Notes: I take liberties with the timeline, but they're not too noticeable. This is not to be taken too seriously. I wouldn't call this fic a 'parody', but I'm also not aiming for a 'super-complex-whoa-that-plot-twist' kind of fic, either. This is just for fun.

Also, some people are having trouble with all the time-skips, so I've added the age of the character whose point of view the chapter is in for each chapter, so hopefully that will clear up the confusion. Please keep in mind that these are my best estimates since the actual timeline is a bit of a mess.

Warnings for the whole story: Lots and lots of hair rufflings (You have been warned.) SPOILERS FOR EVERYTHING.


I. (Yahiko, Age: 10-ish)

"Heh. Pervy Sage wasn't kidding; you really are like a little me."

The amused, smooth baritone easily cuts through their banter, and, despite sparing a moment to wonder how the intruder could get inside their little hut without their noticing, Yahiko, Nagato, and Konan immediately move from their spots on the floor and into a standard formation, kunai held firmly in each of their hands. The man doesn't bat an eye at their movements and makes no move to attack, his hands in his pockets and his posture languid.

Yahiko, ignoring the small voice in the back of his mind wishing fervently that Jiraiya-sensei hadn't abando—returned to service as he often does, manages to relax enough to survey the stranger before him, who is clad in a black long sleeve and pants and is carrying an old duffle bag. Shockingly bright blond hair sticking out at all angles, much like his, on a face no older than twenty is impeded only by the black hitai-ate indicating his shinobi status, and the symbol...

Momentarily flummoxed, Yahiko stands from his slight crouch and blurts out, "Konoha?"

The amusement is even more pronounced, so much so that Yahiko can see the laughter dancing in the man's blue eyes. His indignation is surpassed only by his curiosity and caution; one of the first things Jiraiya-sensei had taught them was not to be goaded into revealing information or endangering themselves by potential enemies.

The intruder smiles slightly and brings a hand up to grasp the metal. "Nice observational skills, kid."

"Who are you calling 'kid'?!" Well, so much for that.

Shrugging in reply, the stranger walks further into the room; as he does so, they, as one, take a few steps back, tightening their holds on their weapons. Confusion strikes once more as the blond ignores them completely and plops down near their fire. "Man, is it cold out there! I know this is Ame, but seriously? Does it always have to be raining?" He mutters to himself as he scoots closer to the flames for warmth.

Completely bewildered, he shares looks with Nagato and Konan, who have no better handles on the situation than him. The increasingly awkward silence is broken by the man as he says, casually, "You can sit down, y'know. I don't bite."

Finally, seeing that the other two have appointed him as their leader (again), Yahiko asks, abruptly, "Just who are you?!"

"Uzumaki Naruto, Jounin, Toad Sage, Traveler," he lists off before turning to them with a wide, genial grin. "I'm also a good friend of Pervy Sage. You guys know of him as Jiraiya-sensei."

Despite his initial suspicion at such a claim, that small voice pushes through his denial and demands, "Jiraiya-sensei? Is he coming back to us?" He hadn't meant to phrase it that way, but it's what all of them are wondering, anyway. He ignores any lingering embarassment as he notices the man's good humor fade slightly.

Sighing ruefully, his gaze focuses back onto the fire as he says, "...No, he's not. With the war still going on, Konoha needs Pervy Sage on the front lines." His gaze snaps back to them, smile in place of the frown. Thumb aimed at his chest, he reveals, "He sent me here instead. Feel free to call me 'Naruto-sensei'!"

Absolutely thrown for the umpteenth time since meeting this man, Yahiko can only gape as he coaxes both Nagato and Konan into relaxing by the fire, a warm cup of tea thrust into their hands and small grins on their faces. He is broken out of his stupor by a firm hand on his upper back guiding him to a seat beside Nagato.

"Ne, ne, Yahiko-kun, keep your mouth open like that, and something will fly into it."