* Disclaimer* I do not own Naruto k?

Heart of Fire

Eyes of Steel

It's coming closer, even as the villages Ninja fight and die to slow its advance, the nine-tailed fox: the Kyuubi ploughs further into the village walls.

Thoughts where racing through Minato's head, he had been trying to think of an alternative way to stop the fox but he simply couldn't think straight.

He would have to sacrifice himself and possibly the future of even his new-born son Naruto, all for the sake of the village.

His brow creased in worry and once again a tear graced his cheek. He had already lost Kushina, having the Kuubi ripped out of its seal straight after childbirth had weakened her too much.

He had dealt with the death hard, but he had to keep up his steely facade just a little longer, for both his son and the village.

"The village…" Minato murmured to himself "how much more must be sacrificed until we can live in piece…until I can live in peace" he turned to the mantelpiece where a small photo rested against the wall, cracked and broken from the conflict that had occurred earlier, when the masked man had attacked his house and attempted to use his own son against him as leverage-a cowards tactic.

Minato brushed the shards of glass out of the way carefully with his hand, and liberated the brightly coloured photo from the teeth of glass that lay inside the dangerous photo-frame, the shards nipping hungrily at his skin.

He pulled it out of the frame and brushed a finger across the picture. It was of him and what remained of his genin team along with his very pregnant wife.


*Flashback*

That day had been very happy, Kakashi had agreed that he would tutor Minato's son just as he had tutored him. He also agreed to look out for little Naruto after he was born, they had decided on the name then and there.

Kakashi at that point had simply said out loud, "What is the best side with ramen" as he sat in Ichiraku Ramen with his sensei.

Both Minato and Kushina had both been brought straight out of their deliberations over a name to shout: "Naruto!" loudly in unison before looking at each other and laughing long and hard.

They had managed to calm down a little by the time Jiraiya had ran in with an idea for the name.

"You should call him Naruto!" he said "You both enjoy ramen enough, and I thought what better way to get him off to a flying start than naming him after the best ramen side ever, I mean, come on Minato, you and Kushina are ramen-a-holics anyway, I doubt anyone would even bat an eyelid…even if it is strange…well, what d'ya think?!" he looked around eagerly at the stunned faces surrounding him, even the young Copy-Nin had an air of bewilderment about him.

The silence lasted a full seven seconds, after which the couple burst out laughing again-even Kakashi thought it was hilarious. Jiraiya blinked a few times and looked between them again before standing straight and crossing his arms strongly with a pout on his face. "Well fine, if you think it's such a stupid idea then I guess I'd like you hear your ideas".

The smiles on the couple's faces though said it all and Jiraiya found himself smirking again. "No Sensei you've got it all wrong" he managed to squeeze out between chuckles. "Yes Jiraiya-san, I love the idea" said Kushina, her eyes sparkling with excitement, "and damn right he will like ramen if it's the first thing I will teach him as a mother!" she had shouted with her hand slamming the bar with a pout plastered on her face.

*End*


Minato rubbed another tear off the picture before, pocketing it quickly and taking out one of Jiraiya's old notebooks, from the only remaining shelf in the house the remained attached to the wall. He also located a pen and slowly began to write his last will and testament, as well as his last words to his first and only son.


Hiruzen Sarutobi wiped his brow of sweat as he consorted with his old team mates. D

anzo was practically breathing down his neck-trying to make him feel guilty for disbanding the root division of shinobi he had headed, trying to make him think they would have been of use here. But deep down he knew that Danzo knew as well as he did that numbers meant nothing in this fight.

The Kuubi had already ploughed through over half the city and was moving on to the largest concentration of resistance.

"Genma!" called the Sandamie

"Yes Sarutobi-sama?" he replied with well repeated grace, his eyes ready for the orders that where bound to come next.

"Get a message out to the remaining shinobi force to pull back to the outside of the village and hold the nine-tails there and wait for the Yondamie to intervene. Minato has a plan for the Kuubi that will end its rampage, but it is imperative that it doesn't get any further into the village. We MUST protect the remaining villagers if the will of fire is to prevail here! Can I trust you with this task my friend?" finished the Sandamie Hokage, the steel in his resolve evident. "Of course Sarutobi-sama, it shall be done"

Hiruzen nodded before he turned away from the retreating form of Genma and turned back to the battle at hand. Where was Minato, where was the fourth?


Minato was panting heavily, the sounds of battle a sombre ambiance in the background of the leaf.

He had run all the way from his house on the outskirts of the leaf, back into the heart of the village as quickly as he could.

