The past catches up to us all. Eventually.
Disclaimer: I don't own Naruto. A shame. If I did, the utter crap that is Part Two would have never existed.
A Naruto one shot fic by Fosfor
He wasn't panting. He wasn't even breathing hard, his muscles weren't sore and his body felt fine.
He never felt worst or more exhausted in his life.
The cerulean orbs narrowed as he rested, looking at the sky.
'There must be a way around this... I'm missing something. But what?'
Despite many claiming otherwise, Kazama Arashi wasn't a spectacularily talented shinobi.
Not in the way of the famed 'geniuses' that Konoha loved so much, anyway.
His grades at the academy were passable. Not bad, not good - just average.
He wasn't particularly strong or fast. He didn't have a bloodlimit or even a bloodline. He wasn't a genius strategist. His ninjutsu was good, but nothing to write home about. His taijutsu was just as average. His genjutsu was no better.
That's not to say he was a BAD ninja. Far from it. He was competent, brave and performed as well as any chuunin his age could. Even better, in some cases.
Kazama Arashi, despite not being brilliantly skilled in any one area, was a perfect all rounder. An ideal jack of all trades. You needed somebody assassinated? Send Arashi. There won't be much flash or cool jutsu involved, but the job will be done. Bodyguard mission? He might need to run along with the client - something many prouder shinobi like Hyuuga and the Uchuiha would never do, but at least the client would live. Intelligence gathering? No problem.
The missions might not be done in a glamorous way, but they got done. Once Kazama Arashi decided he would do something, it got done. It wasn't a question of pride, honor or duty. It was just the way Arashi was.
Once when he was thirteen, he saw a particularly advanced Doton jutsu. He decided he would learn it right there and then.
His jounin sensei was flabergasted. The jutsu, while quite powerful was rather slow and useless in any place save the Earth Country, since it needeed a lot of sturdy rock to work with. Arashi was a genin, lacked the chakra reserves, skill and anything even resembling the instruction, save the time he had seen it in action. And his affinity for Doton was just plain terrible, being Fuuton type. Kazama Arashi didn't care.
It took him two years, cost him his first possibility of the promotion and cut into his missison time.
Kazama Arashi learned the jutsu. Then he had mastered it.
After that, he had never used it again.
That was just the way he was.
Nearly two years later, Kazama Arashi decided he wanted to be faster.
He could have just strapped some weights and do some good old fashioned training. Sure. He even did. He quickly realized that while it have give some effect, it was not for him. Oh sure, he got faster. A little. Somewhat. He didn't want a little faster. He wanted FASTER. As in very.
His body, as healthy and sturdy as it was, wasn't built for speed. He wasn't fat or, as they called it 'big boned' like an Akimichi, but he didn't have the wiry build of an Uchiha or or lithe form of the Hyuuga. He just wasn't 'wired' that way. His body was like him - a good all rounder.
While the weights and intense speed training would pay off, it wouldn't pay of nearly enough for the effort and time he'd have dedicated to it.
And Jiraya-sensei already bitched he sacrificed his latest possibility of the promotion.
He briefly thought of using the Celstial Gates, but he rejected the idea almost as fast as it came. The strain on the body was bad enough for the hardened taijutsu masters. He was stubborn, not suicidical.
So he needed a way around his 'handicap'. The purely physical speed wasn't the only way, there were some high speed ninjutsu. Like the shunshin. But shunshin was clumsy and had several glaring limitations. Moving only in a straight line, an inability to link the shunshins quickly, an inability to stop in the middle... The list went on.
That and it was 'loud' as hell when it came to chakra leakage. Any nin with half brains and sensory skill above academy student could tell where one was going if somebody used the shunshin next to them.
No, shunshin was out. And that was the best high speed ninjutsu in existence. Well, to his and Jiraya-sensei's knowledge anyway.
In other words. He was out of viable options.
So he decided to create himself one.
His affinity was Fuuton. Wind equaled speed, right? Fast like the wind and all that.
So he experimented, researched and did his best.
While he discovered some nice speed enchancement techniques and even improved on them, they weren't what he was looking for.
Though he got some ideas about a new technique he tentatively named Rasengan, so it wasn't a total bust.
Still far from his goal, though.
Oh was obvious that the 'speed' just didn't cut it.
So what was there?
He had an epiphany right then.
Summoning. The Kuchiyose no Jutsu. After all, it brought the summons form different plane of reality practically at once.
But how was he to summon himself? In a desired location, no less?
