Disclaimer in Chapter 1-
"Why is nothing happening! I'm so confused, ya know!"
The enraged shout came from none other than Naruto, who was huffing and puffing in anger at his current predicament. He was at a loss of what to think, which made him very cranky.
"Of course, an idiot like you can't understand something this basic!" An arrogant voice laughed mockingly. "The great Kurama is stuck inside such a loser. Disgraceful!"
Naruto's eye twitched in irritation. "Shut up, stupid fox! I said I was sorry, so lay off me, will ya!" He pointed a finger accusingly at the fox, who simply huffed and looked away. Ever since Naruto had pulled off his totally awesome prank on Kurama, he would not stop teasing the giant fox about fainting on them. Even Kaguya had joined in on the fun and teased her grandson whenever she could.
Kurama didn't understand anything at first, but a quick Ninshu and Genjutsu set the record straight quickly. Now that Kurama was back to his old self, his pride was rather hurt at how spectacularly the prank had worked on him. He had tried to eat Naruto, but the blonde had proven himself to be stronger. Kurama had reluctantly settled for insulting Naruto whenever he got the chance.
Just like old times.
"Ku-kyun, focus, pyon!" Kaguya chided from behind, making Kurama freeze in place. Kurama was actually terrified of the Rabbit Goddess, and it wasn't because she was evil. It was because of a certain… incident that took place a little while after his resealing.
Let's just say that Kaguya, who was a tipsy immortal woman with nigh omnipotence who liked cute things, and Kurama, who was practically a mountain of giant red fluff and very much a cute thing, did not mix.
Not at all.
"I now understand what that wretched cat felt when Naruto was sent to retrieve her." He shuddered, recalling the incident and how Tora the cat always ran away from her owner. Kurama could respect that. There was no shame in fleeing to preserve your badass image, in his opinion.
"What was that, sweetie?"
"Nothing, Grandmother!" If anyone said that the great Kyuubi squeaked, Kurama would eat them.
"Thought so!" Kaguya smiled happily and took a swig from her bottle, "And answer Na-kyun's question, will you?"
At that order, Kurama laid his head on his paws and thought for a while. The question Naruto had asked was about Uzushiogakure and its destruction. It had been two years since he had been sealed into this idiot, and nothing was happening to Uzu. That alone was cause for concern because Kurama remembered that the village should have been destroyed by now.
Since about a year ago, Naruto had been leaving extremely durable and long-lasting clones to lurk around Whirlpool Country. They were to pop and report to him if they saw anything suspicious, and they hadn't, which was why Naruto was confused.
"Why not go personally and check?" Kurama asked, looking at Naruto, who was pulling his hair in irritation.
Naruto blinked, and a grin bloomed on his face. "That's a great idea, Kurama. You're the best partner ever, believe it!" He gave a thumbs up.
Kurama grunted in irritation and looked away. "It's nothing special, loser. My intellect is far superior to yours, after all. Now scram and let me sleep!"
With merely a thought, Naruto appeared next to one of his stealth clones. He looked around to see that they were sitting in a café, which was mostly empty. Good, no one had noticed him. They were in a residential district in Wave Country, which was the closest to Uzu. It was the best place to keep watch without being detected.
"Psst! Boss, put on a Henge, ya know?" The clone whispered, and he himself was transformed into Shino. Absolutely perfect for stealth, in Naruto's opinion.
Naruto grinned menacingly; he had just the thing! He put his hands together and then went up in a puff of smoke. The clone's eyes widened at the figure that emerged.
The clone deadpanned. "No, you didn't."
"Of all the people, why the bastard?" The clone palmed his face, "My day's ruined by seeing that stupid face so early in the morning!"
"HnHnHnHnHn!" Naruto, or rather Sasuke Uchiha, made his best attempt at the Uchiha giggle. This was the perfect opportunity to impersonate his rival and have a few laughs at his expense. RIP, Bastard.
