(A/N: Man… where do I begin with this one… So many people are suggesting who Naruto should eventually hook up with, and I will just state that I know who he will be with and so far not a single person has been able to guess who it is. It is a character of the Naruto universe, and no Kasumi is not going to turn into an anthropomorphic woman for Naruto. She is his familiar, which as she grows in power he can tap into her powers himself for use. Sung is powerful in Solo Leveling, but he never really gets elemental magic like the Mages do. True he does fine without them, but it works better if Naruto does here. And for those who don't want spoilers, skip the next paragraph…
I got a few people who bad mouthed this story on the grounds of implementing a Party System. Alright I will say that it is your opinion and I won't judge you on it since at least you are not trolling me or telling me to kill myself for some weird reason. But in Solo Leveling, the System was made to make Sung the Shadow Monarch, since the thing that made it wanted to resurrect the old one, but it didn't work the way it thought it would. This System was reprogrammed by Sung, who then gifted it to Naruto so that he could make a better life for himself after observing the things he went through at a young age. So Sung made adjustments to better Naruto's experience with it, and friends in a private party were perfect for him so he did it.
But other than that, getting a lot of love for this story so far. Well, since that is the case I will continue on and hope you enjoy this chapter as well. Stay Safe and Healthy out there!)
Two weeks had gone by since Gato had been killed in such a gruesome manner before his body was burned from the face of the earth itself. The people had been stuck where they had been bound as Naruto left them there to hunt the man down, but they felt such joy to see him return, more so since it meant that Gato had been dealt with permanently. So Naruto then began to unbind the people, who in turn helped to do the same to the others until they were all free in the end.
Once they were all freed, the people of Wave then went as a mob towards Gato's huge mansion that was near the water on the other side of the country. As they neared it, Naruto held up his hand to stop the crowd since he sensed there were people still inside. It was nowhere near the amount of goons that had challenged him not too long ago, but that was because Gato had brought most of his men to keep the people in line as he executed Kaiza and his family. Naruto simply told them to wait there for a bit, then hopped over the fence and into the mansion itself. It didn't take long, but there were only a dozen guards there so it was a cakewalk.
Once the remnants of Gato's men were dealt with, Naruto walked out and opened the gate for the people to enter. They all rushed in and began to loot the place down to the bare minimum of things. If it had any monetary value, it was taken by someone so that they might sell it for essentials, namely food…
But soon enough, they reached Gato's office itself, and it was there that they hit a fairly large snag in the reclamation of their stolen money. Gato had installed a massive vault to the side of his room with a number combination to open it up. The door was thick steel that was heavy as all hell so unless they knew the combinations then they would not be getting into the vault. But luckily for them, Naruto came to the rescue once more and asked the people to back away while he did his thing.
The people gave him his needed space, but still remained to watch since they were curious as to what the hell he was planning to do. Imagine the looks on their faces when they saw him whip out a dagger of all things that somehow lit up and then stabbed it into the door. And from there, he began to cut a circle out of the vault door. It took a bit, and even when he succeeded, he was only about a third of the way through the door when he pulled out the section he cut through. But the good thing was that he now easily saw all the parts and gears that kept it locked in place and broke what he needed to to actually open it up. Once he did, he swung the door open and looked inside like the others. The sheer amount of money inside the place was baffling since the man had entire cubes of paper money in a manner for easy organization as well as easy transporting.
Naruto simply walked forward and grabbed two stacks of bills, and asked the people for that, which they were more than happy to give him. To be honest they were shocked to see he wasn't asking for more than that, but to Naruto, the money wasn't his since it belonged to the people that it had been taken from, and what he took was more than enough as it was. It was as the people began to take their money back that one of the villagers called out for the others in the back of the mansion.
What they saw was the opening to a massive warehouse that was hidden underground. Inside they saw so many construction tools as well as materials to build something, but what that something was unknown to them. But Naruto had found the main room where Gato had his blueprints. What they saw only made them pissed more than they thought possible. Gato had the plan to ruin their country, basically starving out the people to the point that people either sold off their children to him or the mothers would serve him willingly to help their family. The husbands and other men would be eliminated one by one when no more money could be taken from them, since why kill those who struggle so hard to make him money in the vain belief that they would live to see old age.
