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Notice: In case any of you are wondering, or have not noticed this story, along with just about any other story made by myself, and Hakkyou no Yami will be AU, the characters will be OOC, and above all else, we will NOT be following canon. We will extract elements FROM canon, but we will not be doing a rewrite of the canon storyline.
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My writing partner Hakkyou no Yami have been working tirelessly on the rewrites for Demonic Legends: Rise of the Inugami, and Demonic Legends: Calamity of the Frozen Storm...Hakkyou no Yami and I can say that the newer versions will surpass the old versions. We may or may not keep the old versions on the site.
Also, I will potentially be posting NEW STORIES depending on what occurs. Some of them may be one shots, others may be multi-chapter, but it all depends on what happens. I will be continuing with the stories I currently have, so do not fret.
Important!: Read the bottom AN, concepts in this chapter will be slightly confusing at first, and I know many of you will send vast quantities of Hate Mail for them for one reason or another, though hopefully after you read our reasoning for those concepts you will understand.
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Naruto's eyes were fixed upon the woman, kneeling before him, her eyes never once separating from his gaze, her words processing through his psyche as he tried to comprehend what she had just told him.
Naruto blinked several times and he finally spoke, "W-what are you talking about?" his voice echoed his confusion louder than his words ever could.
The woman simply smiled at him, scooting closer to him, "It is as I said Naruto-sama, I am your most humble, loyal, and ever faithful servant. I am to do with as you so desire, and shall serve you until the end of my life and beyond, even unto my own oblivion." she scooted closer to him, so close their faces were nearly touching as she whispered, "Command me to destroy a foe, and they shall be ashes, order me to bow, and my head shall touch the ground at your whim, ask of me anything of your heart's desire…" she leaned closer and in a hushed voice, "…no matter how small or great the task, name it, and I shall do it with utmost vigor, and to the very best of my abilities…" she leaned in close, "…Naruto-sama."
Naruto sat completely still as the woman spoke to him, and his psyche processed each word, each syllable, each part of her tone of voice.
It didn't make any sense.
Naruto quickly scooted back and looked at the woman, "Who are you?" he frowned, "And more importantly, how do you know me? I know for a fact I have never seen you before in my life." his eyes briefly scanned her form, taking in every curve, every indent in the skin, every hint of her pale flesh, before his gaze returned to meet her own, and he could not help but marvel at her perfect facial features, 'How could I forget a beauty like her?'
The woman simply smiled softly at him, and moved her hand to gently touch his cheek, "Naruto-sama, I have known you for almost your entire life." her smile softly grew, "After all, we shared a body since you were but a newborn, milord."
Naruto stared at the woman before him, the gears turning inside his head as her words finally clicked. He slowly moved his legs, pushing himself into a standing position, a single word leaving his lips, "Kyuubi."
The woman smiled gently, "Yes, Naruto-sama." she bowed her head, all the while looking directly into his eyes.
Naruto stared at the woman…the Kyuubi…while a hundred different thoughts whirled about his conscious. In situations like this, he would normally be filled with an overwhelming sense of terror, he would be panicking. But right now, all he felt was curiosity to the situation before him, all the while he looked her over, and processed the situation in a clear manner.
Her posture did not display aggression, far from it, her posture displayed a more submissive persona, specifically, her posture showed submission to him.
At this realization, Naruto was filled with an even greater confusion, not that she was submissive to him, but rather that he had been able to see the subtle hints clearly enough that he was able to come to that conclusion. Furthermore, he had come to that conclusion in a calm and collected manner, he had not presumed anything, rather he had observed and made note of the subtleties in the Kyuubi's posture, and drawn a conclusion which for some reason, he knew was correct.
What confused him further, is how he had been able to think so clearly when before such hints would not have even registered in his mind no matter how hard he tried to focus.
Shaking off his questions for the moment, deciding to file them away for later, he went back to observing the Kyuubi.
As he observed her, he took note that her stance, while submissive to him, also contained something else. However, he was not able to discern what that something was.
After a few moments deliberation, he chose to file that away for later inquiry.
As Naruto was deliberating with himself, he noticed something off about his body, something that until a few moments ago, he took no note of, either not noticing, or simply not caring.
Naruto was familiar with the way his body worked, due to being an orphan he had nothing else to truly notice besides himself, so he had become familiar with the way his muscles felt as he moved even a single digit, how his chakra flowed through his body, even the feel of his chakra when he performed jutsu or was idle. Not to mention that, despite his idle state, despite the fact he was focusing keenly on a single task, his senses were working in overdrive, taking in the sights, sounds, and smells around him even while he was concerned with other endeavors.
He felt his muscles motion, which seemed so different from the way they were before. He focused on his idle body, trying to feel for his chakra…he felt something.
But it was not chakra.
He looked at Kyuubi, and spoke with finality, "What happened to me?" he looked between her and himself, "Why do I feel so different?" he looked at her, "How did you get out of the-" Naruto stopped his question as his mind flashed back, memories playing in his mind.
Naruto frowned, 'So that is how the seal broke.' he remembered how Kakashi thrust that jutsu into his abdomen, damaging the seal on his stomach.
A soft giggle drew Naruto's attention, and he turned his gaze to see Kyuubi laughing a bit, before she looked at him, "I see you understand how I escaped Naruto-sama." she smiled and slowly stood up, "As to answer what happened to you, why you feel so different…" she stood up tall, stretching as she continued, "I can only assume it is because your bloodlines have awoken."
Naruto's eyes widened as he heard Kyuubi's statement, "Bloodlines, plural? More than one?!" his shock and confusion went hand in hand as he looked at himself.
Kyuubi finished stretching and walked up to Naruto, "Naruto-sama."
Naruto shot his head up to look at Kyuubi, who was looking at him, a soft look on her face.
Kyuubi spoke again, "Channel your essence to your eyes milord."
Naruto looked at her with confusion, "Essence, what are you talking about?"
Kyuubi brought a hand to her chin as she looked him over, "I can tell that you no longer have chakra, instead your chakra coils have been replaced by something else, something more. The only word that truly qualifies what you have is your essence, however, regardless of its new state, it should still fulfill the intended purpose." she looked up at him, and spoke, "Channel your essence to your eyes, follow the same principle the way you channeled your chakra when you learned the tree walking exercise, but please be careful milord. If you send too much, I am not sure what type of damage will be caused."
Naruto looked at her, and nodded his head, and closed his eyes.
Kyuubi spoke again, "Keep your eyes open milord…you will be able to tell you have activated your bloodline that way."
Naruto briefly looked up at her, but relented, and he began to channel his…essence…to his eyes. He only let a small amount flow to his eyes at first, but as he began to grow more comfortable with his control of his power, he allowed a bit more to flow to his eyes.
As he channeled his essence to his eyes, he stared in shock at Kyuubi as his vision changed. Before he saw things normally, but now he was seeing things in a manner he had never thought possible.
In Kyuubi's place, he saw glowing streams ripping through her body, he saw the crimson glow inside her body, so similar, yet infinitely different from the chakra networks he had become familiar with looking through books in the academy. He looked around and saw the plants around him having similar networks, but the glow inside them was a greenish tone.
Naruto kept looking around, while Kyuubi walked up to him, and placed a hand on his shoulder, "I see your bloodline has been activated Naruto-sama."
Naruto snapped to look at her, and he spoke, confusion staining his voice, "What bloodline is this?"
Kyuubi simply smiled and she slowly began to move her arm.
Naruto watched as she raised her arm up, her palm facing upwards.