"Dobe, let's go check the Village." Naruto cooly muttered as he strode out of the café, only for his eyes to widen at the first shop he saw across the street.
"No frickin' way…"
The clone, who was right behind him, saw the same thing he did and had almost the same reaction. "What the hell…"
In front of the duo, in all its glory, was a name Naruto had hoped never to see again.
GATO SHIPPING COMPANY- INTRODUCTORY SALE!
Deep in a cavern hidden away by time, Madara Uchiha was contemplating his next move. After his fight with Hashirama and awakening the Rinnegan, Madara had waited for the right time to strike. He required capable pawns, as just Zetsu would be no help in a real battle.
The next step in his plan was to implant his Rinnegan into someone to ensure his resurrection in the future so that the Tsuki no Me could be carried out properly.
"Yes, Madara-sama?" Zetsu appeared from the ground, looking as cheerful as always. "Hiya!" The white half waved, but everyone ignored him.
"Find a vessel for my Rinnegan so that we may proceed with our vision." Without giving him a chance to reply, Madara retreated to his chambers.
Just as Zetsu was about to do as told, a faint pulse of chakra appeared in his senses. It was familiar. Very different, very weak, but very familiar. And considering his sensing range and their location, it was somewhere in the Land of Waves.
Black Zetsu's eyes widened, and he let a hopeful whisper slip past his lips. "… Mother?"
While the original was off in the Land of Waves, A clone was attending the Academy as Naruto. He was sitting between Mikoto and Fugaku. Mikoto was diligently doing her coursework while Fugaku was staring out of the window and scribbling new poem ideas. Naruto himself was bored out of his mind.
Naruto's eye twitched at the giggle, which had come from none other than his little sister. Kushina was in the row behind him and laughing at some joke that Minato, who was sitting next to her, had cracked. Those two had been sitting together a lot lately. This was both good and bad to Naruto. It was good, because his mom was getting to know his dad better. And it was bad because… well he wanted to sit next to his mom, dammit!
Minato was already on track to becoming rookie of the year, with Mikoto close behind. Fugaku could honestly care less, and Kushina was not the most studious kunoichi of the bunch.
He'd be stupid to tell her that, though.
"Oh, thank God!" Naruto groaned and threw his hands up, causing some of the class to giggle. Sora-sensei was too used to his antics to even react; he simply walked out of the class.
"Naruto-kun, I will be checking your notes to see how attentive you have been."
Naruto's eyes widened, and he paled at the voice. He robotically turned his neck around, only to face a stern-looking Mikoto. After learning about his hyperactivity, the Uchiha heiress had taken it upon herself to make Naruto smart and achieve an intellect worthy of the Senju heir.
"That's even more impossible than Danzo baking cookies for his ROOT."
"Why are you even here, Kurama? Go bother the original!"
"Cheh, I can switch later. One idiot or another, what's the difference?" Kurama bared his fangs.
"Yeah yeah, big talk coming from you, Fainty!" Naruto giggled inwardly and cut off the link before the incoming outburst.
Naruto snapped out of his thoughts and looked at Mikoto, who was tapping a foot on the ground impatiently. "Eheh, I forgot?" He chuckled nervously, hoping to be let off.
Mikoto sighed and rubbed her forehead in irritation. "Naruto, you have to take your studies seriously. How else will you lead the Village, or even the clans?"
"Clans?" Naruto tilted his head in confusion.
"Uhm! I meant clan! Yes, that is what I meant. Clan! The Senju Clan!" Mikoto blushed and sputtered, waving her arms about frantically. She was glad that he didn't dwell on her slip up. Of course she meant clan! What other clan could he lead? The Uchiha? Of course not, she snorted. The only way to do that would be to marry into the clan, specifically the clan heiress. Which was… her. Mikoto's eyes widened and her face went up in flames.
"M-m-ma-marry? Me and… and…" Her eyes started swirling, and it wasn't due to the Sharingan.
