Categories > Anime/Manga > Naruto > Herald of the End

Chapter 3: Chaos Theory

by MachFarcon 2 reviews

AU The world can be forever changed by the simplest of choices. When Sakura takes a different path home one day after the Academy,Naruto gains a new goal: Protect his precious people. No matter the...

Category: Naruto - Rating: PG-13 - Genres: Angst,Drama,Romance - Characters: Hinata,Naruto,Sakura - Warnings: [?] - Published: 2015-05-10 - 3992 words

This is the first part of the story where the cannon characters are significantly changing due to events that happen. Expect it to slowly spiral out of cannon events soon. Or rather, certain cannon events will happen, but how they are dealt with will be completely different.

I am a huge fan of Fridge Brilliance and Fridge Horror. Thus, there is little things scattered though the story that only make sense once you think about it.

And without further delay, here's the next chapter: Chaos Theory

Mebuki Haruno hurried towards the Konoha Hospital. Sakura, her daughter, and Sakura's friend, Hinata, hurried after her. After traveling for nearly twenty minutes, the three arrived at the Hospital. Mebuki approached the front desk and asked where her patient was located at.

"Excuse me. I am wondering what room Naruto Uzumaki is in." She asked the receptionist politely. The receptionist replied after reviewing the room chart, "He is in room Three-Seventeen." Mebuki thanked the receptionist and motioned to Sakura and Hinata to follow her to the waiting room. Once she got the girls settled, not before they extracted a promise that she would tell them of Naruto's condition, she headed for room Three-Seventeen.

Whatever Mebuki was expecting when she entered the room, this wasn't it. It took all of her medic-nin training to avoid vomiting. Naruto had been dumped on the hospital bed, his seemingly fatal wounds slowly bleeding onto the bed sheets. Naruto's pale, waxen face twitched as his unconscious body gurgled as he fought for each breath. In short, Naruto was the most alive dead-looking person Mebuki had ever met. Mebuki took a deep breath and steeled herself. Then she got to work.

Sakura and Hinata grew more and more worried when Sakura's mother didn't reappear to inform them of Naruto's status. Sakura knew, from her mother's stories of the hospital, that spending a lot of time with an injured patient meant that there was either complications or the patient was seriously injured. Neither option was appealing to Sakura. She nervously nibbled on her lip as she cast a worried glance towards the door her mother had left through.
Hinata wished, not for the first time, that her eyes would not consume so much chakra to use her bloodline. She wished that she could have the power to see though walls easily like her fellow clans-men. That way, she could see that Naruto was fine. Hinata closed her eyes and began to concentrate on bringing chakra to her eye to activate her bloodline. She had never been too terribly good with it, but her need was never as great as now. After an indeterminable amount of time began to pass, she began to feel a slight stinging in her eyes as she concentrated.

Mebuki let out a tired, content sigh. It had been a difficult time, but she had successfully sown up Naruto's wounds and started him on a blood-bag. She was honestly confused was Naruto hadn't simply died from his wounds. If she didn't know better, she would have sworn that the young sunny haired boy's wounds were slowly healing by themselves. She wondered what sudden emergency had called all of the other medic-nins and doctors away from the hospital. It had to be something very significant to leave Naruto in the state that he was in prior to her assistance. Mebuki turned and headed out of the room, wondering how exactly Naruto had injured himself so much while training.

Hinata felt the stinging intensify until it was almost too much pain. She bit her lip to avoid crying out. Then, suddenly, it stopped. Hinata felt something shift inside her. And she opened her eyes. It was disorienting, to suddenly see in all directions. It was even more so to see though objects. Hinata narrowed her eyes and concentrated on finding Naruto. As her vision slowly expanded, she saw Sakura's mother heading in their direction. Hinata concentrated on reeling back her vision and then retracting the chakra to her eyes to turn off her Byakugan, the "All Seeing White Eye". She managed to turn it off just before Mebuki entered the waiting area.

Sakura perked up from her depressed slump as her mother entered the waiting room. Her mother looked tired but content she realized. Did that mean Naruto was going to be okay?

Mebuki looked at her daughter, who was struggling not to blurt out questions about her friend's condition. She took pity on Sakura and answered her unasked question.

