The Abandoned Maelstrom
Almost two weeks.
Two weeks had passed since the training began, and Sasuke was groaning in pain.
His arm was numb, his legs felt like they were being steeped in hot lead, his back was screaming at him, and his breath was coming in short, hard gasps.
He was having the time of his life!
Kakashi stood off to the side as the Uchiha boy collected himself, standing up shakily. "Maa, maa," the silver haired jonin muttered, "I said you could rest for a bit, Sasuke. I can tell that you're at your limit."
Sasuke shot a hard look at his sensei. "If…I'm…ever going…to…beat him," the boy growled, "I…have…to go…beyond the limit!"
Kakashi frowned underneath his mask. "You know if you go any further you could risk your life, right?" he asked.
"I'm…a shinobi," was the only response.
Kakashi nodded. "Fine," he said, pulling out a soldier pill and tossing it to the weakened youth, "That's the only one I'll give you for the rest of the month. When I say we stop, I don't want any arguments."
Sasuke nodded, swallowing the pill. He felt the sudden rush of energy flood his aching muscles, driving the pain away.
"Now, once again," Kakashi instructed, "Focus the chakra…you have to 'see' it forming a point. Lightning chakra is a piercing energy, while fire is a consumer. Your natural affinity is fire, so you're forcing your body to go a different route. That's why its fighting you."
Sasuke nodded, forming the seals as Kakashi spoke.
O-ushi, usagi, saru. "CHIDORI!" the boy growled, thrusting his left hand towards the ground. He felt the chakra gathering in his palm and finger tips, and he forced the image of a spear into his mind.
"Keep it going, Sasuke," Kakashi spoke, "Keep the point in your head!"
Sasuke roared, shooting forward, and thrusting his hand into the cliff face. A burst of energy flowed out, and dust billowed outward. When it finally settled, a new crater was embedded into the rock face, this one almost double the size of the previous ones.
"Excellent!" Kakashi called out, walking up to the panting boy, "You kept it going perfectly. A few more sessions like that, and your Chidori will be complete."
Sasuke grinned, even as he panted. "Then…lets…"
"Hold on that," the silver haired jounin spoke up, turning to the side. "Come on out, I sensed that intent of yours a while ago."
Sasuke's eyes narrowed as the red-headed visage of Sabaku no Gaara walked out from behind one of the boulders.
"You…and that other one," Gaara whispered, causing the Uchiha heir to stiffen, "Where…is he?"
"If you mean Naruto, I'm afraid that I don't know where he is," Kakashi replied, making a subtle motion with his foot, telling Sasuke to calm down, "Why do you want him? That killing intent of yours is pretty strong…you wouldn't be planning on killing him would you?"
"…I'm looking…forward…to claiming your blood," Gaara whispered, addressing the Uchiha once again, "You…and this Naruto…I can tell you both are strong." He bowed his head, and emitted a frightening sound.
Sasuke and Kakashi both stiffened…as Gaara's LAUGHTER chilled them to their bones.
"…I'll…see you…in the arena…Uchiha Sasuke," the redheaded boy chuckled, "…Get even stronger…and prove my existence." The boy vanished in a swirl of sand.
Suna-shunshin, Kakashi thought, rubbing the back of his neck with his right hand, trying to restore some warmth to his body. He turned his gaze to Sasuke.
The dark haired boy's sharingan was activated, and Kakashi was shocked to see something he didn't expect…
…the boy had 3 tomoe in each eye.
Well, this may actually help matters, the silver haired jounin thought. "Sasuke," he spoke up, snapping the boy out of it, "From now until the finals, your training is going to be about speed. You've got the Chidori…now you need the speed to use it."
"How are we going to do it?" Sasuke asked.
Kakashi's visible eye curled, signifying that he was grinning. "I'm so glad you asked…" the jounin replied in a sing-song tone.
Sasuke found that he liked Kakashi's tone even less than Gaara's laugh…
"Magen: Kurobara Ken no Mai!" the pink haired girl whispered as her hands flowed through the seals.
Anko smirked as the world around her seemed to darken, and rose bushes seemed to spring up out of nowhere. She 'felt' vines from the plants wrap around her limbs, and even winced as the 'thorns' pierced her skin.
The girl, Sakura, appeared before her, holding what looked like a giant rose with a sharpened stem. The girl began to sway to some unheard music, before spinning towards the bound woman and stabbing the pointed flower into her captive…
…who dissolved into a puddle of mud.
"Not bad, girl," came a breathy voice behind the panting Sakura. The girl stiffened as she felt the tip of a kunai press into her neck, even as the person holding in used their other hand to fondle her rear.
