Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto or the Last Airbender.
Warning: Azula will be a year younger than Zuko in this story.
Bodyguard of Azula
Chapter 1: Shipwrecked and Water Tribe
Inside the Council room, several people stood as a blonde haired woman sat before a boy with a brighter shade of yellow. While the younger blonde simply sat in silence, the village council could not keep their smiles contained, satisfied at what they see as the village outcast finally getting his 'punishment.' Of course, when asking either the civilian or shinobi member of the council what the crime was, they gave their own version.
"Has the council reached a verdict regarding Genin Uzumaki?" Tsunade asked one of the civilian members, who promptly stood up, his smug grin was open for all to see.
"We have, Hokage-sama," he smirked. "We find the demon...er...defendant, guilty of all charges." He sat down, satisfied with the verdict that he and his fellow civilian members had given.
She looked down at the blonde shinobi. "Naruto Uzumaki, because of your crimes against Sasuke Uchiha, you are banished from Konoha. You will be placed in jail until the Fire Daimyo arrives. Once he does, your chakra will be sealed, and you will never be allowed to return to the village unless we order you to come back." She looked at the ANBU in the room, standing silently in the back. "ANBU, take him."
Both the civilian and shinobi council watched as Naruto was led away. They had expected him to protest, say it wasn't his fault or ask why the Hokage was doing this, all in a loud voice. But Naruto did not react when his punishment was given and he walked out being gently, but firmly led by the ANBU. While the civilians were celebrating, the shinobi looked at each other. they all felt that something was wrong but they just did not know what it was.
Naruto sat on the poor excuse for a bed. The lumps underneath would've made sleeping very uncomfortable. "That went as expected," he said. He showed no emotion during the so-called trial because he knew what was going to happen long before that.
"Yes, it did. Are you still going to leave?" the Bijū inside him asked.
"Is that a rhetorical question, Kyūbi?" he asked back with a blank expression. Ever since he found out what would happen, he tried to keep his emotion clamped down tight (so far it was working quite well).
The fox smirked. "Fair enough, gaki. Let me rephrase that. When are you going to leave?"
The blonde looked out the tiny window in his cell. "Soon enough," he answered, looking at the night sky beyond the bars.
Tsunade watched the sun go down from the window in the Hokage's office. As Shizune came through the door, Tsunade turned to her. "Is everything ready?" she asked her apprentice, who nodded in answer. She got out of the Hoakge's chair. "Let's go get Naruto." The two left her office and headed down to the jail.
After Naruto came back with Sasuke, the civilian council had all but exploded at the Uchiha's battered condition and demanded Naruto's execution. She, along with Jiraiya and the shinobi council, tried to figure out a way to stop that from happening. The elders came up with a plan: Naruto would be banished. But they would wait for the Fire Daimyo to come to Konoha to banish him, to make it look official. However, what would really happen was Naruto would be secretly smuggled out of Konoha and given to Jiraiya, who would then train him for as long as he could, until Konoha needed him again. The civilian council only knew of the banishment part, which made them happy enough. Seeing as it was the best idea voiced, it was agreed on. Once Naruto was out of the village and safely with Jiraiya, Tsunade would secretly pass the real information of what actually happened to the Daimyo and Konoha's allies were (especially Suna, because of Gaara). Naruto's teammates would be told once it came close for the blonde to return. But first they had to get him out. The first step began tonight.
As Tsunade entered the jail, Shizune following behind, she motioned the guard (actually an ANBU agent informed of the plan) to leave. He nodded in acknowledgment and silently left the room. She went to Naruto's cell and pulled out the key. "Naruto," she called out. He turned from the window to her. "We're getting you out of here." She opened the gate and motioned Naruto to come out. But he stayed put. "Come on, Naruto, we don't have much time." They had to get him out soon. Otherwise, someone was bound to find out.
He stood up didn't move from that spot. Instead, he threw the Hokage a glare that was both angered and hurt. "That's where you're wrong, Tsunade," Naruto said coldly. He reached up and untied his headband. "You're wrong about the fact of not having much time. You didn't have any time to begin with." The headband fell to the floor, crashing loudly. At the same time, he disappeared in a plume of smoke.