Naruto grew worried at his friend's reddening face. "Miko-chan, you alright?"
Mikoto knew that Naruto's dense mind didn't understand anything, so she took a few deep breaths, calmed herself down and then continued, "Theoretical knowledge is as important as strength, Naruto."
Naruto whined at the thought of more studies. "But Miko-chan, I am in the top 10 anyway. That's good enough, ya know?"
"Clones don't count, ttebane!" Kushina sang from behind with a cheshire grin.
"Hihi~ Sorry nii-chan." Kushina stuck out her tongue, not apologetic in the slightest.
"Ohhh! The audacity!"
A loud voice caused everyone to snap their heads toward the window, where Fugaku was shouting out his newest poem.
"Your search is over, great warriors! For your greatest foe was always… yourself!" Fugaku guffawed and started scribbling madly in his book. He then started making loud noises of emotion again. "Such marvellous work, by the gods! This shall be my magnum opus, a true tragedy worthy of going down in legend!" He teared up and started raving about how great his poem was, ignoring the scared eyes of his friends.
"Umm, Fugaku?" Naruto ventured hesitantly, being the bravest of them all.
"Yes, boss?" Fugaku reverted to normal as he turned to them. However, what shocked the kids was not his sudden change in his personality. No, it was his eyes. Deep crimson with a single tomoe swirling in each pupil.
Fugaku Uchiha had awoken his Sharingan.
"Oh…" Naruto began.
"My…" Mikoto continued.
"God." Minato finished, as even he was surprised at the change.
It was then that Kushina bluntly asked what everyone was thinking. "How angsty is his poem, that reading it gave him enough trauma to get the Sharingan!" she shouted with wide eyes, pointing a finger at the little poet.
It was after that incident that Fugaku would rise to fame in his clan. No longer an outcast but one of the youngest to awaken his Sharingan, Fugaku was now a celebrity. It was only fitting, given that he had outpaced even the clan heiress in that matter. Sadly, no one else in his clan could understand his poems enough to evolve their own eyes from reading it. But his job was done; he had proven himself to the clan.
Fugaku had gained the clan's support to become the world's first Combat Bard.
An Uchiha and an Aburame walked into a shop.
"Welcome, kind customers!" A short, stout man wobbled out from behind the counter, and both Narutos had to resist scowling. "I am Gato."
"I know. Your very soul stinks." Naruto inwardly glared at the man. He could sense the negative emotions wafting off Gato, now convinced that the businessman was just as evil as he previously had been. But outwardly, Naruto gave his best Sasuke impression. "This shop looks new. Are you new."
Shino clone sweatdropped. "At least sound interested, man."
"Why yes! A keen eye you have, customer! It is my first month in business!"
"Hn." So, he was evil but hadn't done anything yet. That was somewhat relieving.
Naruto wasted no time and put Gato into a genjutsu. When the shorty was frozen in place, he looked to his clone. "Well, he's still an asshole. What do we do?"
"Kill him, pyon."
"That was fast." Naruto deadpanned. Naruto knew that he should kill the man; otherwise he would go on to do very bad things. But still, Naruto hesitated. He had never liked killing someone in cold blood, and the sentiment remained.
"Boss, we could just use that brainwash Jutsu Itachi had and make him… good, ya know?" The clone shrugged. "It's not like he's done anything bad yet. I checked."
Naruto rather liked that idea. Grinning, he patted the clone on the back. "That's amazing! Thanks, bud!" He gave a thumbs-up along with widening his smile.
The clone immediately took out a kunai and stabbed himself in the face, in the hopes of forgetting the image of a grinning Sasuke Uchiha giving him a thumbs up. His blank face and glazed eyes displayed endless horror as he shakily dispersed into smoke.
"Well then," Naruto shook off the weird clone and turned to Gato with his Mangekyo Sharingan activated, "You are to be a good guy, do no evil, and subjugate no countries. Got it?" Naruto used Kotoamatsukami with his simple set of instructions. "Basically, don't be an ass, ya know?"
