Again, not quite the scheduled update and I am again going into my chapter back log. The past 4 months have been extremely unpredictable and stressful, but fingers crossed things settle a little over the next few months. I am still trying to write; I have just not had much luck with how much my schedule has been changed, and so often at that. Kind of hard to sit down and write when you don't know where you will be next week.

In any case, hope everyone is staying safe and enjoys the new chapter.

SSJ3 Kyuubi Gohan.

Previously:
Naruto and Tayuya explored the Leaf Village, with Anko and Ino tailing them initially, only for the two to escape with an illusion. Naruto and Tayuya would then spend some time in the hot springs, running into Asuma and Kurenai. After a long conversation and a few discoveries, Asuma offered to help train Naruto in wind chakra manipulation.

Disclaimer – I don't own anything from the Naruto anime/manga. All I own are my original characters and plot twists.

'Talking'

"Thinking"

'Heavily demonic voice'

'Fox talking'

"Fox thinking"

*expression*

Jutsu

Flashback

Chapter 10 – Seeds

'That was a pretty huge coincidence. Did you really not know about your wind chakra?' Asked Tayuya, as the two walked around the village.

'I really didn't. I guess since I was so caught up in my own training and becoming unstoppable with illusions, I never thought about what others could offer me. Maybe we shouldn't be so hard to find any more if Danzo can actually offer something.' Admitted Naruto.

'Hard to find? Forget that, I can just go and find him myself. I know where his base of operations is after all.' Said Tayuya, causing Naruto to hum.

'Hmm, that actually gives me an idea then.' Said Naruto.

'Oh yeah, what's that?' Asked Tayuya.

'It'll sound a bit odd, but just trust me, it should make things a lot smoother for both of us and I might even get something useful out of it. Not to mention, getting to watch another enigma up close.' Said Naruto.

'So what's the plan?' Asked Tayuya.

-line break-

A man who by all appearances seemed to be a cripple with an unfortunate past sat alone in a darkened room. The man's head and right eye were covered in bandages and a small walking stick was propped up against the chair he was currently seated on. The room appeared to be a large underground hideout with no roof and a large open space. Given the ample space, a single step caused a significant echo and this was the case, as someone walked towards the man seated in the centre of the room.

'To what do I owe this unannounced visit. After our previous dealings, I would have expected you to avoid me.' Said the man.

'Listen up Danzo, because I'm about to give you some pearls of wisdom here. Your dancing in the shadows is clearly not working and isn't going to. I've got some news that you should jump at when I leave because it is a chance for you to finally contribute to something that can be appreciated. Naruto Uzumaki has a wind nature chakra affinity, just like you. You could use this as some half-assed attempt to bring him under your control and into the shadows, but he is practically the sun. Not to mention, his friends in high places won't want you trying anything. Right now, if you actually want a contribution to be noted on your record, you should go and teach him voluntarily. You can't drag him into the shadows, but you could use some sunlight, you're as pale as ash.' Said Tayuya, having come to relay the information learned today.

'I see. Do you plan on using this as an attempt at amnesty from me? Perhaps you seek for me to smooth things over with your former employer?' Questioned Danzo.

'In your dreams. With Mitarashi after me I'm way too high profile to just disappear right now, not to mention I'm basically glued to your prize and we all know if something happens to him people will notice. As for Orochimaru, I don't want anything to do with him. Consider this an olive branch because I'm pretty sure he would jump on a chance to get stronger and while you can't control the loose cannon that is Naruto Uzumaki, you could at least help aim him somewhere productive.' Said Tayuya, before walking back out, footsteps echoing and eventually fading away as she disappeared.

"Hmm, a loose cannon… could do with some direction." Thought Danzo, after a few minutes of thought.

-line break-

The next day, Naruto and Tayuya had headed to the training ground bright and early, expecting to see Asuma and his team there. It was after half an hour of waiting, that Naruto realised something.

'They're probably eating right now.' Said Naruto.

'Well I mean this is what passes for breakfast time I guess.' Said Tayuya.

'No, they will be eating barbequed meat.' Said Naruto, causing Tayuya to look at him in disbelief.

'It's seven in the morning!' Exclaimed Tayuya.