Once the people were either eliminated or enslaved to him, he then planned to turn this entire country into a business of pleasure. The blueprints were for a massive casino and various brothels that catered to many people's tastes, whether they be normal or… abnormal, hence why he wanted the kids since there were always those sick fucks who paid good money to do as they pleased to children without repercussion. And to add a full bag of salt onto the wounds, the man even had the materials to build a bridge towards the mainland so as to begin construction of it once the people were fully subjected like he planned.
So now that the man was dead, his plans were all for nothing, but his materials would not go to waste since the people already planned to build a bridge to avoid another like Gato taking over. Plus the added materials that were going to be used to build the casino and brothels could be used to repair the homes that desperately needed it now more than ever. So the people got right to work, with those proficient in cooking raiding the pantry and cooking up a feast for the people.
The people were grateful for Naruto's help and asked if he could stay to protect them long enough to build the bridge. While at first he thought about agreeing to it, it would take them nearly a year to do so, and he had other things he had to do so he could not remain for so long. In the end he did agree to at least remain until Tazuna, Tsunami's father returned before he left.
So here Naruto was at the construction site, making sure that nothing happened to the place while the others were on break. Many things have gotten better in the past two weeks, with the people's mood lifting being the highlight of it. Those working on the bridge had gotten the end of it done at least, but that was the easy part since building it across only got harder the further you left the shore.
While the people had worked, Naruto had dealt with Haku, who was understandably confused on the matter when he woke up and felt power that seemed so strange to him. Naruto had to take it slow and explain the basics of the System to Haku, who was hesitant to accept what he said since it sounded so bizarre. Naruto had simply shattered his beliefs through one simple action alone, and that was using a low ranked key to open a door that led into a closet and turned it into a portal leading into a forest. Haku had fainted as he saw that Naruto spoke the truth, and from that moment he was accepting of what Naruto told him. So during the night, the two of them, or three if you count Kasumi, would enter the other realms. Naruto started off slowly with low rank ones since Haku was new to this whole thing. He adapted quickly to things, which was no surprise given Naruto had known about this with the Mind's eye for a bit. Haku was low leveled, but he gained experience easily enough through fighting various monsters like wolves and such.
Naruto simply observed as Haku did the work, not to be an ass or anything, it was just so Haku gained all the experience since Naruto was at a level lock and could not raise it up any higher until the day he got the mission to break his limit again. Heaven only knew what he would have to do to do that. His first time had been to massacre nearly an entire clan and the second had been to fight a giant fire breathing three headed mutt that nearly killed him a few times. What else could the System throw at him to advance him?
So Naruto remained hidden with Stealth so the monster didn't see him, and Haku dealt with them himself, but if there ever came a situation that Haku called out for him he would be there to aid him. But so far that only happened a few times given Haku's drive to become stronger. Apparently the two of them were more alike than he had initially thought. But what Naruto did notice though was that monsters now would randomly drop crystals of various colors. They had never done so before so he could only wonder why they did now. But after picking one up, he saw Kasumi's eyes widen as she began to drool a bit. Naruto looked at her with a raised eyebrow and held up the crystal to her. She sniffed it for a bit before she grabbed it and swallowed the thing. Naruto looked at her status window since he was genuinely worried about her, but it was then that he saw she had gained experience from consuming the crystal. So apparently this was how he leveled her up. And the stronger the monster, the stronger the crystal that she would consume and gain experience that way.
So while at night the three of them leveled up, during the day Naruto would nap while the people worked and waited for the elderly man to come back. He did notice the children of the place would come near him but never too close as he napped. A few of them poked him with sticks, but that was more playful so he didn't mind it at all. This had been the way things had gone for the past two weeks, and while this was happening Tazuna was finally returning home with help for his village in tow.
The man had to escape from two shinobi Gato had sent after him once word of his escape became known to him. Yet Tazuna was as crafty as he was old. The man would have died in a straight up fight with shinobi, but he had a few tricks to keep them occupied while he escaped time and time again. But by the time he had finally made it to the nearest shinobi village, which happened to be Konoha, he was on his last legs. The shinobi sent to kill him nearly succeeded then, but Konoha shinobi stopped them and detained the men trying to assasinate Tazuna. He then finally made it to Hiruzen and explained the situation to the Hokage and his advisors.