"Anko-sensei…please don't do that," the girl replied, her breath hitching slightly as the crazy kunoichi pinched her left cheek.
"Why? Would you rather I grope your front?" the demented woman asked, causing the girl to blush, "I got no problems with that." She began to slide her hand forward…
Anko cursed. "Damn it Yuugao-chan!" she growled, "You never let me have my fun!"
TheANBU operative walked forward. "You're supposed to 'train' Sakura-san," the purple haired woman replied, "Molesting her is not training."
"Depends on the situation," Anko replied, grinning, "Those special courses at the academy don't really teach girls the right stuff…I keep telling Hokage-sama we need a better seduction class."
Sakura blushed at the idea. Maybe if I had to take a course like that, Sasuke-kun would help me 'study'…
"Get your mind out of the gutter, pinky!" Anko suddenly snapped, smacking the girl on her ass, "We've still got work to do. That genjutsu still needs work!"
Sakura absently rubbed her abused rear. Why is it she always has to spank me to get my attention? she bemoaned to herself.
Yuugao smirked. Then she stiffened, and turned to the side. "Come on out, Reika," she spoke, surprising the pink haired girl.
Another girl with purple hair walked out from behind the trees, ignoring the glare leveled at her by Sakura. She had replaced her outfit from the prelims, and now sported a purple outfit similar to Ino's, but sans bandages and with black lycra shorts to keep her modesty.
"It's been a long time, little sister," Yuugao spoke again, "How are you?"
"I've come with a message from the clan, Yuugao-san," the girl replied, ignoring the disappointed look her sister gave her, "Kosuke-sama and the council demand your presence immediately at the clan compound."
Yuugao frowned at the mention of the leader of the council. "I am on assignment at the moment," she replied, "Until Hokage-sama relieves me of said assignment, I cannot leave my post. Besides, I'm an 'outcast' like Naruto-kun, remember? The old man can demand all he wants, I'm not his puppet."
Reika frowned. "I'm no puppet either, big sister," she replied, "I'm one of the most trusted new genin in the clan…"
"Who got her ass kicked by the clan's outcast," Sakura interrupted, Reika glared at the pink haired girl. And then looked at Yuugao "That…boy…I saw it you know!" she growled, "I saw all your expressions. No one, not even the Hokage knew it, right? His strength no one knew about it."
"We don't know what you are talking about." Yuugao said trying to feign ignorance.
Anko snorted. "Now, we were in the middle of training here, so since your message is delivered, you should leave," she spoke up, "Go tell you elders that their want's take a back seat to Hokage-sama's orders. Now get!"
Reika snarled, then frowned as Yuugao turned her back to her. "Anko-sempai is right, sister," she said, "Right now…you're not wanted here."
"Don't fool yourselves. It won't work with me. I really wonder now, whose trust has been misplaced." Reika said as she turned around and left, leaving her sister to think.
In a clearing near the waterfall in the forest we find a young man standing calmly on the water facing the waterfall doing nothing. He stood there, his eyes closed and hands in the pockets of his black pants. He wore nothing to cover his bare chest. His blonde hair waving loosely in the wind. Suddenly the man snapped open his eyes as he jumped in high in the air and kicked his leg lazily towards the waterfall and then landing softly on the water, making not even a ripple as he did so, showing his mastery in the exercise. Suddenly the waterfall was split in half vertically and remained as such for few moments before the water once again started to fall. The figure started to grin predatorily.
This was none other than Uzumaki Naruto. Its been two weeks since the training month started. He knew he had left a serious impression on all those who knew him but he didn't care a bit about that. All will be cleared during the exams. he came here for training. In private he might add. It had been hard for him at first due to the seal that the snake sannin had placed on him. But he quickly removed that. As a part of his secret, it was not know to anyone but he was a seal master, at Jiraiya's level if not above.
"Soon, they will pay. To think that they could control me, they will have to pay just for the thought alone. Especially you, Taro. You forfeit your life the moment you thought you could humiliate Hinata." He thought as he ran towards a tree and punched it. The tree stood no chance.
Naruto silently stood in line with the remaining chunin hopefuls, his eyes darting from side to side as he observed everyone, his friends and enemies alike.
He had now changed his clothes. He now wore black anbu pants and grey sleeveless shirt along with forearm guards, black fingerless gloves and black shinobi sandels. His now black forehead protector tied tightly around his head.
Sasuke had yet to show up, but given that his training was with Kakashi-sensei, it was almost to be expected.
Shikamaru was grumbling about something being so troublesome, and Neji simply stood silently.
The three Suna-nins stood side by side.
His eyes landed on the main target of his ire.
