Heyyyy everybody!

So...this is a rewrite of Kitsune Rising. Cause the other version sucks! and i write better than that now...

I do not own Naruto...sadly..i would not be writing fan fiction if i did...

The Mission

"A month?"

"That's right," answered the Godaime. "A month long mission; Reconnassaince." She leaned on her laced fingers, resting her elbows on the desk. A position she found to be most comfortable. "You can handle that can't you?"

"What no fighting?" questioned her charge in a sarcastic tone.

"Shouldn't be," she answered. "But knowing you there might be."

The young man ran his fingers through his blonde hair. "Why can't Shikamaru, or Neji, or even Kiba do it?"

"Because, they're all on their own missions Naruto," said the busty leader. "Trust me, you were not my first choice for this mission. I'd much rather you go on a escorting mission. That way you could actually protect something and not be so antsy. But that just isn't the case."

Naruto sighed. "Do I have to go by myself? Can't Sakura or Sai come with me, Tsunade?"

Tsunade looked him over. Normally the boisterous blonde would be itching to go on a mission, but he seemed wary.

"What's wrong Naruto?" she asked. "Normally you would already be gone."

Naruto stared at the woman he'd come to see as his grandmother, trying to figure out a way to voice his concerns. He was scared. He had the terrible feeling that something was going to happen to him and he didn't know what. He did not feel confident about this mission at all. He would feel much better if someone could go with him. But that wasn't him. He wasn't scared. He was one of the strongest ninja in the world. A sage! He could take care of himself. He put on his best fake foxy grin and nodded.
"Alright baachan! I'll go!" he nearly hollered.

The abrupt change in attitude bothered Tsunade, but she decided not to question it. She stamped the insignia on the mission scroll and handed it to him.

"Naruto, this is a reconnaissance mission. You can't be noisy and you can't just jump into things like you normally do."

"I know that Baachan! Do you think I'm stupid?" grinned the blonde. Tsunade decided not to answer that question.

"Also, I want you to wear official attire for this mission. And I want you to wear a bandana or something to cover your hair. Secrecy for this mission is key, and you're just far too bright."

"That's kind of hurtful Baachan," said Naruto. What was wrong with orange? Absolutely nothing, that's what. "But alright, I'll wear the other stuff." Tsunade nodded.

"Good luck, Naruto."

Naruto pulled on the standard black ninja garb and grabbed a flak vest, pulling it on and zipping it up. He studied himself in the mirror and decided that maybe less orange might be better….No way! Orange was awesome! After this month long mission, even his boxers were going to be orange! He didn't care what Tsunade said.

But even he had to admit that he looked really good without all the orange…

Naruto shook his head. He needed to get ready and go. The mission started as soon as he reached the gates and he didn't want Tsunade to get mad at him for dawdling. He zipped up the vest then grabbed a black bandana, tying it around his head and hiding his mess of blonde hair. Once he had the bandana how he liked it, he grabbed his Konoha headband and wrapped it around his forehead, tying the knot in the back tight.

Once finished, Naruto looked in his mirror, hands on his hips and chest puffed out. He was ready to go. Then he sighed, resting his head against the cool mirror. He was still nervous. He couldn't shake the terrible feeling no matter how much he tried. The glass fogged up from the heat of his forehead as he began to sweat. What was wrong with him? Maybe he was just getting a little sick. Nothing major. He stood up.

"Naruto?" he heard from the door as someone knocked on it. "He'd know that voice anywhere. He walked over to the door and opened it, smiling at the pink haired young woman in his doorway. He grinned wider when he noticed she was staring at his body more than his face. She shook her head.

"I've never seen you without your orange Naruto," she said. "You look nice."

"If you say so Sakura-chan," said Naruto, rubbing the back of his head. "Sakura-chan, I'm sorry, but I really don't have time to vis-"

"I know about your mission Naruto," she interrupted. "And I know how long you were going to be gone. I just wanted to give you something."

Naruto moved away, letting her into the small apartment. She looked around, noticing that the place was abnormally clean.

