was all it took to summon up his element, silent streamers of water rapidly gathering around him in a monsoon of his element, pure moisture sweeping down on the Stern Ritter from every angle.

"Fuck you!" the mowhawk man snapped, flinging his arm forward! "Burner Finger, Three!"

"Bankai! Yarinami no Tsukiumi!"

R&R! =D