'Asuma is good friends with the owner of Yakiniku Q. It wouldn't be too odd for him to call in a favour.' Explained Naruto, before starting to walk towards the market district of the village.

'Who eats barbeque for breakfast though?' Questioned Tayuya.

'Whoever wants to. You can eat whatever you want whenever you want. Forcing yourself to eat only certain things at certain times never made sense to me anyway. Ramen can be eaten for breakfast, lunch, dinner and even as a snack.' Explained Naruto.

'I mean, I can see how you are right… but it just sounds odd.' Admitted Tayuya.

'Of course, if you still hold yourself to what others think of you.' Pointed out Naruto.

'I don't care what others think of me.' Protested Tayuya.

'Yet you get very annoyed when I point out areas you lack in terms of physical appearance.' Countered Naruto.

'Well I care what you think. Everyone else can go get handled by Mitarashi.' Said Tayuya.

Naruto stopped walking at this and blinked a few times, looking at Tayuya searchingly.

'I see. In that case, I will only give you compliments from this point on. I didn't realise I was having such an effect on you so soon. Am I really that handsome?' Asked Naruto.

'Settle down, you're just the only one I care about in the world right now.' Said Tayuya.

'I'm touched. I don't know if you meant it like that, but I didn't know you had such a strong sense of affection for me already.' Said Naruto.

'You did kind of save my life and give me freedom.' Pointed out Tayuya.

'I did, didn't I? You know what Tayuya, I like your brash straightforward speaking. It is so refreshing since everyone these days only says what they think other people want them to say.' Complimented Naruto.

'You don't have to be over the top about it… but when I start filling out, you better say something.' Said Tayuya.

'If we hadn't had this conversation, I would say that I wouldn't hold my breath… but now I'm holding it in anticipation. In any case, we are almost there.' Said Naruto.

'I would say I don't believe that we will really find them there, but I guess you know everyone better than me right now.' Said Tayuya.

'Of course. It's my best and longest trick.' Said Naruto, as Yakiniku Q came into view.

'Closed for private function?' Questioned Tayuya, as the two were close enough to the restaurant to read the sign out front.

'Just listen.' Said Naruto calmly.

Tayuya paused and slowed her breathing to reduce any background noise and started to pick up on the sound of sizzling.

'Seriously?' Questioned Tayuya in disbelief, which caused Naruto to laugh.

'Hey, Shikamaru, Choji, why didn't you invite me to breakfast?' Called Naruto from outside.

'Naruto? You didn't tell us Naruto was going to be joining us today.' Said Shikamaru.

'I didn't tell you about a lot of people who are going to be attending training today.' Said Asuma.

At this statement, the sound of excited footsteps could be heard and a moment later a head of blonde hair appeared in the doorway.

'Oh hi Naruto and Tayuya, fancy seeing the two of you here.' Said Ino coyly.

'I knew it, it's a trap. Where is that trenchcoated-lady? I'm ready for her.' Said Tayuya, eyes darting about suspiciously.

'Anko's not here silly, only the four of us are, come on.' Said Ino, gesturing for the two to follow.

'The early bird gets the worm.' Said Choji, once the two came into view, revealing he had finished all food that had yet to be consumed.

'And the bird as well it seems.' Commented Tayuya, seeing the number of plates stacked up.

'Well, now that you two are here, we might as well head out.' Said Asuma.

'What do you mean now that we are here? We were waiting at the training ground for half an hour, you said come early!' Protested Naruto.

'Jeez Naruto, the sun is barely up and you're already screaming.' Complained Shikamaru.

'So energetic so early in the morning, what have you two been up to?' Asked Ino, feigning curiosity.

'Realising that half the Jounin in this village are too aloof.' Grumbled Naruto.

'I think you meant to say careless.' Corrected Tayuya.

'What's the difference?' Asked Naruto.

'Aloof implies he is cool.' Explained Tayuya.

'Oh, that makes sense.' Agreed Naruto.

'Come on, enough chit-chat, let's go do some training.' Said Asuma, standing up and leaving a stack of money on the table.

The group of six made their way to the training grounds.

'All right, why don't we start with a team battle. Why not Team Ino-Shika-Cho against you two?' Suggested Asuma.