"You cleaned?" she asked.

"Well yeah," answered Naruto. "Didn't want things to fester and mold while I was gone did I?" Cleaning his apartment earlier that morning had reminded him of leaving on his training trip with Jiraiya. He had scrubbed the whole place down then too. He shook his head, not wanting to ruin his day with memories. He didn't notice Sakura staring at him. She tried not to blush. He really looked good without all that orange to distract from his body.

"Naruto, you'll only be gone a month," said Sakura. He shrugged. "Well, anyway, I brought you this." She took his hand and set a bottle of ointment in his palm. "It's a medicine that will help with cuts and bruises. Made it myself."

Naruto looked at the little bottle, vaguely remembering that Hinata had done the same thing long ago at the chuunin exams. He shook that thought out of his head and smiled at Sakura. Hinata….He really needed to talk to her. He promised himself that that would be the first thing he did when he got back . He looked up to see Sakura staring at him with a trained medic's eye.

"Are you sick?" she asked.

"No of course not. I don't get sick," he said, waving her question away. Though he did feel a little off. But he had a mission to go too! No time to be sick!
"I'm glad I got to see you before I left Sakura." He smiled. "Since I'll be gone a whole month and all. Oh and thanks for the ointment. "

Sakura didn't say anything for a while, noticing the small beads of sweat on his forehead and his slightly flushed face. Either he was stressed, or he was getting a fever. But a mission is a mission. A small fever won't be taken into account.

"Yeah…"she said. "You too. Good luck." She put her fist to her chest and watched as Naruto grabbed his pack and walked out, sending her a smile before jumping off.

"Stay out of too much trouble, alright?" said Tsunade, fussing over him a bit. As much as the boy annoyed her, he was like a little brother to her, and the last thing she wanted was for him to be hurt. He's proven that he's been worthy of that cursed necklace. She didn't want it to take another precious person away from him.

"Baachan, I'll be fine." He said grinning. "I promise." He pulled her hands off him and walked out of the gates. He looked back at her like he did Sakura earlier that morning. She waved. Naruto nodded and jumped off.

"….Be safe Naruto…."

Sakura stared at the Godaime with her arms crossed.

"Don't look at me like that, Sakura. He was the only one available for the mission."

"He was obviously sick, shishou. He should be at home in bed," said Sakura, irritated.

"Sick or not, he is a ninja. And he's our best. Don't tell him I said that. Don't want him getting more cocky than he already is."

"Whether he's the best or not won't matter. He's ill Tsunade. That could compromise the mission and might get him killed."

"Think of who you're talking about Sakura. Naruto? Killed? Unheard of! He hasn't become Hokage yet. And I fully intend to make him my successor."

Sakura didn't say anything. She was worried about the blonde. It had been almost two weeks since he had left on his reconnaissance mission and though it was a month long mission, she couldn't help but feel that something might be wrong.

Naruto leaned against a wall, chest heaving. The bundle in his hands squirmed. He tried to calm it, not wanting to blow his cover. He calmed his breathing and heart rate before peaking around the edge of the wall. The samurai were looking everywhere and it was only a matter of time before they found him. He had to get out of here now. Sure he could probably beat them all, but the smoke was making it hard to breathe…


Naruto looked up to see charcoal grey smoke floating around him, getting thicker and blacker by the second. Someone must have started a fire. He needed to get out of there now. Forgetting the danger the samurai posed, Naruto stood and ran right down the middle of them, away from the inky smoke. Many were shocked, not expecting their prey to run past them. The blonde ninja picked up his speed, looking back and seeing a large wave of chakra infused flames coming down the hallway, catching the samurai off guard. He blocked out the screams, running faster and holding the squirming bundle tighter.

The smoke was starting to get to him and he coughed, stumbling a bit before shaking his head, trying to clear it. He bent lower and turned a corner. He carefully put the small bundle in his pack and closed it up, then took off again. He didn't have time to get into sage mode. The flames were still coming, having not dissipated in the slightest. Damn fire jutsus. He really did hate them. He couldn't use a wind jutsu for fear of making the fire stronger, and he sure didn't want to get hit by it. He looked around, searching frantically for an exit before spotting a door that led to the sewage pipes.