Shizune stared the smoke in the cell. "It was a Kage Bunshin (Shadow Clone)?" she asked, not believing what she saw. Tsunade could only silently nod, she was just as stunned. "We have to send the ANBU squads out immediately!" She rushed for the door.
Tsunade follow a step behind. But even as she ran, there was a sick feeling in her stomach. Whatever they did, it would be too late. Naruto was gone.
Naruto smiled as he stared out at the sea. He had done it. He gotten out without anyone finding him.
When he brought Sasuke back to the village, he quickly found out that the civilian council wanted him executed. After discovering what Tsunade had been planning to do with him, he decided to take a page out of Orochimaru's, Itachi's, and recently Sasuke's book. He made the choice to sever all connections with Konoha. But he also knew that just walking out the front gates would not be a good plan (in fact, it was an idiotic plan). So, with some advice from the Kyūbi, the day before he was brought before the Hokage, he made a Kage Bunshin, and sent it out as far as he could from Konoha.
While he was in jail, Naruto used a Kawarimi (Body Replacement) with the clone, swapping places. Once he was out, he ran as fast he could to the nearest port in the Land of Fire. It took him three days to reach it and each was filled with watching everything for possible attacks. Once he reached the port, he signed on a deckhand on the first ship he came upon. As luck would have it, the ship was leaving the Elemental Countries. He didn't breathe easily until the Land of Fire disappeared from the horizon.
The ship was now a month at sea and the Elemental Countries were far behind them. "That was very slick, Naruto," Kyūbi complemented him. The fox always knew that if his Jinchūriki applied himself, the feats that he would be able to achieve would be quite impressive (like slipping out of Konoha's notice and being able to successfully evade them). Of course, he did help the blonde, but he had no doubt that with a little more practice, his Jinchūriki wouldn't need any help.
"I do try to please," Naruto replied, as he kept looking out at the sea. He knew that he was supposed to be working but the sight stunned him. He was amazed by its beauty. It seemed…tranquil and peaceful. But that was soon forgotten when he saw a dark smudge on the horizon. It ruined the image "Any idea on what that is out there, Kyūbi?"
"I'm not an expert on what happens at sea gaki. It's probably nothing" he said dismissively.
Naruto's boss, a experienced sailor called Shin, came over and started shouting at him for not working. He noticed the smudge and the tirade promptly vanished. Instead he swore loudly and told Naruto to get moving. That was a storm and it was approaching fast. He turned and ran, shouting for the captain. All the while, the smudge rapidly filled the skies, coming towards them like a black hand.
Everyone on the deck scrambled to get below once the captain blew the warning whistle. By then it was too late. The storm hit the ship and hit it hard. The deck turned slippery as the rain pounded down. Naruto felt blinded by the rain, unable to see where anything was. His ears were plugged by the winds howling and the sea matching its tone. He tried to reach the deck hatch but couldn't find it, thanks to the rain. It seemed like he was the only person on deck now. When he thought he found the door, it turned out to be the prow. He was on the wrong end of the ship!
He started to turn but a wave swept over the deck. It was sudden and pushed him over the side. He tried to grab something, anything that would keep him safe but his hands only found air. The last thing he heard was the fox screaming "Stay awake, Naruto! Stay awa-!"
(Location: Ember Island)
Azula walked along the beach, annoyed. She had no idea why her father decided to send both her and her brother Zuko, as well as Mai and Ty Lee, with her Uncle Iroh to Ember Island for a vacation. It was getting unbearable with Ty Lee being overly cheerful, her uncle doing nothing but drink tea, and Zuko and Mai being awkward around each other. If she stayed there any longer, she would be tempted to set everything on fire (although, with Iroh there, it probably wouldn't get that far).
She sighed in frustration. Things had changed when her father became the Fire Lord and her mother had disappeared. She had gotten even better at Firebending. People were calling her a prodigy before, now they looked at her with awe. She was being taught by the best Firebenders that were out there, including her father. And while she progressed, Zuko floundered. She had gained his approval and Zuko, despite being the eldest, did not. But she resented her brother for always being with their mother. Azula always wanted her mother to show her that she was loved as well. But she always paid more attention to Zuko and that had irritated Azula to no end.
