It was beautiful night, yet a haunting and horrifying scene was happening.
The moon climbed high through the sky, showering the land with an ethereal light. The light coloring the night sky with a dark regalia hue, the plants on the ground shining with myrtle, and the great beast glowing sangria at the epicenter were mixing in the veil of night. The heavens, earth, and monster were one, such beauty together.
But such a site of destruction.
Legions of men and women surrounded the blood red beast, who was sitting and looking up to the moon. The great beast rose one paw as if touching the moon and caressing it with gentleness despite the empty distance between them. Until the beast slammed down on the earth creating waves released onto those men and women, the men and women fell like flies under this great beast. Scarlet liquid painted the plants and trees as the beast swirled with energy bringing death to the forest they were in; the barring screams from the humans were penetrating the still quietness of the forest. It struck the leader of those men and women at the display between two great beings of the moon and beast.
Alone... Death... A cry penetrated the young father's thoughts.
His child, the father looked down to see his child. An existence, quietly slumbering, wrapped in the father's coat of white and flames. The father held the child tighter, and whispered, "Naruto, I hope one day you can forgive this foolish man who left you alone. I hope you can forgive those you meet that acted in disdain." Yet, the child was softly cooing in the dream. "What I wished the most is you will become greater than me, become greater than anyone in this world," muttered the father near the side of Naruto's ear, "I had never wrote this down, but maybe you will remember my words to you someday. Despite my cursed blood running through your veins, I am glad I could see you come into this world. Just be yourself, my son." He leaped, now facing the great beast.
As his fleeing thoughts vanished, he thought he heard the first words of his son. Surely, the gods were playing a trick with Minato.
"I will become greater than you! Dad!"
The father embraced the darkness.
His son would conquer anything in his way despite the evilness in their blood.
A blond exhaled the suppressed air in his lungs when he arrived at the secret location Mizuki gave him. Shifting his head, his lip curved upward at the capacious space available to him. Damn, he was too awesome; no hidden ninjas followed him from the tower.
He gently opened the heavy scroll as he settled the precious scroll on the ground. He stopped rolling for a moment; his eyes nearly popped out of his sockets when he read the name of the writer. He marveled over the writing of the past great man before him. At first, he thought Mizuki-sensei was pulling his leg when his mission was to 'steal' it, one of the most basic missions a ninja can have.
For a hidden graduation test, he could easily snatch anything within tower with his eyes blindfold. Being a frequent person around the Hokage tower, no one questioned his presence, and he knew the general layout of the place. When the guards switched out and the Hokage disabled with free flowing nasal blood, he slipped past and got the scroll.
He even carried the scroll snuggled between his arms outside. Although they didn't look at him much as they walked passed him, he knew it didn't matter. They are going to notice him there when he became the Hokage. He did think about that morning a week ago, hopefully the General Department noticed his efforts at livening up the office. They need to stop putting their noses on the paper, reading those boring documents, and have a little fun once in a while. He smiled, imagining their blue style again.
Oh well. He continued reading the scroll.
His tongue dragged across through his lip, wetting the deep creases as he touched the surface. Thick with the old smell of ink, no smears or stains were made on the aging scroll: He wondered the environment when one of the greatest ninjas wrote this. It must have been dim with small flame candles, and the outside noised mellowed in the background as the first Hokage wrote techniques after techniques. Personal jutsu from the Hokage, the pits of Naruto's stomach hardened, and his palms sweated at such a treasure within his hands.
What were the thoughts of the Hokage during this time?
He needed to focus; he had a mission to finish after all. Seeing the first jutsu written by the first Hokage, he studied the technique, wanting to become closer to a man whose head oversaw the entire village. One day, Naruto thought he would have his head too, seeing the grand village where he grew up. Despite the hallowed faces and sunken expressions emitted by the people, he was proud of his village, and nothing would stop him from caring about his village.
He remembered what Mizuki said to him.
"Hello, Naruto-kun," politely said the teacher. "There is some grave news to tell you. I must ask you to return the headband."
"It is because you will not become a genin."
"The reason is out of all the students, you had one of the better scores during the exam but the overall score also counts the average grade from your academy years. So your status as a ninja was revoked, but don't worry, it can be easily changed. You were tied with another student, that's why both Iruka-sensei and I agreed to give you two an extra exam. There can only be one genin because only one team spot is still open, so if you succeed my test and the other genin fails then you will be placed in the team. It would make Iruka happy to know his student passed.
Naruto thought about it. With his arms crossed, he stepped closer to the teacher. All he thought about was Iruka would be proud of him and he would finally be a genin. "So wha'cha needs me to do? But I am keeping the headband, Iruka-sensei said it is my proof as a ninja and I am going to treat this like a mission."