The dark haired heir had his usual smug look on his face, and he gave Naruto a jaunty wave. Naruto did nothing on the outside but,
"I'm going to enjoy taking you apart." he thought.
He turned his eyes up to the stands, his face brightened a little as he spotted Hinata. He was glad that she was okay.
His blue eyes gazed over the arena, before coming to a stop on the Fire Lord's booth.
There they were.
His eyes hardened as he observed some of the elders of the Uzumaki clan. He didn't know them, really, but he could see a similar arrogance in their eyes that Taro held in his. He spotted Reika and Kenosuke sitting off to the side, and Kanna standing behind them.
Then he saw HER.
Blue eyes stared into blue eyes, as a distance that seemed greater than the eight years separated them. One set was hard and cold, reflecting the anger they held over the clan.
The other was equally cold, distant, yet held an undercurrent of…curiosity.
"I wonder…just how far have you progressed, Naruto." the woman, Uzumaki Kagura thought.
"Watch me, watch me as I slowly destroy the clan that you cherish so much, so that you may know the depth of my hatred." Naruto thought. "I'm going to show you all who I REALLY am."
The jonnin in charge of the finals, Shiranui Genma, noticed the tension in the Uzumaki boy. Hayate, who was recovering from a sudden flare-up of his disease, had spoken of him several times.
This kid's gonna surprise a few people today, he thought. "All right, kids," he spoke.
"The Finals of the Chuunin Exam…are about to begin. Now Uzumaki Taro and Uzumaki Naruto stay here and the rest of you go to the participant booth." He said. After a while all of them left the arena leaving only the jonnin and the two fighters. "All right now the match between Uzumaki Taro and Uzumaki Naruto… begin." He declared as he jumped back to give space to the two boys.
Taro smirked as he stared at his opponent, noticing the look in the azure orbs of the blond. He idly rolled his shoulders, feeling the muscles along his back loosen up a bit.
"Well?" he asked, "Aren't you going to make me pay, like you promised last month?" he asked, laughing as the blond narrowed his eyes, "I've been looking forward to this match…and to the opportunity of putting you in your place, outcast."
Naruto stared at him calmly, but did not respond to the taunt, instead slid into the stance as he did last month. His hands once again in his pockets.
Taro growled at being ignored. He himself got into his stance but also pulled out a kunai out of his pouch. Those with high hearing, mainly from Inuzuka clan could hear sound of humming from it. Looking closer one could see a slight layer of blue surrounding it. All those who noticed it under stood it was wind and were impressed at the boys use of nature manipulation at such a young age. Taro himself grinned at seeing everyone's reaction. He knew it was not common for genin to do such. With that he threw the kunai, but…
Nobody knew what had happened. They all saw that the boy, Taro prepared to threw the kunai and just when the kunai left his hands he was launched from his place into the wall on the other side of arena. When they looked at his place they were surprised to see Naruto standing there, his leg outstretched. While many of them thought that it was speed and were shocked, many of the few observant ones understood what had happened. The boy had replaced himself with the kunai just as it left Taro's hand. It was quiet efficient as they saw it and he was able to catch his opponent off guard. They were clearly impressed.
Taro dug himself out of the wall and stood up. He was gritting his teeth.
"What…what the hell!?" Taro wondered as he sat up, rubbing his sore chest as he glared at the blond. "How did he…"
"Lucky shot, outcast," Taro growled, "I was going to take it easy on you…" he said.
This time Naruto granted him an answer. "Let me tell you something Taro. The moment you thought that you could kill Hinata, was when you changed this tournament of skills into a game. A game of survival. A hunt. Where I am…" he suddenly appeared beneath Taro "the hunter and.." and launched him in the air just like he did with Reika and jumped above him, with his leg ready for an axe kick. Faint blue chakra surrounding it. "You are tHE PREY." He shouted as he brought his leg down on his stomach. "EXCALIBUR.." he kicked Taro into the ground, with great force. Taro landed on the ground and just as it seemed that it was finished, the earth started to split apart all the to the wall, due to great shockwave that launched from where Taro had landed. It was as it someone was cutting the earth with a sword. This caused a massive explosion.
Nobody could believe what they were seeing. Almost all of Konoha came here to see the Uchiha and the Hyugga prodigy making a name for themselves. The fact that the demon was also participating and would be fighting the heir of his own former clan was just a bonus. Almost everybody knew of his performance at the academy as they knew that no one trained him. But now here he was, he utterly destroyed his opponent and the arena so easily and the match had just started.
"HOOLLYYY SHHIIITT…" Anko screamed from his seat in the spectator box. She was sitting there with the other jonnin minus Kakashi and their students. "Did you just see that? The brat actually destroyed the whole arena with just a single technique. Who the hell taught him that?" She asked looking around.
