Kishimoto is the creator and owner of Naruto. I'm only playing in his sandbox.
Metaphorically speaking…

I'll be posting this prologue and two chapters today, after which I'll be aiming for one a week.
Hope you enjoy it.

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Prologue

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The most damaging event in the history of Konohagakure wasn't one of the three Great Shinobi Wars, all of which it emerged victorious from, it was the unexpected attack of the Kyuubi no Kitsune and the events which followed.

The attack itself was totally unexpected. There was no warning, no chance to prepare. The appearance of the giant Biju caught the entire village by surprise, yet the reaction was almost as fast as it would have been if the event had been planned.

The Akamichi clan moved to engage the Kyuubi in taijutsu, their multi-size Jutsu allowing them to briefly grow in size to the point that they could actually engage it in physical combat, even if only for a bare few minutes. Other shinobi used elemental techniques to slow the attacking monster, undermining its footing or trying to make it back off through barrages of kunai and shuriken.

The battle was one that they knew they could not win, yet very few faltered. They gave of themselves willingly to buy time for the village to be evacuated, the Genin who were not yet field-capable being assigned to escort the civilians to safety as the more skilled Shinobi placed themselves in the way of their unstoppable foe.

And then the Yondaime Hokage, the fourth ruler of Konoha took to the field.

A master of space-time Jutsu and one of the two Toad Summoners of Konoha, Namikaze Minato used his skills to relocate the battle away from the village and his sealing skills to remove the Biju from the battlefield, fueling with his very life the technique that sealed it into his son, a technique which would have failed had it not been for his wife adding her own life to the ritual to ensure the safety of the village that they both loved.

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As Konoha struggled to recover from the attack, the formerly retired Sandaime Hokage made preparations to unwillingly accept the burden of command once more. Before he could take up the role, Konoha was rocked by the news that an unknown Shinobi had stolen the Yondaime's son from his cradle and fled Konoha with Konoha's White Fang, Hatake Kakashi, in hot pursuit.

The ad-hoc team that followed the marked trail as fast as they could arrived at the Valley of the End to discover that the once peaceful valley with the statues of two of the founders of Konoha had been transformed into a battlefield with scars and craters created using techniques of every element. One crater in particular was created by an under-powered Chidori, the unique instant-kill lightning technique created by the Copy-nin, but of the white-haired young Jonin, there was no sign.

What there was, however, was the corpse of the boy that they had tried (and failed) to rescue.

After burying the son of the Yondaime, the team returned to Konoha to report on their mission and that Konoha was now the only one of the Great Five who could not call upon the power of the Biju.

The situation was made yet more complex with the demise of Shimura Danzo and the revelation of his covert action force. The old war-hawk had been slain by the nuke-nin Orochimaru, formerly of Konoha and now part of the organisation known as Akatsuki who had sought to seize the Kyuubi for their own ends and whose leader was displeased with the loss that had derailed his plans seemingly beyond repair.

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The situation was, however, far different than they believed with the entire battle having been faked by a Kage Bunshin of Kakashi while the corpse had been part of the plan by Shimura Danzo to seize the Jinchuuriki of the Kyuubi and raise it as an unfeeling weapon to deploy as he saw fit.

The real son of the Yondaime was safe, having been rescued by Kakashi who, knowing that as long as they remained in Konoha, Danzo would never give up on his plans, faked the entire pursuit and battle while seeking a safe area to raise his Sensei's son.

Within a short time, he unexpectedly encountered the travelling Sannin Senju Tsunade and, more through luck then planning, persuaded her to aid in raising young Naruto. Together with Tsunade's apprentice Kato Shizune, they traveled to the island nation of Wave where Tsunade set up a medical center for the largest village, giving her a place to live while helping to raise her youngest adopted son who, like Kakashi, was disguised by the shortening of his name, the first syllable being dropped. As Kakashi became known to the locals as Kashi, so too did Naruto become Ruto.

As the years passed, so grew the family. A visit from Jiraiya resulted in the ice-users Yuki Haruko and her young son Haku joining the household while Kakashi brought home another foundling, Kaguya Kimimaro, a young boy with the Shikotsumyaku bloodline, allowing him to shape his very bones into weapons.

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Contact with Konoha was re-instituted when Kakashi rescued the Hyuuga Heir Hinata from the Kumo Shinobi who had managed to abduct her from the Hyuuga Clan-hold and was fleeing back to his homeland via a circuitous route to avoid pursuit. Seizing the opportunity which presented itself, Tsunade and Shizune accompanied Hinata back to Konoha where Tsunade made contact with her old Sensei while Shizune used the distraction (and a blood sample from Naruto) to enter the Namikaze Archives in order to remove the contents therein for transport back to Wave.

The scrolls proved to be extremely important and included the three forms of the Yondaime's Flying Thunder God technique. The discovery that the Yondaime's version was based on the similar, albeit more limited version created by Tobirama Senju led Tsunade to insist that she, Kakashi and Shizune all learned how to perform the techniques, with Kimimaro and Naruto being in line to learn when they were old enough and Haku to be taught the multi-person version.