Kyuubi simply moved her fingers, allowing their movements flow to seem like the waves on the water, and red particles began to float off of her skin.
Naruto stared in fascination, his bloodline making each red particle seem like a bright star floating in the ether.
The particles of red light floated through the air, before they began to gather and form into a solid mass.
Kyuubi moved her hands swiftly, and cut into the solid mass with her fingertips, creating arcane rune-like shapes in the red mass.
Naruto's eyes widened as he stared at the red mass as it suddenly twisted, flattened, and its very form shifted into…a mirror.
Kyuubi gingerly touched the edge of the mirror with her fingertip, "Look Naruto-sama, see your bloodline."
Naruto blinked a few times, and he leaned in close to the mirror, which for some reason, looked like a regular mirror to him, even with his eyes as they were, he could clearly see his reflection.
What he saw placed him in a stupor of shock and awe.
Instead of staring into the face of a twelve year old child, baby fat still gushing at his cheeks, an undeveloped and unfinished complexion, he was instead staring in the face of an older version of himself, baby fat burned off, his features sharper, but retaining its original structure. His once short but spike blond locks were replaced with longer spikes of hair with two long bangs framing his face, and a small mane of sorts trailing off the back of his head, just passing the base of his neck. His thin whisker marks had grown slightly thicker, sharper, more pronounced.
But all that paled in comparison to his eyes.
In place of his cerulean blue iris, he found himself staring into pure white eyes, with an azure blue color outlining the edges of the eye. He stared deeply into the eyes, and saw some sort of ethereal, inhuman, but not unholy glow to them. In the center of the eyes there was a faint shimmer of the glow that covered the eye, seemingly the pupil of the eyes.
Naruto muttered softly, knowing the eyes he was staring at, no matter how different they were, "Byakugan?" he whispered to himself, "I have a Dojutsu? I have the Byakugan?" he asked himself, but his question did not go unheard by Kyuubi.
Kyuubi spoke up, "Yes, you do have the Byakugan as one of your Dojutsu."
Naruto's eyes widened further than what he thought possible as he snapped his gaze up to Kyuubi, "What? I have more than one Dojutsu? That is possible?" he was shocked beyond comprehension.
Kyuubi nodded her head and she lightly grabbed the mirror, placing it in Naruto's hands. She then reached up to Naruto's forehead, "Naruto-sama, I want you to channel your essence to your eyes again, this time, explain what your essence feels like as you channel it, can you do that for me milord?"
Naruto briefly glanced at Kyuubi, before he nodded his head, and began to charge his essence to his eyes again.
Kyuubi closed her eyes, pressing her hand against his forehead ever so slightly, "What does your essence feel like Naruto-sama?"
Naruto blinked as he stared forward, his reflection staring back at him, and he spoke, "It feels…focused, as if it is a single neat stream, like a string through the eye of a needle."
Kyuubi nodded her head, "Good, is there anything else you feel?" she opened her eyes and lowered her head, "Focus, is there anything else you feel about your essence milord?"
Naruto looked up at her, and focused on the flow of his essence, trying to feel for anything else.
At the very edge of the focused string of his essence, he felt something.
Kyuubi seemed to see his realization, "Naruto-sama, what is it?"
Naruto looked at Kyuubi, "I feel something different from the focused…essence." he looked at the mirror, trying to think of a way to describe what he had felt, "It felt…erratic, but at the same time it felt like it was under control." Naruto looked up at Kyuubi again.
He saw a look of joy spread across Kyuubi's face, "Wonderful Naruto-sama…" she continued to press her hand against Naruto's forehead, this time adjusting her fingers closer to his temple, "Naruto-sama, I need you to focus on that erratic source of essence. In place of the focused essence, allow that erratic source to flow to your eyes, but maintain control over it."
Naruto nodded his head in affirmation and did as he was asked, and he focused on the erratic source of essence, and allowed that to flow into his eyes. It was difficult at first, due to the erratic nature of the essence, but for some reason, he just naturally seemed to command it, with an ease he did not think possible.
Naruto looked into the mirror as his eyes ceased to retain the form of the Byakugan, briefly returning to his old cerulean orbs, which he noted were a more azure color than before.
Only for his eyes to be replaced by that of the Sharingan, but like the Byakugan, the Sharingan was also different. The red of the iris was not the simple shade of red, no, it was a mixture of the colors he would often see in a blistering fire, swirling about the iris, as if it were aflame, however, the eye contained the same ethereal glow he found in the Byakugan. The tomoe and the ring connecting them was not the standard black color either, it looked more like onyx stone, wreathed in a deep darkness that seemed never ending, and the tomoe and ring itself looked smoother and more defined than those of the standard Sharingan.
Naruto blinked several times, not fully believing what he was seeing, "Byakugan and Sharingan?"
Kyuubi nodded, "Yes, but that is not all Naruto-sama." she moved her hand and gently applied it to cover half his forehead, and one of his temples, "Now, Naruto-sama, can you feel anything else, something besides the focused stream of the Byakugan, or the erratic and controlled essence of the Sharingan?"
Naruto focused his senses and felt around his essence again, this time, finding what Kyuubi was referring to far quicker, "Yes, I do. It feels…powerful…all encompassing." Naruto struggled with his words, "I don't know how else to describe it."
Kyuubi smiled softly and leaned in close, "That is alright Naruto-sama, you have found it, that is all that matters." she closed her eyes and stood up, "Naruto-sama, just like with the last two, focus on that essence, however, maintain full control of it, do not let it flow as freely as the others did, control it, in all of its entirety."
Naruto did as he was told, and focused on the all-encompassing essence, and forced it to flow to his eyes. Taking Kyuubi's words to heart, he never once allowed the power to flow freely, maintaining control over it, a difficult task at first, but he slowly got used to commanding it.
In the mirror, Naruto saw his eyes briefly return to their original state, before becoming something he had never seen before.
His sclera and iris merged, and were filled with a shade of vibrant amethyst, glimmering with an ethereal glow. Out of the sea of amethyst, rising out of it, sending ripples across the eye was a single solid onyx black pupil, the ripples seemed to solidify, forming similarly shaded rings around the pupil, a ripple pattern forming.
Naruto stared at the mirror in confusion, "What Dojutsu is this?"
Kyuubi looked at him, "That would be the Rinnegan." she said flatly, her eyes focusing on Naruto's, "I am not surprised you are unaware of it, only a handful of ningen in the past have ever received it, none of whom are currently alive that I am aware of." she spoke with a serious tone.
Naruto nodded his head and looked back at himself, "So…I have the Byakugan, the Sharingan, and this…Rinnegan?" he asked with a curious tone to his voice, "I have three Dojutsu?"
Kyuubi looked at him and spoke flatly, "No."
Naruto looked at her, confusion etched on his features, "What do you mean?"
Kyuubi looked into Naruto's eyes and leaned in close, "Naruto-sama…you don't have three Dojutsu."
Naruto stared right back, and listened as Kyuubi's lips moved, and a single statement left them.
"You have four Dojutsu."
Naruto's eyes widened as he stared at her, and his eyes reverted back to their normal state, "W-what?!" he asked, shock and confusion. He was already shocked that he had the Byakugan, the Sharingan, and the Rinnegan, but to find out he had another Dojutsu as well?
Kyuubi nodded her head, and she placed her other hand on his forehead and spoke, "Can you feel any essence aside from those that you have already felt milord?"