Well shit.

Naruto ran as fast as he could to the door and swung it open and slammed it closed behind him. The smoke began to seep under the crack. He had merely minutes. He looked and saw a large stone pipe. He formed a weak Rasengan in his hand and slammed it into the stone, forming a hole big enough for him to get through and hopefully keep most of the fire out. After a second of hesitation he climbed into, nearly throwing up from the smell of sewage and other disgusting unmentionables. He breathed through his mouth and ran, slipping and falling off a small ledge into a waist deep pond of the disgusting liquid. This time he couldn't hold it. He vomited then wiped his mouth and pressed on. The tunnel was already starting to get smoky and the fire would soon follow it. If he hadn't been feeling so sick earlier, he wouldn't have had too much of a problem with this. But he couldn't turn back now. With a chuckle he thought of how Sakura would react to the knowledge of him treading through shit and sewage to get away from a fire jutsu that just would not stop. He was really going to have to say something to baachan about this one.

He cried out as he bumped against a wall, sending his torso slamming into the ground of the next tunnel. He growled, climbing up on the ledge. The small tunnel forced him to crouch. He could smell the smoke and he crawled as fast as he could through the tunnel finally coming to the end of it.

He gulped.

He had to be over 5 miles above the ocean. That was a whole lot of feet. How many feet were in a mile? He shook his head. What did that matter! If he fell, he could die.

Naruto hesitated a moment too long. He felt his back warm up, he turned his head to see the fire jutsu roaring towards him and before he even managed to jump, it hit him head on. He cried out as he was forced out of the tunnel by the flames, unable to even gather chakra to try to blow the fire away. The flames burned at his arms and his knot in his head band was burned away as it flew off. He remained conscious just long enough to grab his pack and pull it around in front of him and curling around it as he slammed into the water.

"TSUNADE! ITS BEEN OVER A MONTH! ALMOST TWO!" cried Sakura, slamming her hands on the desk. Then entire rookie nine stood in front of the busty Hokage's desk, all equally outraged. Their friend was missing. And they'd all just now heard about it. Sakura seemed the most enraged. "WHERE IS HE!"

"I…don't know," mumbled Tsunade. She'd lost contact with him completely about three weeks into the mission. The last she'd heard from him, by messenger toad, he'd infiltrated the facility he'd been sent to recon. She hadn't heard anything since. She assumed that he never had the opportunity to write her a note. She could understand her student's anger. Even she could tell that the pinkette was falling for the goofy blonde.

"Why don't you know Tsunade! Huh!" growled Sakura, tearing up. Ino pulled her raging friend back.

"Why are we just now learning that he's MIA, Tsunade-Sama," she asked, hugging Sakura to her and trying to get her to calm down.

"Cause….i didn't know," answered the older blonde. "The last I heard from him, he told me that he wouldn't be able to send anymore letters because he'd infiltrated the base and he would write once he'd completed his mission and come home. He promised me he would lie low and not fight."

Sakura nearly exploded. "DO YOU HAVE ANY IDEA WHO YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT? NARUTO IS NOT GOING TO JUST SIT AND WATCH IF SOMETHING HAPPENS. HE'S GOING TO FIGHT! BECAUSE HE'S AN IDIOT!" Sakura couldn't go on, for she'd fallen to her knees, sobbing. "What if he's gone…"

Kiba looked to the hokage. "He can't be gone. This is Naruto we're talking about! The best ninja in the world! There's no way he can be beaten."

Hinata was nearly crying as well, but she agreed with Kiba. Naruto…Naruto can't be beaten…He just can't. She watched as Ino comforted Sakura and helped her stand.

Shikamaru piped up. "Let us go search for him, Tsunade-sama. All of us."