She heard someone coming behind her. It was Ty Lee. No one else had a spring in their step that was so audible. Azula suppressed a groan. As much as Ty Lee was her friend, she really didn't want to deal with her right now. "Hey, Azula!" called out Ty Lee. "Why are you out…?" Her voice trailed into silence. That wasn't like her. Azula looked back at her and saw her pointing out to the water.
Somebody had washed up on shore. Azula ran over to check. The first thing she noticed was that it was a boy about Zuko's age, maybe a little older. The second thing was that he was still breathing, somewhat. "Ty Lee, go and get my uncle," she ordered. "This boy is injured." He was bleeding from the head. Ty Lee nodded and ran back to the house.
Azula looked closer at the boy, taking in details. He had blonde hair, which was uncommon (if not outright rare) in the Bending Countries. It reminded her of the sun. He had a natural tan and six strange birthmarks, three on each side of his face. They almost looked like whiskers. How strange.
Hearing footsteps on the sand, she saw her uncle coming towards her. He knelt to examine the boy. "Azula, go back to the house and get your brother to help you make a bed ready," Iroh said after looking the boy over. He didn't sound like his usual tea-loving self, but the general he used to be. She nodded once and ran back to the house.
Naruto awoke to the sound of waves crashing on a shoreline. It sounded gentler than the waves in the storm. As he sat up, he noticed that somebody was sitting next to the bed. It was an old man who had a friendly look. "Ah you are awake, that is good," he said.
Naruto looked around to figure out where he was. But all he saw was that he was in a house that was near the beach. "Where…?" he started before a wave of nausea hit him and forced him back down onto the bed.
But the old man understood what he had tried to ask. "You are on Ember Island in my brother's beach house. My name is Iroh," he answered, pointing to himself. "What is your name?" He sounded curious, but there was also a tone of caution.
The blonde managed to sit up again, slowly. This time, he wasn't by nausea. "My name is Naruto. How did I get here?" he asked. "The last thing I remember was being swept into the sea when a storm hit my ship."
Iroh looked at him understandingly. "My niece found you when you washed up on shore. You managed to get a bad injury on your head."
Naruto checked and found the injury. He winced at the small pain from his prodding. "In that case, I think I should thank your niece for saving my life."
Iroh smiled. "I will tell her that. In the meantime you should get some rest. I will be back with some tea." He stood up and walked out of the room.
"Nice to see you in the land of the living again, kit," the Kyūbi spoke once he was certain they were alone. "You almost had me worried there." If his Jinchūriki died, he died too. He liked living, even if it came this way.
"How long was I out, Kyūbi?" Naruto asked, being all business. He kept his voice low so no one else could hear him.
"You were out for two days since you washed ashore. We were lucky. The ship was close to this island when the storm struck. If you hadn't drifted here during the night, you would have been a dead person." What he didn't say was that he practically ran himself ragged trying to make sure his Jinchūriki hadn't died before then.
"Well, it's a good thing we washed up here then."
"I guess you're right about that. But the question I have gaki, is what are you going to do now?"
As Iroh came back with tea, Naruto finished the conversation silently. "What we are going to do is stay here now."
(Location: Fire Nation Capital)
Fire Lord Ozai looked at the twelve young men kneeling before him. These men were in the Fire Nation's military and were some of the best.
After Ozai had scarred Zuko and banished him with the impossible task of finding the Avatar, there had been several attempts on his daughter's life by Earth Kingdom assassins. The last attempt would have been successful had a sentry not saw the attack and sounded the alarm. While Azula was recovering, Ozai did something he never would've thought he would do again: he contacted Iroh, who had gone with Zuko, and asked him for his advice. His brother had sent a reply proposing that Azula be given a bodyguard. He had even recommended someone (even though the two of them had only met the year before). Ozai agreed with the proposal and immediately looked for the most talented Firebenders in the military to fill the role.
And now those eleven were right in front of him, the twelfth being Iroh's recommendation and was the only non-Bender there (he had to be there, since Ozai agreed with his brother's suggestion). While the eleven were fairly well known and respected officers in the army, the twelfth was a common soldier and was often a problem, disobeying orders, protecting civilians and other nonsense. But the odd thing was that the soldiers had more respect for him then the other eleven.