'What a drag, you want us to fight an irritated Naruto first thing in the morning?' Grumbled Shikamaru.

'Come on, I bet we can win.' Said Ino.

'Why don't we just try me to start with? After all, if the two of us together could handle four S-Class criminals, I don't think your team will stand a chance.' Suggested Tayuya.

'Hmm, well, what do you think?' Asked Asuma of those gathered.

'I don't mind sitting the first one out, besides, then I can watch and give everyone tips at the end.' Said Naruto.

'Yeah, I don't know if I want you to be giving me tips, Naruto, especially if you still think your fashion sense is good.' Said Ino hesitantly.

'Orange is awesome, believe it! Besides, you don't need to hide when you can just blast everything away. Oh, and I can hide even in orange, so you know my stealth is the best.' Retorted Naruto.

'He does kind of have a point.' Said Asuma, causing Ino to gape.

'You think orange is acceptable?' Asked Ino.

'I meant the ability to hide in orange makes clothing options redundant.' Clarified Asuma.

'All right, enough clothing talk, let's get on to the fight. I've got my flute this time.' Said Tayuya, pulling out her flute and bringing it to her lips in preparation.

'Ready? Then go.' Said Asuma and the four swung into action.

Ino and Shikamaru quickly backed up as Choji rushed Tayuya.

'Too easy.' Said Tayuya, before playing a quick note.

Choji charged on undeterred, before bringing his right hand up for a punch, only to go in the wrong direction. Choji only had a moment to find himself feeling confused, before he was spun around and kicked in the back, sent towards his team. Ino pulled out two shuriken in each hand and threw them in a semicircular arc towards Tayuya. Tayuya backed up, letting the discs of metal pass harmlessly in front of her, before finding Choji rushing at her again. Tayuya quickly played another note and Choji stumbled. Tayuya played a few more notes and suddenly vanished from view.

'Shikamaru!' Called Ino, causing the boy to form the rat sign.

Shikamaru's shadow linked with Choji and the two simultaneously jumped backwards as Ino stepped forward and threw a smoke bomb in front of them. As the smoke cleared, Tayuya reappeared but her opponents were gone.

'Hide and seek is never a good option against me.' Said Tayuya, before summoning her Doki and starting to play slowly.

The three lumbering beasts quickly set out on a destructive search for their targets.

'Tayuya, this is a friendly match you know!' Said Asuma from the sidelines.

'Why do you think they are just hitting the trees?' Replied Tayuya quickly, before resuming her playing.

'Human Boulder!' Shouted Choji, as he rolled out towards Tayuya.

Tayuya again played the same note she had at the start, which caused Choji to start to veer off to the right, before he suddenly had his path corrected.

'What the hell?' Exclaimed Tayuya, before leaping out of range.

Tayuya suddenly noticed the shadows from the tree line were darting out, trying to attach to her shadow.

'You wish.' Said Tayuya, before running out on to the nearby water, well out of range of the tree line.

At the edge of the lake, a shrunken down Choji was staring Tayuya down. Tayuya mentally scoffed knowing he had no way to manoeuvre on the water with his previous technique, only to see him enlarge his arms and stretch them towards her. Instead of trying to strike Tayuya though, Choji slammed his arms into the water either side of her, sending a torrent of water into the air. Tayuya cursed seeing the water rise high enough to block the sun, casting a huge shadow over her. Using chakra to boost her jump, Tayuya leapt off the water, only to find the blonde looking at her victoriously.

'Mind Destruction Jutsu.' Said Ino.

Tayuya didn't like the sound of that and quickly played a note, causing one of her Doki to appear in front of her. Tayuya safely landed on the ground and found her Doki had landing in front of her protectively. Tayuya cursed when she noticed the Doki was casting a shadow on her, before she found herself trapped.

'Shadow Possession Jutsu complete.' Said Shikamaru victoriously.

'You think you've won?' Asked Tayuya, only for one of her Doki to turn and face her.

It was the Doki that had jumped in front of Ino's attack and right now it was raising its hand, preparing to flatten her.

'You didn't block my mouth though, which is a big mistake.' Said Tayuya, giving a small whistle.

