Vanex: Hello all! Okay, I've apparently overestimated you all. No one caught on to the "little thing" that I let slip in the last chapter. I'll tell you what it is. The "little thing" is the winner of the poll. I'm not kidding. You people should have been able to figure out the winner, due to how the previous chapter went.
However, like I said before, I'm not going to say who the winner was until she appears in the story. But really, I am both amazed and disappointed that I was able to slip the winner past every single one of you. Unless, of course, some of you did figure it out and just didn't say anything.
Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto.
"Tailed Beast Talking"
"Tailed Beast Thinking"
Four months later...
Orochimaru grins at his guest. "The transplant is successful. How does it feel to have the cells of one of the most powerful men there ever was?"
His guest looks at his right arm before looking at Orochimaru. "It feels like I expected it to feel. Remember, this never happened."
"Of course. I do keep my promises."
His guest nods before leaving the room. Orochimaru watches him go, before turning to the row of giant glass tubes, all with someone, or something inside.
"Now then, let's see how well you all integrated these cells."
Kushina frowns as she reads the report. She looks up at the ANBU Captain in front of her. "Are you absolutely sure this report is accurate?"
"Yes, ma'am. Every last word."
"Very well. Assemble your squad at the location and send word to the captains of the two best ANBU squads you know to assemble their teams at the location as well. We will be be going in there to confront whoever is responsible for these disappearances."
"Yes, Lady Hokage."
The ANBU leaves. Kushina gets up and goes over to the nearby crib.
Mikoto smiles as she watches Itachi spending time with baby Sasuke. It brings a warmth to her heart to see Itachi playing with his baby brother.
Mikoto smiles as she walks over to the speaker. "Kushina! What can I do for you?"
"I need you to watch over Naruto for me. Something very important has come up that requires my attention. Minato is still on a mission outside of the village."
"Of course, Kushina. You know I'm always happy to look after Naruto for you."
Kushina smiles. "Thank you, Mikoto."
Kushina looks at the three ANBU squads in front of her. "We don't know what we'll find inside there. But be prepared for anything. If any of you should encounter the person responsible, alert the other squads. Do not engage the criminal. We don't know what he or she is capable of. Let's go."
The ANBU nod and follow Kushina into the entrance of the hideout.
Orochimaru grins as his computer prints out the results of his experiment. But, that grin fades as he reads it. "Subject 1: Failed. Subject 2: Failed. Subject 3: Failed. Subject 4: Failed. This can't be! Subject 5: Failed! Subject 6: Failed! Did none of them successfully integrate the cells? Subject 7: Failed. Subject 8: Failed. Subject 9: Failed. Subject 10: Failed."
He reads down through the list, all of them failures. But as he finished reading about Subject 59, he senses that one of his detection seals has been triggered. His eyes widen. "They found out!" He drops the paper and quickly leaves the room. As such, he doesn't see the final entry.
Subject 60: Success.
Kushina can't believe the things that she and her team have found as they've gone through the laboratory. So many people tortured and experimented on. Rooms, full of glass tubes, contain things that can't be recognized as people anymore.
"Lady Hokage! In here!"
Kushina follows the ANBU that called her into a room with sixty glass tubes. "What is it?"
The ANBU shows her a paper he picked up off the ground. "Look at this."
Kushina starts reading the paper. "Results of transplant of cells from the First Hokage? What other monstrosities has this person committed? It says here that one of the sixty successfully integrated the cells. It also says these children were injected with the cells as infants and have been kept in these tubes for years to integrate the cells."
"It's this one ma'am. It's a teenager."
Kushina looks into the tube and at the teenage boy floating in it. "Release him from the tube."
"Ma'am, are you sure it's safe?"
"We can't leave him in there, so let him out!"
The ANBU presses a few buttons and the tube is drained of liquid. The tube opens and the teen falls into the arms of one of the ANBU.
"Take him to the hospital immediately!"
The ANBU leaves the room, carrying the unconscious teen.
Kushina turns to the other ANBU in the room. "Come on! We must find the sick person responsible for this before he or she can escape!"
Orochimaru has just pocketed a scroll containing all his notes on his attempts to create an immortality technique, as well as all his notes about his Curse Seals, and his notes on the Uchiha clan, when he hears a voice behind him.
"I should have known it was you, Orochimaru!"
Orochimaru growls. He would recognize that voice anywhere. "Kushina Uzumaki."
Kushina and one squad of ANBU have arrived, with no intent of letting Orochimaru escape. One of the ANBU quickly taps his radio. "This is squad two. We have located the criminal. It's Orochimaru of the Sannin. All squads converge on our location!"