Naruto broke himself from his stupor, and searched through his essence, feeling the focused source that activated the Byakugan, the controlled erratic essence which awoke the Sharingan, the all-encompassing presence that lit up the Rinnegan.
And beneath it all…he felt it.
Naruto looked at Kyuubi, "Yes, I can feel another, hidden beneath the others."
Kyuubi's smile widened, "What does it feel like Naruto-sama?"
Naruto looked at the mirror as he tried to describe it, "It feels, wild, primal, a mass of uncontrolled power."
Though Naruto did not notice at first, Kyuubi's smile widened to a toothy grin, "Yes, that is it Naruto-sama." she closed her ideas and gently adjusted her pressing against his forehead, "The primal essence, let it flow towards your eyes, do not control it like the essence of the Rinnegan, simply guide it Naruto-sama."
Naruto looked at Kyuubi, "Uhm, are you sure? Shouldn't I maintain control over it if it feels wild and uncontrolled?"
Kyuubi turned her head to Naruto and softly smiled, "Naruto-sama…" she moved one hand from his forehead, and gingerly placed it on his cheek, "I need you to trust me on this…" she looked deeply into his eyes, "…please milord?"
Naruto did not know what it was that compelled him, but for some reason, he just knew he could trust Kyuubi in this matter, so with a small nod, he did as he was asked…allowing the primal essence to flow to his eyes unhindered.
Kyuubi smiled and returned her hand to his forehead, and closed her eyes.
Naruto continued to peer into the mirror, and focused his gaze as his eyes changed before him.
His iris was consumed by a magnificent azure blue, swallowing his pupil in the mass of color, swirling about his eyes in a cascading ring of such vibrancy, shimmering with a glow so deep and piercing that if his eyes were in their normal state, he knew he would be blinded by it. Within the sea of azure, there seemed to be ripples of crimson that intertwined with the streams of azure in his eye. His sclera's only changed however was that instead of the normal shimmer of the sclera, it was overcome by an overwhelming glow of the purest light he had ever beheld.
Naruto stared intently into the mirror, the Dojutsu he had activated staring back at him. With a steady hand he moved his fingertips to trace the edges of his eyes.
Kyuubi opened her own eyes, and looked at Naruto, gasping slightly as she looked into Naruto's eyes, "Naruto-sama…" she stared deeply into his eyes as he looked up at her.
Naruto looked up at Kyuubi, "What? What is it?"
Kyuubi continued to stare into his eyes, "I knew that your Dojutsu would be magnificent, but I never imagined something so elegant, so extravagant…" she stepped closer to him, and gently placed her fingers against his cheek.
Naruto just glanced back at the mirror and stared at himself, and he spoke slowly, "So, what Dojutsu is this?"
Kyuubi broke out of her stupor, coughing ever so slightly as she looked upon Naruto once more, "That Dojutsu is the Seishougan." she looked closely at him, gently stroking his face as she turned his head to view each eye, "Though I will admit, I was not truly expecting something so radiant."
Naruto looked back into the mirror he held, and had to admit, his eyes were rather unique.
'So, I have the Byakugan, the Sharingan, the Rinnegan, and the Seishougan. I have heard of the Byakugan and Sharingan, they are Konoha Kekkei Genkai after all. But how do I have them, the Sharingan belongs to the Uchiha clan, and they were all wiped out, with Sasuke as the only survivor.' he then looked at his own hands, then looked at himself in the mirror, 'Is it possible one of my parents was an Uchiha?' the thought crossed his mind, but he then rejected the idea, 'No, even if I was a bastard child of the clan, the Uchiha would have ensured I was under their thumb.' Naruto knew how coveted a Kekkei Genkai was, so even if he was the Jinchuriki of the Kyuubi, the Uchiha would have ensured he was within the clan to keep him from spreading their bloodline beyond their clan.
Naruto continued to think, 'Then there is the Byakugan, of the Hyuuga clan, I know for a fact my parents could not have been Hyuuga, otherwise I would have never have lived in an orphanage, even if it was only for a few years, they are so crazed about keeping the Kekkei Genkai in the family, that they place those seals on the Branch family, why would they ever tolerate a Hyuuga orphan, even a bastard one.'
Naruto then looked back into the mirror, 'On top of all that, I don't look anything like the Uchiha, or the Hyuuga, hell I don't even look like them with the Sharingan and Byakugan activ-'
Naruto stopped his thought process as he remembered a detail when he activated the Byakugan, and he shot his eyes up to look at Kyuubi, and they returned to their normal state, "Wait, why did my Byakugan look so different from the Hyuuga Byakugan? They don't have the color tint on the edge of the eyes, and I didn't have veins bulging at the edge of my eyes, why were mine so different? I know it is not a different Dojutsu, so what caused the changes to my eyes?"
Kyuubi looked at him and smiled as she stepped back and spoke, "I saw that your Byakugan did not have the bulging veins, which is good, it is a clear sign you no longer harbor even a hint of ningen blood within you…"
Naruto's eyes widened as he heard that, 'Not even a hint of ningen blood? What is she talking about?'
"…and the differences in your eyes show that not only is your body strong enough to endure their power, but that your demigod blood has only empowered them further."
Naruto's eyes widened further, and he opened his mouth, "What?!" he said with shock and confusion, "What do you mean demigod blood?!" he said walking up to her, dropping the mirror, causing it to shatter upon the ground.
Kyuubi jumped back suddenly as Naruto walked up to her and shouted, and she stammered out "N-Naruto-sama I-"
Naruto did not give her a chance to speak, "What do you mean demigod blood?" he looked at himself in shock and confusion before staring at her, "I-I am a ningen, I-"
Kyuubi spoke up, albeit nervously, "F-forgive my interruption Naruto-sama, but you were a ningen." at Naruto's stare she closed her lips and nervously fidgeted, stepping back several times.
Naruto stared at her, more questions racing through his conscious mind than he could conceive, but each question leading to the same question over and over again.
Naruto walked up to Kyuubi, and spoke, "How?"
Kyuubi looked up at Naruto, "I'm sorry?" she asked in confusion.
Naruto stepped forward again, causing Kyuubi to shuffle back a few steps, "If what you say is true, that I am a demigod…how did it happen?"
Kyuubi blinked twice, "Oh, uhm…" she brought a hand to her chin and stroked it in thought, as if trying to figure out what to say.
Naruto looked at her, waiting for her response, while he tried to comprehend his situation.
Under normal circumstances, he would have said she was lying, after all, how could be possibly be a demigod? How could he no longer be ningen?
But somehow, he just knew she wasn't lying.
Kyuubi finally spoke up, "Well, I am not entirely sure what happened to cause this ascension, at least not the specifics of it. But the best way I can say what happened to you is, that when the seal that held me in was shattered when that…ningen…" she said with obvious venom in her voice, "…used his jutsu upon you, the sudden rush of my Youki, in addition to the remnants of the Shinigami's divine energies within the seal itself overwhelmed your body, annihilating every cell in your body, restructuring you down to your smallest part, and replacing it with a compound created by the union of my Youki, and the Shinigami's energies." she held her hand out, as if referencing his state, "The result being your ascension, into a demigod."
Naruto could only stare at her, before bringing a hand to his head, "Wow, this is unbelievable." he started to pace back and forth as he processed what he had been told.
