The new dawn
Yagura could hear noises from the inside of his cell, two weeks had passed since he had been thrown in the blind cell, his chakra sealed off. It felt bad but he couldn't really blame the village, he had let them down. As a kage it was his duty to protect the village from threats and yet he had become the greatest threat of them all.
'Isobu, since tomorrow you will have a new partner.' Yagura thought mournfully, his oncoming death didn't bother him as much as the mere thought of being without his lifelong friend did. In the early days of third shinobi wars he had been burdened with the sanbi, and indeed a burden it seemed then. He had been six a mere child when the other jinchuriki had abondoned with that his village lost the war.
The days that followed consisted only of training, he was barely eight when he had slain the first enemy shinobi. The next two years saw him ascending ranks but the loneliness that gripped him had diminished for he had a friend in Isobu. The first jinchuriki with total control of the period, it wasn't really surprising when the death of mizukage had provided him the hat.
Now here he was after fifteen years, a man of twenty one, since he had sworn the oath to protect, trapped like a common criminal. Suddenly the door of the cell opened, Yagura was startled, without his chakra he couldn't really detect anyone.
He remained silent even as two mist anbu entered the cell, if his death sentence had already been passed his voice wasn't required. However he was surprised even more as Mei Terumi entered the cell. The customary robes of the mizukage hung from her shoulder, the hat covering her eyes.
"Won't you greet the new kage, Yagura-san?" She asked smiling.
"Are you here to deliver the final verdict yourself?" His voice was bereft of fear only a slight hint of excitement could be detected.
"Then get on with it I don't much like waiting"
"You have been found guilty in several charges of being accessory to genocide for those reasons you should be put to death"
Yagura closed his eyes he could feel there was something more to come.
"However you acted under the influence of genjutsu, as such that verdict would have been unfair"
"Spare me the lies, we both know the only reason I am being spared is because I am the only jinchuriki the village has, with the swordsmen dead or missing ninja I am the last weapon for your village." Yagura spoke standing up to look into eyes of the godaime mizukage.
The silence spoke volumes but Yagura remained calm, he had foreseen it already and really what else a kage could do.
The silence stretched on for two minutes both wondered what they could differently until Yagura bowed down. The sanbi jinchuriki would accept the burden.
"You are not to leave the village without my express permission and you will be marked with a cursed seal". Mei spoke before turning around leaving the room.
Naruto turned for the last time, behind him the mist had already covered the land he
left behind. The mission was over but for him the effect would last much long, for once he had the evidence that his dream was not untouchable. If the hidden mist villagers could accept a jinchuriki like Yagura as a kage then maybe konoha would be able as well. Still there was something else that kept on bothering him, the bloodshed seemed more unnecessary as the days went on.
'We are not so different and yet for some petty reason we kill so many' the sticky blood covered bodies haunted him; so many dreams and ideals puffed out in a small moment; the dead didn't care for ideals, the orphan didn't want to know about the borders. He shook the distressing thoughts away concentrating upon the journey, soon he would have extra duties for his new rank and he wanted to be ready for it.
Hours rolled by as the two teams kept on trekking with the four members of the new clan of Konoha, the steel release users. Naruto wanted to know what they were feeling, it couldn't be easy to leave an entire life behind settle somewhere else. In a way he wondered if the world would have been better without the ninjutsu.
"Believe me kid it wouldnt, your kind delights in slaughter and no lack of chakra can change it. I recall the days before the formation of the villages, there will always be people to use bloodshed to get what they want" the booming voice of Kyuubi echoed in Naruto's mind. It had been a while since the tailed beast contacted him but somehow his presence felt good. The voice reminded him of the words he had heard in the mind of Yagura, the name Isobu.
"Hey fuzzball why did Yagura call Sanbi as Isobu"
The question surprised Kyuubi, he had no idea how did Naruto came by the name.
Naruto didn't expect the silence, he had never seen his tenant silenced by question before.
"Isobu is his name, we are not numbers" the voice seemed sombre for the great beast, for a moment Naruto could sense something like grief in the voice.
"Cool, so what's yours?" His childish mind however ignored it in favor of learning more about oldest comrade he had.
"And why should I tell you that, you sack of flesh, prove your worth first then maybe you will learn my name" kyuubi's voice was gruff but the challenging tone was present.
Naruto grinned, if that's what it took to earn the respect, he no longer hated the beast, feared the use of power it carried true but no longer hated him. For now he knew this power could be controlled, could be harnessed.
The journey to mist changed something in him, his contact with the strange dark counterpart to his soul disturbed him still. But that feeling once countered by the knowledge he had gained. When Ino had kissed him, it was like opening of the door to another world. He didn't want to think about it, thinking about it made his head spin but try as he might he couldn't really forget the experience.
Jiraiya was feeling relieved for the first time since sending the two teams. Most of the information he had from his network about Akatsuki was mostly just rumors and names of two countries. He hoped to find at least one open trail to track the organization down in mist for, in the aftermath of third shinobi wars hidden rain had been closed to foreigners and for anyone with less skill than he it was simply suicide.