"Bringing the full armada down on me, Uzumaki?"
"Surrender, Orochimaru. Otherwise, I'll have to destroy you."
Orochimaru laughs. "You think you can stop me? You only caught me off guard and in a rage last time. Let me show you why I should have been the Hokage!" He quickly does two handsigns. "Hidden Shadow Snake Hands!"
Snakes shoot from Orochimaru's hands, quickly getting onto the three ANBU. The snakes bite into the ANBU, injecting them with venom. Kushina manages to dodge the snakes and summons a chakra chain. The chain smacks Orochimaru, sending him crashing through the wall and into the next room. Kushina follows, drawing her sword. Orochimaru gets back to his feet and draws a sword of his own. He growls as the the two blades clash. "You will die here, Uzumaki bitch!"
Kushina glares at him. "Says the person who hasn't even hit me once!"
Orochimaru roars in anger and swings his sword again.
The other two ANBU squads arrive to see their Hokage locked into an intense sword fight with Orochimaru. They draw their own weapons and jump in to help Kushina. It doesn't take long for Orochimaru to realize that he is losing this fight. He knows he needs to escape. He does some handsigns. "Summoning Technique!"
Manda appears, looking as grouchy as ever. "What do you want, Orochimaru?"
"I need you to kill these fools!"
Manda looks at the group in front of him. "You want me to attack the Hokage and a group of ANBU? Are you insane? Need I remind you that you are a Konoha ninja?"
"Not anymore! I'm going rogue!"
"Give me a reason not to eat you where you stand."
"If you don't obey me, I'll destroy the Snake Contract. You'll lose not only me, but also Anko as a summoner, and I remember how much of a liking you took to Anko as a summoner."
Manda growls. He turns to the Hokage. "Forgive me for what I am about to do."
Kushina nods and raises her sword. Manda charges. Kushina and the ANBU jump to the side. Kushina quickly turns to the ANBU. "Take care of the snake! I'll deal with Orochimaru!"
The ANBU nod and charge at Manda. Kushina focuses her attention on Orochimaru. The two start fighting again. Kushina suddenly shoots a chakra chain at Orochimaru, tripping him. As Orochimaru regains his footing, Kushina charges at him with a familiar attack. "Rasengan!"
The attack strikes Orochimaru, causing him to slam into the nearby wall, creating a crater. A scroll falls out of Orochimaru's pocket during the impact and rolls to Kushina, who picks it up. She quickly looks at it and realizes it's a storage scroll. She releases the seal and suddenly she's holding a much larger scroll. She grins upon realizing what the larger scroll is. She turns to Manda. "Manda! I now possess the Snake Contact! You are free to kill Orochimaru if you wish!"
Orochimaru's eyes widen upon hearing that and he notices that Kushina is in fact holding the Contract. Before he can climb out of the crater and move to reclaim it, he finds himself looking into a familiar snake's eye. "Uh, perhaps there is a way we can come to an agreement, Manda?"
Manda says nothing. He just promptly eats Orochimaru. Upon finishing his meal, he turns to Kushina. "I have a request, Lady Hokage."
"You wish me to give this scroll to Anko, thus making her the official Snake Summoner, right?"
"Consider it done."
"Thank you, Lady Hokage." Manda disappears.
Kushina sighs as she looks at the bloody crater. "Well, Orochimaru is now dead. ANBU Squad Three, take Squad Two to the hospital for treatment for the venom. Then come back here and rejoin Squad One as they continue to explore the rooms in this place. I want to know everything the bastard was up to in this place."
"Yes, Lady Hokage."
"Good. As for me, I have to go pick up Naruto and then I have to pay a visit to Hiruzen. He deserves to know what happened to his former student."
Hiruzen looks up from his desk when he hears the knock on the door. "Come in."
The door opens and Kushina steps through, holding her son. "Hello, Hiruzen."
"What's wrong, Kushina? I can see the look on your face and it makes me worry."
"It's your former student, Orochimaru. You remember the reports about people disappearing?"
"What about them? Wait, was Orochimaru a victim too? What happened to him?"
"He wasn't a victim. He was the one who was responsible. He tried to escape, but was killed by his own summon. Orochimaru is dead."
Hiruzen's eyes widen. "I see." He turns in his chair. "I... I need some time to myself. Thank you for letting me know."
Kushina nods and leaves the room. Hiruzen breaks down into tears.
Vanex: And this marks the end of Orochimaru. How much will his death change how events play out? You'll have to wait and see. And now that I've pointed out that the last chapter did reveal the winner of the poll, how many of you will figure out who Naruto will be paired with? See you all next time!