A/N: Here we go, welcome to my third story. I promised Leez this as his prize for correctly guessing the Cave of Wolves.
Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto.
Nine year old Uzumaki Naruto was silently stalking through the darkened Konoha streets with the boon of his nights searchings. He stuck to the darkest shadows so as to stay completely unnoticed. The last time he was caught… it ended up with a night of beatings in a dark alley before the ANBU had saved him. Predictably, they just let the civilians to get away with it.
As he had been doing for the last two years, Naruto was spending the night searching for abandoned ninja tools, weapons, scrolls, and books. Every night, he would sweep a random four training grounds for discarded ninja wire, kunai, shuriken, sealing scrolls, and unused explosive notes. Then he would choose one of the sectors of town to search through the trash of. He would never visit more than one clan in a week, as they were dangerous. And he never went near the Hyuga compound, not after that first scroll he had found in the trash.
Though, he had to admit, Juuken did seem like it would be useful in Naruto could learn the anatomy and get the next scroll for the intermediate level moves.
He was constantly on the move at night, and seeing how no teacher would let him stay in class anyways, he slept during school.
He couldn't look like he was learning anything anyways; the council would never allow him to be anything but the 'Dobe of the Academy'. He would show them though, he'd be the best genin out the Academy since Uchiha Itachi! Kukukuku… Naruto shook himself from his insane thoughts of revenge and continued to the most dangerous and least used training ground in all of Konoha: Training Ground 44.
It was more of a home to him than his apartment ever was, that's for sure. That's why he stayed here most of the time and only went to his apartment when the Hokage wanted to talk to him. Though those visits were becoming increasingly scarce ever since Naruto had made contact with… him.
(Flashback Start- Three years ago)
Naruto was aching all over after the villagers had beat him again. This time though… they had brought weapons.
His body was covered in cuts and bruises, and an oddly… burning sensation anywhere he was hurting. 'Probably poison.' He thought idly as his vision began to darken. 'It wouldn't be the first time…' soon, his vision was all black and he fell into unconsciousness.
Naruto awoke some time later, but he wasn't in the alley anymore. Standing up he quickly noted he was in a sewer. "Hello?" the six year old boy called out. "Is anyone there? Where am I?"
He sighed and saw pipes along the ceiling. "Maybe I can follow those out?" He shrugged and began to follow the pipes through the strange sewage system. The smell only seemed to get worse, but he trudged on. Eventually he came to a bizarre sight.
Before him was a giant golden gate blocking his path, sealed tight. He saw a single piece of paper keeping the two doors shut that held the kanji for seal on it and heard heavy breathing behind the gate. Two large red eyes stared at him from behind the gate.
"So… I can finally meet my warden, it seems." A deep, booming voice said that somehow sounded malicious.
"Who are you?" Naruto asked with the utmost confidence in himself. The eyes came forward and Naruto's eyes widened at the sight. The body and face of a large fox suddenly came into view. It had blood red fur, large teeth, and was probably over fifty feet tall. That wasn't what stood out most, in the back of the cage, Naruto saw not one, not two, but nine tails swaying back and forth.
"Do I really need to tell you, kit? I'm the almighty demon lord of all biju, the Kyuubi no Kitsune!"
"Why are you here? And where are we? And I thought the Yondaime killed you!" the fox sweatdropped.
"Can you not recognize your own mindscape? Never mind, we are inside your mind, mortal. Inside your own body. The Yondaime couldn't kill me, anyways. I'm a being of pure chakra! You can't kill chakra. So he did the only thing that he could, sealed me within a newborn. Can you guess who, kit?"
Naruto swallowed and shook his head. "M-me?" The fox nodded. "So… that's why they call me demon and fox brat. Makes sense now. But… I don't feel like a demon."
The fox then laughed heartily, it was strangely warm compared to his malicious aura. "You? A demon? That's hilarious! You're no demon! I would know. Think of it more like… if you seal a kunai in a scroll. Does the scroll become the kunai?" Naruto shook his head. "You're the scroll."
Naruto nodded in understanding. "I don't understand… everyone says you're evil… you don't seem that evil to me."
"Evil depends on who is in charge. Plus, you're my kit now. I can't have a weak container, now can I? So here's my deal. You give me access to your senses and I'll teach you the shinobi arts as well as let you access my gifts, the Negative Emotion Sensor and my chakra are yours to use." Naruto knew he shouldn't trust a demon… but then again, he was more truthful than anyone in the village.
Naruto nodded, accepting the deal.
"Going down memory lane, kit?" Kyuubi asked. 'Yeah, I guess.'