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Over the next few years, life continued. Escorted by various shinobi each time she made the journey, Hinata paid regular visits to Wave, where she and Naruto became fast friends, often getting into (and out of) trouble together. Kashi and Tsunade trained Kimimaro and Haku in the skills they would need as Shinobi and when the time arrived, the two boys travelled to Konoha where they enrolled in the Academy for their final year, coming to the notice of the kenjutsu master, Hayate Gekko, who would later become their Jonin-Sensei.

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The peace of Wave was shattered by the actions of the Shipping Magnate and criminal mastermind Gato, who decided to seize control of Wave and convert the island nation into his own private storehouse and slave depot. Although he knew that Senju Tsunade resided on the island, he believed that he would be able to force her to serve him, first by means of threats to her family and then through the application of drugs and poisons which required regular infusions of antidotes to prevent them from killing her.

Unfortunately for Gato, Tsunade was well aware of his plans, countering with schemes of her own which included calling on her Sensei for reinforcements and revealing that she, Shizune and Kakashi could use the Guard Hiraishin. With the help of the Hokage's Guard, Wave was reinforced by several A- and S-ranked Shinobi the morning of Gato's planned multi-pronged invasion.

The two groups attacking Wave through the forests were countered and destroyed by Inuzuka Tsume and her daughter Hana, backed up by the kenjutsu specialists Hayate Gekko and Uzuki Yugao respectively. The main three-pronged attack was stopped dead by Kakashi, the Hokage Guard Trio, Jiraiya, Tsunade and Hyuuga Hizashi who prevented the assaulting forces from reaching the shore long enough for Uchiha Itachi to infiltrate Gato's ship and slay his two guards before killing Gato himself.

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With Wave once more at peace, life got back to normal with Hinata's visits continuing, although with Tsunade's revelation of her ability to perform the Hiraishin, Hinata was brought over not by an escort group, but by Tsunade, Shizune and Kakashi, allowing her to have more time with her best friend.

In Konoha, Kimimaro and Haku passed the Genin Test with flying colors and were joined by a third Genin who was skilled with the blade, becoming Team Tensu.

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With only a few months until he himself would travel to Konoha to join the Academy's final year in his quest to become a Shinobi like his birth-parents, Naruto was taken to Sunagakure by Tsunade, Shizune and Kakashi to witness the finals of the Chunin Exams where his adopted brother Kimimaro, his unofficial cousin Haku and their team-mate Eda Shin, were all competing. During the battles, Shin was disabled by a Puppeteer who was more cunning than anticipated, but both Haku and Kimimaro overcame their adversaries, meeting each other in the final match. After a dazzling display of swordsmanship and the revelation that each had, unbeknownst to the other, studied an additional style in the hopes of gaining an unanticipated advantage, the friends decided that they would seek to win without additional bloodshed by letting the winner be decided in a Jan-Ken-Pon game. Despite (or possibly because of) how they resolved the match, both were promoted to Chunin.

When the time came for them to leave Sunagakure, events took a sudden turn for the worse as Suna's Jinchuuriki, Gaara, confronted them, declaring that he wanted to kill the fox. To protect his young brother, Kimimaro moved to intercept Gaara and was engulfed in a lethal sand attack. A futon technique launched by Naruto and enhanced with the Kyuubi's chakra blasted the crushing sand away revealed Kimimaro standing virtually unscathed, his bloodlimit having allowed him to survive the assault.

Using the time that Naruto's actions had brought, the Konoha Shinobi retreated while Tsunade, Shizune and Kakashi returned to Wave with Naruto. Behind them, the Kazekage confronted his youngest son, using his skills to counter him and bring him to heel once again.

Unbeknownst to any of the participants, the confrontation had been observed by the plant-man known as Zetsu, a member of the feared Akatsuki organisation. The inhuman observer detected the use of the Kyuubi's chakra and instantly deduced that the previous reports of the Kyuubi's demise had been in error, news which he relayed to the one he served as quickly as possible.

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Finally, the day Naruto had long awaited arrived and he enrolled into the Academy to complete his training and become a Shinobi of Konoha. When he arrived, he was met by Hinata, who accompanied him as he registered, then Naruto spent his first night in Konoha in his new bedroom in the flat owned by his brother Kimimaro and shared with Haku.

With Naruto's entry into the Academy, Kakashi returned to full, active duty once more, letting the other Shinobi know that he had returned from his long-term secret mission. During his meeting with his old friend and rival Maito Gai, Kakashi was caught by surprise when Gai used the fact of Kakashi's survival to deduce that the son of the Yondaime was still alive and that Kakashi had been looking after him for the past decade plus.

For Hinata, life was better than ever. No longer would she have to wait for weeks or months before visiting her best friend, she could see him every day and he would walk with her to the Academy. Afterwards, she would help him catch up on the parts he was behind on (as a result of his missing the earlier years) and he would help her train in return.

Tsunade chose to remain in Wave, although her mastery of Hiraishin meant that she could get from Wave to Konoha in less time than it took to walk from the main gate to the Hokage's tower. Shizune also stayed with her, but worked shifts at Konoha Hospital where she instructed the interested in field medicine and kept an eye out for those whose skills would blossom under Tsunade's direction.

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The year passed for Naruto until the day finally arrived when he would follow in the footsteps of his brothers and pass the test which would grant him a Hitai-ate and the rank of Genin, the next step in his journey on the way to attaining his goal, proving himself both worthy and capable of becoming the Hokage, just as his father had once been…