Shikamaru furrowed his brow, as it appeared nothing had happened. Had it simply been a bluff; or had something actually happened?

'Choji!' Exclaimed Shikamaru, as the Akimichi came forward and extended his hands, attempting to capture the enemy.

Tayuya smiled, even as she still appeared frozen, before music was heard. Shikamaru was shocked and quickly wracked his brain, before flaring his chakra. It was a slight change, but Shikamaru's hands were in a different position, slightly closer to his face, allowing Tayuya enough reach to play her flute. Her two uncontrolled Doki quickly charged the Nara and Akimichi. Choji quickly backed off and Ino manipulated the controlled Doki into the path of the other, allowing Shikamaru to temporarily hold on to his shadow possession.

'I guess you must know, I've got a lot more chakra to burn than you.' Said Tayuya, starting to power through the possession, causing Shikamaru to strain.

'Choji, Ino, she's breaking free.' Warned Shikamaru.

'Shika, I can switch to her.' Said Ino.

'Do it, I'll hold on.' Said Shikamaru.

Ino then turned her hands towards Tayuya, preparing to use her technique. Tayuya grunted, trying to break free.

'Ino hurry.' Said Shikamaru, straining to hold on.

'Mind Destruction Jutsu.' Said Ino.

'Got you.' Said Ino, only to feel a kunai pressed against her throat.

'Sure about that?' Whispered Tayuya, causing Ino to shiver.

'Ok, I think that's the end of that.' Said Asuma, walking over to the group with Naruto.

'And here I had just gotten into position.' Said Tayuya, before withdrawing her weapon.

'That was a great fight you four. Shikamaru, Choji, Ino, excellent team work as always, complementing each other's respective techniques. Tayuya, quite a creative use of Genjutsu.' Said Asuma.

'I seemed to think so as well.' Said Kurenai, approaching the group.

'I still don't get how we lost.' Said Ino, only for Naruto to run over.

'Easy, like this.' Said Naruto, before punching the head off the Tayuya between Ino and Shikamaru, only for it to turn into mud and collapse.

'Watch the merchandise there.' Said Tayuya.

'How did you know that was a clone?' Asked Ino.

'Easy, clones are my thing.' Said Naruto simply, causing Ino to sigh.

'That doesn't explain anything.' Said Ino.

'What Naruto likely meant to say, was due to his extensive use of clones, he has a knack for spotting clones now.' Said Shikamaru, only for Naruto to nod.

'Exactly, clones are my thing so I can spot them easy.' Repeated Naruto.

'So when did you do the switch?' Asked Shikamaru.

'When blondie used the smoke bomb. Sure, it hid you from me, but it also hid me from you.' Explained Tayuya.

'So the Genjutsu to change my hand position?' Asked Shikamaru.

'If you heard me playing a flute a metre away from my mouth, you might figure out the trick. I couldn't let you realise the me you were targeting was a fake.' Said Tayuya.

'So when you vanished before the smoke bomb, that was just a simple concealing Genjutsu?' Asked Kurenai.

'Yep, it was enough to make the rest of them panic.' Said Tayuya.

'In the grand scheme of things, we lost because we lost our cool it seems. If we hadn't lost sight of you, we would have won, assuming everything else played out as it did.' Said Shikamaru.

'Theoretically, but I wouldn't be as reckless with my real self, now would I? You can't hypothesise something that won't happen.' Said Tayuya.

'Was pretty smart using the water to make a shadow, but I mean Tayuya could have made a clone then and disappeared under water as well. Would be harder to hide, but she could use a Genjutsu then as well.' Added Naruto.

'He's right.' Said Asuma, causing Ino to look at him in disbelief.

'Naruto is right?' Questioned Ino in shock, causing her fellow blond to stick his tongue out at her.

'Just because you can't handle my orange awesomeness.' Sniped Naruto playfully.

'What a drag, so even Naruto thought a step ahead of us. I need to lift my game.' Complained Shikamaru.

'Aren't you glad you didn't fight us together?' Commented Naruto in amusement.

'Well how about you face us one-on-one then?' Retorted Ino.

'Well, when you face Naruto Uzumaki, it is never really one-on-one.' Said Naruto.

