This idea was born after reading several time travel stories and an exhausted mind who should try to focus more on her exams than day-dreaming.
Either way, I like to try new ideas. I hope it's not too weird, if it is… well, at least I had fun with it ^_^
I hope you do to. Enjoy!
Death and Birth
死と誕生 (Shi to tanjō)
The moment everything became silent, Uzumaki Naruto knew he was dead.
Just instants ago, the blond boy had been surrounded by despair, terror, pain and chaos. The end of the world was deafening, the earth itself cracked and burst into flames and lava, the wind was hot and powerful, the sky had turned dark and thunder roared. But what troubled Naruto the most were the screams.
Everybody was yelling, crying and shouting. There was pain and dread on every single voice, but no one was able to avoid the mayhem and destruction that Tobi had started. Not Tobi himself, not Naruto, not Sasuke, who was right beside him, not Kakashi, not the Kages… no one.
The last thing Naruto remembered was the blast of red, black and yellow that swallowed the world. He remembered looking at Sakura's tearful eyes and then Sasuke's appalled face before the blast caught them. He wasn't sure, but he could have sworn that he had jumped on top of Sasuke in an instinctive attempt to protect him. He couldn't remember it clearly; maybe he had just imagined it.
The world shattered like glass. Reality itself was distorted and broken. There was no limit between the world of the living and the dead, no present or future, no human or tailed beast. They all vanished into the oblivion.
He felt a brief moment of pain and then nothing. Suddenly, the world was silent and dark. Everything was over, it was all gone.
Everybody was dead.
"If I'm dead… then why do I feel the floor under me" the blond boy thought.
Naruto found he was lying on something cold and opened his eyes. Surprised, to say the least, the teenager realized that he was in some sort of white, round chamber.
"What…? What the hell?" Naruto asked, his voice echoing through the bright room as he stood up. "Where am I? What happened?"
Naruto hated feeling confused and being lost only made things more frustrating. Trying to calm down, the blond crossed his arms over his chest and closed his eyes. Only a second later, it all came back to him.
"The blast… No!" Naruto turned around. "Guys! Where is everybody? Sasuke! Sakura-chan! Kakashi-sensei! Where are you? Is anyone out there?"
No matter how many times he shouted the names of his friends, comrades and allies, Naruto could only hear the sound of his echo in that damn white room that was starting to piss him off.
"Where are you? Where is everybody?"
"They won't answer you."
With his blue eyes opened wide with shock, Naruto turned around and found an elderly man he didn't recognize. Though he was old, the teen had to admit he looked quite fierce with his elaborated robes and his golden staff.
"Who are you?" Naruto asked, his body tensing and ready to battle.
"Relax, Uzumaki Naruto" the old man said kindly. "I am not your enemy."
"Hmph! Am I supposed to just take your word for it?" Naruto yelled.
"No… but I'm not going to attack you. I wish to speak you" the man said quietly before smiling. "No wonder Kurama got along with you. You two were quite feisty."
Naruto blinked and his muscles relaxed. "How do you know Kurama?"
"I know him from a very long time… long before you or your parents were born, actually."
Naruto realized the lack of a presence he had always with him as far as he could remember. It was a weird feeling and it took him a while to understand what was missing. The Kyuubi! Kurama! He was gone! They were separated from each other for the first time!
"Where is Kurama? I can't feel him anymore!" Naruto asked.
The man lowered his eyes and his smile faded. "I'm afraid Kurama was destroyed… he's dead. Just like the other Tailed Beasts and every other living thing on the world. They're dead, like you."
Naruto's blue eyes widened and his lip trembled. He knew he was dead, he remembered dying. But hearing that everyone else was dead too… it was just too overwhelming.
"They're dead… they're all dead" the boy whimpered, as his knees gave away. "I… I failed… I failed everyone! It's all my fault! I couldn't protect them… and now… it's over. Everything is over!"
The older man kneeled in front of the crying boy. He didn't touch him or tried to comfort him, because he understood his sorrow and regret, his feelings of being unable to save those he loved.
"What sort of savior am I?" Naruto continued through his sobs, hitting the ground with his fists. "I couldn't save a single person! Not one! The whole world is gone because I…"
"It wasn't your fault, Naruto" the old man said.
"Shut up! You don't understand! I should have been able to stop him! That fucking maniac! Why? They all believed in me. Why couldn't I save them? Why did it all go wrong?" Naruto thought of his parents, of his friends and all the people who had believe in him, to whom he had swore that he would save everybody, that he would make the world better.