Gato nodded dumbly.
Just as Naruto turned to leave, he got a great idea. Turning around, he reapplied the illusion to a recently awoken Gato. "And also, send all your profits to the Senju Clan for life. Take a small salary for yourself. Bye-bye!" he then skipped out of the shop merrily, impressed at his own brains. Free money!
"Who are you and what have you done to Naruto?" Kurama sounded genuinely puzzled. "Not that I mind, though."
"Sigh, I get no respect."
Naruto then observed the area for a few hours, extending his senses as far as they could go, which was very, very far. But still, he could sense no semblance of an invading force.
"Na-kyun, it's possible that Uzu was betrayed." Kaguya chimed in, making Naruto snap his head towards her in shock.
"What!? But who would do that?"
"It was probably Danzo." Kaguya said, "He must have seen Uzu as a threat to the 'glory of Konoha' and sold them out in some fashion." Her words were solemn, as even she didn't want to admit such a thing.
"B-but our villages were allies!" Naruto shakily began, "He wouldn't have sold out an allied village, could he?" Naruto's hands were trembling as he thought over the possibilities. The prospect of his clan being massacred because of the actions of one fanatic man, left a sour taste in his mouth.
"Think about it, Naruto." Kurama cut in, though his voice was gentle, "Your clan were renowned for their Sealing Arts. And they lived on an island. They must have surely had a way to detect enemies from miles away. They should have had enough time to prepare a defence or even escape."
"And do you seriously think all the other Hidden Villages would ally on their own to destroy one clan just after a major war? If they had allied, why didn't they target Konoha while they were at it? They were probably manipulated or instigated."
Naruto shook his head rapidly; he refused to believe it! "It's impossible, ya know! Even Danzo wouldn't stoop that low!" he looked to his two tenants with hopeful eyes, hoping for their agreement.
He, unfortunately, received none, as the duo only looked on sadly at him. "I'm sorry, Naruto. There's no other explanation," Kaguya grabbed him into a hug, which he immediately returned. Kaguya just patted his back, giving Naruto the comfort he so desperately needed. Naruto just shuddered in her embrace, hoping to calm himself down. He was at least glad that he had managed to prevent Uzushiogakure from ever being destroyed.
Even Kurama looked away, internally ashamed at his helplessness. Although, he did wrap a tail gently around the hugging duo to show that he was there as well.
Naruto was thankful for his support and grabbed the tail closer to him.
The next couple of days went by in a solemn fashion for Naruto. He was distraught about what he had found out, but there was no way to know for sure since Danzo was dead. And Naruto being the optimist he was, took consolation in the fact that no actual damage had been done. That was why he was here, after all. So, he looked on the bright side and stopped worrying about what could have been.
"At least you saved Wave country. You'll be the one to bring peace to this world, Naruto. Both my father and I believe so." Kurama chimed in, his usual jeering tone nowhere to be found.
"Yeah, thanks, Kurama." Naruto smiled brightly at the fox, making him uncomfortable. "You're awesome, believe it. I would be lost without ya!"
"That is but obvious."
"Me too! Me too~" Kaguya bounded over and leapt on Kurama, making the fox squeak in surprise. "Ehehe~ fluffy fluffy!" she snuggled into Kurama's soft fur and started making snow angel movements.
The fox sweatdropped. "Grandmother, are you drunk again? More than usual?"
"They may be weird, but they're family, believe it." Naruto sighed fondly, watching his two tenants bicker among themselves. He was immensely grateful for their help, as they always supported him when he was down and never failed at making him laugh. Naruto swore that he would protect these two with his life. It was his Ninja Way.
"Ta-da!" Jiraiya suddenly appeared inside the Senju compound in a puff of smoke, startling the occupants. "Umph!" He then grunted in pain when Tsunade, Dan, Kushina, Mito and Naruto all simultaneously railed on him, thinking him to be an intruder. "Guys, it's me! The great Gama Sennin!" He tried to laugh boisterously, but his breath came out in rasps due to the beating he had just received.
