Disclaimer: I don't own Naruto, Zatch Bell or Fairy Tail.
Crimson eyes snapped open in the darkness of a large cage in an equally large room. The eyes looked about in confusion before landing on a small slip of paper on the golden bars that kept it trapped.
"Well, this is new." A deep voice mused from within the cage.
The owner of the voice frowned a moment later as it felt its power slowly being drained away by the seal upon the bars.
"So, this is how I finally meet my end?" The voice grumbled. "Interesting."
A tendril of crimson energy flew from within the darkness of the cage and touched the paper seal briefly, a moment later a sigh was released from within the cage.
"At this rate it will take far too long for my power to be fully drained." The voice murmured. "Should I speed it up? Maybe not, there might be some negative consequences for the child if I do that, unless..."
A wide grin spread across the beings face revealing rows upon rows of pointed teeth.
"Yes, that just might work." The being grinned as crimson energy began seeping off its form. "Provided that the child proves himself worthy, of course."
The crimson energy began seeping into the walls, roof and floor of the cage revealing the terror held within, the Kyuubi no Yoko.
"Good, good, he's absorbing it easily, this will cut the time originally needed in half." The Kyuubi purred before its eyes glazed over and it seemed to stare off into the distance. "Soon Sherry-hime, Zatch-sama, after all these years I can finally join you."
The demon shut its eyes and curled up to sleep.
"Soon my friends, soon my princess. Soon we can be together again."
A blond infant lay in a small room that was covered in hundreds of small seals, the child lay on a raised dais in the middle of the room making small sounds to entertain itself.
A cry escaped the child as crimson energy surrounded it and flowed through it, the whisker like birthmarks on the child's face faded away as they were slowly replaced by different markings.
Around each of the child's eyes a small black ring appeared.
After a few moments the child went silent as the crimson energy faded away, moments later an old man in flowing red and white robes entered the room. The man was frowning as he entered the room but as soon as his eyes beheld the small child on the dais he smiled softly.
Picking up the child the mans smile widened when the boy released a giggle.
"So, you are our hero eh?" The old man chuckled. "Well, let's introduce the people to their savior then."
With that said the man held the child tightly and exited the room, his mind having high hopes for this child's future.
-Five years after the Kyuubi attack-
"Yes, that's it come closer, closer!" A voice hissed from within the darkness of a large cage.
A blond haired child, perhaps four or five years old, could be seen walking up to the fifty-foot tall bars before him with a look of pure curiosity his face.
Within the cage the figure of a large nine tailed fox could be seen, the aura of crimson energy it exuded lit up the entire room as pure bloodlust radiated from its form. The creature grinned widely as it watched the boy with a gleam in its eyes.
"Good good, I sense much fear in you yet you bravely stand before me." The fox purred studying the child. "Perhaps my vessel has some worth after all."
The child simply stared back with wide eyes as the creature before him began to change.
It shrunk from a fox over fifty feet tall to a teenage boy standing at roughly 5'4. The teen had gray skin with black markings on his forearms and around his eyes, his crimson eyes had turned pitch black during the strange transformation with his fur following soon after. The fur now cloaked the teen like a set of furry/fluffy clothing with three silver ribs on each side and a strange ornament at the neck.
Topping it off was the black, flame-like hair on the teens head, the fierce glare in his eyes, the bloodthirsty grin on his face and strange looking book in the teens hands. The book was completely black in color with strange markings on the cover, from within the pages of the book a red glow could be seen as the crimson energy that had surrounded the fox now seeped from within the book and into the walls of the cage.
"W-who a-are y-you?" The blond child asked as his mind finally caught up with the sight of a huge fox transforming into the small teen before him.
The teens grin widened slightly as he seemed to think the question over.
"I have been known by many names over the centuries but the one you will most likely recognize is my latest," the teen replied after a moment "Kyuubi no Yoko."
The younger boys eyes widened as he heard the name but before his mind could shut down in fear or he could speak the now identified Kyuubi continued on.
"But you, young Uzumaki Naruto." the demon continued as its grin grew wider. "May call me Brago-sensei."
-One week later-
Naruto dropped to the ground in exhaustion as sweat drenched his form.
