Saburo's Tournament

CHAPTER 1

Universal Faction Tournament


"An S-Rank Mission?" Naruto asked loudly, completely taken aback by the woman's statement. The boy had blue eyes and blonde, spiky hair, accompanied by whisker marks on his face. He wore a form fitting orange and black tracksuit that matched his black Leaf headband. He shook his head quickly to regain his initial focus and attentiveness.

"Yes, Naruto," the female Hokage answered, seated in a blue chair behind a wood desk that circled halfway around her. There were various books and documents littered across the room as usual. The woman seated behind the desk was fairly tall, light-skinned with golden-amber eyes, and had straight blonde hair. "You and many other ninja from the Hidden Leaf Village shall be summoned, including myself."

"You're going too, Granny Tsunade?" He asked, scratching the back of his head. "If you, the Hokage, are going, then it must be really important." Naruto put a lot of emphasis on 'really'.

"It's a serious matter that's to be handled by our most powerful forces," she explained. She picked up a document and appeared to be reading it. "The other ninjas should be arriving soon, so you can just wait here for the moment." Her gaze didn't transfer from the document.

"An all-star team, eh?" Naruto grinned happily at the thought of it. "There's no way we can fail this mission!"

"That's a good attitude, Naruto," said a calm voice. Naruto's eyes looked past Tsunade and at the man that stood on the windowsill. The man wore the standard Jounin flak jacket with iron plated gloves. With the help of his forehead protecter, his face mask concealed his lower face and his left eye. He had tall and spiky white hair and wore an easygoing, lazy expression.

"Kakashi-sensei!" Naruto grinned at the arrival of the ninja, but Tsunade didn't share the happiness.

"Kakashi," she called out. "I would appreciate if you used the door next time."

"Oh, right. Sorry about that..." Kakashi scratched the back of his head innocently before leaping down and walking over towards Naruto. The three then turned and faced the door as it opened slowly. Like a horde of zombies, a mass of people squirmed into the tight room. Kakashi counted thirteen heads after the door shut once again.

"It's seems you've all arrived," said Tsunade looking back down at the document. She then began to read off names and look up from time to time. "Guy, Kakashi, Yamato, Neji, Sakura, Kiba, Shikamaru, Sai, Choji, Lee, Hinata, Shino, Tenten, Ino, and Naruto." Each person nodded after they heard their name. Tsunade seemed satisfied as she put her document back down and looked up again.

"Eh? We've got almost every capable ninja in this room," noticed Sakura, a pink haired girl.

"That's true. This mission must be quite serious," said Captain Yamato blankly. "I'm assuming that we'll be doing something strenuous."

"Whatever it is, I'm sure we can do it," said Sai with a plastered smile on his face. Neji and Shino stood silently, giving no hint of excitement nor disappointment.

"Now, all of you have been called here for one reason," said Tsunade, standing up from her chair. "We shall all be going on a high-stake S-Rank mission that requires the best of the Hidden Leaf's ninja!" After saying this, a few people's eyes sparkled with excitement while other's jaws dropped in shock.

"What are we waiting for?" Rock Lee asked, burning with excitement.

"Nothing at all," smirked Tsunade. The room suddenly turned bright, forcing everybody to close their eyes and wait for the light to die down.

...

"Whoa!" Natsu shouted, slamming his palms onto the bar counter. He was a lean, well-built young man of average height. His skin complexion had a minor tan, and he also had black eyes and spiky rose-colored hair. He wore a scarf around his neck that was detailed with pale scales above his black waistcoat with gold trimmings over his chest. He wore no shirt underneath the waistcoat, but he was equipped with short, white trousers that went down to his knees. "Are you serious?"

"Absolutely, Natsu," replied the elderly man from atop the bar counter. Although he was sitting, it was obvious that he was extremely short. He also had black eyes and was growing quite bald with only the edges of his head containing white hair. He also sported a thick, white mustache. "It's going to be a group S-Class Quest with exceptions. I've created a group of sixteen allowed to go on this Job."

"Awesome!" Natsu grinned happily at this information that was being told by the Guild Master, Makarov Dreyar. "So who's the group of sixteen?" He turned and looked at the mass of guild members behind him, all of who were paying close attention to what Makarov was saying.

"Hmm," he scratched his chin. "Erza Scarlet." A red-haired woman that was quite intimidating in appearance and reputation stepped out of the crowd. "Mirajane." A few people were surprised by this choice, seeing as Mirajane appeared quite peaceful at first. "Laxus..." Everybody turned to look at the yellow-haired man who was seated away from the crowd, indulged in his music that he played through his headphones.

"All these guys are S-Class," noticed a random guild member from the center of the crowd.

