Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto or Final Fantasy VII
Naruto belongs to Masahi Kishimoto
Final Fantasy VII Belongs to Square-Enix
Pairings: Naruto & Aerith / Cloud & Tifa
A/N: This begins two years before Final Fantasy VII
Prequel: The Broken Kitsune
It was the only way…
After all the hell and torment of the Fourth Shinobi War, and near death of the Bijuu's container by the hands of the now dead Obito and Edo Tensei Madara. The final death match that brought an end to one Sasuke Uchiha, closing the door on the traitorous Uchiha Clan forever. The now dying 20 year old Naruto Uzumaki lies barely motionless on the ground. Blood seeps from countless sword and Jutsu wounds his now nearly lifeless cerulean eyes look into the night filled sky. A weak smile graces his lips as his crimson lifeblood slowly pools underneath him snow gently falls from above highly reminiscent of Haku's death some years before.
"Least now I can get to see you again," he spoke weakly.
"Kur… Kurama," Naruto's voice dry, cracking, and strained as he spoke.
The old Demon solemnly shook its head while observing everything of the outside world in Naruto's mind. "You can recover from this brat. I honestly doubt she would want us to die alone with that wretched Uchiha corpse rotting beside you."
Despite his partially blurry vision, the blond shinobi tilts his head eyeing his once former friend and teammate. But all the feelings of the once brotherly bond shared died, when Sasuke killed her. His sword running through her chest forever burned into his brain, her light forever silenced from this world.
"Can't I just rest? I am so tired partner..."
"… Partner, what I am about to do will let you rest but also keep us alive. And maybe help you heal… I just hope you won't hate me for this… but this is the only way."
Before the dying blond could comment The Kyuubi concentrated all of demonic chakra as it out its claw-like paws went into a ram seal position.
Kokudo Tensou No Jutsu: Gaia
The last thing Naruto remembered was white light slowly enveloping his body as he slipped into unconsciousness.
"You were right Naruto; the view up here is beautiful!"
"I told you it was dattebayo."
Sitting with a smile both he and her look out on the head of the Hokage monument overlooking all of Konoha. It felt like eternity since his heart felt so light, gently their hands were together with their fingers interlocked. But soon his smile turns solemn.
"This is a dream isn't it," it came out more of a statement than a question from him.
Her shoulder length rosette hair flowed partially in the wind as she looked mournfully at him. "Yes…"
"I'm sorry…" he looks down as the pain rolls through his heart. The overwhelming guilt of his failure tearing at his very soul.
With her free hand she goes and gently touches Naruto's chin to lift it. His cerulean eyes lock on to her brilliant jade. "I told you I never blamed you… How could I ever blame the man I love? Now, time to wake up..."
"I don't want to… I want to stay with you."
"I'm with you always, you Baka." The rosette haired girl smiled softly."But you have to move on… Promise me…"
His eyelids flew open as he quickly sat up, her name coming from his lips. He instantly regretted sitting up as tremors of pain course through his limbs. By Kami his whole body ached all over as he felt like Tsunade Baa-Chan used him for training dummy, fixed him up and used him again. His vision at first being blurry and unfocused as he gently rubs his eyes. His sharp nose picked up the scent of lilies and roses; he could feel the warm peaceful atmosphere envelop him. But still, where the hell was he?
"Stubborn as always, you need rest kit."
His body froze, only one person calls him 'Kit', but not outside of his own mind. And then there was the second weirdest thing, the usual deep male menacing voice was replaced by a feminine warm, sultry, and regal husky tone. Looking to his left as his eyes finally focus the blond blushes a storm at the sight. Standing with her back against the wall and arms crossed under her mid-sized bust is a tall strikingly beautiful woman in her early thirties he guessed. Wearing a form fitting and elegant black and red lining battle kimono similar to Mei Terumi, this fit her hourglass figure perfectly. Her skin is a creamy pale color which only enhanced her almost ethereal beauty; her fingers were claw-like along with her bare feet. Her face is oval with a sharp chin, crimson red hair like his mom's which was in a partial bun and the rest going down to her waist, several bangs just stop above her glowing crimson slit eyes and two half way down both sides of her face. The expression and curve of her lips was between slight pure amusement laced with genuine concern.
"Kurama," Naruto almost stutters which would make Hinata proud.