Tsunade stared at the group of jonin and chuunin who wanted so bad to find their friend. The Peace Keeper as he had been called recently. If the ninja world knew that he was gone….NO! He wasn't gone! He wasn't! But what if he was hurt….

Tsunade nodded. "Alright, all of you! You're mission is to find Naruto and bring him home! No matter what happens!"

The group stood at attention. "HAI!"

Naruto groaned as he felt something cold press along his forehead. He chose not to open his eyes. I must be dead, he thought. Then he felt searing pain coming from somewhere on his back. Oh good, I'm not dead. He opened his eyes to find himself staring at a wooden wall. He was laying on his stomach. Hmm…He gritted his teeth and tried to get up, only to cry out as something pushed him back down.

"Don't move. You've got quite an impressive burn along your back. Wouldn't want to crack the scabs would you?" said a voice. It sounded fuzzy in his ears, almost..far away. He turned his head from the wall and laid it back down. He looked around, searching for the source of the fuzzy voice. Suddenly, a waving hand was inches from his nose.


Talking hand?

"Over here!" Naruto looked over with his eyes to see a portly young woman sitting beside him. She smiled widely at him. "You know, you'd be quite the cutie if you weren't covered in burns and bandages."

Confused, Naruto just stared at her.

"Oh forgive me," she said, assuming he wanted to know who she was. "My name is Miho. What's yours?" She waited for an answer, smiling kindly.

He tried to answer but when he attempted to make sound come from his throat all he could manage was a hoarse cough. He must have inhaled more smoke than he realized.

Wait…Smoke…fire…THE JUTSU!

Naruto sat up quickly, ignoring the agonizing pain in his back. Where the hell was he? He remembered crawling through sewage and smoke and a fire jutsu hitting him and the kit…

The kit!

"Are you looking for your friend?" asked Miho, smiling kindly and forcing him back down. "He's resting as well. Poor little thing lost his eye. I'm assuming the two of you were in some kind of fire. But rest easy. Old Miho will take care of you both."

Naruto laid there, letting the older woman tend his wounds. She reminded him of a kinder, fatter Tsunade. His ears flicked at every little noise in the small room…wait…his ears flick? Ears don't flick. He moved his arm up carefully, gingerly feeling top of his head. He felt a bald spot where a small patch of his hair had been seared off but that wasn't what shocked him. It was the rather large, fuzzy ears he felt twitching at the top of his head. If he wasn't so tired and hurting, he would be freaking out.

Damn it! What other surprises do I have to look forward too? He thought.

"Oh I brushed your tail for you." He heard the old lady say. "You must be a Hanyou."

What's a Hanyou? Tail? I don't have a tail…OH F***! Kyuubi! Kurama! Oy!

Naruto closed his eyes and suddenly found himself within his mindscape, free from pain for a short while. He walked to the giant gate stepping through the bars and walking over to the bulk of red fur that was Kyuubi, or Kurama, as he had recently learned was the name of the giant beast. He noticed that some of the patches of fur were missing on its back and it looked kind of grey.

"Kyuubi." The demon growled, wanting very much to be left alone.

"Kurama," Naruto tried again, calling to the demon kindly. The fox seemed to respond better to his formal name.

"What do you want boy?" he grumbled.

"I want to know what's going on," he answered. "Why do I have the ears and apparently a tail of a fox? Is this some sort of strange dream? Am I going to wake up a mangled mess in a raving somewhere? Cause I'm beginning to think I would much prefer that then having fox features."

The Kyuubi yawned. He'd long since come to terms that he was stuck with the boy for life. But now, he would be gone soon, because the boy was an idiot.

"It's called Absorbtion," growled the Kyuubi. "You are absorbing my essence, and therefore gaining a few of my features. The fat woman is right. You're becoming a Hanyou. The ears and tail of the majestic fox are just the beginning."

Naruto felt like pouting. He didn't want to go through this…Absorbtion.

"What will happen to me?"

"You will gain all my powers, even more so than you already have."

"….What will happen to you?"

The fox opened one glaring red eye and looked down at the boy.

"I'll die."