"Why are we doing this again?" The boy gasped inbetween breaths.
"Because you are weak." The demon growled from within his mind. "You are my vessel, my representative in the world, there is no way I will allow you to remain weak."
The boy frowned but remained silent, he had heard these words from Brago-sensei many times over the last week, the demon abhorred weakness; if there was one thing Brago-sensei respected it was strength, both strength in battle and strength of character.
Still, it didn't explain why the demon would want to train him, according to Brago-sensei the seal was slowly draining both his power and life force away and giving them to him. If so then shouldn't the demon be upset rather than glad? He seemed more happy to have a student rather than upset that he would lose his power soon and die shortly after.
"Besides you will need this training," Brago continued, ignorant of the younger boy's thoughts. "If you want to ever control my power then you will need the training that I am giving you. Now then, why don't you get the FUCK UP AND RUN!"
There was a twinge of pain at the back of his mind causing Naruto to hiss and jump to his feet.
"Yes Brago-sensei." The teen murmured before he began to run once more. 'Damn slave driver'
"I heard that." Brago stated with a chuckle. Naruto could practically hear the grin on the others face. "Add another twenty laps to your regular routine."
"Aww." The boy whined.
-Two Years Later-
"4996...4997...4998...4999...5000." Naruto gasped as he collapsed to the ground, his entire body was sore but then again what did one expect after doing 5000 push ups.
"Good job brat, now begin meditating." Brago spoke from within his mind.
"Hai sensei." Naruto replied immediately.
He had learned long ago that it was simply easier and less painful to do as Brago-sensei commanded. The last time he had refused to train due to a sore arm Brago had somehow managed to break the arm from the inside and nearly rendered it useless, it was far less painful to do as the demon commanded.
"Good, good. You are making excellent progress child." Brago stated after a moment. "Once you begin meditation come find me, we shall be moving onto the seventh spell today."
"Hai sensei." Naruto replied with a slight grin.
He always loved learning a new spell from Brago, the power held within such techniques was mind blowing. Although he couldn't use the spells to their full capabilities like Brago could, that would soon change when the seal drained the demon of its power.
"Hey sensei?" Naruto whispered as he lay in bed.
"Hn." Brago grumbled sleepily.
"Why did you decide to train me?" The blond asked for perhaps the thousandth time since they had met.
"I told you already brat." The demon mumbled.
"That can't be the only reason though." The blond muttered.
"True," Brago replied with a yawn "Let's just say you reminded me of someone I once knew."
"Yeah, he was just as thick headed and annoying as you were." The demon added with a smirk causing Naruto to frown. "But he was also kind-hearted and brave, well deserving of my respect."
The blond smiled softly.
"He sounds like a good friend." Naruto said.
"He was." Brago replied before going silent.
Naruto closed his eyes and tried to sleep, he had learned more about his sensei today.
"What was his name?" The blond asked as he dozed off.
"Zatch," Brago muttered sleepily. "Zatch Bell."
-Three Years Later-
"Reis." Naruto intoned with an outstretched hand. A ball of purple-black energy formed in an instant and was sent flying into the dark forest before him.
He grinned in satisfaction when he heard a shout before it was cut off by the sound of a body impacting with something, hard.
'Mission complete.' He sent to his inner demon as he gazed around the battlefield.
He was currently standing within what was once a bandit camp just a few miles from Konoha. There had been many of these camps popping up ever since the village had been created, most camps were created by shinobi who flunked out of the academy and had no experience for other career's.
The bandits preyed on the weak merchants coming to or going from the many villages in fire country, but kept close to Konoha for protection from other villages and shinobi.
The only reason these camps were even allowed to survive for so long rather than being wiped out by an ANBU squad was because of the battle experience they provided. A squad of experienced genin was usually given the task of wiping out such camps from time to time, this gave the genin the battle experience they needed as well as allowing them to get their first kills in a better controlled environment.
Naruto had been doing the same for years.
Once Brago-sensei had considered him proficient enough he had began organizing these little excursions, the blond would escape from the village once a month and wipe out a small bandit camp. It provided him with good battle experience, a test for his weaker spells and got him accustomed to killing. While the bandits were no comparison for the shinobi, -unless he ran into the rare missing-nin that sometimes joined such camps- he would one day face, they provided enough experience to make a difference.