His mom and dad, who died protecting him and believing he would be a savior someday; Jiraiya-sensei, who thought he would finish his quest for peace, the Kages, Tsunade Baa-chan and Gaara, Nagato, Itachi, Iruka, Granny Chiyo, Sakura-chan, Kakashi-sensei, all his friends and comrades from Konoha who called him a hero, all those ninja who had died in the war to protect him, and Sasuke, who he never got to save from his hatred. He had failed them all.
The old man could only stare and watch the young boy's heart shatter with all that grief. This child was carrying the honor and burden of a savior on his shoulders and, even though he had died and all his future and dreams had perished with him, he wept for others and not himself.
This boy might be exactly what he had been waiting for: someone selfless, honest and caring, but also brave and strong. A mere child who had been able to unite nations with his golden heart, turn vicious enemies into friends, who carried a will of iron from all of those he met and the power and names of the Nine Tailed Beasts and their Jinchūriki .
"Naruto… if there was way to bring everyone back, to save their lives… What would you do?" the old man asked carefully.
The blond raised his head immediately, tears still running down his checks but his eyes shining with hope. "Is there a way? Do you mean it? Tell me what it is!"
"Patience. It's a lot more complicated than you think."
"Just tell me!" Naruto insisted, almost grabbing the old man. "Can you do it? Can you help me save them?"
The old man waited a few seconds, staring deep into the young boy's heated eyes. "Yes, there is a way. I can do it, but not alone…"
"I can help!" the blond interrupted. "I'll do anything you ask, Kami-sama!"
"Eh? I'm not God, boy" the old man said. "I used to live in your world a long time ago. People thought I was a God too because of my powers. I too tried to become a savior and died. I thought I had done everything right, but… it wasn't enough. I left many things unfinished and that also caused the world to vanish. I knew it would happen someday, so I've been waiting for another savior to come."
Naruto got up and stared at the older man with a big smile on his face. "You don't have to wait anymore! I'll do anything you need, Jii-chan! If that will bring everyone back, then I'll do anything!"
The old man's eyes became solemn. "Even if it comes with a very heavy price?"
Naruto's smile faded. "Price?"
"Like I said, I can bring the world back into existence but that will require a sacrifice. I'm not going to lie and say it's something small… it's a very heavy price on your behalf."
Naruto blinked but his eyes never left the old man's face. "What kind of sacrifice?"
"Your own existence."
Naruto paled and felt his mouth go dry. "What? My existence? What do you mean by that?"
"I mean that if you agree to do this, I'll bring everything back to a certain point in time, except you" he answered softly, studying the boy's shocked expression. "I'll bring back the world and its people, but you won't exist anymore. It would be a world where Uzumaki Naruto was never born. Your life for theirs, it's your choice."
Naruto was taken aback; he didn't know what to say. A world where he didn't exist? That would mean that everyone he loved was going to live without him. He would never be a part of their lives.
"You can choose, Naruto" the old man said. "You can move on to the other realm or you can bring the people back to life in exchange for your existence. It's your choice alone and there is no way back, so think wisely."
"There's no need to think" the blond said, his blue eyes filled with determination. "I made my choice. You can erase me, Jii-chan."
"Do you understand what you're saying? Uzumaki Naruto will not exist! Are you okay with the world existing without you? Can you cast aside yourself for them? Even for those who wouldn't feel grateful for your sacrifice?"
Naruto knew the old man was talking about Sasuke, but his smile and his decision didn't waver one bit. "I would gladly give my life for them. Sure… I'd be lying if I said it doesn't make me sad that I won't be with them anymore. However, they will be alive and that's good enough for me!"
The old man looked deep into Naruto's eyes and saw the honesty of his words. The boy was smiling genuinely at the thought that he could save his loved ones and the world, not despairing over the terrible price.
"You are a remarkable boy, Uzumaki Naruto" he said, raising his hands and clapping them together. Out of the blue, everything turned into light and an enormous power burst from the old man's body. "I will bring back your world and its people. Let us hope that this time, the future will be brighter."
Naruto smiled and looked at his hands; they were fading into light with the rest of his body. He could also feel his consciousness disappearing. It wasn't painful; it felt like going to sleep.
Just before he faded away, Naruto's last thoughts were about his friends and all the people he had made bonds over his short life. He was glad that he had been able to save them after all, but also saddened because he knew he wouldn't see them again.
"If I had one wish left… it would be to spend more time with them" he thought, a single tear running down his cheek as Uzumaki Naruto faded from existence.
The old man was able to sense the teenager's thoughts and smiled kindly. He was definitely one of a kind and didn't deserve such a cruel fate. So, the old man used more of his remaining power to give the new planet a better chance to change the future and, hopefully, avoid some people's previous mistakes.
However, that wasn't up him anymore.
July 23rd, Konohagakure
Uzumaki Kushina was sitting at the table of her living room, rubbing her growing belly. She couldn't believe that in less than two months, she was going to become a mother and finally hold her precious baby boy in her arms.