Kyuubi watched, and spoke softly, "Uhm, anyways, Naruto-sama…" she swallowed as she spoke up, "…no doubt your new Demigod blood has not only enhanced your eyes, but removed them of their inherent weaknesses. The Byakugan for example, the veins that pulsed around the edges of the eyes was the body trying to push the eyes to their absolute limit. Ningen were never meant to have such eyes, so to compensate, the body of Ningen pushes so much chakra, blood, and adrenaline through the body and especially into the eyes that the side effect is the veins pulsing along the edges of the eyes of those who wield the Byakugan, hence why whenever the Byakugan is used for long periods, there is severe eye strain, if not blindness, sometimes permanent, other times temporary…"
Naruto stopped and looked at her, his mind going over what she was telling him.
"…in addition, your ascension also removed the blind spot that every last wielder of the Byakugan has." she walked up to Naruto and reached behind his neck, "To my memory, the blind spot is right about…here." she tapped a spot on the back of his neck, "Right above the first thoracic vertebra."
Naruto reached back where Kyuubi touched, and gingerly rubbed the area.
Kyuubi spoke up, "But you need not worry about such weaknesses Naruto-sama, your demigod blood has not only purged those weaknesses from your system, but enhanced the strengths of the Byakugan to such a level, the so called prodigies would seem as if novices in comparison." she smiled and softly bowed, "After all, the eyes as they were, were not befitting of one of your noble and regal stature, Naruto-sama."
Naruto looked around as he continued to think.
Kyuubi continued, "Of course, not only your eyes have been enhanced milord, your strength and essence has become far greater than any ningen could hope to obtain, no doubt at your current strength, the ningen who dared try and kill you, would be no more than a common nuisance to your majesty, milord."
Naruto snapped his eyes to her, "Truly?"
Kyuubi nodded and bowed, her eyes gazing into his as she did so, "Indeed."
Naruto was in awe at the revelations presented to him.
Kyuubi stood up and spoke, her tone stern and serious, "However, that will change once you have been properly trained in your new abilities, and once your training has been completed…"
Naruto looked up at her…
And felt his entire world shift as she continued to speak.
"…not even at my full power, could I even hope to scratch you."
Hi no Kuni-Border
On the border connecting Hi no Kuni and Nami no Kuni, two individuals limped across the border.
Kakashi Hatake and Sasuke Uchiha.
Kakashi groaned in pain, clutching the arm he had used to grab the cable, which currently was fractured and the palm of his hand sliced up heavily.
Sasuke was in a similar situation, but with his hand the bone was partially visible, and the only thing keeping him from bleeding out was a haphazard medical gauze, which was soaked with blood.
They had managed to pull themselves up thanks to the cables they had managed to grab onto, but not without their share of injuries. They had no means to heal themselves, nor any reason to remain in Nami, so they headed back towards Konoha, at least as far as Sasuke knew.
Konoha had many outposts hidden inside the other nations, some were in Tsuchi no Kuni and Rai no Kuni, and others were simply on the borders. The locations of these outposts were privy to only the ANBU black ops and the most trusted Jonin in Konoha.
Kakashi happened to have been the former captain of the ANBU black ops, and was more trusted than any Konoha Jonin, so he knew of the locations of each outpost.
Kakashi looked to Sasuke, "Hurry, we are almost there."
Sasuke glared towards Kakashi, "Are you sure we are headed in the right direction?"
Kakashi nodded his head, "Yes, there is a medical facility for Konoha shinobi just past these trees…" he said indicating the forest around them, "…once we get there, we can get fixed up and return to Konoha."
Sasuke scowled, "Why can't we just head straight to Konoha now? Surely these minor injuries will not hind-…hind-er…" Sasuke began to stumble, only to be grabbed by Kakashi.
Kakashi narrowed his visible eye, "That is why, you have lost a lot of blood, and my arm is currently broken. Better to get fixed up as soon as possible than risk being ambushed by an enemy." he let go of Sasuke and used his free arm to push aside the branches, "Just be patient, we are almost-" Kakashi suddenly froze in place.
Sasuke saw this, "Kakashi-sensei, what is-"
Sasuke was silenced when Kakashi suddenly pulled out his kunai and got into a stance, his eyes snapping left and right.
Sasuke looked around as well, activating his Sharingan, two tomoe in one eye, a single tomoe in the other.
He noticed shadows in the tree line, but they moved too fast for him to see more than that.
Kakashi switched his position, and readied himself to fight if need be, his kunai being laced with a layer of chakra.
Suddenly, the branches around them were pushed aside, and Kakashi and Sasuke watched as seven figures surrounded them.
Each one wearing a blank mask.
Kakashi narrowed his eyes as he saw them, even if they wore no symbols, his time in Black Ops had ensured he was quite familiar with one organization above almost all others.
ROOT, whose operatives were currently surrounding him.
He kept his guard up, despite his loyalties, Danzo was a shady individual who was willing to use…less than pleasant ways to further his goals, which in his mind was always meant for the greater good of Konoha.
One of the ROOT stepped forward and spoke, their voice distorted, making determining their gender impossible, "Kakashi Hatake, Jonin sensei of Team 7?"
Kakashi flinched and tightened his grip as two more ROOT stepped towards them.
The ROOT shinobi were quiet for several moments, until the one that spoke piped up again, "I will ask again…" the reached towards their sides, where Kakashi saw the hilt of assumedly a bladed tool, "Kakashi Hatake, Jonin sensei of Team 7?"
Kakashi knew their position was dire, and chose to answer, "Yes."
Almost immediately, the ROOT removed their hand away from the hilt of their weapon, "We have been deployed to escort you and your squad safely back to Konoha." they looked at Sasuke, "All questions can wait until later, the Uchiha is injured and must be escorted to Konoha immediately."
As the two ROOT flanking the first one stepped forward, Kakashi paled as he realized what getting to Konoha faster meant.
One of the ROOT shinobi lifted Sasuke up and headed towards Konoha, while the other assisted Kakashi and they sped off towards Konoha as well.
The five remaining ROOT looked towards each other, "Continue with your mission, I will tail them, it is doubtful any enemy Shinobi could have impersonated Kakashi so well, but we must be certain." they pointed in the direction of the outpost Kakashi was headed towards, "Guard the entrance, reinforcements will arrive soon…the subject must not be allowed to escape."
The four ROOT shinobi spoke in unison, their voices masked as well, "Hai." and they vanished in a swirl of leaves.
The remaining ROOT shinobi shot after Kakashi, Sasuke, and the other two ROOT Shinobi.
Deep in the underground base of ROOT, an immense room, which had at one time been used to pit ROOT Shinobi against one another to better their skills, remove their faults in technique, and practice what they already knew. The lights designed to supply different environments in order to acclimate each and every Shinobi to different combats, which was assisted by the vents used to cool, warm, moisten, or dry the atmosphere in which they fought in.
In addition, there was a large pool of water below a platform, which would be sealed up, or left open to change the battlefield.
It was in this arena that a large group of over twenty or so ROOT and guards had blockaded the various hallways that lead through this room.
They had known this room better than any outsider could, they had trained in here, fought in here, perfected their skills in here. By all accounts, anyone who entered should have been at their mercy.
Instead, all it had given them a familiar place to die…when they were mercilessly slaughtered.
Their techniques had been blocked, or turned against them by the same woman they were trying to subdue.
Their bodies ripped apart and tossed into the waters below, while others had been thrown into it and drowned as the water itself pulled them under.
Others were pinned to the walls and ceiling by long roots of black wood, their blood and crushed organs flowing down the surface of the roots.
Their arena had become their tomb.
But none of this concerned Kushina, no, what concerned her is her reflection in the steel walls of the arena…
She stared at the onyx black bangs which framed her face, the white highlights at the tip of her hair, how her crimson and rose red hair so naturally shifted from one color to the other.