He dug into his memory, remembering and dissecting anything he knew about the kuchiyose. Then he grilled Jiraya, one of the greatest masters of the art in a long time. When that didn't prove to be enough, he went for Konoha's archives.
Sometime along the way he got promoted to a Jounin somehow - not that he really cared about the rank - and experiemented with his rasengan on the side.
He also became a very efficient nin. After all, the missions seriously cut into his research and it irked him. All those little snags, failiures and blind alleys that he came upon during his development of his dream technique proved to be quite beneficial in that. Though he was honestly surprised that he suddenly jumped to the 'upper A-class' threat level in most bingo books.
So he was a freshly minted jounin, already an A-class badass in every Bingo book out there... And he didn't give a fuck.
He was STILL missing something.
'Okay, let's see...' He frowned. 'Summoning myself, yeah. Possible. Needs a medium...' He glared at the complicated seal array he was resting on. '...but possible.'
He gritted his teeth
'Only it hurts like FUCKING HELL!'
'I just don't get it... You can summon people if you create the necccessary seal array on the scroll and have a willing target. I know that it's possible. And there is no pain involved. So WHY the hell does summoning myself via medium at barely a five meter distance feels like getting mauled by the Hyuuga Clan? It doesn't make any sense!'
A shadow coming over his face shook his train of throught off.
He looked up and blinked.
There was a face hoovering above his.
It was nice and angular, though the cheekbones were a little bit sharp. But the face was feminime and undeniably beautiful. He wouldn't call it 'nice'. It wasn't that type of beauty. Her features were that of fully mature woman, her skin very pale, though not deathly so. Her hair was the richest shade of crimson that he had ever seen, and it hung around her face in a slightly wild and untamed manner. Though he could see the four elaborate hair pins holding the long pony tail.
She was frowning as she looked at him, her eyes a shade of lighter, more vibrant crimson than her hair.
"What are you doing?"
He blinked at that.
Her voice was strange. Not the sweet, high pitched tone of the village girls, but not the harsh one some kunoichi seemed to use either.
It was low and rich, but it wasn't melodious. It was the type of the tone that brooked no argument, one that didn't ask, but ordered.
"I'm laying here for my health."
Well, he had never been very good with orders.
Her frown deepened, but she didn't get annoyed. Her tone remained the same.
"I am asking about this." She indicated the array.
Overcoming his slowly abating pain, Arashi sat up. While Tsunade managed to beat some manners into him, he was hurting too damn much to do anything else.
He quirked an eyebrow.
Now that he wasn't upside down, he could look at her properly.
And there was a lot to look at.
She was tall. Taller than most of the women he had seen in his life - a little bit taller than him, even. She was also built like a kunoichi - rather volomptous one, but a kunoichi. The simple black pants, shirt and a loose burgundy jacket weren't exactly tight, but they showed enough.
'She looks a little bit like Tsunade.' Arashi decided finally. 'Smaller breasts... Well, not a shock here, but otherwise they look a little bit similar.'
Oh there were differences - Tsunade's features were softer, her hair blonde, shorter and neater... And she sure as hell didn't emanate such a harsh, commanding presence, but there were similarities.
"I'm creating a summoning array." He finally answered, almost slapping himself right after. 'Oh great going, you moron. That she LOOKS like a kunoichi doesn't mean she IS one.'
"I mean, it's like the summoning creatures that shinobi sometimes do. We use a bit of chakra, mold it and..."
The redhead cocked an eyebrow.
"I know what calling on the help of a contracted tribe is, shinobi." She said curtly. " But what what purpose would that," she indticated the array. "serve? This array... It is empty. It summons nothing."
'So okay, she knows what summoning is. Propably not a civilian, then.' He frowned. 'Not a low level kunoichi either. Spotting something like that... It takes some serious skill, upper chuunin at the least.'
"Well it doesn't summon 'nothing'." Arashi corrected the woman. "It summons me. Or it should anyway." He scratched his neck in embarassment.
She blinked, before looking at the array wordlessly for a good while.
"Why?" She said finally, looking at him curiously..
"Well, if I can summon myself wherever I want, that'd be a pretty good technique, right?" He said shrugging. "The ultimate kind of speed... Though it wouldn't be SPEED, per say." He muttered thoughtfully, before perking up. "But it would be-"
"No." Her crimson eyes were calm, but very focused. "Why do you do this?"
"I'm not sure I understand." He said, puzzled.