"Heh! The look on your face is absolutely priceless,"Kurama chuckles.
"Bu… But you always... When you were a giant fox you sounded like a…" Kami she is fucking gorgeous…
Uncrossing one arm she rubs the back of her head sheepishly. "Yeah, I did that on purpose. You should have seen Hashirama's face when Mito told him I was actually a woman. Or hell your father, the man practically doubled over, Kushina could not stop laughing at him. And thank you kit, did not think you liked me like that,"a mischievous smile graces her lips.
Naruto's cheeks went slightly red again; "You heard me?!"
"We still are connected Kit. Not that I am complaining any since my container is such a very fine specimen."
The blond blinks as he shakes his head getting out of his daze. His eyes soon gaze around his surroundings. A medium-size homey pink and red bedroom with one dresser and mirror on the opposite side of the bed, a desk and chair in front of a window for a person to see the view outside. It was a woman's room by every definition of the word, but being empath he could feel the warmth and love in every piece and décor within here. And judging by Kurama's relaxed posture they were not in a hostile nation or held captive by an enemy.
Looking down at his body he sees bandages wrapped around his stomach. Chest, arms, and hands. He had no doubt his right leg was also bandaged up to. Whoever found him took great care in patching him up. He looks back at his partner finally realizing something.
"How are you outside the Shiki Fūin?"
Kurama shrugs; "The rules are different here in Gaia."
Naruto tilts his head in confusion as the Bijuu Queen sighs and explains. "In order to save you I had to use a Jutsu only known to us Demons. Kokudo Tensou no Jutsu, or Realm Transfer Jutsu. I brought you to another dimension within space and time here something called the Lifestream flows the strongest to the point of overflowing."
"The very essence of this planet, its soul you could say which is unimaginable raw tangible energy greater than even chakra. Every planet in every realm has this even our old one though not as strongly, but here in Gaia it literally flourishes like the ocean. I brought you here and used that said energy to accentuate your healing. Since you have your natural Uzumaki blood mixed with my demonic chakra you've healed almost an instant. But our landing was left a lot to be desired…"
Naruto blinks in surprises actually seeing embarrassment on Kurama's face. "How did we land?"
"We did some free falling through a church's roof let's just say it wasn't pleasant…"
Normally, her day usually consists of tending to her beautiful flowers at the church and picking them to sell in the main square near the marketplace, helping her mother with shopping, cooking, or avoiding them. Never in her wildest dreams did ever even suspect more people would be falling from the sky and into her church, scaring the living daylights out of her… again. The life of 21 year old Aerith Gainsborough was never dull, though at times she wished it was, the heart could only take so many surprises. She sighs slightly as she walks up the stairs inside her house, her dainty fingers light sliding on the wall. In her other hand are some clean clothes which looked like they could fit the cute blond, since his were badly torn up and covered in blood. She blushes at the 'cute' comment a little as she shakes her head, had to focus.
Wonder where they came from. The planet said they were 'outsiders', but what did that mean? Still the energy around feels so strong compared to anyone I ever been around. And that woman's glowing eyes, I wonder if she and the blond are from SOLDIER?
Her thoughts were interrupted as she reaches the top step, hearing voices coming from the room that was housing her guests. The young man is awake? How was that possible, last I saw him, he was close to death!
"We fell through a roof of a church?"
"I wasn't really guessing on our trajectory, Kit."
She tip-toed quietly to the closed door leaning in putting her ear close enough to the door to listen in on the conversation.
"So healing me ended up me getting hurt again," she could hear the sarcasm in his tone.
"Oh, shut up! Your alive aren't you, you could least be grateful for me saving your ass Naruto."
"I am Kurama. Oh, and whoever is behind the door listening you can come in, Dattebayo!"
Hearing a loud startled squeak behind the door, Naruto and Kurama chuckle quietly, opening the door slowly the Bijuu Queen smirked seeing Naruto slightly blush at the sight of the young woman entering. About petite in height, maybe 5'2" or 5'3" Naruto guesses, her attractive hourglass figure like Kurama but not so flared out. Wearing a very beautiful blue and white dress with a red camisole underneath and white wedge sandals with pink straps, the outfit fits her figure just right. Her brunette hair having segmented bangs which framed her heart-shaped face and the sides, and was also pulled back in a thick plait with a pink ribbon tied around it. The blond and red head also noticed a white orb within the ribbon which held a faint glow, both could feel a faint power coming from it. She has fair but beautiful skin tone and vibrant emerald eyes, they noticed she wore no makeup, but in truth she did not need it.