She reached up and gently caressed her onyx locks, while her other hand clasped the white highlights.
They felt so natural, so real…were they real?
Such a question, so simple, yet so complex, it drove her to bring her hands closer to her face, still holding the locks of hair within them, bringing them across her line of sight.
They were real…
At such a realization, Kushina released her hair from her grip, and looked back at her reflection, and drank in her form.
She knew that she was a beautiful woman, but what she saw before her was not what she remembered she looked like. Her figure was never so perfect, her hips were never so wide, yet so smooth. Her thighs were certainly thicker than she had remembered, and her bust was also much larger than she had remembered.
She was more beautiful than she ever remembered being.
It was as if someone had taken all of her features, and had enhanced them to levels of beauty beyond any ningen comparison.
On top of that, she looked younger, much younger…it looked as if a whole decade had been removed from her complexion, if she didn't know better, she would have thought time had turned back the clock for her. She certainly looked younger than she was when she gave birth to her sochi.
All these changes brought a question to Kushina's mind…if her sochi knew what she looked like when she gave birth to him, if Konoha had allowed him to know what she looked like to begin with, with her present changes…
Would he believe she was really his mother?
Kushina bit her lower lip and took in a deep breath, before she went through one of the doors connecting to the room.
She pressed onward despite the questions of doubt at the forefront of her mind…
She would find her son, and she would be with him as she should have been with him.
And she would raze Konoha to the ground if she had to do it.
With that conviction, her eyes glowed with a reddish tint as she slashed through another ROOT shinobi as her nails seemed to carve through them like a dagger.
The ROOT shinobi made it to Konoha rather easily, and had immediately gone to the hospital, where they were quickly brought to the Shinobi section of the hospital, where medical staff immediately set out to fixing them up.
It was not long before news of their return had spread through Konoha, as well as the news that two members of the team were not with them.
One Hiruzen Sarutobi had heard this news from his secretary, and had made a beeline towards the hospital.
The lack of Sakura and Naruto set about mixed emotions in the Sandaime. The two of them not being in Konoha implied that both of them were dead, and while he was pleased with Naruto's absence, he would be lying if he did not admit he was hoping to avoid more casualties than necessary, especially with how desperate Konoha was thanks to the major loss of their Shinobi in the Kyuubi attack, and the past skirmishes with Kumogakure.
However, the loss of a single Genin was well worth the cost of ending Naruto Uzumaki, after all, all great goals required necessary sacrifices.
He entered the hospital, his presence met with civilians and Shinobi bowing and saying, 'Hokage-sama' as he passed by them.
He walked up to the front desk, where a nurse was manning the desk, "I need to see Kakashi Hatake immediately, I have been informed he is in the hospital, will there be any trouble with that?" he asked knowing that the possibility of Kakashi being in intensive care was plausible, and wanted to make sure there were no issues.
The nurse glanced over the forms as soon as Hiruzen finished speaking, "Actually, he is resting in the recovery center. He is available for visits currently, so you are free to go and speak with him Hokage-sama."
Hiruzen smiled and nodded his head, "Thank you for your assistance and cooperation." he then turned his head and headed off to the Shinobi section of the hospital, and from there, recovery.
The recovery ward was teeming with life, Shinobi being brought in from intensive care to get them back on their feet, Shinobi exiting the ward to return to their duties, and doctors and nurses bustling about keeping the patients entertained as they recovered, since bored Shinobi tended to me a greater nuisance than bored civilians.
Hiruzen entered the recovery ward, and glanced across the room, trying to find the Shinobi who had drawn him to this wing to begin with.
It did not take long, in the corner of the room, staring out a window, was one Kakashi Hatake.
A smile adorned Hiruzen's face as he briskly moved across the room, the patients and nurses stepping aside so as to not impede their leader's progress.
At the same time, Kakashi was staring out the window, a feeling of dread washing over him like a tidal wave on the shoreline. How was he going to explain to his leader that not only did he lose one of his Genin, but he had likely failed in killing off Naruto, and that he somehow had used a time-space jutsu which rendered the mission to Nami no Kuni completely moot? Not to mention the hell he would receive for continuing a mission so high above the rank, it would be another story if the mission was successful, but the mission was a failure, in more ways than one.
He only prayed that the Sandaime did not hear of his presence in the hospital so soon, perhaps he could figure out a way to word the story so as to rectify this situation…
"Ah Kakashi, I am pleased that you are back in familiar territory."
Kakashi felt his heart stop and his eyes widen in horror, the voice that had spoken to him not more than a few feet from him.
Slowly turning his head, he looked up into the face of the man he dreaded to see.
The Sandaime Hokage, Hiruzen Sarutobi.
Hiruzen, seemingly oblivious to Kakashi's dread, though more likely paying it no mind spoke up, "I see you have returned with minimal injury. I do hope the injury did not impede your ability to complete your mission."
Kakashi seemed to choke on his own voice as he glanced around, the others in the recovery ward becoming aware of the situation, "H-Hokage-sama, I-I…"
Hiruzen chuckled, "Oh of course, too many prying eyes and ears." he looked towards the nearest nurse, "Excuse me, could you assist me in escorting Kakashi-san to 'the room'.
The nurse swiftly bowed her head, "Of course, Sandaime-sama." she quickly went over to Kakashi, and aided him to 'the room'.
Kakashi's body seemed to tremble as his situation only seemed to worsen.
'The Room' was basically a small version of an interrogation chamber. Shinobi would often return from high class missions injured, and would need to relay information to their leaders in private, obviously this could not wait until they fully recovered, so the Shinobi section of the hospital, along with other sections were outfitted with small rooms that was basically cut off from the outside world, no sound could get in or out, nor could anybody break in by conventional means, and most unconventional means were barred from entrance as well.
Kakashi had hoped that the Sandaime would be impatient to learn of Naruto's supposed death, and would have demanded an answer right then, but it seemed the Sandaime was more patient than anticipated. He had hoped that once Hiruzen heard the news, and he inevitably attacked, the nurses and Shinobi would be able to pry him off him enough for him to explain the situation.
Now though, he may as well have been locked in interrogation with the entire torture division.
Kakashi was silently lead into the room, where he was seated upon one of the chairs inside, as Hiruzen took a seat directly opposite of him.
The nurse gently propped Kakashi up, and after a swift bow, left them as she closed the door behind her, which latched shut as soon as it had closed.
A moment of tense silence occurred, until Hiruzen smiled and spoke, "Now Kakashi, based on what I have already heard in Konoha, I can expect good news from this mission."
Kakashi inwardly panicked, his heart and pulse racing as he realized how bad his situation was.
Hiruzen spoke, "However, I would like to hear the news from you, Kakashi…so tell me, was the mission a success?"
Kakashi began to sweat profusely, and he began to shake as he stared into the expecting eyes of his leader.
Hiruzen slowly started to frown, "Kakashi…the mission was a success…wasn't it?"
Kakashi swallowed the spit that had built up in his mouth, and slowly wheezed out, "S-Sandaime-sama…the mission was…" he choked on his words as Hiruzen suddenly stood up, his frown deepened as his eyes turned to a judging gaze.
"Kakashi!" Hiruzen snapped, "Was the mission a success, or not?" he spoke with a stern tone, and he snapped, "Answer me!"