"As a shinobi you require an efficient technnique. To move but five meters, you need a complicated seal array that takes hours to put up and still fails most of the time. And the energy backlash leaves you in too much pain to even stand up." She cocked her head. "Why?"
"Well the backlash thing IS pretty annoying, but once I find a way ar-" He started.
"No." She cut in again. "Why are you attempting to do it?"
He stopped, frowning thoughtfully, before smiling.
"I don't know." He admitted cheerfuly. "But I won't know until I try."
Her eyebrows rose slowly.
"You focus on an impossible goal without knowing why?" She asked curiously.
"It isn't impossible. So far I just found what doesn't work." Arashi said rasing a finger pointedly.
She looked at him for a while, her face expresionless, before nodding slowly.
"Shinobi, your name?" She said finally, her tone commanding.
"Arashi. Kazama Arashi. Jounin of Konohagakure."
She pulled one of her long pins from her hair and looked at it contemplatively for a while. It was a little odd, Arashi noted. It wasn't a straight shape he had seen other women using, but rather a three pronged, an almost blade-like shape.
"Kazama Arashi." She said thoughtfully, as if to herself.
Her hand blurred.
Arashi's eyes widened before he touched his cheek, now dripping blood. The bloodied hairpin embeded in the center of the array, still vibrating slightly with the force of the throw.
'My god... I didn't even see it move!'
She looked at him, her eyes strangely amused.
"That was good answer, Kazama Arashi. I'm going now, but we will meet again. And I will remember your name." She smirked. "Indeed, I will remember your name, for good or ill." She bared her teeth in a disturbingly savage grin. "Next time, you better be faster than my little hairpin."
She laughed before walking away and quickly vanishing in the forest despite the distinctive color of her hair and jacket.
Arashi, still too much in pain after the failed technique just blinked.
"Okay..." He said finally. "Can anybody tell me what the hell just happened?"
He winced, touching his cheek.
The wound wasn't deep, paper cut at most, but those were always the most annoying.
He wiped the blood, only for more to appear.
'Well damn... That was one hellishly sharp hairpin.' He thought with a scowl, reaching for the item in question and freezing.
Slowly, ever so slowly he looked at the pin, before wiping more blood and puling out a fresh scroll.
Pulling out a senbon, he started scribbling furiously, using the life giving liquid like ink. He cut away the clean scraps, leaving a long, thin slip of paper that he tied over the pin.
He looked at it thoughtfully before smearing more of his blood over the handle.
He stood up and slowly walked to the second, identical array five meters away.
Slowly he made the precise seals for his modified kuchiyose.
There was a slightly queasy sensation starting in his gut and a brief, if strong, stab of pain as he landed inside the second seal.
Kazama Arashi grinned, a mad glint in his eye.
The situation wasn't hopeless.
Well, not really.
They were just... a little out numbered.
Like, ten to one.
And in the Iwa teritory.
Deep into Iwa teritory.
No reinforcements. No supplies.
The Iwa bastards didn't even have to attack - the hunger would to the job for them.
Arashi frowned, fingering his pouch.
'Damned if I do, damned if I don't.'
He wasn't READY. Not yet. The technique worked. Well, mostly. But he still needed the 'markers' to know exactly WHERE he was going. And the technique itself had flaws but...
Not like he had a choice here.
"Hiashi." He turned to one of his comrades, a young Hyuuga, taking out several three pronged quasi-kunai "How accurate are you with thrown weapons?"
The Hyuuga Main House heir just cocked an eyebrow.
The technique had flaws. Holes.
It ate chakra like crazy, it wasn't exactly stealthly either. He had tried, but after he eliminated the smoke and the loud sound, there came the flash. The leaking chakra had to got SOMEWHERE and he didn't fancy it slamming back into his coils like it did before he worked out the bugs. Before it was painful - with this much it could fry his chakra coils better than a rabid Hyuuga.
Despite the ovewheling numbers, superior tactics and knowledge of the terrain, any Iwa ninja who fought, died. Those who escaped, carried forth a horror story of a golden haired demon appearing out of nowhere in a flash of yellow light, decimatibg his opponents before they knew what was happening.
While the Iwa nins fled, terrified of the crushing defeat at the hands of, for all intents and purposes, a single man, Konoha nins rejoiced, their sipirits rising, morale skyrocketing, rekindling the famous fires of Konoha's spirit once again.
The Yellow Flash was born.
Not that the newly nicknamed Kazama Arashi knew or cared, seeing as he fainted from the chakra exhaustion right after.
When he awoke, his cheek was bleeding, the crimson line directly symmetrical to the cut he recieved few years before. A bloodied, three pronged hairpin rested in his hand.