Besides he was sure the battles with Brago-sensei inside his mind provided more than enough experience for how strong a shinobi would be.
"Hmm...impressive, but sloppy." Brago murmured after a moment. "You are far too slow. What if that last one had managed to escape? Next time, try to kill them fast rather than playing with them."
"Hai sensei." Naruto murmured in reply as he began the long walk home, he paused after a few steps and sent a burst of purple-black energy behind him before continuing on.
Behind him the small bandit camp, drenched in the blood and entrails of its occupants, was enveloped by a large ball of purple-black energy before the energy vanished leaving a large crater behind.
"Replay the battle in your mind as you walk, try and visualize a better attack strategy for next time." Brago ordered "But be quick about it, we need to get back to the village before the sun starts to rise; it would be counterproductive for anyone to learn about these little excursions."
This was the usual routine after all his battles, he would have to replay them in his mind and try to think of faster ways to end them next time. It usually helped against bandits and thugs but failed every time against Brago-sensei, the demon never fought the same way twice making him very unpredictable.
"Hai Brago-sensei." The blond replied in an even tone.
"Hey sensei?" Naruto murmured as a thought struck him, his eyes opened to stare at the older teen meditating across from him.
"What?" Brago asked cracking an eye open to glare at the blond.
"Are you afraid of dying?" The blond asked with a raised brow.
Brago sighed and remained silent for several seconds before he replied.
"No not really," the demon began "I've lived for a very long time Naruto, all my friends and comrades died thousands of years ago."
"So you don't mind dying?" The blond asked.
"Not at all, in fact I look forward to it." Brago replied with a smirk.
"You look forward to it?" Naruto asked with a surprised look.
"Of course, do you know how to kill a demon?" Brago asked in reply.
The blond shook his head.
"There are only three ways to do so, the first is by completely destroying their body so they can't regenerate." Brago explained "The second way is by burning or completely destroying their book, and lastly.."
Here he pointed to the small black book beside him that was still leaking crimson energy.
"..you can drain them of all their power and send them to the afterlife." Brago finished.
Naruto nodded at the explanation from the demon, it didn't take a genius to figure out which method was being used to kill the demon before him.
"Like I told you before," Brago continued. "The demon world was practically destroyed by a cruel and self-righteous king, only I and the other eight were able to escape into the human world."
Naruto nodded along as he listened, Brago had let him know much about the demon world and the tournament held every thousand years to decide who would be king of the demon world; a tournament that had ended several thousand years ago when an evil king chose to destroy the realm rather than protect it.
"Of the eight that escaped with me, none were my friends and we all went our separate ways after a few days together." Brago sighed once more before continuing. "My true friends were dead and although I wanted nothing more than to join them, I refused to take the cowards way out and end my own life."
"That is why I am glad I was finally defeated and sealed, that is why I am glad that I will finally meet my end." The demon spoke with deep conviction. "That is why I do not fear death."
Naruto smiled sadly at his mentor.
"I wish I could feel the same, to have people so precious that I would face death just to meet them once more."
Brago gave him a smirk and tapped the book beside him.
"You will one day Naruto, with my life force you will gain immortality on par with a true demons." Brago replied "In that long lifetime you will meet many people and find those that you will consider precious."
Naruto's eyes widened, this was news to him.
"I'll become a demon once you die?" The blond asked.
Brago smirked and shook his head.
"One does not just become a demon Naruto, its something you have to be born into." Brago explained. "You will still be a human, just one that is far more powerful and long-lived. You will be near indestructible thanks to the healing qualities of demonic energy and you will live far longer than a regular human, but you will still be human none the less."
"Oh." Naruto replied as he sat deep in thought.
"A pity then, I've seen how humans treat each other." The blond murmured in anger. "Being a demon would not have been a bad trade off."
Brago smiled slightly and nodded.
"If you want to place a title on it then you could consider yourself a half-demon, nothing more, nothing less."
The blond grinned and nodded back to his mentor.
