Review of the Day goes to Sgt. Nolisten: "Don't listen to that cowardly anon reviewer Orange mate, and keep doing what you do best, and that's being awesome."
Take that, Orange! Even if I do a fic like this, the readers love me!
Here we go! Disclaimer away!
Disclaimer: Naruto belongs to Masashi Kishimoto and My Little Pony is a product of the amazing Hasbro Company. I earn no profit from this...though I probably could.
Live to Rise
6: Visitors from Hidenleaf
"N-Now don't do anything drastic, Grandma Tsunade," Naruto said with a shiver as he shrunk into the bed when the unicorn that entered moments ago stalked towards him. The orange stallion's blue eyes frantically scanned the room, searching for some sort of device that would call the other nurses in the case of an emergency. A chuckle drew his attention back to the hazel eyes of the tan unicorn.
"Oh, you silly colt," Tsunade teased with a grin that was far too sweet to be real, "You think I'm going to let anypony take care of you? No, when Princess Celestia told me via emergency messenger that you were severely injured, I galloped here as fast as I could and took control of this hospital."
Naruto blinked before swallowing, "Y-You...You put Doc Hoof through a wall, didn't you?"
"He's still in intensive care..." the medical Unicorn replied before musing to herself, "Mental note: have Shizune send a gift basket."
"H-How did Celestia know to contact you?" Naruto asked cautiously as he tried to slip out of the bed. Tsunade snapped from her musing and glared at the stallion. Before he could attempt to escape, the mare appeared next to him and slammed her left hoof into his head.
After Naruto pulled his head out of the mattress and floor, Tsunade gave him a verbal response, "You're an enlisted Earth Pony, Naruto. The Princess has access to all sorts of information thanks to that. Not to mention you're next in line for-"
"Don't remind me," Naruto grumbled as he shook the dizziness away. Why did he insist on antagonizing her again?
Oh yeah, he was still in a hospital. Ugh.
Tsunade narrowed her eyes at the stallion, "You have an obligation to Hidenleaf, brat!"
"...But that job is so boring..." complained the blue-eyed stallion before he was struck again, thankfully lighter than before. Though he found himself back in the hole Tsunade drilled him into moments ago.
"Stupid brat," the mare grumbled before the door opened and she snapped her attention to it, "What?"
Nurse Redheart, seeing the destroyed bed and the stallion attempting to pull his head out of the ground once again, swallowed before nervously asking, "Um...A-A filly would like to see Naruto, Mrs.-"
"Doctor," Tsunade growled with narrowed eyes and a sparkling horn. Nurse Redheart swallowed again and nodded vigorously in understanding. Tsunade looked at Naruto, who managed to free his head once again, before looking at the nurse and nodding, "Alright."
Nurse Redheart, relieved at being dismissed, looked behind her and said, "You can go in now."
"Thanks Nurse Redheart!" Scootaloo said happily before galloping into the room. Naruto blinked before cringing when he saw what was heading towards him.
"NARUTO!" "OH EQUESTRIA!"
Scootaloo had launched herself at her surrogate brother and began sobbing in relief as she hugged him around his still tender midsection. Naruto fought his own tears back, caused by physical pain not emotional, and hugged the filly back. He lowered his head and put it against the side of hers in a soothing gesture.
"Hey...Hey Scoot," Naruto whispered to the crying Pegasus filly, "Shh...It's okay. Shh."
"Y-You were all b-bandaged up!" Scootaloo said through hiccups, "T-T-They wouldn't-wouldn't let me in!"
Naruto sighed, "I'm fine, Scoot."
"T-They said you w-were g-gonna d..." the filly broke down, crying harder and buried her face in the crook of his neck. The orange stallion frowned and hugged her slightly tighter. Scootaloo sobbed for a good ten minutes, being soothed by the stallion and both being watched by the still unnoticed mare.
...Is that his filly? Tsunade asked herself out of shock before shaking her head, No, no way! The brat isn't his Godfather. This requires investigation.
When the filly had quieted down, Tsunade cleared her throat to get the siblings' attention. Scootaloo blinked in confusion before looking at Naruto with her reddened purple eyes and asked, "W-Who's she?"
Naruto smiled nervously, "She's a very, very...important pony, Scoot."