Kazama Arashi slept with a smile that night, one that had nothing to do with his glorious victory.
The Yondaime Tsuchikage glared at the blond jounin.
"A little gimmick... A little, fucking TOY..." The Tsuchikage sneered, breaking the three pronged kunai. "Not so mighty without it now, Yellow Flash, huh? Not when there is no gimmicked crap to use!" He spat.
Arashi smirked through the blooded lips.
"Well, that 'gimmicked crap' cost you quite a few soldiers... And your personal ANBU bodyguards as well. I guess it is useful for something, eh?"
The Tsuchikage gritted his teeth.
"You will pay for every life you have taken, murderer." He hissed. "Each of those men was worth a hundred of you. They didn't need to cheat to be excellent shinobi. Not like you!"
Arashi looked the Tsuchikage for a few moments, before stating to... snicker.
The Tsuchikage's rage reached new levels.
'He...DARES?!' The Iwa shinobi thought, seeing red.
"First off... We are ninja. Cheating, subterfuge, stealth... You know, kind of required. In the job description, as it were." Arashi said, finally restraining his chuckle. "Second..." The konoha jounin vanished.
The Tsuchikage's eyes widened as he heard the tell tale sounds of the fully charged Rasengan behind his back.
"... I don't need the kunai for the Hiraishin."
When the dawn came over the battle field, he laid there/ sorrounded by the wreckage and corpses. His body tired, armor ruined and bloody from the dead enemies as well as himself, Arashi found the third three pronged hairpin.
His cheeks were not marked, but the pin was wrapped in a slip of silky cloth where the blood had been on the last two.
The last three pronged hair pin didn't cut him. Nor had it been given to him during or after a battle, like a victory token. There was no sash, nor blood.
He had found it on his desk one morning. It just laid there, silent and gleaming in the afternoon sun.
An hour later he recieved first report of the giant fox heading for Konoha.
Arashi panted, drawing the air in greedily.
He tried to stop the beast before it reached Konoha, along with his ANBU, but it proved futile. Nothing, not even the Boss Summons, could stop the raw engine of destruction that was the nine tailed fox.
All of his best ANBU, including Kakashi, his prized pupil. All that skill, power and experience that could rip a small army asunder...
They didn't even manage to slow the bijuu down.
Even when the rest of Konoha forces went to fight the demon, it didn't change anything. Where once of those crimson tails hit, mountains crumbled. Where one of the tails swung, rock and earth alike were torn asunder. Fire, hotter than any Katon jutsu he had ever seen, rained down from the heavens with each swipe of the red tails.
And they couldn't wound it. They couldn't even scratch it. The most powerful jutsu in Konoha's history didn't leave a mark on the crimson fur.
He knew, deep in his heart, that it would end this way. Still, he had to try.
'Well, only the one way left now...'
"Kakashi! Take the ANBU and order the rest to evacuate!"
The grey haired youth blinked, before looking at his teacher with outrage.
"Sensei! You can't...!"
"This is the only way, we both know it!" Arashi said harshly.
The glint of determination lit in the young copy nin's eyes.
"Then I will do it. You are the Hokage, sensei, this village needs you!" He focused his single sharingan eye on Arashi. "I can copy it, just show me the seals!" He demanded urgently.
Arashi smiled sadly.
"If only..." He muttered, before using the Hiraishin to appear at his student's back, knocking him out with a blow to the neck.
"RETREAT!" He screamed. "IMMIEDEATE RETREAT!"
He gave Kakashi's unconscious body to the nearest ANBU.
"Take him and go." He ordered.
"Hokage-sama..." The masked figure hesitated
"GO GODDAMIT!" The blond roared.
The ANBU nodded, before standing at attention, as did the rest of the ANBU, even the wounded. They gave Arashi a quick salute before vanishing in the swirls of shunshin.
The Yondaime sighed, before jumping on Gamabunta's head.
"Just you and me now." He said with a grin. "Come on, furball! One last dance before the show ends!"
'For the both of us.' He added mentally.
It was futile. He KNEW that. It didn't stop him from trying. And the fox, it seemed, was more than happy to accomodate him.
They battled, if you might call it that. The tails swept, the fire rained, Rasengan whined, dragons rose. The fight raged on.
"Arashi... I can't keep this up for long, the bijuu is far too strong. If you continue like this, we will lose." Cautioned the Toad boss.
The Hokage nodded wearily.
"Yeah. I know. It's time to finish this."