'How about you just make two clones then, so it will be three-on-three?' Suggested Choji.

'Hmm, I guess I could do that, but one hit and my clones go poof. The same thing doesn't happen to you guys.' Said Naruto hesitantly.

'Why don't we just try it and call it a win when either side lands a critical blow?' Suggested Asuma.

'Hmm, that could be fun I guess.' Said Naruto, before making a hand sign as two clones appeared on either side of him.

'Ok, I won't make any more clones from now, how's that sound, fair?' Asked Naruto, looking to his opponents.

'Fair.' Agreed Ino, before the group walked away from the lake.

'Okay then, the three of us will watch this time. Rules are as agreed upon, first solid hit takes you out of the battle. When you are ready, start.' Said Asuma.

The two groups eyed each other off. Team Ino-Shika-Cho was still a little worn out, while Naruto was in no rush to make the first move. Shikamaru was the first to move, making a rat sign and sending his shadow at Naruto, who simply stood there. The shadow continued to approach Naruto, but he made no move to dodge until they all suddenly charged the trio. Shikamaru quickly adjusted his shadow to lock on to the quickly approaching Naruto, only for him to jump into the air, causing his shadow to disappear and move away. Choji enlarged his arms and tried to swat two Naruto's out of the air, only for them use chakra to stick to his hands, before running towards him. The clone on his right arm jumped off and headed towards Ino, while the one on the left continued on towards Choji. Meanwhile, the original Naruto touched down and started to rush Shikamaru head on. Shikamaru quickly redirected his shadow toward Naruto, only for Naruto to launch eight shuriken out at Shikamaru. Shikamaru was forced to break his technique, seeing as Choji was not in a position to defend right now and Ino was just about to engage her clone.

Ino prepared to defend against Naruto, only for the blond to suddenly pull out two kunai. Ino hastily pulled out two of her own, before the four metal weapons collided. Naruto pushed forward, finding overpowering Ino was easy, before changing tactics and pulling back, causing Ino to overextend herself, this led to Naruto ducking down and kicking Ino's legs out from under her, causing her to fall face first, quickly followed by Naruto landing his bodyweight on Ino, knee into her back and kunai against her throat.

'I think you're out.' Commented the clone, before dispelling.

Ino grumbled as she got back to her feet, before walking over to Asuma and the others.

'Come on Shikamaru, go Choji, kick Naruto's butt and avenge me!' Cheered Ino.

'You're out already?' Questioned Shikamaru in disbelief, before finding Naruto inside his guard.

Naruto swung an uppercut at Shikamaru who somersaulted backwards to dodge. Naruto then pulled out an explosive kunai and hurled it straight at Shikamaru. Shikamaru threw a kunai of his own out at the kunai, causing it to veer off to the side and embed into the ground. The instant the two weapons met though; Naruto had rushed off to join his clone. The clone was pressuring Choji and forced him to stumble for a moment, which the real Naruto capitalised on, by sliding towards him and kicking him up in the air, only for the clone to leap up and axe kick Choji into the ground. It was as the clone landed on the ground, that both were ensnared by Shikamaru.

'Got you.' Said Shikamaru, only to feel someone tap on his shoulder.

Turning his head slightly, Shikamaru noticed a clone of Naruto waving at him, before punching Shikamaru in the face, sending him and the two other Naruto's staggering back.

'And that's the end of that.' Said the clone of Naruto, before he and his fellow clone disappeared, leaving only the original Naruto.

'Man, I sure pack a mean punch, don't I?' Said Naruto, rubbing his jaw.

'I'll say.' Said Shikamaru, as he helped a groggy Choji to his feet.

'He cheated!' Exclaimed Ino.

'No I didn't.' Defended Naruto.

'You said you were only going to make two clones.' Said Ino.

'No. Choji suggested that, and I said it sounded fair, but I actually said I wouldn't make any more clones. I actually made three, I just transformed one into an explosive tag.' Said Naruto with a grin.

'That is what Naruto said. Oh man, I can't believe I got fooled twice in one day, what a drag.' Sighed Shikamaru.

'I can't speak for Tayuya, but planning to beat me is like trying to catch thunder, you never know when or where I will strike.' Proclaimed Naruto.