"Of course, you should treat it as a real mission with real consequences," Mizuki said, and Naruto walked away.
To become a ninja was something more than proving Iruka was right to believe in him, becoming a ninja would mean Naruo could properly protect his village. There was no way in hell he would let go from becoming a ninja. He erased the shadows of doubt slowly seeping in as he tried to concentrate on the scroll in front of him. Securing the scroll on the straw rug and carefully looking at the instructions, he practiced the new jutsu. One, two, three! He released his concentration as he looked at the solid clone in front of him. Nope, not enough detail, Naruto found out as the clone looked more like a fox. Tries after tries, over and over again, he continued working on it, determined at mastering this new clone jutsu.
He knew he was doing the right seals. Iruka-sensei was the one who taught him the seals until he remembered it by heart. It was one of the very first lessons in his academy life; something no one had willingly given him that was not Jiji.
Once more, he intertwined his fingers forming the sequence then ending with the finger cross seal. A new break came when his first really looking clone looked exactly like him. It was good looking Naruto thought. But when Naruto tried to talk to him, the clone cried with a meow and a yelp. "Aaa, man, this is harder than I thought it would look like. What did Iruka-sensei say about clones again? Think about your move, it needs intent and control!"
That was what he needed: Intent and control. He should smack himself. Then he grinned.
Gaining new confidence, Naruto did what he needed to do. He used intent, mustering a bit of focus as he remembered the guidance of Iruka-sensei. He laughed at the thought. "Can't wait to tell Iruka-sensei, I learned something in his class."
Minutes after minutes passed by and soon minutes turned into a long span of time, but Naruto let out a shout. "Hell yeah! Now that what I am talking about. The Great Uzumaki Naruto did his first technique from the scroll!"
He looked at his finished creation, a perfectly talking solid clone of his. "What you are looking at, ugly?" said the perfectly replicated version of Naruto.
The clone's personality needed a little working on though. Yet another brilliant idea popped into his head, forming to be one of his greatest pranks. "Jiji would so get me for this, but it would be so worth it. Okay I need thirty more of these guys." After completing the requirement, he ordered sixteen of them to transform into the forbidden scroll. The sun would set soon; night would help his plan.
He released them to the forest and voiced his thoughts, "With those guys, everybody will think that's me. If one technique passes me into a genin, then if I learn more, I will probably be mark as the top student. Then maybe Sakura-chan and Iruka-sensei will proud of me! And, and Sakura-chan will definitely go on a date with me 'cause I got top spot instead of Sasuke."
His desire solidified his resolution; he would attack more techniques when he relocated to a different location, a place he held dearly. "I bet Mizuki-sensei would not mind."
After settling down when he got to his secret garden, the studying boy groaned. "Huh, there must be some code to all this," said Naruto, his fingers scratching his head. Some of the writings were a foreign concept: He was pretty sure he was reading the native language, but what did a howling bird stance, head of a ballet mantis and flower power have to do with a jutsu.
Remembering another lesson from Iruka-sensei, man how many times has Iruka come into his head.'Iruka-sensei must have done something to me because I don't remember thinking what Iruka-sensei would say so much before. But it's alright, Iruka-sensei is dope so no worries there, except when he sometimes became fanatic, now there's a problem.'
Noticing his thoughts derailing again, he focused on remembering what Iruka-sensei said, "Look what's hidden beneath, that's an important concept at being a ninja, looking at secrets." Well, that was not what exactly Iruka-sensei but it was close enough, he thought.
Naruto would try to solve the mystery of the code the first Hokage was using.
After what he thought were hours, in reality just a few minutes at trying to solve the code; Naruto was ready to pull out his hair at the intricate writing. He knew he didn't have the right code breaker at his hand; he was using an academy code breaker manual. But still he thought he got somewhere when the first part of the secret text was translated right using the code breaker, except it was another absurd line, "a sleeping dog, hidden under the wallowing oak ready to strike."
Yeah, he knew the code breaker he had was not the right one. Maybe, whoever was in the position of Hokage had the right code breaker. So he did the next best thing besides breaking the code, he would just skim to see if there was any writing he could recognize without giving him a headache.
As he further opened the scroll, the writing from one section to the other section suddenly differ. The first section had uniformity and steady rigidness in the letters like wood, but the next section the writing had more fluidity elegance as if watery spirit wrote the words. Naruto looked down to see the signature, and he thought he would have a heart attack.
The second Hokage also wrote something in the scroll. Naruto couldn't believe two Hokages wrote on the same scroll. Now Naruto realized why such a scroll was guarded by the seating Hokage.