Incredibly the nine tailed fox halted. It looked at the blond human, it's deadly tails swiping from side to side but not ripping, burning or crushing for once.
Then it did something Arashi would never suspect it to do.
"WHAT ARE YOU DOING, HUMAN?" The voice was deep, harsh and growling, but not as unpleasant as he might have imagined.
Astonished, Arashi blinked, before answering
The tails moved impatiently.
"THAT I CAN SEE. BUT WHY?" The huge head cocked to the side. "YOU CANNOT STOP ME, HUMAN.YET YOU USE A JUTSU AFTER A JUTSU. MY POWER IS LIMITLESS. IT IS IMPOSSIBLE FOR YOU TO DEFEAT ME OR EVEN HARM ME. WHY DO YOU EVEN TRY?"
"You don't know until you try right?" He chuckled. "Besides, nothing is impossible. So far I just learned what doesn't work."
The fox grinned, it's maw showing the rows of gleaming teeth.
"GOOD ANSWER, SHINOBI." The tails rose as one. "THEN PREPARE YOURSELF."
"I can say the same to you." The Yondaime Hokage said calmly, Rasengan blooming to life on his palm, before vanishing in the yellow flash, appearing over Kyuubi's head.
"This is something special I've been cooking up for a while, just for you...!" He grinned as the small sphere roared, suddenly growing in size several times over. "Oodama Rasengan!"
The Kyuubi roared as the sphere tore into it's body, managing to do what the whole Konoha ninja force couldn't - actually wound the bijuu.
The tails swiped savagely, as the beast writhed in momentary pain.
Gamabunta, his resolve renewed, attacked the bijuu in it's moment of weakness. Weakness that, sadly, proved only temporary. With impossible speed, the crimson fur mended as one of the tails swiped at the blond figure holding the rasengan, the paws tearing into the giant toad's side.
But Gamabunta was unheeding of his own pain as his eyes widened.
"ARASHI...!" He roared, watching helplessly as the tail crushed his friend, only to blink as the body exploded in... smoke?
'The Kage bunshin?!' The Toad Boss thought incredously. 'But when...No, more importantly... WHERE is Arashi now...?!'
Kyuubi froze suddenly.
"NO... NO!" It roared, feeling something was deeply wrong.
Down on the ground, Arashi smirked, his fingers finishing the last seal before plunging into the crimson fur.
Gamabunta, no longer having chakra, his injuries severe, vanished in the poof of smoke.
The veiled figure of the shinigami appeared overhead and Kyuubi's eyes widened.
"I told you before, demon!" The Hokage shouted trimpanthly. "One last dance... For the both of us!"
Still grinning, the blond coughed up blood.
The bijuu, instead of trashing and screaming, looked down at the human with it's crimson eyes.
"WELL PLAYED, SHINOBI." It said with a grin. "WELL PLAYED, INDEED."
Kazama Arashi, The Yondaime Hokage, fell back, closing his eyes, grin still on his face, the four ornate three pronged hair pins falling from his belt where he had always kept them.
Naruto came to his senses slowly, which was rather odd. Usually he just woke up, crisp and ready. Something to do with his regenerative powers, according to the obaa-chan.
She explained it in detail but it flew over his head. Pity her punch didn't.
He chuckled weakly at that, before coughing and wincing.
'Shit! What happened?!'
He felt worse than after the whole Valley of the End fiasco, worse than after the Four Tailed transformation, even!
His eyes widened.
Memories returned slowly.
'That stupid, idiotic, halfwit BASTARD!'
The idiot 'avenger' somehow got into his head that the best way to get to Itachi would be through Naruto. How and why, Naruto had no idea. But Sasuke had lured him in, pretending to be willing to return, only to beat him black and blue after his back was turned.
'And then he practically gift wrapped me for the Akatsuki.' Naruto thought darkly.'The only thing missing was the fucking ribbon!'
He hung his head, clenching his fists.
Sasuke betrayed him once, escaping the village. That had hurt. But doing something like this...
'Not that he got anything out of it, the stupid bastard.' Naruto smirked.
Instead of fulfilling his purpose and avenging his clan by killing Itachi, Sasuke ran into a wall called Hosigaki Kisame.
Who promptly smacked Sasuke around with Samehada like a redheaded stepchild. even the freakish Cursed Seal on the second level didn't help the younger Uchiha - if anything it made fighting him easier for Kisame, since it used so much chakra.