He would have tried to use his Flying Thunder God to get back in a flash, but he was holding baby Naruto and using the Hirashin for the first time gave most people a headache, followed closely by vomiting their guts up, so naturally he did not wish to subject his son to that.

As well as this, all of his special tri-pronged kunai had been destroyed by the beast's rampage.

As he made his way to the foot of the Hokage tower, or what was left of it and bit his thumb and making the hand signs for a summoning.

"Summoning Jutsu!" he called into the chilled night air.

He slammed his palm to the ground and found himself stood atop Gamabunta, the boss summon of the toads.

"Minato you little squirt, what do you want I was right in the middle of-"

Gamabunta stopped suddenly and looked out over the devastation that had been wrought about the leaf village.

"Oh my…Minato boy…what-"

"Kuubi is loose 'Bunta and it is under the control of an Uchiha nukenin, I need you to get me to it and hold it in place for as long as you can" he said, the large toad nodded its head in response before raiding what could be passed for an amphibious eyebrow.

"But Minato-if the Kuubi is loose, what about Kushina is she all right? "the toad asked, concern tinging his voice.

Minato looked away and whipped a tear from his eye.

"She is gone 'Bunta, the un-sealing took too much of a toll on her" he paused for a minute and wiped a couple more tears that came before speaking again.

"But it's okay though, I will fix this as much as I can." Minato smiled lightly

"I have managed to seal what remained of Kushina's chakra into this scroll" he lifted a large red and black summoning scroll to illustrate his plan.

"I plan to re-seal the Kuubi using the reaper death seal using Naruto as the host. I will seal what I can of both my own and Kushina's chakra into him as well so we can help him when he needs us most"

Gamabunta's eyes widened at what his summoner just told him.

"Think about what you are doing Minato!" he yelled

"You would kill yourself this early on? Your village needs you!"

Gamabunta shook his huge head strongly, adjusting the pipe in his mouth.

"On top of that, you would sacrifice the childhood of your own son as well? You have heard Kushina's story, as have I, it was a hollow existence! Do you really wish that for your child?"

Minato didn't answer straight away his eyes where glazed over and a smile lingered on his face.

"He is my son 'Bunta, he will pull through" he turned to the large amphibian before smiling his foxy grin.

"I believe in him completely that he will be able to pull through and do the right thing, he must, just as I must do this to both protect the village, and Naruto himself from my enemies"

"Naruto 'eh? Even his name screams Hokage's son" Gamabunta's face took on a look of doubt.

Minato nodded solemnly.

"But it is what Kushina wanted" he smiled before lifting his head to the boss toad.

"I do have one request of you however" he paused waiting for the toad to nod, which he inevitably did before continuing.

"When he is old enough, will you allow him to sign the summoning contract 'Bunta?"

Gamabunta's face took on a look of amusement before he laughed out loud.

"Of course boy, why ever would I decline his birth right?"

Minato smiled contently before standing back up. He had slowly sat down without noticing it after summoning Gamabunta, he was strangely relaxed, even though he knew he was about to die. The Reaper death seal required you to summon the Shinigami into this plane of existence to do a task for you. If your deal was satisfactory, it would complete this task in payment for your soul which would naturally kill you.

He took a deep breath, ready in both body and soul to meet with the death god.

"Let's get going 'Bunta"

The huge toad nodded once again and he pushed his strong back legs to the ground and sprung towards the Kuubi, ready to do battle.


The Sandamie was relieved to see the large amphibian appear in one of the side streets of the village. It meant the Yondaime was here, it meant hope- If anyone could defeat the Kyuubi, it was him.

His smile dropped however when he saw the toad boss with Minato atop his colossal head leap towards the Kyuubi at full speed. What was Minato thinking taking the Kyuubi head on? If the entire villages shinobi couldn't stop it, then no one man no matter how powerful should be able to stop it.

Hiruzen found himself sighing deeply in thought at the prospect. Minato had done the impossible before; he could no doubt do it again.

"Captain!" he called out suddenly, an Anbu captain landing gracefully next to him.

"You orders sir!" he called out, his team forming up behind him.

"Bring your squad and gather the clan heads, I want them with me in five minutes-we are going after Minato and will provide any backup that we can. He has a plan that much is certain and we shall be as much a use as we can, sitting idly by just won't do!" he finished with a stern shake of his head.

"Sir!" he repeated and leapt off in the direction of the nearest clan compound.