"Naruto is going to be fine. It was a bit of trouble at first, but he's fine now. He's just resting now." She explained, attempting to ease both Sakura's and Hinata's worries.

"Can we see him?" Sakura half-asked half-demanded.

"Of course dear. Follow me." Mebuki beckoned the two girls to follow her. After a few minutes of walking, they arrived at room Three-Seventeen.

Mebuki entered the room, followed closely by Sakura and Hinata. Upon seeing Naruto's bandaged, unmoving form, both of the girls started to silently cry as they made their way over to the blonds' bedside; unconsciously moving to opposite sides of the hospital bed. Sakura brushed Naruto's hair back out of his face, as Hinata scanned Naruto for visible injuries. Both of the girls eyes met. They both found chairs and sat next to "their" side of Naruto's hospital bed. Mebuki smiled happily. It was good that Sakura had found friends that she was willing to stick by.

It had been several hours since Sakura and Hinata had been waiting. During that time, the two had discussed plans on how to get even with Misuki-menba. They had discussed, discarded, and finalized several plans, in case one went awry. They then had discussed how Naruto had gotten his injuries, considering that Naruto wouldn't have hurt himself so critically if he was training. This had started a discussion about how the villagers disliked Naruto. As the last of the hours drew to a close, Sakura and Hinata had decided on waiting to ask Naruto what had happened, since the chance that Naruto hurting himself this badly while training was practically non-existent.

The sounds of a conversation above him slowly roused Naruto from his heavy slumber. He could feel something wrapped tightly around his hands and torso. Whatever it was, Naruto was fairly confident that it couldn't keep him trapped. As Naruto continued to slowly awaken, he became aware of the soft bed that he was laying on. It was probably the softest thing he had ever laid on in his entire life!

Soon, Naruto was able to identify the two voices above him. It was Sakura-chan and Hinata-chan! Naruto focused on waking up, ignoring the twinges of soreness that emanated from his hands and abdomen. He slowly opened his eyes.

The room was white. It had a sterile smell. Everything was white walls and brushed steel. But then something infinitely more important than studying his surroundings intruded into Naruto's space. It was Sakura and Hinata! "I wonder why they are here. Where ever here is. It wasn't that serious of an injury." Naruto wondered to himself silently. "I wonder if I can get back to the alley. Those were some high quality Kunai. I can always use a few more."

Suddenly Sakura and Hinata realized that Naruto was awake and immediately stopped refining their plans about dealing with Misuki-menba. They both looked over at the bed, and noticing Naruto's confused bright blue eyes, felt their own eyes filling with tears. Naruto was alright!

"Hi Sakura-Chan and Hinata-Chan!" Naruto exclaimed, putting his own confusion aside in favor of stopping his friends tears. He wasn't sure exactly why they were sad, but he knew that he had to do all in his power to make them happy again!

Hinata broke first."N-Naruto-Kun!" Hinata sobbed into his chest, "I w-was so w-worried!" Naruto felt great and terrible pangs of guilt. It was all his fault that Hinata was crying!
Sakura broke next. "Don't ever scare me again like that Baka!" She choked out amidst her now falling tears. "You were so pale and still!"

Naruto made a promise to himself in that instant. He would never cause Sakura-Chan and Hinata-Chan to cry again! Even if it killed him! Naruto lay on the bed, overwhelmed with guilt and confusion. He waited for Hinata and Sakura to stop crying, for he knew no way of making them happy until they could tell him what he did wrong.

After what seemed like an eternity to Naruto, Sakura's and Hinata's tears petered out. Naruto, still wondering what he had done wrong, asked earnestly, "What did I do wrong? I didn't mean to make you cry!"

Sakura and Hinata froze. What was Naruto talking about? Sakura slowly raised her head to look at Naruto. "You didn't do anything wrong Baka! We were just worried! That's all." Naruto tilted his head to the side as he contemplated Sakura's words. They didn't really answer his question, but as long as Sakura was feeling better, that's what was important.

"N-Naruto-Kun," Hinata's slightly trembling voice broke Naruto and Sakura out of the locked eye contact they had entered. "W-What h-happened to you? W-What c-caused you to get hurt?" Naruto shifted to look at Hinata.