Kakashi whimpered and he seemed to shrink into himself as the killing intent emitted by the Kage began to seep into his pores, "T-the mission was a failure Sandaime-sama…"
Hiruzen stared at Kakashi as his eyes narrowed, his teeth grinding together as he snarled, "What did you just say?" his tone spoke volumes of the anger he was emitting.
Kakashi spoke again, his voice laced with fear, "T-the mission…i-it was a failure
Hiruzen snarled in anger and slammed his hands on the table in front of them, and snapped, "Tell me everything that occurred, and explain to me how on Kami's earth you could have failed to kill one untrained Genin Jinchuriki!"
Kakashi needed no further persuasion, and spoke briskly, and did as he was commanded.
He told him everything.
By the end of it, Hiruzen was staring at Kakashi with a mixture of anger, disbelief, and shame, "You lead a Genin squad to finish a mission that had gone from C-rank to A-rank?!"
Kakashi stammered, "S-Sandaime-sama I-"
"You then tried to kill Naruto in front of the entire village?! Did I not tell you what you were to do to ensure this incident was believable? At what point does killing him in front of an entire civilian populace make 'Naruto turned on his team…' seem remotely believable to you?!"
"-please I-HURGH" Kakashi was grasped around the throat as the Sandaime pulled him over the table.
"On top of all that, not only did you fail to kill him, but he somehow used a time-space ninjutsu to escape, and you lost one of your Genin because of all this?!"
Kakashi gasped, "S-Sandaime-sama, I-I beg of you…p-please…"
Hiruzen snarled and shoved Kakashi back, slamming him into the chair, which toppled back, smashing under the combined force of Kakashi's weight, and the force from Hiruzen pushing him.
At the same time, Hiruzen brought a hand to his chin as he bit his lip, this was not good by any stretch. If Naruto was indeed alive, then there was a high possibility he would seek retribution for Kakashi trying to kill him, and who knows, he may even go so far as to blame the whole village for this.
Then there was the matter of Sakura, even if Sasuke was beloved for being the 'last Uchiha' the council would not tolerate him killing his teammate, no matter the circumstances.
Hiruzen brought a hand to his head, and firmly wished that a migraine was all he would suffer from this incident.
'Damn it all…'
Hi no Kuni: Border Outpost
In the forests of Hi no Kuni, along the border connecting Hi no Kuni and Nami no Kuni, a small hill stood out in the middle of a field, out of place in such an open area, yet looking so a part of the landscape itself those who came across it paid it no mind. A clever deception, but to the trained eye, it was obvious that this so called 'hill' was not natural.
In truth, the hill was artificial, created by Konoha as a means to hide a subterranean base, which was used in wartime, and as rendezvous points within missions. Each hidden base was outfitted with everything needed for shinobi of Konoha; armory, medical center, food storage, even translation teams for encrypted messages.
Such bases were scattered all over the elemental nations, each one designed to blend with the landscape, and each one outfitted with a small team of Shinobi, ranging from Genin to Jonin in rank.
However, the base in this field, unbeknownst to Kakashi, had been decommissioned two years prior by the Sandaime.
Not a month after its decommissioning was it assimilated by ROOT's underground network, and connected to the massive network of underground tunnels, subterranean military outposts, and hidden laboratories.
Which was the reason why the four ROOT shinobi had been sent to this location after an alert had been sounded in the lab where the subject had been held, and after further alerts showed that the subject's most probable path, was to this base.
One of the ROOT Shinobi turned around, and spoke, their voice still distorted to hide their identity, "Seal the entrance shut, reinforce the walls of the base, erect a barrier around and above the base. The subject must be contained until reinforcements arrive."
Two ROOT Shinobi stepped forward, one heading towards the hill itself, the other standing several meters away from it and cycling through hand seals.
The other two ROOT shinobi began to cycle through hand seals themselves.
The ROOT shinobi who had walked up to the hill reached and grasped the grass on the hill, and suddenly ripped it away, revealing that the grass, while realistic, was artificial.
Underneath the fake grass was a steel door, held shut little differently than the locking mechanism on a bank vault, and surrounding the door was steel plating, welded together by Katon jutsu no less.
The ROOT Shinobi began to cycle through hand seals, "Katon: Hi So-"
The ROOT shinobi was suddenly pierced through, and sent flying across the field by a long black root, which ripped through their armor, flesh, and bone as if it were a piece of wet paper being carved through by a kunai.
Their body was smashed into the ground as the root continued to carve through the earth, using their body as if it were a battering ram.
The other ROOT shinobi dived out of the path of the incoming assault, barely avoiding it as it shot past them with such force, they felt a strong wind crash into them.
The root itself smashed through several trees, scattering the body of the ROOT shinobi in various directions.
The three remaining ROOT shinobi stared in shock at the massive black root.
At the same time, three more black roots shot through the remains of the door, causing it to fly through the air, hurtling towards one of the ROOT shinobi.
The ROOT operatives did not see it in time, even as they heard the sound of something cutting through the air.
Not until the door slammed into the back of one of the ROOT shinobi, bisecting them, and sending their body parts flying across the field.
The two remaining ROOT narrowly avoid the body parts slamming into them.
The two of them swiftly removed their weaponry, and channeled their chakra through it as they looked towards the source of the black roots, which were slowly widening the doorway they had so easily ripped open.
They stared in shock as a large wave of water passed through the doorway, spilling onto the field like a torrential downpour, creating a massive pool upon the field.
Suddenly, they heard the padding of footsteps coming from the doorway, and they saw a shadow inside of the now widened entrance, and they tightened their fighting stance as the figure revealed themselves.
Exiting the widened entrance of the base, was none other than Kushina Uzumaki…the subject the two remaining ROOT operatives were ordered to prevent escaping.
They quickly dropped their weapons and ran through hand seals, "Doton: Dosekiru."
Suddenly, the earth split apart, and shot towards Kushina in the form of two dragon-like shapes. "
Kushina made no motion to move as the dragons of earth closed in on her.
Only for them to explode into a spray of sand and mud as the pool of water shot up, smashing into the earth dragons like a tidal wave, obliterating them.
The two ROOT shinobi did not cease, and grabbed their weapons, and shot off towards Kushina, the chakra on their blades flaring wildly as they swung at her.
Kushina simply bent backwards, dodging their strikes, and sent a kick directly into the chin of one of the shinobi.
The force behind the kick was so great, it tore the muscles and tendons keeping the head connecting to the neck, and subsequently sent the head flying through the air.
The body twitched and quivered for a few seconds as it fell over, blood pouring from the neck, staining the water with blood.
The remaining ROOT operative slashed at Kushina, who swiftly dodged out of the way and sent a thunderous kick at the ROOT operative, who barely dodged it as they jumped over it, and tried to attack Kushina again.
Kushina simply dodged it once more and then swiftly backhanded the ROOT operative.
This time, they were not fast enough to avoid the strike, and were sent hurtling across the field, slamming into the tree behind them with enough force to shatter the bones in their body.
The ROOT operative cringed in pain as they tried to push themselves to their feet, only to fall back as they felt their body being torn apart by their shattered bones.
Kushina saw that they were still moving, and began to walk towards them, her eyes narrowing dangerously as she stalked towards the broken body of the ROOT shinobi.
The ROOT operative cursed as they tried to reach for their hidden weapon.
Before they could even grasp the handle, Kushina saw what they were about to do and moved with speed that made her seem as if a blur.
And before the ROOT operative could even blink, their head was ripped from their shoulders.
Their body quivered and trembled as their blood bubbled from their neck, oozing down the front of their body like a river, before their body toppled over, and their lifeblood spilled off to the side.