The four of them saw this as the perfect opportunity to milk the situation for all it was worth given that while Wave was a small country, it was a major trading hub as well as rich in resources. If they aided the people with this when they were on the verge of death, the people would have to show their gratitude in the future when a trading agreement was made, and dear Kami were they going to make it benefit their village greatly. So with the information given to them they decided to send Squad 7 to aid the people of Wave, but with the added member of Itachi himself to assist just in case it was needed. Better to be prepared for the worst…
But little did they know, things would escalate far beyond the worst…
Ever since Sasuke had awoken from his comatose state nearly seven months after the Uchiha had been killed, the boy had been, in one word, driven. He vowed to avenge his fallen clan and put his all into his training day in and day out to hunt down this so-called 'Shadow Monarch' and end him as he had done to his family. Itachi had been a great help there, since his older brother had come to admire his brother's determination and trained him personally along with Kakashi as soon as he was made a member of Squad 7. Sasuke never wanted to feel as weak as he had felt that day, and the stronger he grew the more he felt his chances of beating his nemesis rose.
So here he went along with his squad that consisted of two others along with a jonin instructor. The second member of his squad was once the bain of his existence since she was fucking annoying to not only him, but so many of the others who knew her back in the academy days since she was so vocal about her obsession with Sasuke. Day in and day out she would voice her love for the guy and try to get a date from him. Even the other fangirls were not as obsessional as she was and it was borderline insane. But Sasuke had eventually put a stop to this all at the source.
Sasuke had literally whipped a blade out and held it to her throat with enough killing intent to make her actually believe that he was going to kill her. He called her a waste of a kunoichi and to leave him the fuck alone or he would kill her. Since that day, she had been broken since apparently her whole life was about Sasuke. No one understood why that was, but even though she was a broken woman after his threat, her mind twisted his words into a honest belief that if she got stronger he would love her and finally accept her love. So she began to take her training far more seriously and was actually making improvement, yet she still had a long way to go.
The other member of the Squad was a shinobi by the name of Sai. There was not much Sasuke could say about this guy, and the reason for that was he never attended the academy alongside him or Sakura. The guy had been thrown into his squad on the day they were announced and that was the first time either of them ever even heard of the guy. The young man was emotionless to the point it was disturbing as well as the fact that the guy sucked at talking to people given he had next to no social skills. Yet what he lacked in social grace me more than made up with his actual shinobi skills, which was a major boon to the squad and they learned to work together.
So these were the three Genin that made up Squad 7, and with them was their leader Kakashi along with Itachi. And so far on the way back there were no ambushes or the like, which made the older members of the group worry a bit since that usually meant there was a bigger one further along. So they remained on alert the entire way there, but even though they expected an ambush, there was not a single one. This went against what the shinobi who were chasing Tazuna said since after being tortured, they mentioned how two other more powerful shinobi would hunt Tazuna since they had failed to kill the old man.
They made it to the boat that Tazuna was able to stash away and once they made sure they weren't being followed by anyone, they got aboard and shoved off. They alternated paddling the boat, but as they neared landfall in Wave, Tazuna asked them to stop the boat. He had seen the construction site where the bridge was being built, and it made him question so much right now since Gato forbade the building of such a thing given it would make the people no longer be under his control like they were. So he asked them to paddle towards the bridge, which they did, but once they reached landfall they slowly made their way up the hill towards it since they were airing on the side of caution. As they did, none of them saw Kasumi who had sensed them and ran off to see who was coming this way while her master napped.
Once she saw who it was, she rushed back to tell Naruto there were invaders on the island, which she couldn't exactly say since she couldn't speak or anything. She might learn as she grew stronger, but only time would tell. So she basically hopped onto his chest and licked his face a bit to wake him up. Once awake, he saw her use one of her paws to point towards the water. Naruto understood what she was saying so he patted her on the head, which made her purr in appreciation, stood up and dusted himself off. He hoped that this was Tazuna returning, which would then mean he could leave since he had given his word he would stay until the man came back. But as he lifted his hood up so you couldn't see his face, he saw the group coming towards him from the distance.