But now a question arose on why would Mizuki-sensei use the scroll for when it could get stolen by enemy ninjas?
But it didn't matter for now; Naruto would want to know what kind of technique the old second Hokage wrote down. "Holy, that's just cool!" said Naruto, reading the rest of the description, "I can totally get a bad ass weapon now." One step closer to being the next Hokage after Jiji, except right at the moment, he didn't have the right materials. But he did have some ink and paper, always handy materials for pranksters worldwide.
He wrote down the instructions step by step and as clearly, so he could actually read what he wrote down when he come back to getting his weapon. Although, the last material was weird as it stated, "The body of a great ninja," Naruto thought it meant to use his blood. You know because he was great, and he knew he was going to become Hokage.
But his fun ran out as the same weird code appeared again, just when he thought he could learn some more jutsu from the Second. He skimmed the section again, only to stop when he was faced with something shocking. Jiji also wrote in the scroll, which meant three leaders of their village wrote in the very same scroll.
He recognized the morphing writing of the Third; it was changing yet everything in the same time, somehow that made sense in his mind. Jiji was called the 'The Professor' for mastering the jutsu over jutsu, and his writing kind of reflected to Jiji's achievement. He couldn't wait for what Jiji put in the scroll; there must be millions of skills he wrote down. Wow, just wow, Naruto thought as he couldn't keep his excitement any longer.
Even Jiji knew cool techniques as he read the first skill, it ticked him off that Jiji wouldn't teach this to him sooner.
The first skill Jiji put was totally wicked, manipulating the surrounding environment into a physical projectile. It was a technique that can be used at any length or distance as long as the caster has a clear idea of where to shoot. It was most definitely used for attacking or even assassination which is what the description depicted. Naruto thought about it, by combining this jutsu with the Shadow Clone skill, he can really have some of his clones do some heavy damage. It was going to be awesome he felt in his veins, the blood pounding against the walls. He knew, for sure, he will be the number one rookie ninja if he mastered this, and he could totally show Jiji when he got it down.
Then a thought came to Naruto. If three Hokage wrote on here then the last Hokage might have scribbled something down here too. The temptation of finding out if the Fourth Hokage did write some of his knowledge down increased each second as he stared at the scroll. So, naturally, Naruto wrote the basic instructions down and hand-seals down in his handy pad for Jiji's skill.
Skimming over the Third's section, he went over straight to the Fourth's section. Why not, this was the Fourth Hokage, the only man ever to defeat the Kyuubi, the monster of legends.
Seriously the man, one man, the only man to manage to kill a tailed beast, the very same man might have wrote down his methods.
If that was the case, then Naruto would undoubtedly become the Hokage. Although once he looked at the section, it was empty. No writing, no trances of ink, just nothing, Naruto was confused.
But his initial observation was wrong, there was something but it wasn't something he recognized immediately. There was a seal, not a hand-seal but a carved seal, a written seal.
Jiji always told him that the Fourth was someone who used seals as his weapon. Naruto admired the Fourth even more as ninja seals were one of the ninja arts hardest to master, yet from what Jiji told Naruto the Fourth was breathing and living with seals.
His candle was flickering, a dim light against the growing darkness of the village evening. He reached to his back pocket again, only this time to get the matches he had from there. Except while fiddling within the pocket, an unused, sharp kunai he had scratched the surface of his fingers. Scraping it enough to draw blood, Naruto recoiled back, licking his wounds. But by doing so, some of his blood scattered across parts of the Fourth's seal. The parts touched by his blood started to glow, and Naruto didn't know what to do with it.
He told his body to run.
Meanwhile, the other ninjas were chasing the evasive Naruto as he rampaged through the village. Every time they tried capturing him, he would manage to slip away. And when they did catch Naruto, he would vanish only to reappear again. They couldn't exactly use their weapons or ninjutsu under the commands of the Third. One wrong move, and they would have to deal with the wrath of the Third, no questions or excuses were allowed. So they tried to do their best without relying on their normal methods of capture. They did not know Naruto mastered the Shadow Clone skill.
One of the Naruto didn't play with the others as it was his first time outside; he wanted to something different compare to what the original Naruto kept doing usually. His scroll partner agreed with him, and they parted ways with him going around and his partner going to the academy. The non-scrolled Naruto decided to explore one of Naruto's secret desires, which was gardening. Roaming around, he eventually came onto a field of flowers, just past a fence from a clan estate. To most eyes, the field couldn't be compare to the grand, demanding attention mansion.
But to Naruto, the garden was what he wanted. The garden sharply contrasted the manor; it didn't demand attention but instead mellowed onto the background. The garden expressed tranquility compared to the original Naruto, and maybe that was why this Naruto was drawn to it.