"Why's she here though?" Scoot asked before scowling, "Is she another fan filly?"
"By Celestia, I hope not," groaned out the stallion. Tsunade scowled at him before smiling softly at the filly.
"My name is Tsunade Kato," Tsunade said with a bow of her head, "I'm that brat of a colt's grandmother..."
Seeing as she said this with a shudder, Naruto frowned, "You make it sound like you'd rather be my third-aunt from my mother's side than my grandma, Grandma Tsunade."
A pen suddenly shot out at him and slammed into his side. Naruto whinnied in shock before holding his right leg against the assaulted spot and pouting at her. Scootaloo giggled, it was always funny when Naruto was punished for something she didn't understand.
"Brat," Tsunade snorted before smiling at Scootaloo, "And you are?"
"I'm Scootaloo!" The Pegasus filly introduced herself before hugging Naruto, "I'm Naruto's sister!"
THANK CELESTIA! Tsunade sighed out in relief internally while smirking at the orange-coated stallion, "A sister, eh?"
Already knowing what cards his gambling grandmother would play next, Naruto's nostrils flared and his eyes narrowed, "Don't. You. Dare."
"Oh, I might dare," Tsunade growled back through a forced smile, "Behave yourself, brat. I'll be back later to discuss that...thing."
"Yeah, whatever, I guess I'll be here," sighed out the stallion as he hung his head in defeat. Tsunade studied him for a brief moment before nodding in content and leaving the room. Before shutting the door, Tsunade looked over her shoulder and said, "Oh, and a pleasure meeting you, Scootaloo."
"You too, Ms. Tsunade!" the filly said with a wave. As soon as the door shut, Naruto grinned.
"Like I'm gonna stay in the hospital," he said before looking down at his bandaged gut with a frown, "Hmm...Hey Scoot, wanna get my bandages off?"
"What? Why?" the filly asked curiously, "Don't ya need them on to get better?"
"You know how fast I can heal, Scoot. Once these bandages are off and I put my headband on, I can leave," Naruto explained before his eyes went to his head and he paled, "No..."
"What?" Scootaloo asked out of curiosity. Naruto went to a window and looked at his reflection. His eyes widened and a look of dread crossed his face.
"She wouldn't...She couldn't..." the stallion murmured to himself before sighing in depression and falling to his haunches, "She did...Ah, dammit..."
"What's wrong, Naruto?" the Pegasus filly in the room asked as she trotted to her brother's side. Naruto looked at her with depressed eyes.
"Grandma Tsunade took my headband..." he whimpered, "She probably won't give it back until I'm 'fit for duty'!"
"So?" Scootaloo asked with confusion. What was the big deal?
Naruto banged his head on the protected glass once before replying in a defeated tone, "I can't leave this hospital...not until I get my headband back..."
"Why not?" his sister asked, still lost on why his headband was keeping him from leaving. Naruto sighed before looking at the filly.
"The headband I always wear, even when sleeping," started the orange stallion, "has a significant meaning behind it. It's...It's like a Cutie Mark."
Scootaloo's eyes widened and she listened intently. If his headband was like a Cutie Mark, then that meant it was very important.
"A Cutie Mark symbolizes what a pony is exceptionally good at, right?" Naruto quizzed his little sister, getting an affirmative nod from the filly, before he continued, "Well, the headband I wear symbolizes my adulthood. It shows that I'm no longer a colt, and that I've earned my place amongst other stallions and mares."
"Wow...wait, is that what mine means too?" Scootaloo asked out of curiosity and eagerness. Naruto blinked before chuckling.
"Sure, why not?" the orange stallion said with a smile as he patted Scootaloo on her head with his hoof, "You do well at taking care of yourself, don't you?"
"Yup!" Scootaloo agreed, before frowning, "But that doesn't mean you have to leave."
Naruto blinked, surprised by the serious tone she spoke with. He then smiled in understanding and wrapped his leg around her, bringing her in for another hug.
"Can't get rid of me that easily, Scootaloo," the orange stallion said quietly, "I won't leave you to grow up alone..."
"Anytime, Scoot," He replied softly before grinning, "Besides...I'm just too awesome to die."
The filly giggled and leaned further into her brother's side as they looked out the window together, both relishing in their sibling love for one another.