Still, that was beside the point now. "You are all here because you have been given an opportunity," Ozai said, looking down on them. "You have the chance of becoming Princess Azula's bodyguard. You will be her shield against all threats to her." The eleven officers looked at him with excitement, as they should. This was indeed a great opportunity for them. It was the chance to bring more honor and prestige to their families. But the twelfth remained silent.
"Now I have decided that there will be a test to decide who will protect Azula," the Fire Lord continued. "There will be a tournament and the winner will become the bodyguard." The eleven officers nodded in agreement, while the twelfth shook his head. "Do you disagree with this plan, boy?" Ozai asked with a slightly dangerous tone. There were only a few (a very few) who would dare disagree him.
He nodded once, looking up. "Yes, Fire Lord Ozai, I do. It's pointless to fight among ourselves. Why don't the twelve of us fight an Agni Kai against Princess Azula herself? That way, we would be able to prove ourselves to her," he suggested.
Ozai thought it over. He was willing to admit that the plan did have its merits. "Very well then, the twelve of you will fight against my daughter in an Agni Kai. It will begin in four hours." The twelve stood up, bowed to Ozai, and left for the stadium.
When he was alone, Ozai chuckled to himself. the poor fool Iroh had recommended would not last five minutes against his daughter. She was a Firebending prodigy, while he could not bend at all. It wouldn't be a problem for Azula to beat him, and that was a sight Ozai was looking forward to.
The stadium's audience buzzed with excitement. Princess Azula would be fighting an Agni Kai against twelve opponents. Such a task had never been done before but everyone was absolutely sure that Azula could do it; she was, after all, a Firebending prodigy. The princess herself was completely focused on it. Those who were challenging her would bite the dust. She didn't need a guard and she was going to prove that .
The gong sounded, signaling the start . Azula rose from her kneeling position and turned to face her opponents. Eleven of them wore the skull-like helmet of a Firebender and, judging by their armor, were officers. But the twelfth was just a soldier, and not even a Firebender, judging by his conical helmet. As soon as she was done analyzing them, she took her stance. Eleven of her opponents took that as the sign to attack.
It took a combination of tricky maneuvering and exceptional Firebending, but Azula defeated them. Once they were down, she turned her attention to the last. Her form was perfect, her control was precise. But no matter what she did, he would always manage to avoid her attacks. She bent fireball after fireball at him, trying to burn him to a crisp. But all he ever did was step out of the way.
After a few more minutes of this Azula looked at her opponent, "Are you just going to stand over there or will you actually to try to fight me?" she asked angrily. He looked at her for a moment and Azula thought he looked a little familiar.
While she was distracted by that thought, he got in close. It quickly proved effective Every time Azula tried to use close-combat Firebending, her opponent would block the attacking limb. No matter what she did, she couldn't break past his defense. Azula realized why he did not attack with the others. He was observing how she fought and where her weak points were. He knew how to fight her, more importantly, how to block her.
It angered her, making her fight harder. But the more she fought, the more she started to feel tired. Her breath, which she controlled perfectly, lapsed. That's when he attacked, sweeping legs out from under, causing her to fall and hit the tiles. He knelt down, pressing his knee to her stomach, holding a knife to her throat and using the other hand to pin her wrists. It was over, she had lost.
After a few seconds passed, he withdrew his knife and released her wrists, letting Azula get back on her feet. As much as she wanted to attack, she knew she couldn't, not with everyone watching. The Fire Lord landed in the stadium and approached them. "Well done, soldier. You have beaten my daughter, a Firebending prodigy while you are not a Bender yourself," he seemingly praised the soldier. "Azula, because of his victory against you, this soldier is now your personal bodyguard. He will protect you with his life. Show your face to your Princess," Ozai commanded the soldier.
He reached for his helmet and took it off. Azula's eyes went wide as she stared. "You're…"
(Location: Northern Water Tribe)
"RUN FOR YOUR LIFE!" was the general phrase the Fire Nation soldiers were screaming as they ran back to their ships. They were trying to escape the giant fish-like monster the Avatar had created out of water. As they retreated, they saw a person in a black cloak with the hood up. If they took the time to stop and look, they would've known who he was. But they were more focused on saving their lives. The cloaked man didn't care that they didn't notice. He walked past them, keeping his eyes on the monster.