Not that the former Mist nin had any problems handling Sasuke before. The younger Uchiha was incredibly ninjutsu oriented. And even his famous speed came mostly from channneling chakra. Chakra which the Samehada ATE. Kisame was almost bored fighting the Uchiha scion. He went so far to say that fighting Naruto was far more fun that fighting Sasuke. Far more challenging as well, according to his words.
It was a bad, downright terrible day to be Uchiha Sasuke.
If not for Itachi's intervention the 'Great Emo Duck' would end his sad existence there and then.
'Oh I bet the teme is just eating his own kunai in frustration!' Naruto snickered. 'Not only being called inferior to ME, but being saved by his psycho brother! Bwahahahaha!'
"And what are you so happy about runt, yeah?"
"Maybe he anticipates the moment of release from the bijuu as joyful?" Itachi's psycho-monotone was a s creepy as always.
"Hell, Itachi-san, you never know with that brat. It just might be possible."
Naruto slowly looked around the dark cave, finally noticing the faint silhouettes in black cloaks with red clouds.
His eyes went very wide as he sweat dropped.
'So maybe laughing wasn't the best idea...'
"Enough. We are ready. We need to start the procedure now, before some meddlers interrupt it." Came the calm, authorative voce.
The seal around Naruto lit up.
The blond jinchuuriki screamed.
He panted, sweat running down his brow as he strained with the foreign chakra.
'Sweat? Why should I sweat in my own mind?'
Just like that, the sweat was gone. But the strain remained.
Another bar of Kyuubi's prison was rent asunder, despite the suiton jutsu holding it in place.
"DAMN IT!" Naruto roared. "HOLD, YOU FUCKER!"
The fox rose it's head, shaking it slightly in a disturbingly human manner.
Naruto had no idea how long he had been doing this, but he was already at the end of his rope.
The moment the extraction started, he landed straight in here, this familiar, hated sewer, watching as the first of the countless bars to the Kyuubi's prison was slowly ripped, deformed and finally crushed.
It was a long time ago. Only a third of the bars remained, despite his best efforts.
Naruto gritted his teeth.
"BRAT, I'M TALKING TO YOU."
Naruto still chose to ignore the demon, focusing the last dregs of chakra in the 'sticky' jutsu he had learned from the Ero-sennin that seemed to work best on the bars.
The Kyubi growled, finally losing patience. One of the tails sneaked through the holes ripped by the Akatsuki. The apendage gabbed him, slammig him face first into the remaining bars, leaving him staring in the Kyuubi's crimson robs.
"DO I HAVE YOUR ATTENTION NOW, BRAT?" The Fox sneered.
"The FUCK do you think you're doing, you stupid furball?! I'm busy here!" The blond growled, trying to get free of the tail, a futile effort. Not that it stopped him from trying.
"DON'T BE AN IDIOT, BRAT. WHATEVER YOU ARE DOING DOESN'T SEEM TO HELP AT ALL. WHY DO YOU EVEN BOTHER IS BEYOND ME. IT'S IMPOSSIBLE FOR YOU TO EQUAL EIGHT NINJA LIKE THAT."
"Screw you!" Naruto grunted through his gritted teeth. "Possible, impossible... I don't give a fuck! It's beter than sitting and waiting to die." He smirked. "Besides, it ain't impossible. I just didn't find a way that works, yet."
The fox froze. It's crimson orbs closed for a moment before opening, glowing brighter than Naruto could remember seeing in his life.
The fox grinned toothily and Naruto's eyes opened wide as the wave of crimson consumed him.
The two orbs of purest crimson looked down. There was no malice, no hate. Not even the bloodlust. Just anticipation and... something else. Something that scared and unsettled Arashi greatly.
"WELL PLAYED, HUMAN." the fox grinned. "WELL PLAYED INDEED. BUT IT ISN'T THE LAST DANCE, KAZMA ARASHI."
The Hokage's eyes widened.
He had planned to seal the demon in himself as he died from the sacrifice to the shinigami, taking it with him. He could feel his life force slipping, but... Why so slowly...?
The nine tailed demon fox looked at the shinigami.
"WELL BARGAINED AND DONE, LORD OF THE UNDERWORLD." The bijuu growled. Said being nodded gravely, before vanishing.
Arashi's eyes widened.
"DID YOU REALLY THINK A MORTAL WOULD HAVE A BETTER RAPPORT WITH THE SHINIGAMI THAN ONE SUCH AS I?" The Kyuubi chuckled. "NOT THAT HE DIDN'T DEMAND A PRICE... GREEDY BASTARD." The nINe... no, eight now, tails swept back and forth with obvious irritation.