While the heart-to-heart was happening between the orange-coated siblings, another orange coated Earth Pony was in the midst of a heated argument with one of the few nurses in the hospital. The Apple siblings and the other Mares of Harmony had stopped by with a depressed Scootaloo earlier, but only the young Pegasus was taken to see their injured friend.
"What do y'all mean we can't go visit?" Applejack raged with steam shooting out of her nostrils, "He's our friend!"
Nurse Tenderheart sighed, "Listen Miss Apple, I understand that you're worried for Mr. Uzukaze, but he's only allowed visits from family members. We only have the filly Scootaloo listed as a family member."
"Who made up that stupid rule?" Applejack asked with a snort. A clipboard suddenly shot past the raging mare and splintered into pieces upon impact with the wall. Applejack turned to ask who threw the item, when a new Unicorn mare walked into the room, a piglet on her back.
The Unicorn's coal eyes were narrowed and her short black mane contrasted well with the white coat she had. Around her neck was a headband similar, if not identical to, Naruto's and her cutie mark was a red cross with two needles crossing through it in an 'X'. The little pig on her back was frowning as well and had beads around its neck. The most noticeable features, however, were the bags under her and the piglet's eyes.
"Listen, filly, if you don't like the rules my teacher set up then leave!" the mare snarled angrily, "Otherwise, take a seat and shut up!"
"An' who are you ta boss me around?" Applejack asked with a scowl.
"Shizune Kato," the nurse introduced herself with a frown, "SCMO of the Hidenleaf village." Snort. "Oh, and this is Ton-Ton."
"SCMO?" The ponies in the room repeated in confusion. Big Mac stared at the mare's headband and his eyes widened.
"Yer from Naruto's village," he said in realization, gaining the room's attention. Shizune blinked and nodded slowly.
"Yes," she replied, "Lady Tsunade, our village's CMO, was summoned by Princess Celestia when we found out about Naruto's...predicament."
"What's an SCMO?" Twilight, ever the scholar, asked curiously, "Is that an acronym for something?"
Shizune bit on her lip before nodding, "Yes. I'll be brief. I've got things to do and they'd have been done if somepony," the mare glared at Applejack, "Hadn't disturbed my patients."
"You callin' me out?" Applejack asked, her tail being bitten on and pulled by Rainbow Dash. The farming pony yelped and glared at the Pegasus, who shrugged.
"You know what they say about payback," she innocently commented. Twilight shook her head at the two mares' antics before looking expectantly at Shizune.
Sighing, the nurse spoke again, "SCMO stands for Second-in-Command Medical Officer. I'm the second highest ranking expert in our village."
"That...sounds like a military title," a worried Fluttershy murmured. Shizune nodded.
"It is," Shizune said, getting the ponies (and curious fillies) to go wide eyed, "Hidenleaf is a militia village. We're Equestria's first defense against outside attacks."
"Naruto never told us that," Rainbow Dash accused with a frown. The SCMO rolled her eyes.
"Well, I'm not surprised," she said, "He tends to act more and more like a spymaster than a-"
"SHIZUNE! WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING?"
"Eep! Sorry, gotta run," Shizune apologized before glaring at Applejack, "And you; keep it down!"
"Nyeh!" Applejack shot back when she stuck out her tongue at the galloping mare, electing giggles from Applebloom and Sweetie Belle. The Mares of Harmony retreated back into a waiting room before they started to talk, while Big Mac went back to the ranch to get back to work.
"Hey, Twilight, what can you tell us about Hidenleaf?" Rainbow Dash asked. The purple Unicorn blinked before frowning.
"Not much," she replied, "I briefly went over it with Princess Celestia once, but she never elaborated on it. She said it was the birthplace of the Stallions of Sacrifice."
"The who to the what now?" Rarity asked in confusion. Twilight sighed.
"I don't know," said the purple unicorn, "She said they were a lot like the Elements of Harmony, but that they have their own darkness to fight. Basically, Hidenleaf is a mystery, except to the guards and the Princesses."
"Then why don't we ask a guard? Maybe they'll tell us!" Pinkie Pie suggested cheerfully. Applejack, having calmed down a bit, shook her head in disagreement.