Just like her…
Her slight embarrassment fades seeing Naruto sitting up in bed. "You should be resting," her voice soft and warm melodic as she walks over and sits beside Naruto.
"How long was I out," the whisker marked blonde asks.
"Nearly a day and half, I am surprised you're even up." Aerith lets her eyes wonder over Naruto. He was fairly tall, probably 6'2" if she guessed, a light tanned skin tone. Unlike most men she has seen with muscles, his form had a more wiry muscular build than bulky, which fit his body structure rather nicely. That and unlike someone who came from a gym, he looked like a man who used his muscles than rather having them for show. If it wasn't for his upper body wrapped up, she would be blushing at his toned chiseled chest and abs. but that hardly stopped her imagination any if at all. His face was angular with whisker-like marks on his cheeks which made him almost look like a fox in a way. Spiky sun-kissed blond hair with blade-like bangs half way going down his face. Then there is his eyes, cerulean in color but had such a radiant glow which amplified the tone. Is he a part SOLDIER? Does he know him?
Hearing a clear throat brings Aerith out her muses with a faint blush. Looking she sees an amused grin on Naruto's face with Kurama's looking more mischievous.
"Like the eye-candy too eh?"
Seeing both Naruto's and the girl's flustered reaction almost sent the Bijuu woman into a fit of giggles which into laughter. She knew was going to have fun with those two, she could already tell. Aerith recovers first as she hands the blond a clean grey shirt and pants.
"I was able to find these your size, when you feel ready come down stairs for supper."
"Thank you… Oh I did not give my name, Naruto Uzumaki. That damn vixen over there is Kurama," the blond lightly smiles.
"Aerith Gainsborough, I am happy you're alright. You to Ms. Kurama," the brunette smiles which lights the room.
Cringing at the title the Bijuu woman waves her hand dismissively. "Just Kurama kiddo. Ms. Just makes me sound old."
Naruto snorted which prompted the red head to glare at him; Aerith snickered at the two as they began to bicker. But they halt dead in their track when she innocently asked the question.
"So how long have you two been a couple," Aerith asks with a sly grin.
The two nearly choke on their own spit as their head snap over to heads over to young woman who smiles innocently.
"I've known this brat since he was born! He is more like my little brother!"
"She's a friend, teammate, and the occasional pain in my ass. End of story!"
Kurama glared as her hands went to her hips; "Oh a pain in the ass am I? Wasn't I always the one that save your sorry backside?!"
"If I recall that was begrudgingly. It took you five years just to trust my ass!"
"It was worth it in the end wasn't it?"
"It would have been worth it if you trusted me before Obito started that damned war!"
Kurama winced as her anger vanished. She slowly looks out the window solemnly, her crimson eyes showing to his surprise regret. Naruto was right after all, if she had not been so stubborn and prideful the two could have prevented much of the wrong done by that crazed maniac. Her Bijuu siblings would not have been enslaved, and their Jinchurriki murdered. The Jūbi would have remained dead, the fourth shinobi war would never have happened, The God Tree would never have come back, and she would still be alive. But both knew the past was done, her sorrowful eyes turn back to her now former container.
"I am sorry, Kit…"
He mentally winces seeing the pained look on Kurama's face. The blond always had a weakness when seeing a hurt female. Regardless if they human or demoness, "Same here, sorry Kurama…"
As this went on Aerith watched with concern. How the scene went from funny to serious in less than a second. A war, what war? The only war she knew of was the war with Wutai but her instincts told her this was something else, especially since she never heard of any person from the war named 'Obito', who seems to be responsible for it. Seeing Naruto tense up decided to change the subject.
"Have you two ever been to Midgar before?"
The looks she gotten were pure confusion on both of them. While Kurama knew of the powerful Lifestream that flows here, she knew nothing of the history or its people. Somehow Aerith had a feeling this was going to be a long day.