Yondaime's eyes widened in horror. He had failed. Completely and utterly. The beat would be free regardless of his sacrifice and wipe Konoha after all.
"OH DON'T BE SO SCARED, HUMAN." The Kyuubi said with a grin." I SURVIVE, BUT I GO WHERE I'M SUPPOSED TO. JUST NOT IN THE WAY YOU HAVE IMAGINED."
Arashi stifenned before crying out in pain, smoke rising from his stomach, then from his hands and, soon, from his whole body.
"INDEED, SHINOBI. IT WAS A DANCE. BUT NOT THE LAST ONE." The fox smirked.
Even as the seal started to draw the mighty being in, the Kyuubi laughed
Naruto fell down, the tail no longer keeping him aloft.
He coughed, his cerulean eyes unfocused and dazed. He shook his head, touching it to the cool material of the bars.
'What...what is... What the hell...?!'
His head was as if covered in cotton inside out. the thoughts were sluggish and jumbled, slow. Like a river of tar.
And they hurt. GOD how they hurt!
He closed his eyes, trying to chase off the pain.
The pulse in the back of his neck grew. His stomach hurt.
And then it was gone. Something cool and soothing touched his brow.
He leaned onto it with gratitude.
'Soft and cool... Kami... This is...so...soothing...' He trailed off.
He froze before slowly, ever so slowly looking up.
The crimson eyes looked into his cerulean ones with undisguised amusement.
"Hello, shinobi." The crimson lips stretched into a smirk. "I told you we will meet again."
The Akatsuki leader twitched..
His fingers were smoldering slightly, as was the seal they put around the extraction altar.
He noticed that all of his subordinates had shown similar symptoms, some more than the others.
'What in the world?'
"The yondaime truly was a master shinobi.' Itachi's monotone finally broke the silence."The seal he created is strong."
The leader regained his composure.
"He was but one man. And what man created, man can break."
"Ain't that the truth." Drawled an amused voice.
Itachi's eyes widened, looking at the blond jinchuuriki.
'Impossible! The extraction process is so strenous that even if it was interrupted he should have stayed unconscious...!'
"You know, I must congratulate you on the whole set up." The jinchuuriki said, his tone conversational as if he was taking a relaxing stroll in the park. "Cave with only one entrance... Manacles, ropes, traps... I can't move at all, even if I broke the chains. You thought of everything." Naruto grinned and vanished.
There was a distinctive sound of twisting air and chakra, a low, almost inaudible growl of power.
Itachi turned quickly, the tomoe in his sharingan morphing.
Naruto's cerulean eyes caught the Mangekyo without a slightest hesitation.
Itachi looked at the black and white landscape of his Tsukuyomi.
Or what should have been black and white and was now in varying shades of red.
The Kyuubi no Kitsune smirked savagely, looking down at the wide eyed Uchiha, lowering her giant maw so that it was directly in front of Itachi's face.
The Akatskuki watched in frozen disbelief as the Uchiha genius stared at the jinchuuriki with wide eyes, before screaming shrilly in pain, clawing at his sharingan.
Kisame, the closest standing to Itachi backed away a step when he realized that Itachi's eyes started to, for the lack of better word, melt. First, the sharingan blurred out of existence, leaving just the pitch black, only to be flooded with crimson again.
Itachi howled in agony as his eyes boiled in their sockets, first wisps of smoke coming out of them.
The Uchiha stiffened, going silent, before his eyes just... popped, bubbling down his face.
Naruto stared at the Uchiha, before shaking his head.
"Wimp." He muttered contemptously, before cracking his neck and knuckles.
He looked at the rest of the Akatsuki.
The quiet yet menacing growl of the Rasengan filed the chamber.
Naruto smirked. The yellow bolt flashed through him, from head to toe.
"I guess we haven't been formally introduced yet, you bastards." Naruto's smile was wide and toothy. "My name is Kazama Arashi. You tried to kill me. Prepare to die."
Naruto (it was still odd to think of himself any other way, really) laid down on his back, the cave utterly wrecked, bright sky visible through the blown holes.
The floor was covered with gore, as were his hands, severeal cloaked figures strewn around him. Most was rather... dismembered.
He opened his eyes lazily to look at the crimson haired, pale skinned face right above him.
"Heh..." The blond smiled weakly. "Now this feels rather familiar for some reason, don't you think?"
He blinked, looking at the familiar, ornate, three pronged hair pins on his chest.