As he got closer, the greater the contrast between the garden and manor became. Even when the last glinting rays of sun set, Naruto can easily tell which one was more beautiful in his opinion. The manor was formed and stylized grandly, from the rich wooden floors to the imported white walls. The mansion set ablaze with the fading light; the white walls and pillars dyed with such a crimson flame as if a great fire would erupt from within, the paper screens burning and a fire moving through the mansion.
The mansion couldn't compare to the glory of the small, tiny garden.
The flowers glowed under the light, a feast for people watching the scene unfold before them. The rays were caught through the delicate flowers, shining and alive; the tiny growing flowers ignited gentle sparks of life under the warm golden rays. It was not the burning building but a thriving wonderland as if the field lit like a dancer through the night. Beautiful and breath-taking, Naruto heard a melody.
A gentle voice sang around the field. It didn't come from the dead quiet manor, whose occupants walked like shadows. Shivers ran down his spine at the lyrics of the song, a song of happiness. The song was filled with happiness, yet the voice carried none of its enjoy.
The voice just sang from the utter loneliness. A feeling welled up from the clone as he walked where he thought the singing came from. Naruto knew he was getting closer as he vaguely thought he heard that voice from before. He hid behind a tree, nesting near the field just as the singer turned around.
The singer was enjoying her time with her mother's garden. There was something about gardening just before the dusk; it made her feel connected with nature more.
No one around, everyone heading to their homes for the night, just the flowers and her in the fleeing radiance of the sun, she loves gardening during this time.
She spun around, feeling someone was watching her. She activated the powers of her bloodline and searched out the invader. She found the person, hiding behind the old oak tree. She started gathering charka around her hands, and shouted to the person, "I k-know y-you're t-there, p-please c-come o-out."
She was going to be okay. She was near enough to the Hyuuga estate the guards would hear her.
It was probably the most mesmerizing sight in the short life of the clone. The darken light complimented her fragile statue, her ivory skin, her moon-drop spheres and ebony hair framing her innocent face. The girl, her eyes pinpointing at each of his tiny gestures, was intense against the early dusk.
An unknown pressure built on the pits of the clone's stomach; a pressure that was foreign but pleasurable. Naruto blushed knowing the beautiful girl knew he was there.
He moved from the tree, what else can he do? But he saw more of the maiden of the dusk, which he thought was a fair trade. Her eyes was hypnotizing as if he was seeing three moons on the darkening sky; the pressure continued to build up. He wanted to groan at the reaction he was having, but it would scare off the dusk doll maiden. He held it in just enough to hear her gasp. He knew it because once people recognized him; they act all differently.
"N-naruto-k-kun, w-why a-are y-y-you h-here?" questioned Hinata. She didn't even think of the possibilities that the unknown person was Naruto. She knew Naruto liked exploring the village, but no one would wander so near the Hyuuga estate. But this was Naruto; he was probably the only one who would do such a thing just to prove he could to everyone.
"Hi, how do you know my name…" said Naruto, instantly regretting it. There was something familiar with this girl, but the time he got a sense where he saw her, his big mouth already asked her. "Sorry, but who are you?"
She knew Naruto didn't know her, she couldn't compare to some bright sun like Sakura; she was just a waning moon. Her face probably reflected her reaction because Naruto started getting closer. She felt her lips quivering, and she wanted shake along with him.
No, she needed to be a Hyuuga: She could not back down.
"I get the feeling I've seen you somewhere before, but I don't know where." She couldn't believe her ears, she must be hearing things. This would mean Naruto-kun has seen her, she wanted to faint right there. "So tell me your name, I'm Naruto Uzumaki."
"I-I'm H-Hin -"
"You all heard me! The name's the Great Uzumaki Naruto!"
"W-who a-are you? You're not Naruto-kun," said Hinata meekly, as she backed away from invader. She didn't know what to think, the invader looked like Naruto from everything to the sun-kissed hair, the sharp birthmarks marring his face, to those deep ocean-blue eyes.
But somehow her guts were telling this 'Naruto' was different from Naruto-kun.
"Wait, don't run please. You're right. I am not the original Naruto. I am actually his Shadow Clone. Well, one of his Shadow Clones," said Naruto. It made sense to her now, a Shadow Clone has the same principles and features as their castor. One of her tutors taught her the description of the Shadow Clone technique. She knew this because her father wanted her to have the vast knowledge of the clan in her disposal.
She calmed herself, and she breathe in, "How did Naruto-kun learn the Shadow Clone?" In all her time watching Naruto, she has never seen him practicing the Shadow Clone. Although she did not know the exact seals of the Shadow Clone, Naruto-kun would have been too excited and proclaiming it during his training. Now that she thought about it, this Naruto was too calm especially sneaking around.