As they got closer to him, he was able to see them more clearly, and the more he did the angrier he got. He easily recognized most of the group, with the only ones he had no idea as to who they were being Sai and Tazuna. He had never met either of them in life so it was obvious he wouldn't recognize them. But the others… the others he had history with…
"Why…" asked Naruto to himself as he stood there looking at the group of shinobi who now saw him standing there against him. "Of all the shinobi to come here, it had to be those from fucking Konoha." Naruto could only mentally growl over the fact that Haku was still asleep at Kaiza's place to heal up from getting sent through… if he remembered correctly… four trees by a large troll. Haku had been hurt fairly badly, but he lived and still managed to kill the beast before he fell forward from his injuries. Naruto had been on hand with a health potion so Haku survived and healed from the damage done. He just needed some rest for the moment so he wouldn't be of any help right now.
"So you are one of the shinobi the Demon bros mentioned to us after intense interrogation," stated Kakashi as he pulled out a kunai as did the other in preparation of the fight they were expecting.
"Demon bros?" asked Naruto in a confused tone of voice. He had no clue as to who they were talking about. He had never heard that name before, and it sounded stupid when he heard it given he had actually fought demonic creatures and he highly doubted they were anything like them. "I have no idea who the hell you are talking about. I work for no one but myself."
"So if you don't work with them," said Sakura, who was considered the smartest of the Genin, "then why are you standing against us like you are?"
"Man," said Naruto as he rubbed the side of his head with his hand over the hood. He easily recognized her by her banshee-like loud voice that she had back when she was five. She had been one of the kids to bully him, but she was weak back then so she was one to do it verbally only. It was that fact that she was saved from the asskicking he gave to the ones whose bones he broke in retaliation. "I know it has been years, but you still have such an annoying voice Pinky."
"Wait," said Sakura, whose turn it was to be confused since that was not the response she was expecting from him. But she never got to say anything more since they saw Naruto raise his hand out towards her and as he did they saw her lift up into the air while she was struggling to breath. They saw his hand glow a bit with power, but their shock over someone having such an ability stunned them in place long enough for Naruto to clench his hand into a fist. Everyone heard a sickening crunch as her neck snapped, and then with a simple wave of his hand to the left, her body was thrown in that direction. This was the Dominator's touch ability, and dear Kami did it come in handy for times like this. True he couldn't use it against people stronger than him, but Sakura was far from being that.
"Don't blame me for your death," said Naruto aloud so that the other could hear him, "blame the decision of becoming a kunoichi when you knew the risks of death were so high."
He saw their faces that they had towards him, and it didn't take a genius to understand they were shocked that he had managed to kill Sakura like he had done.
"What," said Naruto with a chuckle, "did you expect mercy from me after all that Konoha has done to me? Not going to happen people."
"You are to be detained for transport back to Konoha, where you will be tried for the murder of one of our kunoichi." Said Kakashi as he was starting to take this guy seriously.
"Oh is that all Kakashi," said Naruto with a smirk that was visible to them. They couldn't see his face, but his grin shined eerily in a manner they could still visibly see it. "Because I am quite certain your village wouldn't give a damn about one dead kunoichi from your village given my massive track record against it."
"Who the hell are you," demanded Itachi, who activated his Sharingan in the hopes that he could see past what he assumed was some form of jutsu that hid their opponents face. This caused Naruto to raise an eyebrow as he saw him use it.
"Before I answer your question," said Naruto with a wave of his hand, "answer me this. Are you an Uchiha?"
"That I am," said Itachi, who was confused at the question. But his confusion only increased along with the others as soon as they heard him begin to laugh out loud. "What is so funny!?"
"I just couldn't help but laugh," said Naruto as he got a hold of himself, "since I was so sure I only spared one Uchiha that night. Isn't that right Sasuke?" Naruto's eyes then lit up with a menacing dark blue color, and as Sasuke saw it, the memories of what he had seen that night were flooding his mind all at once. It caused him to go weak in the legs and so he fell backwards onto his ass as he began to break out in a cold sweat. For years he had prepared to kill the one responsible for his clan's massacre, but now that he saw the person who called himself the Shadow Monarch, his fear returned. And what made it worse was seeing him slaughter one of their group in mere seconds with no form of hesitation in a manner that none of them ever expected. "But apparently the gods have given me the chance to rectify that."