Once he was close, the monster noticed him. It swung its arm, either to swat or drown him. He settled into a stance, moved his hands and drew out his jian. He swung his sword once and the monster's arm simply fell off. It reeled back as he sheathed the jian. He had the chance to press the attack. But before he did anything, he felt a familiar presence by his side and stayed silent.
"LA!" an ethereal voice rang out, getting the monster's attention. "WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU'RE DOING?!" The people of the Water Tribe looked on in fear as the voice continued. "HAVE YOU FORGOTTEN WHAT TUI WAS SUPPOSED TO GUARD? YOU WERE SUPPOSED TO MAKE SURE SHE DID NOT DIE, YOU ARE HER GUARDIAN. NOW SHE IS DEAD AND YOU ARE OUT HERE TRYING TO TAKE REVANGE WHEN WHAT YOU SHOULD BE BACK THERE TRYING TO FIND A WAY TO FIX THE BALANCE! YOU WILL GET YOUR WATERY ASS BACK TO THAT OASIS, RIGHT NOW! I WILL CLEAN UP THIS MESS. NOW GO!" The voice roared at the giant monster. Once what he had said had gotten through, the cloaked person moved on quickly to his next target.
As Zuko and Zhao fought against each other, they saw that the giant monster suddenly melt down and retreat back to the oasis. "What is going on?" Zuko asked in wonder. His pause allowed Zhao to punch him in the chest, knocking him to the ground.
"My troops were successful in destroying that thing." Zhao declared triumphantly as he stood over his opponent. "Soon they will destroy the Water Tribe for good, and my name will be remembered forever!" But while he seemed certain in his victory, it earned him a scornful laugh.
They both looked i and saw the cloaked person leaning against a doorway. "How very wrong of you, Zhao," he said. "As of right now, the ships from the Fire Nation are heading back to safe waters. The invasion failed. Your name will be forgotten, Zhao. And your life is forfeit." Zhao's face went dead white, paling in fear. He ran away, rushing past Zuko. "I love it when they run," the cloaked man said with a smile as he went after him, leaving behind a bewildered Zuko.
Sokka stared at the two fish circle each other. The Ocean spirit had come back to the Oasis and melted back into the pond, leaving Aang on the grass. Zuko arrived shortly after, only to find the Avatar unconscious with Katara and Sokka there as well as his uncle. Aang woke up shortly afterwards. Zuko and Iroh decided to take their leave at that point, but were interrupted when Zhao ran back into the Oasis with a terrified expression. "Someone, please hide me!" he half-screamed, surprising everyone. It literally looked like he was scared for his life.
At that moment all they saw was a blur and suddenly the cloaked person was behind Zhao with his jian out. "Admiral Zhao, for your incompetence and blatant stupidity, you will die," he said in an official voice. Before anyone could stop him, he plunged his jian through Zhao's neck. As he tried to pull it, it got stuck. He tried to wiggle it loose but instead it snapped in half. "Damn it, not another one," he muttered as he looked at the ruined half in his hand. As Zhao's body fell, he dropped it as well.
Aang had watched the entire scene with horrified eyes. "Why did you do that? He was defenseless and scared. You didn't need to kill him!" he cried angrily, a furious expression on his face. He might've disliked Zhao, but he never would've killed him, especially when he was like that.
The person said nothing in response. He only walked forward, like he was going to take Aang. But he was blocked by Sokka, his boomerang out and ready to use. "Move, boy," he told him. Sokka just shook his head. "Move." he said again, putting an edge in his voice.
"Look pal, I've been having a bad day. The Northern Water Tribe was invaded, the moon spirit was killed, and the girl that I liked gave up her life in order to become the new moon spirit. So pardon me if I'm not just going to roll over and let you take one of my friends, okay?" Sokka asked in a half-sarcastic, half-deadly serious tone of voice.
The man did nothing for a second, then he laughed. "I can respect that," he finally said. He looked slightly up to the air. "What do you think?" he asked no one in particular. Even though there was no reply, he bowed his head slightly as if he heard one.
He turned to leave when Iroh said, "Hold a moment."
He looked back at him. "What do you want, old man?"
Iroh, completely unfazed by his rudeness, grinned. "It's nice to see you again, Naruto."
For a moment, nothing happened. Then the man sighed in resignation. "Iroh," he greeted, lowering his hood.