That's why he hoped the hidden mist would provide the answers he sought.
However that could wait he supposed, for now keeping his god-son safe was his first priority. Every day newer questions rose, not just akatsuki, he was finding the lies kept by his own village, starting from the rise of Hanzo, to the failed rebellion in iwa every where Konoha shinobi were involved.
It made him sick but for the first time he realized the kind of man his sensei was, all the years he knew the man,it was just a mask. It actually hurt to think that the man allowed this kind of missions to take place sending in the soldiers without any need.
He wondered why Minato didn't stop this kind of shadow operations, as far as he knew he thought him above this. All his life Jiraiya killed many, not all of them deserved to die but for all that he never killed someone he could spare. In a strange way Jiraiya
felt he had been happier when he was out of the loop, the knowledge of the festering darkness in his village disturbed him greatly.
His mind went back to his journey after leaving the village, seeing things no one had ever seen, the suffering that common people had to go through for the shinobi and how a happy go lucky child became blood thirsty. He had seen it all and somewhere deep in his heart he created a cocoon for himself, now suddenly something squashed the cocoon leaving him naked before the ugly truth, his dream seemed so far away.
Now standing face to face with the visages of his predecessors his jaw tightened, Hashriama Senju had started the village based on an idea, the will of fire was meant to protect the future not send it to their doom. Now of the two founding clans so few remained, the blood of Senju would end with Tsunade while Uchiha clan now only had two brothers each bent on killing the other. This wasn't the way it should have been, and Jiraiya felt helpless to prevent the decay, he knew all over the world war was singing his song and soon the fires will burn once more.
What went wrong? Jiraiya thought a design that was supposed to cleanse the sin of forefather's ended up compounding it. There shouldn't be boys of Naruto's age fighting to death, there shouldn't be a graveyard fuller than the current population, all those years of his travel and Jiraiya was still asking the same questions.'you can change it all' a part of him said, 'break the cycle' but the more pragmatic part of him disagreed.
Yes he could send peace envoys but the other villages drunk in their own superiority would never agree. 'What we need is a common enemy' the thought flashed in his mind and he had the solution, the Akatsuki had unknowingly given him the key to secure the peace, "not yet, but soon".
Watching the man from above the anbu protection detail could only sigh in their masks, Jiraiya was the direct opposite of the third homage. While the old leader was shrewd and pragmatic, Jiraiya believed in ideals and honestly they couldn't say which one they preferred.
Jiraiya was broken out of his thoughts when a new report came in, it was from one of the informants he had around the elemental nations, some days ago a small settlement near the land of paddy had been wiped to the last man, now on a whole this shouldn't have been troubling but it was for the settlement was of a shinobi clan specializing in sealing techniques.
With the uzumaki clan out of the picture the secrets of tailed beast sealing were fading and the counter sealing as well, Jiraiya owed his own excellence in large parts to the toad sages of myobaku mountain. The thought gave him pause, Naruto needed to learn sealing arts when facing elite of the elites the boy will need every edge they can get.
With his mind set Jiraiya turned once more to the endless paperwork, shifting through the pile of mission requests until he reached one that caught his eye. There was something wrong with it he could almost sense it but he couldn't place his finger on the reason. 'Bodyguard detail to a famous actress huh sounds simple enough but why am I feeling that something more is afoot.'
Danzo sat in his headquarters, the message he received earlier today was satisfying, he needed the snake alive but only until he had his secrets. "Agent 32 inform me once 56 enters the village." He spoke to one of the figures kneeling on the ground before him. The operative left without any sound quick and efficient like shadow and once more the veteran warrior returned to his thoughts.
He watched closely as the Kyuubi jinchuriki matured, he would have liked to have him under his thumb but with the blasted sage keeping an eye over him it was like treading on thin ice. However he had one piece of puzzle the last Uchiha, Itachi would have been better but as it was the man knew too much and he needed to be silenced.
Without Sasuke, root agents would never be able to find the shinobi. Danzo wondered how would Itachi feel when he would find his sacrifice had been in vain. The old warrior felt tired, so long he kept the village safe always staying in the shadows so others could get the safety for his sacrifices he was misunderstood and hated but Danzo cared nothing for the masses. Tobirama Senju had begun the secret black ops division to protect the village against internal and external threats, danzo remembered the message his teacher had imparted.
"Leaves may flutter in the wind, they may thrive in sun but it is root that lies beneath earth that protects the tree" Danzo chanted a code he followed the entirety of his life, he was leaf's last line of defense and so long as he lived konoha will not falter. He may be vulnerable to the greed that plagued others he wasnt evil. Sand had to be exposed as the treacherous bastards they were and if that quest allowed him to seize power what was wrong in staying back.
"Why then, why do you keep looking at me like that" Danzo muttered as he saw the wraith of Sarutobi stand at the corner of his room glaring at him.
Author's note: bit of a filler chapter but I was having a writer's block. However seeing as yesterday was my birthday and finally turned 21 I wrote this chapter as a gift to my readers from me. I hope this is up to the standard