Itachi heard Naruto say that and felt a rage he had never known in his entire life. While it was true that he knew about his clan's plans to perform a coup towards the village, they were still his family. He remembered the day he had come back and heard about what had happened when he had finished his own mission near the edge of Fire Country. He had felt anger that day, and it was that anger that caused him to storm into the Hokage's office and demand answers as to what had happened. Itachi had expected the Hokage had a hand in this, which he openly admitted he was planning on it as well as showed the scroll of the mission to kill most of them. But he denied actually going through with it since his plan had to eliminate the older members so that the younger members would learn from their elder's mistakes and not cause trouble. The one who actually killed his clan had wiped them out entirely save for Sasuke. He had spared not even the children. Itachi had only said one word after he heard that last bit…
That one word spoke volumes and had been laced with most of the rage and hatred Itachi had suppressed to become the prodigy of a shinobi he was. And so Hiruzen told him who had done the deed, and like he expected, Itachi went far out of his way to try and hunt Naruto down once he learned the Jinchurikki had been the one to slaughter his family like he had. Yet for years, he had never found the brat and only heard whispers of people who resembled him. But now here he was standing before him, with a smirk on his face and laughing at the slaughter of his family. He laughed over the fact that Itachi remained alive as well as Sasuke. Itachi would make this fucker pay one way or another if it was the last thing he did.
"Naruto Uzumaki," seethed Itachi in malice.
"So you know of me," said Naruto as he pulled his hood off to show his face to them. Itachi already knew who he was so there was no need to hide his face. "That raises my self esteem a bit given one with your reputation knows about me. But I question the treason you know about me that I am the Jinchuriki of your village or because I slaughtered your family without a hint of remorse when I did it."
"I'll make you pay for what you have done til the day you die brat," said Itachi as his eyes changed a bit as he prepared to use his jutsu. "Starting now. Tsukuyomi!"
The others in the squad, even Sasuke who had quelled his fear for the moment, all rushed forward in the belief that Naruto was stuck in place for the moment since that was what Itachi's technique did. While the pain he would be put through in his mind would only last a few seconds in the real world, the damage done inside his head would weaken him in a way they could capture him easily enough without a fight.
Now while that would have happened if it was anyone else, Naruto was an exception to their expectations. Years ago when he had slaughtered the Uchiha, he had been gifted a simple passive skill of being immune to illusions. But since Naruto had been living on his own in isolation for the majority of his life without people using such things on him, he never got the chance to see just how effective it was. He had honestly forgotten about it since it never came up, even against the monsters in the realms he went to. So now that he was faced with a powerful illusion, the skill activated and told him that he resisted the illusion on a screen only he could see.
So with a smirk, he simply vanished from his spot as the others had tried to surround and detain him. This caused them to look around since he shouldn't have been able to do this. But then they heard Itachi as Naruto appeared in front of him and slammed his fist right into the young man's gut. Itachi's eyes opened wide in pain as he coughed out blood from the damage. He was launched back quite a bit and fell to his knee as he tried to steady himself, but Naruto was quickly upon him. He had used his Mind's eye to see what levels of shinobi he was dealing with, and while at the moment his level was equal to both Kakashi as well as Itachi, the problem was that their level was hindered. Naruto easily put two and two together and knew that the reason for that was that they had yet to use their Sharingan fully. Itachi had used the base form instead of the Mangekyo version so he was not at full power yet. Naruto knew he would be in trouble if he allowed them to fully use their power, so he wanted to end this before that happened to save him the hassle.
But as Naruto came in with a swipe of his knife in hopes to slash Itachi's throat and end him here and now, said man exploded into a flock of crows and smoke that rushed past him towards the others in the group.
"Not gonna work," said Naruto as he held out his hand and activated his Dominator's touch once more. While the thing was usually able to hold onto one person, that was because people struggled and you needed a full grip to keep them in place. This was a flock of crows, and Naruto grabbed all of them and smooshed them back together so that Itachi was back in one piece before he swung his hand down, thus slamming the man into the ground hard.
"How the hell has he gotten so strong," shouted Kakashi towards Itachi as he pulled his headband up and revealed his Sharingan for Naruto to see.