"That won't work," she said to the pink mare, "Those fellas are more borin' than watchin paint dry."
"Indeed," Rarity agreed with a hum, before her eyes sparkled, "Ooh! Idea-a-a!"
"What's your plan?" Rainbow Dash asked. Rarity smiled proudly.
"Why don't we ask Naruto?" she suggested, and before her plan could be debunked, she continued with, "We never properly asked him about his past."
"Ah, um, but Naruto doesn't like talking about his past," Fluttershy said, shrinking a bit when her friends' eyes landed on her. She continued softly, "H-He's very private despite being outgoing."
"We could always ask Scootaloo what she knows," Rainbow Dash suggested, getting odd looks from the others, "What? I wasn't being serious, you know."
"No, it's...that's a good idea," Twilight said in surprise, "And it's not...'extreme'."
The blue Pegasus frowned, "Hey, I have good ideas!"
She growled as her friends continued to brainstorm, avoiding giving her a positive reply. Huffing, Rainbow Dash thought to herself, At least Naruto would have given me a response...Even if it would have been a smart mouth one.
Naruto paced through the room, wincing now and then as the movement strained his tender ribs. Celestia's Sun had already set and Luna's Moon was high in the sky, surrounded by the stars. The blonde stallion looked over at his little sister, who was sleeping on half of the destroyed bed. Scootaloo shivered once in her sleep and Naruto smiled before trotting to her side and pulling a blanket over her.
"You're just like your father, you know that?" Naruto's smile dimmed and her turned to look at Tsunade. She had a small smile on her face, causing Naruto's to renew. The Unicorn continued, "He would always do something so bucking stupid that I'd have to patch him up afterwards."
"Jiraiya said I acted more like my mother," the stallion mused. Tsunade snorted.
"Jiraiya is an idiot," she replied as she trotted into the room, "You probably did embrace your mother's bullheadedness, but he probably was referring to the pervert beatings you gave him."
Naruto smiled fondly at the memories, "Yeah...Well, most of the credit goes to those mares and stallions he was watching. They sure can organize fast..."
The two remained quiet as they looked down at the sleeping Scootaloo before Naruto asked, "Any word from him?"
"Unfortunately, yes," grumbled out the tan Unicorn. Naruto's smile grew slightly, but fell when Tsunade continued, "But I can't tell you anything."
"Rank too low?" he asked bitterly. Tsunade sighed and looked away.
"Naruto, you know that what you did was wrong," she said softly, getting an irritated snort from the stallion.
"Maybe to the Council," he grunted, "But not me. I wasn't going to let them get away with it."
"And I'm proud of you for making that choice," Tsunade replied with a smile, before she frowned, "But you know the only way for you to regain your former status is to come back and reclaim your father's title."
"I don't need to rely on my name to get ahead," Naruto snapped, determination burning in his eyes, "There's a reason I go by Uzukaze now."
Tsunade rolled her eyes, "Combining your parent's names, how original. Naruto, Hiruzen can't stay in control, if you don't take the Hat from him soon-"
"'I'm too inexperienced,'" the stallion spat, his eyes glaring out the window before looking at her, "Those were your words when I tried three years ago. I haven't gone on a mission in two! Does that make me more responsible? Does that make me experienced? Why are you bothering me about this now? What changed?"
"Hiruzen is DYING, Naruto!" Tsunade roared, her grief and anger snapping. Her exclamation got Naruto to pause and widen his eyes. The Chief Medical Officer also had wide eyes, shocked that she revealed that in such a manner.
"H-He...The Old Stallion's...?" Words failed him and Naruto felt that his world was crumbling apart. Hiruzen, the Third Chief of Hidenleaf, was an important part of Naruto's childhood. When he was a foal, the Third Chief would always tell him stories of his parents and of the Generals that came before him.
"N-Naruto?" Scootaloo asked, blinking her sleep away as she slowly sat up, "Wh-what's goin' on?"
Naruto shook himself from the shock and went to the filly's side, running his hoof gently over her mane and lulling her back to sleep. Softly, Naruto said, "Nothing' Scoot. Go back to sleep."
"Mm 'Kay," the young Pegasus replied as she laid back down, "Night Naruto..."