'Well, it is actually the lightning which strikes, thunder is the sound, but the point does remain.' Said Asuma.

'No, I meant thunder. You can catch lightning, I've seen Kakashi do it once, but you can't catch a sound.' Retorted Naruto.

'He does have a point there.' Commented Kurenai.

'Well, either way, I think we've got quite a few things to work on now.' Said Asuma.

'Yeah, I guess so. Man, trying to account for people like Naruto is such a pain.' Commented Shikamaru.

'As for the two of you, you need to learn how to take a hit blondie and you need to learn how to defend.' Said Tayuya, addressing Ino and Choji.

'Isn't the point of a fight to not get hit.' Protested Ino.

'Yeah, but you shouldn't go down from one hit either.' Countered Tayuya.

'Those were the rules.' Said Ino.

'Yeah, but the blade to the throat shows if that was a serious fight, you'd be dead.' Said Tayuya.

'I don't think there is much of a defense for an Akimichi though. They are generally tanks and are made to sustain a lot of brute force.' Said Asuma.

'Well then at least work on some counters. If you punch twice as hard, you just need to hit at least the same number of times as you get hit then. He took two and delivered none.' Suggested Tayuya.

'Not a bad suggestion either. Ok then, let's split up into groups and start working on some things. Ino and Choji, I want the two of you to spar against each other in Taijutsu. Ino, your goal is to land as many hits as possible while avoiding or enduring any counterattacks. Choji your job is to be on the defensive, dodge as many attacks as you can and land as many counters as you can, but don't make the first move, let Ino try to engage you. Shikamaru, I think you'd benefit discussing Genjutsu with Tayuya and Kurenai, since both of your plans today were foiled by deception of some sort. It will benefit you to know what kind of considerations are taken into account when using a Genjutsu. I'll leave the actual Genjutsu teaching to Kurenai and Tayuya though. Naruto, we'll start trying to get you some control over your wind chakra and if things go well, some low-level attacks you can use to supplement your weapon arsenal.' Said Asuma, dividing the groups up.

As the groups split up, Ino and Choji moved to a more open area, while Tayuya, Kurenai and Shikamaru made for the shade. Asuma led Naruto towards the lake adjacent to a few trees.

'Now Naruto, based on what you've already shown of your wind abilities, I think you'll skip through the initial steps quite quickly, but they should be done either way to ensure you have the fundamentals down.' Said Asuma, before plucking a leaf.

'The first step is to split this leaf using your chakra.' Said Asuma, as he handed the leaf to Naruto.

Naruto grabbed the leaf, before putting it between his palms and pulsing his chakra, opening his hands, the leaf was split right down the middle.

'Ok, now try and do that with as little chakra as you can. I don't expect you to have issues with running out of chakra, but it will help you control things a little better.' Suggested Asuma.

Naruto focused on the new leaf Asuma had handed him, before pouring as little chakra as possible between his hands. Opening his grip, the leaf had been split halfway through. Asuma handed Naruto another leaf and Naruto doubled the amount of chakra he had just used, leading to the leaf being split clean through.

'That's one step out of the way.' Said Asuma, before ushering Naruto over to the water.

'The next step is to split the water in half, again, try to use only enough chakra to split right through without overdoing it.' Instructed Asuma.

Naruto nodded before using the same amount he had used to cut the leaf through and found only a small parting of the lake resulted. Raising his chakra expenditure, Naruto again cut through the lake, this time slicing into the foundation below and to the sides, resulting in the lake becoming both deeper and now wider.

'Naruto, are you focusing on cutting the water as deep as possible? It helps to focus on how far you want it to cut then focus on depth. Depth in this case is power and width is control. I don't think you need to worry too much about power, but the control will help your attacks have some extra finesse. One of the good things about wind jutsu is the deadliest ones don't even require a lot of chakra, just technique.' Said Asuma.

'How about something like this then.' Said Naruto, before placing his hands against the lake in an alternate fashion, his right hand parting the water in half to a minimal depth, before his left sliced the water down to the base of the lake.

'Do you think you could combine that into one action? Or is it like the situation with the Rasengan?' Asked Asuma.