"He just learned it an hour ago."
"Umm, if it this not too much to ask…But what are you, ummm Naruto, doing here?" She was starting to feel relaxed with this Naruto. His presence was really tranquil to her, yet she couldn't help the blush forming on her face.
"You see with Naruto learning the technique, he gave us the choice to explore the village. We were created just an hour ago. We just wanted to experience something different compared to the original Naruto. So when I just wandering around, I stumbled onto this place," said the Naruto clone. He scratched his head, slightly embarrassed talking about this to a person already who found out his secret.
"If you don't mind, do you want to talk?" Somehow, Hinata was getting the feeling this Naruto was lonely, maybe, the original Naruto was also lonely as well. She should do something instead of just watching him in the dark.
"Of course I do. Sorry but is your name," said Naruto with the tips of his mouth curving upwards.
She reflected the same action although a feeling ran throughout her body made her nervous with this Naruto and said, "M-my name is Hyuuga Hinata."
The Konoha ninjas were getting too annoyed at the dodgy Naruto. It was annoying each time they caught one afterward there would be a puff and he was gone. Then he would appear in another district across town, where they had to get him, chasing for hours and hours. They were adroit on killing and capturing, yet they could not catch one measly freshly genin.
Seeing the other ninjas could not find the brat, Mizuki gained more hope at catching that annoying fox. The stupid boy even forgot where they were suppose to meet. He needed to move quickly, and he saw the monster exploring his workplace. Seeing the boy, he approached him. "Naruto, what are you doing here?" said the teacher.
"Yo, Mizuki-sensei, I so totally got a technique," said Naruto excitingly. Good, thought Mizuki, this was probably the real brat.
"Good, I knew you could do it Naruto. Now just hand over the scroll and you will be on your way to being a ninja of the village," said Mizuki, opening his fingers to receive the scroll.
"Wait, I thought we were suppose to go to Iruka-sensei first! I want to show him the technique I learned, and I know he will be proud." Naruto made no movement to come closer to the man. Naruto looked at his teacher and said, "and don't you want to see what kind of technique I would show Iruka-sensei?"
This brat. "Naruto-kun, I will hand the assessment to Iruka. I will just need to check if you really have the scroll," Mizuki said, practically forcing down the bile by being polite to the brat. If the boy would not come in a few more moments, he will have to get the scroll himself. Discreetly moving his left arm to his back, he reached to his weapon, fingering the smooth edges of his kunai in his poach. "Come here, Naruto-kun, so you can finally passed as a ninja."
"Wait, I think I see Iruka-sensei!" Sure enough, Mizuki saw his freaking ass colleague with his fucking ass perfect timing. He slid his arms out in the open. He needed to time this right unless he wanted to be exposed even before he got out of the village.
"Naruto! You are in trouble!" yelled out Iruka. Naruto had to smile, Iruka was the only teacher that showed concern for him. Sure, Iruka would get loud and all, but it showed Naruto how Iruka cared for him. This Naruto knew the true feelings the original Naruto had for his teacher who taught him everything despite teaching other students. Before he could waved to Iruka, he felt a sting in his shoulder blade.
Then, smoke replaced where Naruto was standing.
Mizuki couldn't believe it. The brat just poofed! He was talking to a clone before! He fucking thought he had the real brat, just what kind of jutsu did the brat learned that made his clones real?He had it all figured out. He would harm the brat for a bit to prevent him from talking. Then, he would ask Iruka to escort the brat to the Hokage while he got the scroll and away from the village. He quickly took back his weapon before Iruka saw. Mizuki was quickly realizing his plan was crumbling to an annoying monster. When Iruka arrived, Mizuki tried to act to be in shock. "I was just holding him," he said with a perfectly timed jaw drop.
"Naruto must have learned a new jutsu," said Iruka, who was standing far too close to Mizuki. Mizuki thought his plans would be revealed by this person. Glancing around, he did not see others, and he reached for his weapon again. Mizuki needed to calm down and think of his next plan, especially how to get out of the village without anyone knowing.
He saw Iruka turn his back while Mizuki was ready to strike, but a yelled alerted Iruka. "Iruka! The scouts reported Naruto has gone to the forest," said another teacher from the academy. Like lighting, Iruka raced to the forest despite not asking which way.
Compared to Mizuki, Iruka grew extremely worried for Naruto because not long ago the Hokage issued an emergency order to track down on Naruto. The Third ordered them to bring back Naruto using non-lethal means. However, that did not reassure Iruka because he knew sometimes ninjas would act against orders depending on the situation. He had to be the first one who would find Naruto. Seeing the sun-kissed hair, he hoped it was Naruto.