Tsunade looked at the broken lump of a man with a twitching eye. "Dammit, Jiraiya! What were you thinking, appearing in a Ninja household like that!"
"A sage always makes a flashy entr- ow ow ow, lemme go!" Jiraiya's confident proclamation turned into a whine as Tsunade harshly pinched his ear. "Hime, I'm not a child!"
"Says the man who appeared inside the compound in smoke!" Her eyes then softened, and she went forward and hugged him. "I missed you, stupid." She really had missed him; he was one of the people closest to her after her family. She was glad to see him safe and sound.
Jiraiya's grin also mellowed into a small smile. "I'm back, Hime." He then released her and greeted Dan and Mito, both of whom cordially welcomed him back.
His gaze then turned on to the only small children in the room. His eyes gleamed in excitement. "Ohohohohoho? Has my godson finally found a girlfriend?" he wiggled his eyebrows at the two kids before being clobbered into the ground by an angry Tsunade.
"Eww!" Naruto and Kushina both made a grossed-out face. "He's my Onii-chan, ttebane!/ She's my little sister, ya know!" Naruto was pissed, and slightly weirded out. The first time he sees Jiraiya in a year, and this is what he pulls? The man was really insufferable sometimes.
"Ahaha! I know, guys! I was just messing with you." Jiraiya waved his hand casually, "We used to talk by summons, remember?"
"Not funny, ttebane…" Kushina pouted, and she just looked so cute that Naruto wanted to pat her head.
So he did.
"O-onii-chan!" Kushina squeaked and swatted his hand away, a tomato blush on her face.
"Hehe, adorable." Naruto giggled, making her blush even harder. He considered this payback for all the times she had punched him the first time they met in his mind. But embarrassing her was a good enough revenge, he mused.
After a while, they all sat down and were chatting comfortably in the sitting room.
"So, Jiraiya, what are you permitted to tell us about your mission?" Dan asked, sipping a cup of tea which Naruto had managed to grow somehow.
At the mention of his mission, the Toad Sage puffed out his chest in pride and went into story-telling mode. "I was supposed to go on a scouting mission to Amegakure, but I had to get to some contacts first. And the strangest thing happened when I finally arrived." Jiraiya then grew serious, prompting the others to lean in, "I found that Hanzo was already dead."
"What!?" Tsunade yelled with wide eyes, making Jiraiya nod again. She was still processing this news and slumped into her seat. The man who had almost killed her team, who had crowned them the Sannin, dead? The thought was weird to her. She always thought of Hanzo as undefeatable, and to think he was dead…
Naruto was nervously chewing on a cookie, trying not to show the panic on his face. "Oops."
Hanzo, from what Naruto heard, was powerful. Extremely so. But Naruto didn't need to outmatch him. He just needed teleportation and a truth-seeking orb. Both of which he had. Huh, would you look at that? Convenient.
"I dunno who runs Ame now, but that's the gist." Jiraiya poured himself another cup of tea, "But whoever the new guy is, he's doing a damn good job. The place looks better than Suna." It was actually one of Hanzo's apprentices who believed in benevolence, but Naruto shouldn't be knowing that.
"Ah yes, I gotta fix Suna too. Thanks, Pervy Sage!"
"What else did you do?"
Jiraiya leaned back in his chair. "Nothing much, to be honest. Met a couple of contacts, stopped writing smut, did a few diplomatic missions, got married to the leader of a warrior village, adopted two orphans from Ame, and came back in a jiffy!" He finished and sipped his tea with closed eyes as if he just hadn't dropped many bombs the size of a Bijuudama on them.
A/N- The bit about Uzu is my headcanon as to what actually happened. I don't really see A and Oonoki agreeing on anything just after the second war. Something fishy for sure.