He cocked an eyebrow, before smirking.
"Not gonna cut me?" He joked. "Cause it'd be kinda nostalgic and all."
"I don't need to mark you now." She chuckled throatily, her long nails gently tracing his whisker marks. "See, it's all here. Right how it needs to be. Right how it should be."
Lazily, he picked up the hair pins, tracing the ornate handles to the top.
"Why do I have the feeling that when put the ends just right I'll get a perfectly round, white sphere?" He asked with a wry smile.
She just chuckled, sitting next to him.
He took the first of the hair pins and used it to comb the crimson hair. He had never done it before, but when he grabbed a handful of it, the smiple, slightly wild yet elegant pony tail came out without a hitch. He had seen it in his dreams too many times not to.
'I wonder if it was because of that I had my crush on Sakura? After all, in Konoha she was the closest thing to a redhead... Though that does sound kind of silly now that i think about it.' He thought absently, placing the first and the second pins.
With swift move, ha placed another two, the same way he remembered from their first meeting, so long ago.
He sated his eyes with the sight of rich crimson for a while before closing his eyes and lying down.
He was so damn tired...
A moment later he could feel a warm body, unheeding of the blood on his hands and torso, laying next to him and embracing him tightly.
"You now... I should be pissed." He murmured. But now I can only think of one thing... Why me?" He opened his eyes, looking at her curiously. "Why? Why not some demon lord or even another bijuu ro something?"
"It was you. From that very frist moment, I knew it was you. There was nobody else." She said, amusement in her voice. "Bijuu are... well, boring I guess. Humans might be weak as a whole, but they are interesting. Well, they are interesting as individuals. As a whole..."
He looked at her curiously.
"You said 'they'?"
"Oh please." She snorted with amusement. "Fifteen years of co-existng with me and you think yourself human? Give me some credit."
His eyes widened.
"So the regeneration, the senses the chakra capacity..."
"Yours. Let's just say that I just gave way to what was already there."
"Oh." He said finally. "Cool."
"Well I spent over twenty years on the whole thing, it better be." She grumbled.
"Yeah... I wanted to ask you that." He said slowly. "Why all that..." He waved his hand. "You know, the set up. Why the hair pins I can guess, but the war with Iwa... The whole attack on Konoha..." He frowned. "Which reminds me, I'm still rather pissed about that. "
"Arashi... Or Naruto, however you want to be called. "She looked at him. The blond shrugged.
"Naruto's fine." He said. "So is Arashi, but I doubt going under my old name would be good. I DID have mu share of enemies. I don't need them crawling outta the woodwork now."
"Naruto it is." She nodded. "How long does human a live?"
His eyes widened.
"Ah, so you see." She smiled. "I needeed you to use the Shiki Fuuin." She shrugged."Besides..." Her eyes narrowed. "I had a bone to pick with Konoha. I still do, as a matter of fact."
"Hey, hey hey!" He said in alarm "Easy there! No invading Konoha! I might not like it terribly much because of the last fifteen years of my life but I still have friends there." He frowned. "And what do you mean 'a bone to pick'?"
"Bones. As in plural." She siad flatly. "Mokuton is the first. Pity that your Shodaime is dead. I'd enjoy roasting him over a slow fire, the miserable thief!" She snarled, her eyes glowing crimson, before frowning. "I wonder if I can learn that Edo Tensei..." She muttered thoughtfully.
Naruto rolled his eyes.
"And the second?" He asked.
"Uchiha Madara... That human, to put it quite simply, annoyed me one time to many. Miserable maggot." She growled with disgust, before perking up. "Melting Itachi's eyes has been quite cathartic, however"
"I don't get it..." He said finally. "You're pissed at two men, and Konoha as a whole suffers?" He scowled. "Kinda overkill, if you ask me."
"Do not judge me by some human morality." The Kyuubi cautioned the blond sternly. "Besides, Konoha is MINE by right." She said with a smirk.
Naruto looked at her sceptically.
"You know, I DO know that you're the big bad demon lord and all but, that's kinda pushing it, don't ya think?" He said finally.
"Oh not at all." She said lazily. "What did your Shodaime use to create Konoha, hmm?"
"Moku-" Naruto's eyes widened. "Oh you GOTTA be kidding me!" He said finally. " You mean to tell me, that since Mokuton is yours, then by default..." He looked at her with wide eyes.
Kyuubi looked smug.
"I might not be able to destroy it now, as long as you don't want it, beloved. But I think I'll start charging them rent." She said with an evil smirk.