"Naruto! You are in trouble!" yelled out Iruka. He vaguely thought he heard himself say that once before.
"Iruka-sensei! You would not believe what I learned today!" Naruto shouted. "I am so becoming the Rookie of the Year when I let you see what I can do! I made you proud Iruka!" In his elation to finally becoming a ninja, Naruto forgot to put the honorific for Iruka.
"What are you talking about, Naruto?"
"It is okay, Iruka-sensei. You don't have to mess around anymore; I know all about the extra exam. Man, Iruka-sensei if I knew I was going to have a practical exam before becoming into a genin, I wouldn't need those studying times," said Naruto, grinning. What was Naruto talking about? What extra exam? Naruto was already a genin as far as Iruka was concern.
"What extra exam? Naruto you are holding a very dangerous scroll, and the Hokage assembled some ninjas to search for you. You holding the headband is already prove you are a ninja," said Iruka, who was wondering why Naruto thought this emergency was an exam.
"Wait, ya telling me this is not a mock exam!?" Confusion emerged from Naruto. If this was really happening, then that meant the original Naruto was endangering the village by playing more with the scroll. The clone thought he needed to warn the original. The clone Naruto was about to go to the direction of where real Naruto was when ninjas descended. The clone was screwed; there was no way in hell he would be able to escape without warning Naruto. "Iruka-sensei! The garden!"
Iruka nodded, completely understanding the Naruto before him was a clone. The garden was something Naruto and Iruka knew about, and it was a place Naruto rarely used unless to water the plants growing there. It was their secret place. He quickly run while the other ninjas were distracted with the clone.
However, he was followed by the mastermind behind the orchestration of Naruto stealing the scroll.
The higher ranking jounin members, especially one certain copy ninja, were mildly impressed at display of hardship their fellow ninjas were having. They already knew what technique the boy had acquired, and they were stunned at the rapidly developing genin. At the center of the jounin was the Hokage, using his crystal ball. Except the damn thing cannot pinpoint the real Naruto anywhere!
He became worried at the length of time since Naruto had taken the scroll. Despite his warning towards the ninjas about harming original Naruto, they can use any means to capture Naruto if enough time has passed and depending on the threat of Naruto. He needed to catch Naruto now before anything else happened to the boy.
He saw through his crystal ball a group of ninjas stalking Naruto with the Hyuuga heiress. He wished he could hear what they were talking about. Hopefully, the ninjas don't do anything idiotic with the Hyuuga clan. He rather not clean up any disruptions.
"Komachi, identity those two," said the leader of the group, cursing his short sight.
"One of them is the target we are looking for while the other is the first born of the main family of the Hyuuga clan, Towa." The leader nodded, and he understood they need to move carefully. Despite the high discipline the Hyuuga was known for, touching a royalty of Hyuuga would not end well.
"I will lead with Komachi. The rest of you be on standby," ordered the leader, who wanted to have settle everything low key. Not wasting any time, Towa and Komachi were approaching the children. Even before they were in within the reach most chunin could detect, the Hyuuga heiress turned towards them.
"Good evening, ANBU-san," said the Hyuuga. Her partner, who was laughing, suddenly stopped, and he turned to where Hinata was talking to. Naruto blinked at why it seemed the ANBU were looking for him.
"Good evening," said Towa, "we request the attendance of Uzumaki Naruto. We need him for an investigation." Then, it clicked on Naruto about the scroll. Shit, he needed to get away. He did not want them to find Naruto. 'But, dang, Iruka-sensei and Mizuki-sensei were really going full on with the test, especially getting the ANBU to play along.'
When Naruto looked over to Hinata, he saw something only people gave others: concern, compassion, and candor. "Naruto," said the Hyuuga heiress with anxiety, "are you in trouble?" She knew ANBU asking for an investigation is akin to Naruto doing something dangerous. Naruto was not that type of person. Sure, he would do pranks around the village, but the pranks were never dangerous or hurt anyone.
"Nothing to worry about, Hyuuga-sama. We just need him to come with us, and it won't take long," said Komachi. Hinata cowered because despite the voice was calm, an underlying command was laced with the other ninja. Fearing for his safety, Hinata grabbed hold of Naruto's shirt. She knew he was a clone, but Naruto being danger is something inconceivable in her mind. She knew ninjas led a dangerous life, but she wasn't ready just yet.
"Nah, don't worry Hinata-chan. It is all part of the plan," said Naruto, who gotten closer to the girl. The clone had remembered what the original thought of the girl in his class. But after spending time with her, the clone was confident Hinata was kind and gentle, and he didn't want her to get into trouble for his exam. He started reaching his side pockets when a barrage of ninja projectiles came toward Naruto. The last thing the clone saw was the shock face of Hinata.