Zuko's eyes widened as he stared at the blonde. Iroh grew serious. "Naruto, why are you here?" he asked. He knew who the blonde served and he also knew that he wouldn't have come to the North Pole by himself, not unless he had a good reason.
"Why do you think I'm here?" Naruto asked him back. He would've thought it was an obvious thing.
His eyes widened in surprise. "She sent you here?" He never would've thought that she would do such a thing. But then again, he had not seen her in some time.
The blonde nodded. "She understands the need for balance." He may've had a hand in that but the end result was still the same thing.
Iroh laughed. "Two years ago, she would not have cared if the moon spirit was killed, only if the Northern Water Tribe had been conquered." Truly, it was remarkable how different she apparently was.
"You could say that I've been an influence on her"
Zuko finally caught on. "Wait, you don't mean…" he started to say, but stopped when Naruto only nodded once. He just looked at him in disbelief.
"Hey kid, what's your name?" Naruto asked Sokka, turning his attention back to the Tribesman.
"My name isn't kid," Sokka told him indignantly. "It's Sokka of the Southern Water Tribe."
"Well then Sokka, it will be interesting to have you on board," Naruto told him. "Just try to keep him on a short leash from now on, huh?" he asked, indicating Aang with his eyes. What he said was confused to the Tribesman.
But before he could ask what he meant, the blonde had turned to leave again. He walked away, leaving the Zhao's corpse behind, and was halfway to the exit when the Avatar landed in front of him . "You didn't answer my question, why did you kill him?!" Aang demanded, pointing to Zhao's body. "Do you not care about human life?"
Naruto looked at the Avatar, who was shaking with righteous anger. "This is coming from you?" he asked with ice-cold eyes. "You, a coward who shirked his duty and murderer, would actually say something like that?"
Aang stiffened. "I am not a coward or a murderer!"
"You are those things, boy," he all but spat out the last word. "When you were told you were the Avatar, instead of stepping up, you ran away and hid for a hundred years, while this war went on. You betrayed your own people with those actions."
Aang faltered a little. Those words did hit a little close for him. What the blonde said was true, he did run away. But he didn't know what it had felt like back then, how it felt to be betrayed by the monks. "I'm not a murderer."
Naruto smirked like he had caught the Avatar in a trap. "So you are the last Airbender just by coincidence?" Aang took a step back like he had been slapped. and the blonde took a step forward. But he didn't say anything else, or even try to attack. He just walked past the Avatar like he was unimportant.
Aang fell down to the ground as the question repeated itself again and again. It's implications drew up memories of what he did repeated over and over again in his mind. All of a sudden, all he could see was how the Fire Nation destroyed his people, why he wasn't there to do anything about it. He felt Katara and Sokka by his side. They were talking but he couldn't hear the words.
While the Avatar's friends tried to make sure he was alright, Zuko and Iroh took the chance to leave the Oasis as well as the Northern Water Tribe.
(Location: Fire Nation Capital)
Azula walked into her room with purpose. Her father had given her a task to do, one she would accomplish. She started to pack, making sure that she took everything she needed. "So what did the Royal Flaming Asshole want you to do?" a voice asked her from a shadow against the wall. It would have surprised and/or sacred anyone else, but Azula had lived with it for two years now, so she had gotten use to it.
"That's Fire Lord Ozai to you, Naruto," she told her bodyguard, who stepped out of the shadows. Naruto had grown in the past three years. He had lost the rest of his baby fat, giving him a more a mature look. His hair had grown out a bit, giving him a wild look, and had put a good deal of muscle on his body. All-in-all Naruto had turned into someone that girls paid attention as he walked by. Add in his politeness and his manners, and he had Fangirls wherever he went (something he did not appreciate).
But that was only girls. Azula's father and her bodyguard did not see eye-to-eye often and didn't agree on a lot of things. Because of Naruto's unique position, he was allowed a seat on the war council despite being a common soldier, which also irritated Ozai to no end. What further irritated the Fire Lord was that during the war council, Naruto would often oppose him when a plan for the warfront was passed. He would give his solution to the plan, or come up with his own . His plan would save lives while also gaining territory in the Earth Kingdom. Because of his plans, the soldiers all loved and respected him, while the officers took after Ozai and treated him with disdain. He just told them that he didn't want to lose anyone else (having lost a lot of people while fighting in the war).
