He could have sworn that it was a normal goldfish. Did ninja goldfish even exist, like ninja dogs did?

Because Sasuke could have sworn that it had said his name.

He had been keeping it in one of Suigetsu's empty water bottles and had transferred it to a bowl for the time being, intending to maybe put it in a proper fishbowl eventually and admiring it for a while before moving on. Fish were fish, whatever.

"SAAAASUKE!"

He looked down at the little fish. It was... blobby. But it had a pretty color. That's why he had bothered taking it with him, really. And it almost seemed to have a human face.

It was smiling at him.

He tilted his head slightly in confusion.

The fish looked at him expectantly, little smile on its face. Yeah, definitely a face.

"...uh, yeah? That's my name."

"SAAAAASUKE!" the fish said again, and jumped out of the bowl in glee. "PONYO!"

...right, hadn't that been what he had named the little thing? Because it was so squishy. "Uh, sure. Ponyo," Sasuke said. God, was he glad he was alone right now. Look at him, talking to a fish-

"Ponyo! Loves! Sasuke!"

...what in the hell...?

The fish was jumping up and out of the bowl again, doing little flips and swimming around in circles.

...how long had it been since Sasuke had slept? Two, three days? Yeah, that must have been it.

He went outside and dumped the fish into the ocean. He didn't need a goldfish.


A few days later, pelted by incredible torrents of rain—well, at least Suigetsu was enjoying it—Sasuke and his comrades stopped to take a break on a bluff where the rain wasn't so bad.

And that's when he saw her. A little girl in red, running on the waves.

The same color red as that fish, same little smile.

He could hear her calling out to him.

"SAAAAAASUKE! PONYO LOVES SASUKE!"

Oh, hell.