"Night Scoot," he replied as the filly returned to her slumbering. Once he was sure his sister was asleep, Naruto looked at Tsunade, "When?"
"I gave him three months before I was summoned," the Unicorn said with a saddened face, "I...Naruto, you weren't supposed to find out like that. I'm sorry."
"Don't be, Grandma Tsunade," Naruto replied with a forced smile, "It's my fault."
He felt his face fall when he looked back at Scootaloo, "But...I can't. Not yet."
"Naruto, I understand," Tsunade said, getting his attention, "You have more important things to do right now, but please...don't let Them win. I'll do what I can to buy you more time."
Naruto nodded and trotted to Scootaloo's side before he lied down next to her. Tsunade left the room, knowing she just dropped a huge bomb on the young stallion, but felt it was for the best that he found out from her before anything bad could happen.
The next morning Naruto woke up with Scootaloo early. Next to them was a silver tray, on it were a rolled up scroll and Naruto's headband. After using his tail to place the headband on his head, Naruto opened the scroll and began to read.
If you couldn't tell, you're all set to go. Your ribs are healed and as your CMO I'm ORDERING you to take it easy. Relax and act your age for once. Heck, go get wasted and mount somepony for all I care. HOWEVER, if I so much as hear a peep about you going off to rescue mares and fight dark spirits again I'll PERSONALLY kill you, bring you back, and then kill you again.
I've got eyes on you now, Brat, and be sure to have a clean bill of health when I come visit!
Tsunade Kato, Chief Medical Officer of Hidenleaf.
P. S., Tell Scootaloo that I said it was nice meeting her.
Naruto snorted and blushed from the scroll, snapping it shut before Scootaloo could try and read it. Tsunade's letters were always blunt and sometimes harsh, but he knew that she was the type of mare that threatened you to show how much she cared.
"Aw, why can't I see?" whined the young Pegasus filly. The orange stallion chuckled as he tossed the scroll into his saddlebags.
"You'll understand when you're older, Scoot," Naruto said with a faint blush. Inwardly, he thought, Though I will kill any damn colt that tries to come near you or the other two Cutie Mark Crusaders.
Nopony was going to sully his little sister(s) if he could help it!
"Come on, Scoot," the stallion said to his sister once he managed to pull his saddlebags on, "Let's go show the others I lived."
The duo left his former hospital room, taking the stairs due to Naruto's distrust of the elevators. Scootaloo jumped onto his back, apologizing when he gave a quiet yelp of pain, about halfway down the flights of stairs. As soon as they walked into the waiting room, however, they were surprised to find the Elements sprawled across the various furniture.
Pinkie was draped across one of the couches and was snoring loudly, a trickle of drool escaping her lips. Rainbow Dash had copied her, only claiming a chair rather than the couch. Fluttershy was peacefully curled up in the corner seats, using Rarity's hindquarters as a pillow. The white unicorn was curled up against Applejack, both smiling while the farming mare's hat rested on the corner of a couch.
The only one not fully asleep was Twilight Sparkle, and that was because she was talking with Princess Celestia and Luna. It was the younger of the latter two Princesses that noticed him first, giving her elder sister a soft nudge to gain her attention.
"Ah, so the young hero awakens," Celestia twittered out with a smile, getting a blush from the stallion as he trotted forward. Naruto bowed to her and then to Luna, who averted her eyes quickly with a turn of her head, before giving a nod to Twilight Sparkle.
"As grateful as I am, Princess Celestia," Naruto started with a small frown, "Please tell me how you found out Granny Tsunade was related to me?"
Celestia giggled once again, "Where would the fun be in that?"
"Touché..." Naruto replied before looking at his awestruck sister and lightly whacking her upside the head, "It's rude to stare, Scoot."
"OW! Naruto! That wasn't nice..." the filly said with a pout. Naruto smirked before cradling his own head after it was struck by a book.
"Don't abuse your sister, Naruto!" Nurse Redheart called from behind the front desk, her eyes narrowed as they locked on the stallion in question. The orange stallion glowered at her and raised a hoof.
"One of these days..." he mumbled before looking at the Princesses and the student of Celestia, "So...What exactly happened to Nightmare Moon?"
AN: Yeah, I'm cutting it off there. Next chapter will probably be a timeskip, not much, just a few days or so.
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