Walking down with Kurama in tow Aerith so Naruto could get dressed; the brunette sees her mother starting to cook supper. While the Bijuu woman kept a respectful silence, as Aerith sorted her thoughts. How could two people not be familiar with Midgar? The biggest industrial city of Shinra Inc., and why did her instincts keep saying it's a more complicated answer than she thinks. Then there was the feeling she got from the Lifestream, it told her earlier these two were foreign to Gaia, strangers in a strange world to them. But at the same time the planet seems to be enraptured by their energy, Kurama especially.
"Mom, the young man from yesterday is awake," Aerith comments as she enters the kitchen.
Turning her head Elmyra looks over at surprise when seeing that the tall red head was also up. Kurama gives a slight bow to her head as Elmyra returns it. The Bijuu woman knew off the bat that this was not Aerith's true mother, her scent alone made that obvious. Still it was none of her business, these two saved Naruto, which was enough for her to like them. Plus it wasn't unusual to see a foster parent.
"Now that is surprising. But I'm happy to know that both of you are alright, my dear," the woman said motherly as she smiles.
"Thank you for helping us. It shows real honor to help strangers when it would be better to leave them to die."
Elmyra shook her head; "my daughter and I would ever let someone die. You are welcome here the both of you. Aerith please help me set up the table."
Kurama smiled slightly as she watches mother and daughter prepare the large dinner table. Not wanting to be a third wheel the Bijuu woman eventually joins in, simply stating she was not a freeloader. At the same time the women hear footsteps as they see a dressed Naruto coming down. He smiles warmly at Aerith and Elmyra he smirks coyly at Kurama who glares daggers at him.
"Not one word…"
The blonde only chuckles as he walks over, Elmyra begins fixing dinner. Naruto being the gentleman he sits both Aerith and Kurama in a seat before he took one in between them.
"Thank you," Aerith smiles.
"My, my aren't we the little gentleman. Who are you and where is my Kit?"
The two women giggle at the mock glare Naruto gives to his former tenant. Sighing as he shakes his head he looks over to Aerith's mother as she walks in with the food. "Thank you for helping us ma'am."
As she puts down the tray of food the kindly mother simply smiles. "It is quite alright sweetie. Please call me Elmyra, and you both are welcome here as long as you like."
The two thank her as they start eating their meal. The mood was quite lively as Aerith spoke to her mother while Naruto and Kurama listened quietly. Taking notice of this the younger brunette spoke to the two.
"So where are you two from exactly?"
Both blonde and red head froze as look at each other in the eye. Now this was going to be an interesting dinner conversation.
Aerith and Elmyra thought was a normal getting to know your guest became something of an experience. It turned into something they thought was out of a movie or a really strange long running television or manga series. But the conviction from both Naruto and Kurama in their voices showed that neither was lying. These two people had actually come from a different reality, a whole different world and fought in a very bloody war. The group sits in the living room as the two explain about the Elemental Nations, the shinobi villages, The Akatsuki, Obito Uchiha, and Madara Uchiha, and finally Kurama's kind. Knowing they could have kept this a secret, neither Naruto or Kurama felt lying to the people that saved you would not sit well with either of them.
"A Bijuu," Aerith lets the word roll off her tongue.
"Don't let my appearance fool you. While I may look and act like a human, I am far different from your kind. I along with my brethren we're once one being known as The Jūbi. An ancient demon meant only for one purpose to bring chaos and destruction. Many fought against him and fell to ruin under his wake. That was until The Rikudō Sennin appeared. Father was the first human to use chakra, and blessed with the Rinnegan a powerful ocular doujutsu."
Seeing both Aerith and Elmyra in complete confusion Naruto took over. "The Rinnegan are unique eyes. The one of Rikudō Sennin had is considered the eyes Kami herself. But there are also two more Doujutsu's. The Sharingan," Kurama snorts in disgust, "and Byakugan. But digressing, through his power the Rikudō Sennin defeated and sealed away in Jūbi into himself, thus becoming the first Jinchurriki. Near his death he split the Jūbi into nine sentient entities. The Bijuu or in simpler terms they are called the tailed beasts."
Elmyra felt she saw something when young blond said that title. "What is a Jinchurriki Naruto?"
The blond was silent as the past played back into his mind, but only Aerith and Kurama see the pain and sorrow written in Naruto's glowing cerulean eyes. But she also notices sees the deep regret in the Bijuu woman face. She connects the dots faster than even Kurama could predict.