"Hinata-Chan!," Naruto congratulated, "You didn't stutter too much just now!" Hinata's face immediately flushed red as she looked down. She began to poke pointer fingers together as started feeling a bit lightheaded. Naruto had complemented her!

Sakura frowned. She wasn't sure why, but when Naruto had complemented Hinata, a slightly funny feeling had developed in her stomach. She grunted to herself before demanding Naruto to answer the question. "Naruto! What happened to you? You couldn't have hurt yourself that badly in training!"
Naruto blinked. "Why did they think he hurt himself training?" He wondered silently. His face scrunched up in confusion as he tried to think of the last time he had seriously hurt himself while training. It was...maybe a year ago? "Well, I was trying to learn how to do the Bunshin Daibakuha last year. I may have exploded myself a bit..." Naruto confessed sheepishly, rubbing the back of his head in slight embarrassment.

Sakura blinked. She didn't know that. She opened her mouth to reprimand Naruto for being so reckless, but then closed it with a snap as she realized that Naruto wasn't talking about what had just happened. And if Naruto hadn't gotten hurt training...then what hurt him?
"Naruto." Sakura spoke, her mind racing, "If you didn't get hurt training today, then how did you get hurt?"

"Huh?" Naruto asked in confusion, "Oh!" Naruto realized what Sakura was talking about. "Eh, I just got cornered by three ninjas in an alley. I knocked one out before they used some binding jutsu and pinned me to the wall. They then stabbed me a few times before they ran off." Naruto dismissed in the same tone one would discuss the weather.

Hinata and Sakura froze for a moment before they began to tremble. But they were trembling for completely different reasons. Hinata was trembling at the horrifying reality that someone would willingly hurt her Naruto-Kun.

Sakura on the other hand, was trembling with a slowly increasing rage. Who had hurt Naruto? She would find them and beat them down! Hurt them so bad that they wouldn't ever think about hurting him ever again.

Naruto watched the proceedings with wide eyes. "What did I say to make them upset again?" He thought with sinking feeling of growing guilt. "I'm sorry!" He burst out, "I don't know what I did to make you two sad, but I'm sorry!" He continued on desperately, "Just tell me how to fix whatever I did wrong!"

Sakura lowered her head and was silent for a few moments. She then looked up and locked eyes with Hinata. A silent message and understanding passed between them. Then Sakura spoke, her voice eerily calm, "It's all right Naruto. You didn't do anything wrong." She then hesitated, before continuing, "But don't worry. We'll help you avoid getting caught by those ninjas again. This is my promise! Naruto-Kun."

Iruka Umino hummed happily to himself as he prepared for the day. Today was graduation day for his class! Iruka thought of the changes that had happened over the last year. Sakura Haruno had changed overnight to a certain extent. She now had taken training very seriously and was in the top ten students of the class. Hinata Hyuga had changed even more. While she was a gentle girl most of the time, when she was in a fighting situation, she changed. Her attacks were precise jabs of disabling power. Her Byakugan allowed her to instantly find the pressure points of her opponent, allowing her to incapacitate her opponent with a few quick strikes. Hinata had also almost completely lost her stutter, no doubt due to Naruto's compliments.

Naruto had also changed to a certain extent. He had tamed his boundless energy to a certain extent, and channeled that energy into becoming a close-combat specialist. Most of the students would just surrender when faced with sparring Naruto now. In the last year Iruka had gotten to know Naruto and had found the exuberant child to be pleasant to talk to. He had slowly befriended the young blond, occasionally taking Naruto out for ramen. Iruka could safely say that he was looking forward to what Naruto could accomplish in the future. It had always puzzled him, however, how Naruto still got such terrible grades despite his best efforts.

Sadly not it was not all roses, as the saying goes. Sasuke Uchiha had grown angry and spiteful of Naruto's limited success. His superiority complex couldn't understand how such a dead-last like Naruto could invoke such fear in the academy students. Luckly, Sasuke had never sparred with Naruto. Iruka shuddered to think what would happen should Naruto defeat the arrogant Uchiha. It wouldn't be good.