Her screaming reached new heights when Naruto disappeared despite knowing he was just a clone; she did not expect kunai weapons thrown by ANBU to a freshly graduated genin.
"Damnit, who the fuck threw that shit!" the leader yelled at the people he ordered to standby. It went down hill for the small ANBU team as the Hyuuga guards came rapidly hearing the heiress cry of distress.
"Hinata-sama, are you well?" said her personal protector. He had two other guards with him, and more guards will be coming in a couple of seconds. "What have you done to Hinata-sama, ANBU." He was already in his fighting stance; he needed one call from the princess to act against the ANBU.
This was the reason why Towa only had Komachi accompanied him because he trusted Komachi, but now it was a mess. Who shot the boy he wondered, but what was more important was dealing with the situation with the Hyuuga clan. "We meant no harm. We only wanted the boy to come with us. I believe one of the ANBU misread the boy's intentions because the boy was going for his side pockets."
"You must have one immature ANBU," spat Hinata's protector, "go now unless you are also here to talk to Hyuuga-sama." Towa saw the rest of the Hyuuga guards with the lord of the Hyuuga clan coming towards his party, and he nodded before snapping his fingers to signal the ANBU to continue their search for the boy. "Hinata-sama, has any of the ANBU touched you?"
"No. Thank you, Kō-san. Thank you everyone," said Hinata gratefully despite the image of Naruto popping out of existence stuck in her mind. She bit her lips in silence.
After arriving safely back to the mansion, she prayed Naruto would be safe inside her room.
It was a mistake! Everything was a mistake! It could not be true! These thoughts were running wild in Naruto. There was no way he was the son of the Fourth Hokage, and the worst part was he was a fucking jailor to the nine tail fucking beast. He wanted to rip the plants off the ground.
But they were innocent, and he would waste both Iruka-sensei's and his work by doing that. Stinging was irritating to his eyes, and he was feeling the moisture gathering at the edge of his eyes.
He would not accept that fate!
As he stared down the small garden, he wished these flowers could talk to him. Another flash of images came into his head. He saw the weird classmate of his, the garden she was in, the chilling song she sang, and the ANBU coming to get him. There were other flashes before, but they were not as prominent as the image just now. Everything in his head was confusing him, and he was close to not trusting anything anymore. There was a flash that said his mission was fake!
Then, how was he suppose to become a real ninja? He wanted to get away from all the shit that was happening.
He looked up at the veil evening sky, so bright with the stars illuminating space, and he viewed the shining moon. The crescent shape of the celestial body was almost similar to a smile; however, those thoughts came back, plaguing his mind without stop. No! He was Uzumaki Naruto, and he would not give up.
"Naruto! Naruto! Are you okay," said Iruka as he saw the boy standing so still even he could not visualize the image. Iruka ran to Naruto, not even questioning him if he was a clone. "What happened?" He forgot the purpose when he saw Naruto looking so lost staring into the sky.
"I am sorry, Iruka-sensei. Sorry, sorry, sorry," chanted Naruto as Naruto moved to Iruka's side. Somehow, Iruka was certain this person was the real Naruto. However, Iruka was surprised to see another side of Naruto he did not usually see. Naruto was nearly balling his eyes out, and Iruka knew Naruto was close to a breakdown.
Before Iruka could calm Naruto, he sensed danger coming towards Naruto. He saw an army of giant shuriken, and Iruka had no time to dodge it with Naruto, who was still trapped in his misery. Rapidly doing hand seals, Iruka pushed Naruto out of the way while he took the entire impact of the attack. The shuriken logged onto Iruka's person, and Iruka gagged at the piercing he felt. He coughed blood as he was sent flying by the force.
"You always got into my way, Iruka," said Mizuki, descending from the shadows like some fallen angel. "First, you are the supervising teacher for the graduating students, then you are here helping the brat here. You were spoiling things for me."
"It was you who planned this?" Only disbelief was presented in Iruka's face. One of his colleagues, a person who he worked with for years, was betraying the village.
"You think the brat has the smarts to actually plan everything. But, even for a simple snatch and run that kid messed it up. Now I have all classes of ninja coming for the kid. If that person had not messed up, I would have been gone with the scroll already," said Mizuki, who was getting more weapons to throw at Iruka. He could stage this his way. He just need to kill Iruka and the brat fast enough to make it like they battled each other. He got this because he already wounded Iruka and the boy could not touch his level.