"You're Jinchurriki, aren't you Naruto," Aerith spoke in the most gentle of voices.
Both blonde and Bijuu look at her in shock, while finally collecting himself Naruto nods. "Jinchurriki is called by many the power of the Human Sacrifice. We are people who have a Bijuu sealed inside us. We have tremendous chakra and unique abilities from our respect Bijuu. The tradeoff however is we become outcasts or pariahs of our village. We are hated and feared, to point of almost extreme abuse."
Elmyra and Aerith both covered their mouths as their eyes widened in small horror. Naruto's eyes casted downward while Kurama's still held her regret. "Because of an incident and a man who tried to control me through the use of the Sharingan. I attacked Naruto's village, if it wasn't through the self-sacrifice of Naruto's parents, all would be lost. I was freed but was also sealed away into Kit here. Because of me Kit endured so much hatred and scorn from the time he was a baby till he was sixteen."
Naruto lightly glares at his partner; "I said I forgave you for that."
"I have to forgive myself too Kit. And after all I did, it will take a long time for that."
Sitting in the rose garden behind Aerith's and Elmyra's house, Naruto sits in meditation after everything spoken of the day, letting the reservoir which flows like a waterfall near the house calm him. After their tale, the two brunette's gave a brief history of their world. More specifically Shinra Corporation, the organization which holds all the political and military power in the world. They explained; this was no simple group, but rather a massive self-made conglomerate that decided almost everything in the world. Most of the reason for this was through the use of Mako reactors which harness the very Lifestream into a power source, it gave them complete dominance over Gaia itself.
The two brunette's explained Midgar, was Shinra's crown jewel and later became the capital of Gaia. With several large Mako reactors in a circle pattern, the capital is divided by an upper and lower city sections called plates. They explained about the vast differences between the upper and lower plates. In the upper sections you had the wealthy, the high society, and the Shinra building at its center. Below were the slums where people find any way they can survive, which also gives way to a high volume of crime. Naruto and Kurama were sickened by this and it reminded them too much of the crime lords like Gatou who held some villages like Nami No Kuni in the depths of depression, before Team seven had liberated it.
For Aerith and her mother, they lived in the Sector 5 slums which were near a church the young woman goes to tending to flowers. She said she picks them to sell them up top for a Gil which was the currency of this world. The former Jinchurriki and Bijuu Queen took it all in varied strides.
Naruto lightly smirks. "I give you an 'A' for trying to hide yourself." Hearing a squeak he opens his eyes as he looks over to Aerith hiding behind some of her flowers. The young woman slumps her shoulders somewhat, soon walks over and sits beside the young Sannin.
"What will you do now?"
It was a reasonable question; "don't really know. Guess see what I can do here along with Kurama. Become a Mercenary maybe."
Aerith lightly frowned, while she was against killing people, she knew skills like Naruto's were most likely rare. She just hoped nothing ill would come of it.
"Do you want to go back to your own world?"
Naruto blinked, he finally came to really think about it. But he shook his head; "Tell you the truth there is nothing really left for me there. I am surprised you actually believe us."
"I admit it does come out of some weird science fiction novel or a really cool anime. But the way you two both spoke of 'the elemental nations', how could we not believe you."
Naruto grins; "Because most sane people would consider us crazy."
"Sanity can be vastly overrated," Aerith grins back.
The two look at each other in silence then begin laughing. For Naruto it had been a long while since he felt this light hearted. It was nice to remember the feeling. As they settle down they go into a comfortable silence.
"In a way... You can start from scratch. A new world and a new life. I think you and Kurama have more than earned it Naruto."
Looking over his cerulean gaze into her emerald. A small part of him felt like he was looking right into her eyes. But he knew that was not so, and Aerith is very different compared to… He looks away as the pain goes into his heart. Seeing his sudden change in emotions her dainty hand touches his shoulder.
"Sakura," his voice was low almost to a whisper as his eyes look off distantly.
Sakura? "Who is Sakura?"
Gasping quickly clearing his head, he focuses back to the present smiling weakly; "so what this stuff called 'Materia'?"
She knew that it was weak deflection of her question, but seeing such an intense pain in his eyes, she let it go. But a small part of her hoped someday he might tell her everything, Lifestream willing.