Iruka shrugged to himself before stretching. He was one of the examiners for the Genin exams. Today was going to be a long day...

Sakura awoke with a smile on her face. Today she was going to graduate with Naruto-Kun and Hinata-San! She hoped that they would be on the same team! They would be the best team ever! Sakura grimaced slightly after she finished that thought. Perhaps Naruto rubbed off on her more then she thought...

Sakura shrugged. It wasn't like it was a terrible thing. She was fairly certain that Naruto was incapable of doing anything terrible. She headed off to start her morning routine with a bounce to her step. Once she finished, she headed downstairs to grab a quick breakfast before heading out.

Sakura walked towards the kitchen, the aroma of warm food enveloping her as she grew closer. When she finally reached the source of the mouth-watering scents, she spotted her mother, Mebuki, flipping over a omelet. She was humming as she quickly moved from cooking one food item to the next on the stove. As she flicked the omelet onto a piece of toast, she noticed Sakura.

"Hello dear! How did you sleep?" Mebuki inquired to Sakura.

"Good!" Sakura said as she sat at the table, "Now I need to eat quickly! I'm graduating today!"

Mebuki giggled at Sakura's exuberance as she set the food in front of her pink-haired daughter. As she watched Sakura eat, she was once again thankful for Naruto. He had convinced her daughter to eat more healthy food, pointing out that she couldn't woo Sasuke if she had fallen behind in training due to lack of energy. Mebuki hid a grin as she remembered when Sakura and Hinata had attempted to get Naruto to eat less ramen. They had all watched as Naruto ate a massive amount of ramen without suffering any issues, much to their consternation. Sakura had then demanded that Naruto join her for dinner at her house to "get proper healthy food." Mebuki's grin faded as she remembered the first time Naruto had joined them for dinner...

Compared to the vague rumors that she had heard from around town, Naruto was completely different. He was polite, perhaps overly so, and certainly didn't try to destroy anything. It had quickly become obvious that Naruto had never eaten with anyone else in a formal setting. Thankfully, Kizashi had causally slowed his movements so that Naruto could copy them.

Naruto had thanked them both with a beautiful smile that made even the brightest lights look dim in comparison. After dinner, as Kizashi helped Sakura clean the dishes, Mebuki had the opportunity to talk to Naruto. It had started out innocently enough, but soon she found herself asking about Naruto's injuries that had landed him into the hospital four months prior. Her heart broke as Naruto casually explained what had happened. Naruto's accepting tone as he retold the event had caused Mebuki to suddenly pull the young boy into a comforting hug. However, Naruto had stiffened upon her contact, and she quickly pulled back. What Naruto had said next changed her view of him and the village.

"Wha-what was that?" Naruto seemed puzzled."It didn't hurt." He continued to ponder what strange action Mebuki-San had just done. "It felt...nice", Naruto decided. He was spared from further confusion as Sakura came back into the living room, and asked if Naruto wanted to get a little more training in before bed. Naruto had happily agreed and the two had headed towards the training ground.

As soon as the door slammed shut behind them, Mebuki had collapsed into her husband's arms, quietly sobbing. "H-he didn't know what a h-hug was!" Mebuki choked out. "He thought I was going to hurt him!" Kizashi rubbed her back comfortingly, letting her cry into his chest. There was no trace of his normal easy smile on his face. A grim expression slid onto his face as he considered the facts that he was given. And he didn't like the picture he was getting. Not one damn bit.

Eventfully Mebuki's sobs had tapered off. Kizashi guided her to the couch as he sat beside her. His almost angry expression had taken her aback. As Kizashi starting to explain his suspicions, her expression slowly changed to outrage. How dare the village treat anyone, especially a child, like that!

Mebuki had vowed, right then and there, that Naruto would always have a home, should he want it, at their house.

Sakura's fork scraping on the plate as she finished the last few bites brought Mebuki out of her remembrance. She handed Sakura a bag with her lunch. "Sakura dear, I also packed two breakfast egg sandwiches for Naruto-Chan. Make sure he gets them. I also packed a lunch bento for him. You normal bento is in there as well!" She instructed. She then added proudly, "I'm so proud of you! I could never ask for a better daughter!"

