sorry this is the last one for a little bit.



"I'd just summoned the shinigami," Minato began slowly, his eyes not looking at his former student. "The seal had been made, and the Kyuubi was contained within Naruto. Kushina had fallen, Naruto was screaming…and I was being pulled into the death god's stomach."

He swallowed as he recounted with perfect clarity the terror he'd felt, only a day before…or was it sixteen years? Throughout all his years of training, of fighting, of war, and of death, he'd never been truly frightened as he had been that night…so many years back…so fresh in his mind.

"I was afraid…" he forced, his voice coming at a half whisper, and saying it aloud, confessing it brought the reality of it all to him, as if the final traces of a dream were finally lifted. He could feel his limbs trembling, and his heart still beat fiercely, as if it feared it had not much longer to do so. "No…no I was terrified," he corrected, and his hand clenched in a fist in attempt to stop its shaking.

"I struggled…I couldn't stop myself. I didn't want to leave them…I didn't want to leave my wife and my son. I wanted to be there for them, even though I knew that I was already dead. I wanted to see someone arrive to help them, to fix Kushina and take her and my son to safety together…I needed to see that they would be safe. I kept telling myself that she would live…" his voice cracked as the fear engulfed him again. "It was the only thing I could do to keep from losing my mind.

"But then…the death god…the shinigami, it began to pull her in as well. It was dragging the both of us towards it, and I couldn't do anything about it. But she wasn't part of the deal! It was my soul for his power, not Kushina's!" words were pouring from his mouth, and he could feel himself slipping into hysteria. He forced his mouth shut and forced himself to breath deeply, and though the immediate panic faded, his heart still beat fiercely against his aching and fractured ribs.

"So that's why neither of your bodies was found…" Kakashi murmured, more to himself than his old sensei. "But why would the shinigami take the both of you when the price was one soul?"

"I asked the same thing," Minato answered quietly. "He…the shinigami, he…spoke to me. He told me that Kushina was…was part of his 'domain'. I suppose that means that she was…dead," his voice broke, and a cough racked through his already aching chest. "He also said…something about, 'the destruction of this world,'" he said confusedly, shifting through his memory. "Chaos in his realm…he said…he said, 'Child of prophesy'…'restore my realm'…'I give you…quittance?'" his eyes screwed shut in concentration. "I don't remember anything else."

"Quittance?" Kakashi repeated slowly. "You mean like payment?"

"I'm honestly not sure," Minato sighed. "I don't remember anything else after that. But…I know that he wasn't speaking to me…"

Kakashi looked at him with confusion. "What do you mean? Wasn't it just the three of you in the clearing?"

"It was," Minato agreed, and Kakashi's bewildered look was lost to him as he thought back to everything that had happened that night. The realization of what was to come returned to him, and again he saw his son, shifting and changing from the baby he'd so recently held in his arms, to the young man who he had become. "The shinigami called him 'child of prophesy,'" Minato murmured to himself, almost completely forgetting that Kakashi was still there. "So it was true…my son is the boy from the Great Toad Sage's prediction."

"Minato-sensei, what are you talking about?" Kakashi broke Minato from his musings.

"There was a prophecy made by the Toad Sage to Jiraiya when he was a young man," Minato explained, his deep blue eyes still distant. "That there was a boy who would bring revolution to the world. I think…no…I know that the prophesy was talking about my son…my Naruto…" his voice was soft, and yet so sure, that Kakashi believed his words to be true.

"Revolution, huh?" he mused to himself. "That certainly sounds like Naruto, alright." Minato felt a surge of pride for his son at his former student's praise, though with it came a renewed pang of sadness at the thought of the boy he couldn't claim to know. "But that still doesn't explain why you're here…and what did the shinigami mean by giving him 'payment'? Payment for what?" Kakashi asked aloud, bringing him back to issue at hand.

Minato only shook his head. He was just as confused as the silver haired nin. Silence fell on the two again. Kakashi still seemed to be thinking, and Minato just felt exhauseted. Besides, he didn't really know what to say to the Hatake. He was sixteen years behind the times, and in all technicality, his former student was now older than he, even though to him a day before Kakashi was still a young teenager. Hell, even his newborn son was now older than the Kakashi he felt he knew.

"Well, there is no doubting it," Kakashi finally said, his single eye finding the yellow flash once again. "You're definitely the real Namikaze Minato. It's a very good thing too," he said tilting his head to the side slightly, taking in the slightly confused look on his former sensei's face. "You see, we find ourselves in need of a Hokage once again."

this is the last chapter for just a little bit.

It turns out to be that I do have liver cancer after all. The good news is that it's only a small tumor, and we can most likely remove it with surgery after we try a bit of chemotherapy. anyways i don't feel much like writing right now, so I'm sorry that you won't see a chapter most likely for a little while.

thanks for reading! I'll be back as soon as i can!