Meanwhile, Kushina stared down at their body impassively as her hand tightly gripped the top of the ROOT operatives head, before she callously tossed it aside.
As the severed head tumbled across the ground, Kushina looked at her surroundings…
Finding herself inexplicably lost.
She knew that she was still in Hi no Kuni, the smell of the forest was indistinguishable from any other forest, same went with the variety of trees, which only grew within Hi no Kuni's borders, but the geography was so unfamiliar to her.
This fact filled her with dread, if the geography had changed enough for her not to recognize where she was, then a great length of time had to have passed.
The question however, was how much time had passed.
Kushina looked left and right, trying to find anything of remote familiarity, something to point her towards Konoha where her Sochi likely was being held.
Just the thought of her Sochi, without his mother, trapped in Konoha like an animal, it brought feelings of great anger within her, despair followed her rage as she realized how much of her son's life she likely has missed.
How old was he now? Was he too old to need a mother now? Would she have any purpose being in his life?
Would he let her try to be a part of his life? Or would he cast her aside, seeing no need to let a person into his life who was not there to begin with?
Such thoughts caused her to hyperventilate as she started to pace back and forth, her eyes looking all across the landscape as she entered the forests surrounding her.
None of the trees were familiar to her.
None of the bushes or landmarks distinguished any type of direction.
Nothing was familiar.
Kushina's eyes were widened in desperation and fear, and she felt herself be torn apart, "AHHHHH!" as she screamed to the heavens as she fell to her knees, and began to pound her fists into the dirt, her eyes wide as she kept glancing around even as she smashed her fists into the dirt.
Kushina started to pant heavily as she stopped punching the ground, and she kept looking around.
How was she going to get to Konoha if she did not even know where she was?
How was she going to find her son, if she could not even find a way to him?
As these questions plagued her mind, her chakra began to pulse outward, traveling through the forests around her…pulsing further and further with each echo of her chakra pulsation.
Kushina lowered her head and closed her eyes, feelings of wretched tribulation wash over her.
And then she felt it.
Kushina's eyes snapped open, and she turned her head swiftly as her face conveyed shock and hope, as she felt an essence she would never forget.
The youki of the Kyuubi no Yoko, the very Bijuu which had been sealed inside of her Sochi after he had been ripped from her arms after she had given birth to him…before she had been captured in her weakened state.
Kushina stood up without a single motion of wasted movement, and she ran in the direction she felt the Kyuubi's youki.
It was faint, but she could tell it was a recent release of the Kyuubi's youki, her experience with other villages Jinchuriki proving useful in this situation.
She made a beeline in the direction she hoped her Sochi would be.
Meanwhile, back in the field where she had engaged, and extinguished the lives of the four ROOT operatives, the black roots which had given her freedom slithered into the ground.
And all was silent.
Naruto stared at Kyuubi, his eyes conveying shock and disbelief, what Kyuubi had just told him, it just didn't seem possible.
In Konoha, despite how often his progress was hindered, he was very familiar with the legends of Kyuubi, and the evidence that supported those facts. He had heard that a single swipe of the Kyuubi's claws could shatter mountains, could bring forth Tsunami's, he had even heard that the massive gorge just beyond the village walls was caused by the Kyuubi itself.
Despite all that, he was being told by Kyuubi, the Kyuubi, that once he is trained properly, she would not be able to scratch him at full strength-
Another question popped into his mind, 'Full power?' he looked at her in confusion, 'Is she weakened somehow?'
Kyuubi saw his confused gaze and spoke, "What is it, Naruto-sama?"
Naruto blinked as he realized Kyuubi had caught his stare, and he sighed, 'No point in hiding the question honestly.' he then looked up at her and spoke, "You said 'full power, what did you mean by that?" he frowned slightly, "Are you weakened or something?"
Kyuubi seemed to tense up at the seemingly innocent question, and she lowered her head, "Uhm…"
Kyuubi's discomfort was easy for him to see, as she fidgeted in place, her face scrunching up as her eyes darted back and forth.
Naruto frowned and walked up to her, "Kyuubi…"
She jumped in place as she realized Naruto was directly in front of her, and she almost jumped back a second time as she saw Naruto's gaze connecting with her own.
Naruto's eyes were fixed upon hers, their very position spoke volumes of what he was feeling…and what he wanted to say.
Kyuubi bit her lip softly and tried to avert her eyes in shame…
"Kyuubi, have you been weakened?"
Kyuubi shivered at the tone of his voice, leaving absolutely no room for argument.
Swallowing slightly, Kyuubi lowered her head, "Yes, Naruto-sama."
Naruto blinked a few times, before he turned away from her, and brought a hand to his chin.
Kyuubi seemed to grow slightly more depressed, assuming the worst case scenario.
Naruto meanwhile was contemplating the implications of this revelation. If Kyuubi was in fact weakened, how long had she been weakened? And did that mean that the only reason she was able to be sealed in him was because she had been weakened beforehand?
It would make sense as to how a being as powerful as Kyuubi was defeated by a ningen as easily.
However, knowing he should never leave details to assumption, he turned back towards Kyuubi, whose head was still lowered and spoke, "Kyuubi…"
Kyuubi snapped her head up as Naruto spoke, a bit of surprise on her face at the lack of a spiteful tone, surely her master would be upset that she was not as useful to him?
However, she obediently answered, stammering out, "Y-yes Naruto-sama?"
Naruto blinked as Kyuubi stammered, but continued, "How long have you been in a weakened state?"
Kyuubi stared at him, not expecting the question, "Milord?" she asked in confusion.
Naruto turned completely towards her, "How long has it been since you were weakened?" he didn't stop there, "Was it before I was born? Were you able to be sealed inside of me because you were weakened?"
Kyuubi flinched slightly, and started to twiddle her feet, "Uhm, no milord, I was actually weakened…recently…" she said with uncertainty, as if avoiding the question.
Her answer however only served to confuse Naruto, "Recently? How recently are you referring to?"
Kyuubi seemed to deflate as she turned to him, "A-around the first few moments of your ascension milord…"
Naruto blinked twice, and spoke, conveying his confusion, "I'm sorry, what?" he stared at her in bewilderment, "What do you mean that you were weakened around the first few moments of my ascension? How is that even possible?"
Kyuubi gulped, "W-well…remember how I told you exactly how you ascended?"
Naruto nodded his head, "Yes, you said it was caused by an interaction between your Youki and the divine energies of the Shinigami inside the Shiki Fuin itself, but how would that have weakened you?"
Kyuubi looked into Naruto's eyes, "Naruto-sama…the amount of my Youki that was stripped from me to ascend you reduced me to this state…" she indicated to her current state, "…as I am now, I am currently at the weakest I have ever been."
Naruto stared at her in shock.
Kyuubi then looked at herself, specifically the changes to herself upon her release, "In addition, I can sense that it was not you alone who was changed by my release, and I currently do not know how far the changes have progressed."
Naruto blinked at her, "What do you mean?"
Kyuubi sighed and looked back up at him, "Forgive me milord, I am more than willing to answer any and all questions you may have to the best I am able to…" she bowed softly, "…but it is my humble suggestion that we continue this in another location." she stood back up and looked around, "No doubt the events with the ningen will draw in and attract unwanted attention…from ningen or otherwise…who will eventually track us to our current location."
Naruto cursed inwardly, almost completely forgetting what had happened in Nami no Kuni, and he couldn't help but agree. If they were successfully tracked as they were now, Naruto's lack of experience with his new powers would be a hindrance rather than an asset.