"You say fire, I say flambé," Naruto replied with a grin.
She huffed in annoyance. "Why do you still do that?" she asked, referring to him talking from the shadows. He did that to her for the first couple of months the two of them were together.
"Old habit," Naruto answered with a shrug of his shoulders. He'd do it to A: sharpen her senses as well as make her develop a danger sense (he would throw things at her if she didn't find him fast enough) and B: to freak her out and make her lighten up.
She looked at the jian he had . "Is that a new one?" she asked him with a raised eyebrow and a smirk.
He frowned in annoyance. "Yeah, it is. Grabbed it at some point during the week I spent coming back here." That was something odd about him. Every time he had a jian, sooner or later it would somehow break (he was also pretty sure that there was a pool going on about how long a particular jian would last and how it would be destroyed). But he didn't let his annoyance linger, becoming serious as he refocused on her. "What did he want you to do?"
"The Fire Lord wants me to hunt down and capture my uncle and Zuzu."
He nodded once. "I'll go grab the rest of my gear." He turned for the door.
Azula stopped him. "Naruto, why did you agree to go the North Pole? I told you only what I thought Zhao would do and I could've been wrong but you still went. Why?" She knew that what Zhao had almost succeeded in doing would've been disastrous. But for some reason, that was not the only reason her bodyguard was willing to go up to the North Pole.
Naruto looked back at her. "I went to stop Zhao from doing something stupid but I had a different reason for doing that then you," he said cryptically.
"Naruto?" she called out. "You won't leave me alone, will you?" She asked with a slight fear in her voice. She hated how weak she sounded at that moment. She knew that something was happening to her but she didn't know what it was. She still had her devious and cruel edge, but there were times where she thought that everyone would leave her and she would be alone and not wanted or loved. That thought scared Azula to no end. That's why she asked Naruto . He had been with her for two years, had been a friend as well as a bit of a teacher to her. So she was terrified if he would actually leave her.
He walked back over to her. Before she could object, he pulled her into a hug. "I told you this before," he said to her, his voice soothing . "I will always be there with you, even when you don't need or want me. I swore to protect you, no matter what it may cost me. I'm your servant, your protector and your friend. Remember that, Azula, and you will never be alone."
Azula gave a small smile. When she stepped away from the hug, she was back to normal. "Weren't you going to go grab your gear?" she asked pointedly.
Naruto laughed. "Alright, I'll go now."
"One more thing Naruto. did you see my uncle and Zuzu in the Northern Water Tribe?"
He stopped at the door. "Yeah I did, although I suspect that they have already left, I also met someone interesting," he replied, looking at her once more.
Azula looked at him. "Who was it?"
"Someone who managed to land the same position I have without even recognizing it." Even though he used the word "position" he wasn't talking about guarding Azula (he considered that a job).
"I'm guessing you aren't talking about the Avatar?"
His expression soured at the mention of him. "No, not him. Someone else much more interesting."
"And what is so special about this boy?" Azula asked.
He smiled mysteriously. "He isn't a Bender." He left the room, leaving Azula to think about her task and how to do it. Already a plan was shaping in her mind.
Author's Note: So here is my Naruto/Last Airbender crossover, which I hope will go far.
I will state this right now: this is not the last time we see Konoha. Right now, I'm thinking that Naruto will run into each of the teams separately (he runs into one of the teams, they report back to Konoha and then Tsunade will keep sending out people he knows to try and capture him) and at the Western Air Temple, have everyone be kidnapped by Konoha shinobi and brought back to the village, or something along those lines.
I know that I killed Zhao off differently, but I wanted Naruto to shock everyone there by killing him without difficulty or hesitation. I wanted to show the difference between Naruto when he had just graduated from the Academy and the way he is now, as well as show how different he is from Aang.
Yes this is a good Azula story but it's not going to be right away, I'm aiming for her to have conflicted issues about it all, but will still be able to make her choice.
The reason that Naruto called Sokka out instead of Aang will be partially explained next chapter.
I will try to stay as close to the Last Airbender storyline as I can but there will be some changes to it with Naruto in it (but then again, that's why we do crossovers).
I will do my best to keep writing, so I see you all next chapter!