"You are right. Very impressive indeed. I myself have never seen such a thing in my whole life. Though seeing the use of his leg, could it be that he made it as the Eigi style as his base. Excalibur huh? That is something we should be careful of." Asuma said.
"Yes, and if not that we shouldn't forget that speed of his too. It was nothing to sneeze at. OHHH, HIS FLAMES OF YOUTH TRULY BURN FIERCELY." Gai shouted.
Near them the rookies were also flabbergasted at the performance of the former classmate. They all knew now of what had happened between the clan and Naruto, as Sakura was told by Yuugao. They didn't know what to do, though many were ashamed of how they called him an orphan and made fun of him. But, for now they were enjoying the show.
"Yeah go Naruto. Show him what you can do." Sakura cheered.
"Beat his ass Naruto. Beat him or I will beat you." Kiba shouted.
"That is highly not probable Kiba seeing as what he did just now." Shino said silently which freaked everyone out.
While this was going on, sitting near Kurenai, Hinata couldn't help but think of what happened that day and what Naruto said.
"Just a little more Hinata. They will pay, for what they did to you. Then I hope we could finally be together. I just have to show everyone, what would happen if they tried to mess with someone I love and they won't even dare thinking hurting you. Just you wait. Goodbye." Naruto word rang in her ears. She couldn't believe what he said and thought it was all a dream but she knew that it was a reality.
She didn't know if he knew that she was wake or not but to say that he loved her made happy. Though she couldn't understand what he meant by everything else.
In the stands, where the Uzumaki clan were watching the fight along with their charge, the fire daimyo, couldn't believe what the were seeing. The boy who they had left behind because he didn't show any signs of being a genius was demolishing Taro, their clan heir and the a prodigy in the ninja arts. When they heard that he had defeated Reika in the preliminaries, they thought that it was just a fluke. It also didn't help that Reika was also a branch family member so they thought nothing of it. But right now seeing such power they were speechless.
As the dust settled, everyone was expecting Taro to be present in the center seeing as that was where he fell but they were surprised when the found him buried under the rubble of the now destroyed wall of the arena. Only some of the experienced shinobis understood that the shockwave that stated from the center actually carried him all the way to the walls. Now they were patiently waiting to see whether Taro would stand back or not.
"I know you are not knocked out yet, Taro." Naruto seeing Taro not standing up spoke. "I made sure of that. I made sure that I held back a lot." This statement caused a lot of people to be shocked. He held back. "I can't allow you to lose so easily you see. No you will pay with everything you got for everything you did."
Slowly, the rubble started to move and out came Taro. He was covered in blood, and was having trouble standing up. He had heard what Naruto had said, and was gritting his teeth at being shown pity by the outcast. He now knew that this match would not be easy but he show the outcast that he had made a mistake when he sparred him.
With this thought he once again slid into the Eigi stance and launched a Rapier kick at Naruto. Everyone watched as a vertical wave of chakra was launched from his leg. But he didn't stop there and started making hand signs for his next technique.
"FUUTON: KAZE GYORAI!" (Wind Torpedo). As the name suggested a torpedo of wind was released and charged towards Naruto.
Naruto watched as the chakra wave charged towards him. In response to that he just waited for it come and just as it reached him, he swung his leg into the wave completely destroying it. Taro while shocked at the outcome smirked at the thought of Naruto completely unprepared for his next attack, but that smirk was completely wiped of his face as Naruto launched his own attack.
"Rankyaku (Storm Leg)" Naruto calmly said as he once again swung his leg with great force and a shining blue wave tore through the air and collided with the wind torpedo resulting in an explosion.
As the explosion finally settled everyone once again saw Naruto not at his original position but standing in front of a shocked Taro with his hand extended and all his fingertips touching Taro's stomach.
"Goryu Shigan (Five Dragons Finger Bullet)" Naruto said and Taro found himself lying in dirt, his eyes wide. He knew that Naruto had just touched him but he felt as if his insides have been ripped apart. Though seeing this nobody understood what happened. They just saw Naruto touching him with his fingers and then Taro falling.
"How?" Taro unable to move, managed to say slowly.
"What?" Naruto asked.
"How are you so strong, you shouldn't be. That's why the clan left you here. You were weak. You don't even have any training by anyone. I was informed as such. Who trained you? How did you get so strong?" Taro asked all the while lying on the floor.
"The clan left me because I was weak huh? Maybe you are right or maybe you are not. Allow me enlighten you Taro…" Naruto said as he bent towards Taro and spoke slowly but loud enough that everyone present could hear him.
"The clan didn't leave me, Taro….
I made them leave me alone. I made them abandon me.."