When the doctor confirmed the baby was a boy, she found herself imagining how he would look like. A child from her and Minato, from the Red Hot-Blooded Habanero and Konoha's Yellow Flash… Their child was definitely going to be amazing.
"What are you laughing at, Kushina?" Minato asked, placing a warm and gentle hand on her shoulder before sitting in a chair next to her.
"I was wondering how Naruto is going to look like" she said with a grin. "I mean… he's a child you and I conceived together. I'm trying to imagine what he's going to take after me."
Minato laughed and placed his hand on his wife's pregnant belly, he had to admit those thoughts had crossed his mind.
"I hope he inherits your hair" the Fourth Hokage said.
Like always, Kushina blushed. "I haven't thought about that! But now that you mentioned it, I would like him to have your face."
"Huh? My face?"
"Sure, you looked girly as a kid but you became very handsome after a few hears. I hope Naruto gets the best from both of us."
"Then he won't get your personality" Minato joked. "I don't think the world could handle the two of you."
"What? What's wrong with my personality?" Kushina shouted, while her husband carefully moved away from her reach. "I'm a strong, confident and cheerful person. Naruto would be blessed to get that from me! You're too passive, Minato! Our boy will be a badass like his mommy!"
The Yondaime could only laugh. "I guess you're right…"
"You're damn right, I'm right! You'll see! He…"
Without a warning, Kushina went pale as a ghost and fell from her chair. Minato caught her in his arms and pulled her against his chest, his eyes wide with shock and worry.
"Kushina! What's wrong?"
The red-head Jinchūriki started to gasp and whimper from the immense pain that pierced her body like hundreds of kunai. Her worried blue eyes looked nervously at her stomach, where the pain came from.
"Mi-Minato… the baby… the baby…" she whimpered, grabbing her aching belly. "It hurts… It hurts so much! Something is wrong with the baby! Something is wrong with Naruto!"
"Please… just stay calm, Kushina" Minato said, though his heart was also racing painfully with panic. "We'll go to the hospital now. I'll call the Sandaime. It's going to be okay! Naruto is gonna be alright!"
When Minato lifted his wife in his arms, they finally noticed the big pool of blood that was growing under Kushina.
Only a few miles away, another woman was also whimpering and crying in pain while a group of three midwives tried to ease her pain and calm her down. Even though it was her second time, Uchiha Mikoto was still amazed with the pain from childbirth.
"I can see the head!" one of the midwives said. "Please keep pushing, Mikoto-sama!"
Mikoto had to close her mouth to prevent another scream. Her long black hair was spread across the bed and glued to her sweaty forehead, her face twisted from the pain and effort. She had been twenty hours in labor already, not even Itachi's birth had been this long.
Then again, this pregnancy had been a little different. Unlike her first one, she had decided not to know the sex of the baby. She wanted it to be surprise. Her Itachi had already proven himself to be an exceptional child and was going to be a great leader of the Uchiha Clan, so she hoped this second child's life would be a lot easier and carefree.
The two men of her life, her husband and her son, were waiting on the other side of the Mansion and a midwife was going to call them right after this little one was born.
Itachi was so excited to become a big brother. She couldn't wait to be able to hold her two children. It didn't matter if her youngest was a boy or a girl, she had already thought of names for either of them.
"Just a little bit more. You can do this, Mikoto-sama!"
Mikoto pushed with all the strength she had and, for a moment, only her groans could be heard in the room. Then she heard a small whimper, followed by the unmistakable cry of an infant.
"Congratulations, it's a healthy baby boy" the younger of the midwives said with a big smile on her face, as she cleaned the small newborn.
Mikoto lifted her head and felt tears in her eyes when the midwife brought her baby to her. Carefully, the raven woman held her second child for the first time, marveling on how beautiful he was. He had raven hair just like hers and, even though he was still crying, he looked like the most beautiful baby in the whole world.
"Hello Sasuke" she said tenderly, pushing the baby's body against her chest and calling him by the name she chose for him for the first time in his life. "I finally get to see you."
Sasuke continued to cry by his mother's side, while she smiled and rubbed his back. When the midwife had to take him to clean him up, Mikoto almost refused because she felt like holding him forever.
"How are you feeling, Mikoto?" the oldest of the midwives, a middle aged woman with a lot of experience, asked with a smile through her tired expression.
"Happy" Mikoto answered, leaning against the pillows. "Exhausted… but very happy."
"You did wonderfully. You should be proud of yourself."
Mikoto was about to thank her when another contraction made her yell in both pain and shock.
"What's wrong?" the midwife asked, instantly looking at the young mother's birth canal.