He became unaware of the brat's presence when Naruto got into the chuunin's space and upper cut him. "You bastard!" yelled Naruto. Mizuki recovered finish enough to throw more projectiles, but Naruto rapidly did seals to substitute a log of wood. "You're going to have to go through me if you want Iruka-sensei!"
It seemed Naruto regained from his slight funk. Another series of hand-seals gone off, and several Naruto came into being. Two clones went to guard Iruka while the rest went after the bastard.
Mizuki eliminated several clones before jumping away from the rest. He had to admit the failure was good, but he knew something the brat would not know. "You really think everyone in this village likes you?" He laughed, the jailor wo1uld find out what he really was. "Everyone in the village knows you are the jailor of the Kyuubi! You will always be the demon. And you will never persuade them you are a normal person! It is the same for your teacher you adore. The teachers in your academy were ordered by the Hokage to be nice to you, including Iruka right there." He snorted although Naruto, his clones, and Mizuki did not look at Iruka, who sneaked away from his spot unto a tree when Mizuki did his rant.
Iruka tightened his mouth, holding the scorching burns from the wounds in. When he sensed the danger, he had remembered an jutsu that hardened his skin, but he slightly messed up. When those shuriken hit, he got hit pretty badly because he was not conditioning his control over his jutsu besides the standard ones when he became a teacher. It did, however, still saved his vital spots; furthermore, he had a small window of time before he bleed to death.
He also really wanted to explode when Mizuki said Naruto was a demon. Sure, at first that might have been the case. But he kept his heart open, and he realized Naruto was a person unlike anyone.
He was annoyingly persistent, giddily foolish, and contagiously cheerful. Naruto would never be a demon to him: Naruto would always be a normal, happy boy to him.
He needed to control his breathing. Waiting for the perfect time, he would strike against Mizuki. "Yeah, you really think I didn't know. That's old news. Well, here is something, Shadow Clone!" When hundreds upon hundreds of clones appeared, it was Iruka's time plunged the dagger into the jackass's heart.
It only took a moment.
Iruka rushed to Mizuki, surprising Mizuki, Naruto, and his clones. Using all his might, Iruka pierced the armor Mizuki was wearing under his clothing, and Iruka knew he had to gamble on something. "Naruto, attack him!" shouted Iruka as he fell down with Mizuki. Mizuki pushed Iruka off which lead Iruka to land very hard on the ground. Obeying the words of his real teacher, Naruto commanded his clones to save Iruka and attack Mizuki.
Mizuki barely had the time to scream before he was utterly beaten, almost to the point of being crippled, and he was knocked unconscious. Once the clones confirmed Mizuki was down and tied him up, Naruto rushed to Iruka. "Iruka-sensei, are you okay?"
Naruto panicked at the amount of blood gushing out of Iruka. He had never seen Iruka with so many injuries, and his face contoured with pain, one side of his face stiffing that the bites of frost came out as Naruto's hand went over there.
It was his fault Iruka was like this because he was thinking of some stupid shit.
"I'm okay, Naruto. Don't believe Mizuki when he said you are the Kyuubi."
"It does not change that I am the jailor of that creature, and the village will never forget that fact" commented Naruto as he frankly tried to stop the bleeding.
Iruka had little time left. He would use most of his time to make Naruto understand he was not the Kyuubi. It would be his last mission he would do. He said, "all you have to do is change their minds. You wearing that headband is not only a symbol of this village. It is also symbolize your pride to everyone around. As long as you wear the headband, you can change the thinking of everyone that you are Naruto Uzumaki, a proud ninja of Konoha." A wild fit of coughs from Iruka interrupted the hallmark moment between teacher and student, and more bleeding gushed out from Iruka.
Naruto was frantically thinking what to do right now. Iruka was dying; those thoughts made Naruto want to rip the heavens out and challenged whoever, so Iruka can live his life to the fullest.
Not him! Not his teacher! Not his friend! Not his family! Not him! It shouldn't be him, lying here and waiting for death!
He held tight with hopes the bleeding would stop. "Iruka-sensei! Iruka-sensei! We going to get help-"
"Do not worry, Naruto-san," said a voice from above. Naruto turned his head to see the male ANBU and his entourage who were in those flashes of his coming down to where Iruka and him were laying. Emergency ninjas with white clothing went to Iruka's side. "Iruka-san will be fine. He is in the safest of hands. I promise as a ANBU that Iruka will be safe and will be healthy." "
Naruto saw people carry Iruka away from the forest spot they were in, but Naruto growled at the people separating him from Iruka. However, the absolute hold Towa had was too strong to break through. "He better be."
Towa nodded. "The Hokage requests your presence, Naruto-san."
After calming down considerably, Naruto knew it was time to confront the Hokage about everything.