Sakura grabbed the bag and dashed off, calling over her shoulder, "Thanks for the breakfast mom! I'll make sure Naruto-Kun gets the food!"

Hinata awoke with a sigh. It was graduation day. Hinata had mixed feelings about today. On the one hand, she was excited to graduate with Naruto-Kun and Sakura-San. But on the other, she was worried that she wasn't good enough to graduate. Her father had spoken to her yesterday and had told her that she, as his daughter and more importantly a Hyuga main branch member, she could not fail the test today; least she shame the clan. While her father was slightly impressed by her improvements over the last year, he still viewed her as weak and useless. It was this maelstrom of emotions that killed Hinata's appetite. She instead quickly completed her morning routine and then headed towards Naruto's apartment. Naruto was always there for her...

Mizuki awoke with his head in a fog. He had been up late last night going over exactly how graduation had to go. It was his responsibility to make sure the demon never passed the exam. The demon had shown enough worrying growth in fighting ability to make the council nervous. Mizuki smirked. The little shit wouldn't know what hit him! Until it was far too late that is. Mizuki let a victorious expression stretch across his face as he considered what he would have gained after today. The demon would be dead, he would be far away from this accursed place, and he would be a ninja of Otogakure!

Mizuki's expression turned sullen as he remembered the events that had led him to come up with this plan. It had all started with the little fox getting medical attention. The bitch, Mebuki Haruno, had actually healed the demon fox. They had sent a few ninja to her house to "explain" why you didn't heal the demon. But something had gone wrong. The ninja they had sent just vanished without a trace. So they sent a few more experienced shinobi. They too disappeared. It was at that point they simply stopped trying to "contact" the Haruno family. Some powerful shadowy figure was protecting them. Eventually they had found out that it wasn't the Hokage, Sarutobi. That had both relieved and scared them all. For while it was good that the Hiruzen didn't know, it meant that someone else was stalking in the shadows.

Mizuki shrugged. Once he was gone, his "allies" in this village could burn for all cared.

Naruto awoke with a happy smile on his face. He was going to graduate with Sakura-Chan and Hinata-Chan! His first step in becoming the strongest ninja ever was nearly complete! Naruto hurried to complete his morning routine so he could meet Sakura and Hinata.

The Kyubi chuckled as he watched his container hurry about. The demon fox thought about the massive amounts of changes that had happened to Naruto in the last three years. He had gained two friends, or at least both he and Naruto assumed that they were friends; given that they really weren't sure exactly what a friend was. Yes, Kyubi decided, the Sakura-girl and the Hinata-girl were Naruto's friends. In addition, Naruto had been invited to the Sakura-girl's home to eat on multiple occasions. The healthy food had benefited his jailer immensely. His jailer now stood about average with all of the other children, instead of being massively shorter than them all. Naruto had also gain quite a bit of muscle for his age. Only traces of his baby fat still lingered after all the training he had done. All in all, the Kyubi considered the last three years the best years of his little container's life.

Just as Naruto was finishing up his instant ramen, which contrary to the name; wasn't instant, he heard a knock on his door. Naruto paused for the briefest of seconds before the specific knock pattern registered. It was Hinata-Chan!

Naruto threw open the door and happily greeted Hinata. "Hinata-Chan! Hello! I wasn't expecting to see you this early! Ready to graduate?"

Hinata sighed inaudibly and relaxed. She had missed this. Naruto's easy confidence and warmth. "Hello Naruto-Kun! I am ready now for the graduation exam." Naruto's answering grin gave her the strangest feeling in her stomach. Almost as if a bunch of butterflies started fluttering about inside. After a moments consideration, she realized that it wasn't a bad sensation. It was, perhaps, the complete opposite of bad.

After Naruto grabbed his jacket, the two perspective ninja headed towards the Academy.
They were about half way towards the Academy when they met up with Sakura. "Here Naruto! I brought some food for your breakfast! My mom made it!" Sakura said as she thrust the packed egg sandwiches into Naruto's hands.

"Thanks Sakura-Chan!" Naruto shot a massive smile at Sakura before he started munching on the delicious sandwich. Sakura temporally froze as a hint of red flushed on her face. That smile had looked really good on Naruto's face...
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