Minato and Gamabunta had reached the Kyuubi and in one jump 'Bunta tackled the Kyuubi to the ground while Minato jumped down beside it and began to unravel the scroll and unseal the ritual pieces and place them accordingly.

A thick sheen of sweat covered his brow; he didn't think he would be so tired. The fight earlier had taken much more out of him than he had first thought, as well as that, he had slowly been sealing his chakra away into the scroll for use in the sealing, tiring to be sure.

He heard the sudden poof of pressurised air and smoke filled the clearing, as the Kyuubi's teeth tore out the shoulder of the toad boss and Minato's eyes widened in fear as 'Bunta dissapeared.

'We aren't ready yet, god, Kami-a miracle would be lovely right now please!' he thought to himself.

Just as if from Kami herself, the third Hokage and the clan heads as well as an Anbu squad burst through the clearing and began to assault the Kyuubi with reckless abandon.

"Minato!" shouted the third as he sprinted up to his side but found himself blocked from approaching.

"Minato what is all this, why can't I get to you?" the Sandamie raised his eyebrow in bemusement for a second, but the look on the fourths face said it all.

"Minato boy...Y-you aren't going to use...that are you?" he said, a pleading tone to his already quivering voice.

"It's the only way Hiruzen, my wife is dead, my village in ruins. The last thing I can do for this village and it's people is to preserve the balance and stop this from happening again"

His vision shifted to his son. "He will be my legacy, my son, these peoples hero, and someone who I believe will become strong enough to deal with the masked man I faced earlier. The very same who released the Kyuubi and almost fought me to a standstill"

He smiled warmly at his son and knelt down to place a single hand on his sons forehead "I will believe in him and pass on my will of fire, look after him Hiruzen-or I might just come back to haunt you" he smiled one last time before his face became one of concentration and he stood with all of the strength and power that the Yondaime commanded.

He flared his chakra and made the necessary hand signs and shouted into the night-sky something that got even the Kyuubi's attention.

"Reaper Death Seal!"

The Kyuubi's eyes widened as he looked towards the tiny human, the mate of his previous host and saw the menacing form of the Shinigami towering over him with a look of hunger in his black pupil less eyes.

"NO!" roared the Kyuubi before turning quickly and charging towards the child lead on the floor who was clearly to be his next host.

"I WILL NOT BE SEALED AGAIN HUMAN!" its booming voice echoed.

"Crap!" thought Minato as he gave the Shinigami the 'go-ahead' to start the sealing process. A long shadowy arm went though his chest and straight into the fox that was now stopped dead in its tracks.

It slowly began to struggle and minutely so began to descend its gigantic clawed paw towards baby Naruto's face.

"No!" began Minato as be began to get ready to jump in front of the claw but surprisingly a huge hand came out of nowhere and took the claw straight through its palm.

Choza Akimichi grunted from the sidelines and grabbed hold of the Kyuubi's leg and tried to restrain him as best he could.

Minato could only watch and grit his teeth as the slowly the arm began to 'float' at a snail's pace back towards baby Naruto, overweighed by the huge weight of chakra contained within.

Blood dripped down rhythmically onto baby Naruto's head and he slowly began to open his eyes.

What he first saw with his eyes though, no one should have to see.

In his vision was the entirety of the Kyuubi in all of its malice, hatred and evil staring right at him, with a savage look in its eyes and its colossal grin of razor sharp teeth glowering down on him.

Naruto didn't even make a sound. He just stared straight ahead in terror.

"Seal!" called Minato, and he dropped quickly to knees, his breath heaving. He fell onto his back and grunted before holding his hand up.

"Hiruzen" Minato started his voice hoarse and cracked "Please, bring me Naruto quickly. I already don't feel my fingers…I'm starting to fade"

The third quickly ushered off to bring Naruto to his dying father but returned with a panicked and worried expression on his face.

"Minato…he won't stop trembling, I tried wrapping him in my coat, but he just won't stop. Do you know what could be wrong with him?"

Minato looked at the trail of blood down his sons face and his eyes sagged significantly as what happened clicked in his brilliant mind.

"He saw it Hiruzen, the Kuubi it looked right at him with that feral hunger in its eyes" a tear pricked at the corner of Minato's eyes.

"I pray I have done the right thing Hiruzen...for all of us" Minato kissed Naruto softly on the forehead and their eyes slowly began to droop in unison.

"I hope you can forgive me...Naruto...s-son..."

And with that, Minato Namizake breathed his last with the fate of his son left in the hands of a bunch of fickle, judgemental men and a few decent fellows. Everything would work out... right?