"I… I felt another contraction…" Mikoto said, groaning as another one pierced her body. "What's happening? This should be over. It… it never happened before… what… AH!"
The older woman stared at Mikoto's still bulging belly and her dilated cervix. Cautiously, she felt the younger woman's abdomen and her black eyes widened as she felt a huge mass. Decades as a midwife told her what she still couldn't believe, however, one look at Mikoto's birth canal quickly confirmed what she suspected.
"Mikoto-sama, I'm sorry but you can't rest just yet" the older woman said, positioning herself for the hard work she was about to get.
"What… what do you mean?" Mikoto asked, trembling with pain. "What's wrong with me?"
"It's not you Mikoto-sama, it's your third child" she said, as Mikoto's black eyes widened. "You're having twins."
"Twins? There's… Ah! Another baby?" she asked. "How is it possible? No one saw anything in the hospital!"
"I'm seeing the baby right now, so I can tell you it is possible" the midwife said, frowning. "This one is going to be a bit harder. The baby is breech, so it's going to need more help getting out."
Mikoto's expression went from disbelief to fear in a second. "Breech? Will the baby be alright?"
"We'll make sure of it."
The older midwife called the other two and Mikoto found herself pushing and screaming again. She still couldn't believe that she was having a third baby, but that didn't matter. She wasn't going to let this little one die!
During what seemed like an eternity, Mikoto cried and moaned as the older midwife tried to turn the baby inside her womb from feet first to head first. Mikoto honestly though she and her baby were going to die, she couldn't take it anymore and the baby just wouldn't come out. She was so tired that when the pain finally subsided, she didn't even hear the newborn crying for the first time. After cleaning the sweat from her eyes, Mikoto finally heard the powerful scream of the baby.
"Dear Lord, this one is a fighter Mikoto-sama" the midwife told her, cleaning the infant in warm water and a clean towel. "Look at him! After all that fighting and he can still yell like a warrior ready for battle."
The midwife placed the newborn on Mikoto's hands and the young woman stared at the crying infant in both awe and then immense relief and love. The child was the carbon copy of Sasuke; they were identical like two drops of water. Nevertheless, the feelings she had for this baby were different.
The babies could be twins, but she could already see that they had different personalities just moments after their birth. Sasuke had cried softly and looked peaceful on her arms, while this little surprise baby was screaming his heart out, like he was announcing his unexpected arrival to the whole world.
"Hello" Mikoto said to the baby. "I'm sorry I didn't know you were coming too, but I'm glad you did."
The baby was still crying but calmed down a little bit, while his mother cuddled him close to her chest. Shortly, he was fast asleep.
Minutes after the midwife had brought Sasuke to Fugaku and Itachi, she was called urgently by the others because something unexpected had happened to Mikoto. The Uchiha Leader wanted to know what was wrong with his wife, but no one told him anything.
Itachi, who was holding his newborn baby brother quite skillfully for a five year old, looked at his father with worry in his black eyes. He didn't say anything, but they both feared the worst had happened to Mikoto.
That was why, when the three midwives finally came out, he didn't wait for their response and entered his wife's room. To his dismay, Mikoto was sitting on her bed with a big smile on her tired face and she had something in her arms… another baby.
The happy mother smiled at her surprised husband before turning to Itachi. "Itachi, give him to me" she asked, pointing the baby he was holding. "And come here too. There's another brother you need to meet."
Itachi walked slowly towards his mother's bed and handed her Sasuke carefully. Though her arms were tired, Mikoto held her twin sons happily.
Itachi was still looking at his unexpected baby brother, with more than curiosity in his young eyes, it was complete disbelief. If one looked closely, they would see a lot more maturity than it was expected in a five year old, even though he was a prodigy.
Itachi's eyes had seen a lot, though not in this lifetime. He was still trying to understand what had happened after he had returned to the afterlife when he had forced Kabuto to release the Edo Tensei.
Right now, he looked at Sasuke and this baby who was not supposed to exist.
"Itachi? Don't you want to say hello to your other brother?" Mikoto asked, blissfully unaware of her eldest son's thoughts.
Itachi stared attentively at his new sibling, who looked exactly like Sasuke. He didn't know why this baby had been born, but he couldn't help feeling warmth in his chest when he looked at him. Though it was strange, he felt like he knew him.
Slowly, Itachi leaned towards Sasuke's twin brother and stroked his thin raven hair.
An hour later, both babies were placed on a crib while their mother slept in her bed, next to them. In his sleep, Sasuke's touched his twin's hand and their fingers intertwined.
One-Shot or continue?
Like I said, it's different. Should this be a one shot or should I continue it? Hmm…
Please tell me what you thought! I would like you know your theories about what just happened.