'Hmm, I'm not sure, but that does give me an idea.' Said Naruto, placing his right hand on the water and causing the whole thing to start swirling.

Asuma watched on, curious as to what Naruto had learned in the short bit of training. Naruto seemed to be focusing, causing the water to swirl faster and faster. Naruto then started to raise his hand, causing the whirlpool current to decrease in intensity, before he lowered his hand again. A perfect spiral cut right through the lake, meeting the bottom, and gouging a small spiral shape into it.

'That's impressive. I guess from what you've told me about the Rasengan you must have really advanced chakra shape manipulation abilities as well. Add in change in chakra nature and there really is no limit to the kind of techniques you could create.' Commented Asuma.

'I have a question. If this training focuses on nature and shape training, why aren't there more different types of wind jutsu. All I've seen is big blasts and small cuts, why not a big cut?' Asked Naruto.

'The most likely reason? Becoming skilled in shape manipulation is different to becoming skilled in nature manipulation. Being skilled in both is difficult and being skilled in both and having a large chakra supply to create a devastating attack like that is beyond most people.' Said Asuma.

'Really, that's it?' Asked Naruto.

'Well, I suppose the other risk would be losing control. Wind chakra is deadly because it cuts through anything. The recoil risk is probably the highest with wind, maybe only equal to fire due to sheer heat, but the damage of a backfiring wind jutsu would be devastating. People can lose limbs from a badly controlled attack.' Said Asuma.

'So since you need so much control, people with more power trade-off for the control and vice-versa. If I can do nature manipulation and shape manipulation, plus have a lot of chakra, I could create a huge super cool awesome attack!' Said Naruto enthusiastically.

'I mean you could, but the risk to yourself is still there. Let's start small for now though, why don't you just try and make a wind blade. It is the first step up from the leaf cutting exercise, only you add to the output and give direction.' Said Asuma, plucking a leaf and letting it fall, before it was pierced through by a burst of wind chakra, ripping the leaf in half.

'Hmm.' Said Naruto, before looking at a tree.

Naruto formed his hand into a knife-edge and slashed down, sending out a visible current of air which sliced a small branch off the tree with little fanfare.

'Cool.' Said Naruto, before noticing his index finger was bleeding.

'Try and release the chakra a bit away from your actual body, otherwise wind jutsu are literally a double-edged blade, you'll always get cut.' Said Asuma.

'What about like that big blast Orochimaru used in the forest?' Asked Naruto.

'Well, there is a smaller scale version of that which is pretty useful.' Said Asuma, before pulling out two shuriken.

Asuma threw one at the trunk of the tree, embedding it, before throwing the other one and thrusting his hand in its direction, causing it to rip through the tree like a hot knife through butter.

'Wow, that gives me a cool idea.' Said Naruto, before walking onto the lake and walking into the middle of it.

Asuma and the others watched on, as it looked like Naruto was planning something. After a moment, Naruto nodded and threw four kunai up into the air, before using chakra to jump through them, causing them to spin. Meanwhile, as Naruto continued to soar into the sky, he placed his hands below him, before giving a push. A strong current of air rushed out and clipped the kunai, sending them shooting at the edges of the lake, where they quickly burrowed through the ground a few metres. As Naruto slowly dropped down on the lake, he only had one thing to say.

'Neat.' Said Naruto, as he collected his kunai.

'Well, those are the basics, there are a few tips I could give you on finesse, but I think you'll do just fine with a bit of trial and error. The only thing to remember, is that wind is on a spectrum from pierce to push and everything in between, you decide what happens.' Said Asuma.

'So what kind of wind jutsu do you use?' Asked Naruto.

'Me? My trick? Why don't we have a little spar, and you can see for yourself?' Suggested Asuma.

'Bring it on.' Said Naruto, jumping off the lake onto dry land.

'Okay, first blood wins.' Said Asuma, before pulling out two knuckle-dusters with a long blade on the edge.

Naruto watched Asuma for a moment, trying to figure out what his plan of attack would be. Having never seen Asuma in a fight and only knowing he could use wind jutsu didn't give him a lot to work with.

'Well, when in doubt.' Said Naruto, before summoning fifty clones.

'Go wild!' Shouted Naruto, with his clones rushing Asuma.