-Two Years Later-
Naruto sighed as his body finally relaxed and his chakra stopped racing within him, as his body relaxed so too did his mind and he found himself reminiscing over what had just happened.
Brago was gone.
Twelve years after it had been placed, the seal had finally done its work and drained the demons power away.
Naruto frowned slightly as he remembered his time with the demon, while their relationship had been mostly teacher-student, Brago had been his role model, mentor, confidant and closest friend. He was sad to see the demon go but Brago had taught him well and he kept his emotions bottled up and his face blank.
With his sensei gone he was once more alone in the world, alone in a village he despised and one that utterly despised him as well.
With a sigh Naruto rose to his feet shakily and made his way to the bathroom, Brago had informed him that there would be a few changes to his appearance and he wanted to see what had changed.
Standing before the mirror Naruto smirked as he examined his appearance. His hair was now spiked more like Brago's making it look flame-like rather than the messy 'I just got out of bed' appearance it once had, it had also turned a much darker shade of blond.
All in all the changes were quite minor.
With a small smirk Naruto exited the bathroom and grabbed his clothing, rather than the black jumpsuit he usually wore however he grabbed a new set of clothes this time. He'd had a full set of battle gear commissioned months ago using the money he'd collected from bandit camps, at first he'd wanted a set of clothing similar to his sensei's but Brago had quickly shot that idea down and made him get something that wouldn't stand out too much.
Naruto now wore a set of clothes that would look more fitting on a civilian than on a shinobi. He wore a dark-red t-shirt with the purple-black ball of his Reis etched into the center of his chest, over top of that he wore an unzipped, black, long-sleeved, hooded jacket with a dark purple lining on the inside. For pants he had chosen a simple pair of black jeans, held up by a dark purple belt with the Reis ball as a buckle. On his feet he had on a pair of black and purple running shoes with dark red socks and laces. Lastly he had a pair of black, shinobi style, finger-less gloves with a metal plate on the back.
While the clothes looked quite plain and unfit for a shinobi, nothing was farther from the truth. The plain looking clothes were made of the same chakra cloth as ANBU gear, with some small additions for extra defense. The chakra cloth used was thin and flexible so it wouldn't slow him down or hamper his movements but at the same time it would take quite a bit of effort to cut through it,especially when coupled with the chain mail sewn into his jacket.
His clothes were far more protective than most shinobi and samurai amours; they were also very, very expensive. He'd had to save up for close to three years just to afford a small set of five outfits and that included the large fortunes he'd 'liberated' from bandits and missing-nin.
The only part of his clothing that would reveal him as a shinobi was the small kunai pouch strapped around his right leg, the seals sewn onto the inner lining of his jacket and the seals etched into the metal plate of his gloves.
The seals on the jacket were a variety of gravity, weight and resistance seals taught to him by Brago, they both weighed him down and restrained his actions making every movement difficult and strained. Without his healing factor and the extensive exercises he'd been doing from a young age he would have found it near impossible, as well as very painful, to move. The seals on the jacket were designed to make his day to day activities a real chore but they would also allow him to train his muscles at anytime.
The seals on the gloves however were much different, some had even been so obscure that Brago had never come across them before. He had taken the gloves off the corpse of a particularly strong missing-nin, while the man was quite weak -being only high gennin to low chunin level at best- the gloves had been a true work of art.
The seals etched onto them helped to control chakra flowing through the hands allowing the wearer to make their jutsu far more effective, something very useful for someone with low chakra control. There were also seals on the gloves that absorbed and recycled excess chakra so the wearer would be able to cast far more jutsu than they would without the gloves.
For someone like Naruto with extremely large reserves, reserves that had just tripled with Bargo's demise, the gloves were a godsend.
With his new clothes on Naruto made his way to the nearby window, his reserves had grown immensely since the seal had drained an entire tail's worth of chakra in one night, he would need to head to a training ground and work on his control; there was only so much his gloves could do and he didn't feel like overpowering any of his attacks at the wrong time, that could lead to not only his death but the death of everything in a large area.
With a moments pause to place his emotionless mask back in place Naruto leapt out the window and towards the training grounds.
'Goodbye Brago-sensei, I hope you found your friends.'