Kyuubi looked at him, "If it pleases you milord, I might suggest one of the temporary homes I constructed here in the elemental nations."
Naruto looked at her in mild disbelief, "Temporary homes? Why did you never settle in a more permanent one?"
Kyuubi flinched at the question.
This did not go unnoticed by Naruto, who sighed, "Never mind, it is not of importance." he stepped forward and held out an arm, "Lead the way."
Kyuubi looked at Naruto for a moment, "Milord?"
Naruto looked at her, "I don't know the way to your Temporary Home, so in this situation, you would lead."
Kyuubi blinked several times, "Uhm, yes, of course…" she bowed, "Forgive me milord." she looked around, and then pointed through the tree line, "I-if we head in this direction, we should reach the den by tomorrow."
Naruto turned his head to her, "Den?"
Kyuubi immediately flushed, "I-it is what we Yoko call our homes…temporary or otherwise."
Naruto nodded his head, "I suppose that makes sense." he nodded to her, "After you."
Kyuubi nodded hesitantly, and then turned in the direction she had indicated as she took the first steps towards the hidden location. Naruto soon followed her path as they headed into the tree line.
As their trek began, Kyuubi's eyes were filled with turmoil, remembering Naruto's earlier question.
'Temporary homes? Why did you never settle in a more permanent one?'
She nervously nibbled on her lip, knowing she would have to answer him eventually, and that there was no way she could deceive him…he would know if she lied to him.
That was assuming if she had the will to lie to her master.
As Kyuubi's thought process was taking place, Naruto's thoughts were on their own course. The topic of his thoughts…
She was blindly obedient to him, that much was certain, what he could not figure out was why she was obedient to him in the first place.
'Could she have grown an attachment to me inside the seal?' was the first question he asked himself, only for him to scoff at the notion, 'No, I highly doubt she would have such devotion to me, especially since all I was to her was a prison cell.'
His thoughts considered other possibilities, 'Could the Shiki Fuin have affected her psyche while in the shield to make it easier for me to draw on her chakra?' such an idea had more plausibility than the first idea he considered, but he still saw holes in it, 'No, absolutely not.'
As he thought of the possibilities, his mind wandered to what he had become.
And he seemed to stumble over his thoughts as he realized something.
They had both been changed by his ascension, not just him.
Glancing at Kyuubi, and for a brief moment, her original form before that energy changed her passed over her form, before flashing back to her own.
'Could that have had something to do with it?'
He did not know why, but he felt that his ascension and her change connected them in some manner.
And it was this connection that made him realize something that he had never before considered.
Until now at least.
He picked up his pace and called out, "Kyuubi…"
Kyuubi stopped in her tracks and turned around as Naruto walked up to her, "Yes Naruto-sama?" she asked in curiosity as she looked him over, trying to discern what he was going to say, so as to answer him as swiftly as possible, as a proper servant should.
Naruto looked at her for a moment, and spoke, "Kyuubi…"
Kyuubi blinked a few times before she said something, "Y-yes Naruto-sama?" she asked in confusion, not understanding what her master was trying to convey.
Naruto spoke again, "Kyuubi…I get the feeling that 'Kyuubi' isn't your name."
Her eyes widened softly and she tried to speak, "W-what makes you say that?"
She was deeply confused, how had her master known? Had she said something to imply what her master had drawn a conclusion from?
Naruto conveyed his answer, "I am not sure how to explain it, but somehow, I know that your name isn't Kyuubi, not your real name at least."
She stared at him with a bit of shock, before she slowly nodded her head, "Y-yes, t-that is true."
Naruto looked at her and crossed his arms, "So…what is your name then?"
She stared at him in shock, and she stammered, "Y-you want t-to know my name?"
Naruto nodded his head, "Yes…yes I do."
She stared at him, and she felt a small smile creep at her lips.
Taking a deep breath, she bowed, "My name is Akane, Naruto-sama."
Naruto nodded his head at that, and allowed a small nod, "It is a pleasure, Akane."
Akane's eyes fluttered a moment as Naruto said her name, and began to walk past her.
"If we don't start moving now, we may not get to the den in time."
Akane stood up straight and turned after Naruto, "O-of course Naruto-sama." and she ran up after him, until she was ahead of him, leading the way to their next destination.
A small smile tugged at the edges of Akane's lips.
Ok, first off, Hakkyou no Yami and I tried our best to not end this chapter on a cliffhanger, if we did, we apologize...we are in the works on chapter 5, amongst our other chapters as well, so please be patient...we realize that is asking a lot because of how LONG it took us to update, and we are trying to update more often, but good stories take time to write. As I am sure all authors on this site can agree with.
Now for the Questions...
Is Akane in love with Naruto?: No, she is of great devotion to her master…
Naruto is a demigod?: Yes, however, unlike in other stories, Naruto will most certainly not be a Mary Sue of godlike power, no, he will have to work for his power…he may be a demigod, but he is also a YOUNG and NEWLY FORMED demigod…
Naruto's sudden genius intelligence? How he notices things in others and himself?: His ascension made things clear to him that were not before…as for how he notices things in others, that came with the ascension as well…as for how he noticed things within himself, he was an orphan with damn near nobody but himself, he would likely know more about himself than anyone else.
Why are his Dojutsu different from the previous chapter they were in?: His ascension played a part in their adjustments…when they were first revealed, he still had Ningen blood running through his veins, but when he ascended fully, all of that changed.
Why does it require different flows of his essence to activate each Dojutsu?: He has not one, but FOUR Dojutsu, it may seem plausible to simply 'charge chakra to the eyes' when you only have one Dojutsu, but he has four, so if he simply charged his essence to his eyes, who knows what could end up happening? For all we know, he could activate the Rinnegan when he needs the Byakugan, he could activate the Seishougan and accidentally switch to Sharingan in mid battle. The point is, that it makes sense that activation of each Dojutsu requires a different flow of his essence.
Byakugan not meant for Ningen?: The Byakugan's activation makes the veins around the eye bulge out…that cannot be good for your health.
Is Naruto a pervert like Jiraiya?: No doubt this is a question spawned by Naruto noting Akane's beauty…let me answer with this…there is a difference between appreciating beauty and being a shameless lecher.
Kakashi's willingness to go with the ROOT shinobi?: Based on the situation, he had little choice but to cooperate…and Danzo is loyal to Konoha, despite his underhanded tactics and shady dealings.
The council not tolerating Sasuke killing a teammate?: Despite fanon building up the reasonably legitimate idea that the council would and likely will pamper a substantial asset to Konoha…the fact remains Sasuke killed a teammate, if this action went unpunished, it would imply that nothing he did was wrong, which would lead to him killing his teammates again in the future, which could lead to failure of a mission due to lacking shinobi for the mission, as well as dissention in the group. This will eventually come to bite Konoha, as hearing that one of their Shinobi callously kills their comrades on a mission will make them less inclined to send missions to them, which will cause Konoha to nosedive into a financial slump that will make them easy prey for the neighboring villages…as dumb as civilians are in Shinobi matters, they should be able to comprehend THIS much.
Kushina's further insecurities?: She is a mother desperately searching for her child…is there really any more reason to explain this?
Akane's unwillingness to say more of why she did not set up a more permanent home?: This will be explained in the future, it is a major part of the plot.
Now, Hakkyou no Yami and I appreciate your patience in waiting for updates, and we sincerely hope that we answered all of your questions without giving away major spoilers.
Until our next update, this has been dracohalo117 and Hakkyou no Yami