Asuma deftly weaved between the clones, punching them solidly to dispel them. It was like a boxer swatting down thrown projectiles because no matter how the Naruto clones attacked, they were knocked aside easily.

'Take this.' Said Naruto, throwing a demon wind shuriken at Asuma, his clones parting to allow the deadly weapon to pass through.

Asuma angled his blade downwards and as soon as the blade struck his blade he raised his hand up, sending the shuriken into the sky.

'Get him!' Said Naruto, causing all the clones to charge.

Asuma resumed his punching and dispelling only for the hair on the back of his neck to tingle. Looking up, there was a Naruto falling from the sky with a Rasengan in hand. Asuma looked around and noticed the clones had backed up slightly and all had their hands outstretched.

'Push!' Said Naruto as he and all the clones blasted wind chakra at Asuma, buffeting him in blast of wind, while also keeping him in range of the Rasengan.

Asuma smirked to himself, before making a few hand seals, before a small fireball was spat out of his mouth, where it quickly exploded into a spiral raging inferno, hiding him from the view of the clones.

'Rasengan!' Yelled the Naruto clone, charging into the vortex of flames, before an explosion was heard and the fire whirlwind dissipated. The scene showed a large hole in the ground, but no Naruto or Asuma around.

Those nearby were now watching with baited breath, waiting to see who would appear first, only for a wave of projectiles to be launched all around the impact zone. Moments later, Asuma leapt out from the centre of the incoming barrage of metal, only to launch a blade of wind from his knuckle duster. Following that, Naruto burst out of the tree cover summoned another batch of clones, who each threw a kunai into the air at Asuma. Asuma was impaled multiple times before turning into a log. After that, the sound of a heavy impact was heard and Naruto was kicked out of the forestry and landed in the middle of the training ground, blood oozing from his lip.

'Well, I guess that's it then.' Said Asuma, walking out of the bush.

'Yeah, I guess you are right.' Said Naruto, as he stood up.

'You did well Naruto, I'm actually surprised you did this well.' Said Asuma, offering a hand to Naruto.

'Yeah, I'm full of surprises.' Said Naruto, shaking Asuma's hands, eyes closed.

A moment later, Asuma felt something sharp in his hand and pulled back, only to see a cut on his finger.

'Surprise.' Said Naruto as he released his transformation, revealing he wasn't actually bleeding.

Asuma looked at his hand in disbelief for a moment, before chuckling.

'You are definitely full of surprises, Naruto.' Said Asuma, conceding the win.

'So when can we do this again?' Asked Naruto.

Asuma was about to respond, only for a non-descript Chunin to appear and whisper something to Asuma before leaving.

'Haa, not for a while it seems, Choji, Shikamaru, we've got a mission, get your things ready and we will head out in an hour.

'What about me?' Asked Ino.

'Unfortunately, the mission specifically asked for Shikamaru and Choji. I'm only going as the Jounin leader.' Said Asuma.

'What kind of mission?' Asked Ino.

'A herd of animals in a nearby town have escaped, they requested Shikamaru to come and assist as they are wildebeest and Nara have experience with deer like creatures, Choji was requested as they can be a bit rough and are quite large and unruly. Sorry Ino.' Explained Asuma, causing the girl to sigh.

'Fine. I guess I can keep myself busy while I wait.' Said Ino, refocusing on Naruto and Tayuya.

'Here, since I lost, you can all get lunch, my treat.' Said Asuma, giving Naruto a few ryou.

'Thanks.' Said Naruto, before happily marching off, Tayuya following shortly after, as Kurenai and Ino hung back for a bit.

'You two better do a good job on this mission, especially if I'm not there to keep you two in line.' Said Ino to Shikamaru and Choji.

'You just make sure not to start spreading rumours again.' Said Shikamaru, causing Ino to stick her tongue out at him.

'I won't, I'll get solid proof this time.' Said Ino, before walking off.

'How long will the mission be?' Asked Kurenai.

'A few days or so. We should be back by Friday at the latest.' Said Asuma, causing Kurenai to nod, before walking off as well.

'Come on you two, I'll meet you at the gates.' Said Asuma, before he also disappeared.