Naruto finally made it to the Forest of Death and easily jumped over the closed gate with a chakra-enhanced hop and made his way through the forest. As always, the animals stayed away from him, too scared of Kyuubi's aura to bother him. That was good as it left him with a great place for training. Especially once he found his secret grove.
He didn't find it until three months ago but loved it all the same. It was a large field, probably the size of Training Ground 7, protected on all sides. To the south-where he entered from- and the west was trees of the forest. The north had a giant rock face that extended up two hundred feet easily and was covered in seals made by Naruto to store everything he had, using blood seals. He also put a weak genjutsu over them to make it look like weather marks on the cliff, at least his chakra control was good enough for that.
To the east sat a large lake that was fed by a river running through the Forest of Death and provided a good source of fish for Naruto to eat.
In his personal training ground were three training dummies Naruto had 'borrowed' from three of the abandoned training ground no one used, 17, 23, and 40. Each one showed signs of use, one was his to use for kunai and shuriken practice, as well as weapon training when he was lucky enough to find anything. Right now he had one tanto, a kusarigama, and a wakizashi in his collection, and that was it.
The second was for Elelmental Jutsus. When he started training under the Kyuubi, Naruto had gotten ahold of some chakra paper. When he tested his affinity, it split in half, one half becoming soaked, and the other side burned to ash. With Kyuubi's help, he had learned a few elemental jutsus of each element.
The third dummy was used for taijutsu practice for his personal taijutsu style he had… 'borrowed' from the library. It didn't really have a name, but was more like a combination of the animal styles, like Snake, Mantis, Tiger and the other ones. It was essentially used for switching between styles at a moment's notice. Kyuubi managed to convince him to this style because he believed it could trick the Sharingan.
He pulled out the two scrolls he had found this night. One was a C-rank Katon jutsu. The other really excited him though, it was a fuinjutsu scroll he didn't have yet. He learned that, somehow, he had a talent for fuinjutsu. Kyuubi was just as surprised.
'I don't think anything could ruin this day.' He thought.
"Oh my Kami! How in all of hell is this possible?" he heard a voice behind him announce. "Spoke too soon, kit. Spoke too soon."
(One minute earlier, Forest of Death entrance)
Right on the inside of the Forest of Death in a tree sat Miturashi Anko. She was sitting on a branch, dango in hand, idly swinging her legs back and forth. The Forest of Death was her favorite place in the world. She could escape all the prejudice and glares of the village. And especially the sexual advances of men, and sometimes women, that thought she was easy because she used to be with that slimy pedophile of a snake, Orochimaru, as his apprentice.
She stopped chewing on her dango as she felt a familiar chakra signature. "So, the gaki's back, eh?" She looked down and saw the blur which is Uzumaki Naruto. Bright as the sun blonde hair, deeper than the sea blue eyes, and those whisker marks that would've made a lesser woman squeal "Kawai!" and hug him. Even with her strong will, she had trouble with containing herself.
Since he started the Academy, she had noticed him in the Forest. She wasn't surprised. The gaki had it worse than her. At least Anko could defend herself. The poor boy had the civilian council down his throat, beatings on a weekly basis, Academy teachers that hated him, and the hatred of the general populace of the older generation.
Sooner or later he had to find the sanctuary which the Snake Mistress knew as Training Ground 44. It was the only place in Konoha free of the judgemental villagers that somehow branded her a traitor, and him a demon. Anko then thought about it. "There's no way he has any friends… and he probably needs a teacher to protect himself. Plus… I usually get bored in here." Making her decision, Anko followed him deep into the Forest, following him into a large glade that made her eyes bulge.
"Oh my Kami! How in all of hell is this possible?" she exclaimed.
Naruto turned quickly, kunai already in hand and entered into a tiger stance. Who he saw made him relax slightly. It was Anko, he knew she was just like him. Hated by the villagers for something out of her control and wore a mask to deal with the emotions. To hide her insecurities. To keep her weaknesses private so no one could exploit them.
She used a sadistic and sarcastic mask that promised pain while he wore the mask of the dopey, village idiot, the dobe.
"How the hell did you pull this off?" She asked. "I had a feeling you were training… but your own training ground? That's impressive gaki."
"Arigato, Anko-san. You won't… tell anyone, will you?" Naruto pleaded with his most respectful voice he could muster. She looked around, walking to examine everything.
"On two conditions, gaki." She said with a menacing grin. "You let me use it…" Naruto vigorously nodded. "And… I become your new teacher."
'That smile… it promises pain, humiliation, and… torture.' "Do it, kit! I can sense her strength and will. Plus, who can you trust beside another pariah?" Naruto sighed. "You won't tell anyone?" She nodded. "Okay… Anko-sensei." Her grinned widened and he suddenly became terrified of whatever she would do and call 'training'.
Naruto didn't know how right he was.