"You're right, we have no chance," agreed a second guild member. Natsu could see the disappointment in his comrade's faces as they parted from the crowd.

"Bickslow, Evergreen, and Freed," continued Makarov. The three named members stood proudly together near Laxus, who seemed to be uninterested in the matter.

"The Raijin Tribe..." whispered somebody in the crowd. More people became discouraged and sat down at various tables.

"Juvia and Gajeel." Eyes glanced towards the black-haired Iron-Dragon slayer, but he looked as intimidating as ever, making the people change focus to Juvia.

"Juvia is going?" Juvia referred to herself in third-person. She was a young woman with blue-hair, pale skin, and a curvaceous figure. Her hair was tightly curled at the base, and she wore a navy blue coat, a fur shawl, as well as a Russian Cossack Hat. Makarov simply nodded in reply before continuing on.

"Natsu and Gray." A large grin spread across Natsu's face, as well as the shirtless and dark-haired Gray's.

"Hell yeah!" Natsu shouted as he let loose a stream of fire towards the ceiling. This act discouraged even more members, as they also cleared out.

"And lastly...Lucy, Cana, and Wendy!" Makarov announced to the three females that all stood seperate of each other. The brown-haired and curvaceous Cana appeared to be surprised as she nearly spit out her beer. After a brief moment a silent proudness, Erza finally spoke.

"That's only fifteen, not sixteen..." Erza was a young woman with long, scarlet hair and brown eyes. She had a slender figure that could be described as amazing by some, and was complimented by large breasts. She wore a custom-made armor made by Heart Kreuz smiths, a blue skirt, and black boots. On the middle of her left upper arm, there was a blue Fairy Tail stamp.

"Well the sixteenth member isn't here yet, but he'll arrive eventually," said Makarov looking down at the ground. "But don't worry. This Job should be quite exciting and fun-filled with many battle opportunities."

"Battle opportunities?" Gray repeated. "Against who?" The others all listened in, also curious of who they would be fighting against.

"Ninja from the Village Hidden In The Leaves." Everybody's eyes widened as the room turned a glaring white, but everyone soon had to shield their eyes from the light.

...

Two large cubes that appeared to be made of light, or something similar, expanded over one hundred square feet each, granting the two groups that materialized inside them enough space to move around freely and spread out. Outside the cubes was what appeared to be some sort of room with tall pillars edging the sides and a large throne near the back.

"So you're finally here," said a man who sat upon the throne. He had long, black hair that split into two at the back of his head and his eyes were dark red. Four zig-zagging scars ran down the man's face, stretching from his eyebrow down the crease on the left side of his lip. He looked noble as he wore a long, white cape with gold edgings. He also wore galliant white gloves that had gold edges to match. Even while seated and at a distance, it was able to discern that the man was rather tall. "I was hoping to get this 'event' started earlier than this, but I guess its alright."

"Who the hell is that guy?" Natsu asked to Makarov, who stared at the noble-looking man.

"Yeah, Granny Tsunade! Who is that guy and who are those guys?" Naruto glanced at the large cube containing Natsu and his guild members. Natsu slowly glanced at Naruto, allowing the two's gazes to connect, invoking an intense staredown.

"I, my friends, am Saburo Kobayasha," he introduced himself. "And you are Fairy Tail and Konoha, correct?" The two groups turned to to face each other, until the man spoke again. "As Makarov and Tsunade know, I have summoned you here to compete in the Universal Faction Tournament."

"Universal what?" Naruto asked.

"'The Universal Faction Tournament', is what he said," Kakashi repeated calmly, despite the situation at hand being totally fictitious in essence.

"A tournament?" In the other cube, Natsu turned to Master Makarov. "We're competing in a tournament?" A large grin spread across the young man's face as Makarov nodded as if to signify 'yes'.

"Isn't this a little bit...outrageous?" Lucy asked to nobody in particular. "I mean, come on...this must be dream, right? There's no way something like this could be possible," she continued. Everybody else was too focused on Saburo to answer her question.

"Whether you believe this to be reality or a dream," started the black-haired orchestrator. "...you better fight like your life depends on it." You could literally hear the mass amount of 'gulps' as people cleared their throats. "Now then, I have introduced myself and informed you of what you are competing in. Is that enough information for you to win?" He asked. Seeing as nobody replied or answered, he began to talk again. "If there are no questions, then we shall began the first match."

"Already?" Yamato asked, sweat dropping from his brow.

"I guess this guy's pretty serious about this tournament," shrugged Ino.

"Yeah, a little too serious," commented Choji as he rubbed the back of his pudgy neck.

"The first match shall be..." Saburo took a long pause in order to build up the dramatic suspense. "...Kiba Inuzuka vs. Bickslow of the Raijin Tribe, and there will be no further discussion."