"It's amazing what one can learn when they are not hindered," said Naruto simply as he whipped out his daggers and rushed forward. But as he did, he saw Itachi look at him and his saw as his eyes changed into their more powerful form. In a fit of rage as well as the drive to see this brat suffer for what he did, he used one of his most powerful attacks, Amaterasu…
The speed Naruto was going, it would have been impossible to dodge it fully, and in the end he would have suffered too much damage to be able to continue to fight even if he dodged it. But the one thing Naruto had was overwhelming luck that was inhuman to quantify and since that was the case, something happened even he had no idea it would happen…
While Naruto had been fighting this entire time, Kasumi had been on his shoulder the entire time. She usually was so it was easy for Naruto to forget that at times. And as she saw the pitch black flames come towards her master, she opened her mouth as wide as she could and began to suck in air. The fires of the Amatarasu didn't hit Naruto in the slightest, instead she consumed them down to the last ember. This caused everyone, Naruto included, to look at her wide eyed since this was not something they had expected.
"What the hell kind of summon is that!?" shouted Kakashi in rage mixed with surprise.
"One who is far better than I initially thought," said Naruto as he pet her on the head. She purred loudly as her master praised her. But Naruto then continued to rush forward to kill Kakashi. He did have to stop and slide a bit though since Sai had attempted to slice him down the middle. Naruto's senses were keen enough to dodge it, and since the young man was off balance from missing, Naruto stabbed him in the neck and pulled it out the long way as he slid past. Even if by some miracle Sai didn't die from the massive blood loss given his artery was cut in his neck, the poison now coursing through him would kill him soon enough. So Sai fell over while trying to stem the blood flowing out of his neck in vain.
Naruto then threw one of his daggers at Kakshi, who used a kunai to block the weapon, but he was then hit with a quick smoke bomb and now his vision was clouded. Even his Sharingan wasn't helping since Naruto was using Stealth to hide his appearance from his enemy. So Kakashi wasn't able to see Naruto as he snuck up behind him and sliced his neck from one end to the next. That should have been the end of it, but in the sense of Deja vu, Kakashi simply vanished in smoke since what Naruto had killed was a clone. The difference with this one was the fact it wasn't water based so he wasn't wet from it. Not like that mattered though, since seconds after he killed the clone, a massive long dragon made of water slammed into him. Naruto was able to eventually hold his own against it by bracing himself and planting his feet firmly into the ground, but then he was attacked from behind.
Kakashi had felt Naruto's presence vanish and had quickly come up with a plan to defeat him. He had used a jutsu to sink into the ground while he made two clones. One stood where he was as a decoy while the other jumped out of the smoke and prepared the watery jutsu that had hit Naruto. Once the brat was distracted, the real Kakashi popped out of the ground and hit him smack in the lower back with a Chidori so as to cripple the boy in a manner he could no longer fight back. The water the boy was now soaked with only enhanced the power of the electrical jutsu, and Naruto screamed out in pain as he felt it course through him. In the end, Naruto fell onto his stomach as he painfully felt the electrical energy course through him making him spasm like this.
Kakashi saw that he was down for the count and quickly slapped on a pair of chakra suppressing cuffs so he would remain in that state while he checked up on the others. He knew that Sakura was dead and gone by this point, but Sai had just fully perished by the time Kakashi got to him to see if he could do anything to help. So no he went to Itachi, who was getting back on his feet. Kakashi tossed him a small container containing some soldier pills to revitalize him, which Itachi took and swallowed one of them. As he felt his energy return, they checked up on Sasuke, who was doing fine all things considered.
But as they checked up on themselves to make sure that they were not in a life threatening situation medical wise, Naruto felt as the electrical energy in his body began to lessen. And as he was still stuck there for the moment, he planned on what to do. But while he quickly planned on how to deal with this, a window popped up in front of him out of the blue:
Limit Breaking Mission:
To truly become strong in the future, one must truly break free of their past.
Mission: Kill Kakashi Hitake
Seeing this mission made Naruto smirk since he already planned on doing just that, but this made it even better for him since he would be able to become stronger once he killed the man.
"I don't know how you got so strong Naruto," said Kakashi as he walked over towards Naruto and pulled the brat by the hair so he was forced to look at him. "But IT will have a field day learning how you did."
"And when they are finished with you," said Itachi as he spit in Naruto's face, "I will make sure you suffer til the day you die." Itachi then punched Naruto hard in the face.
"Ha," chuckled Naruto as he spit the blood that pooled in his mouth to the side so as to properly speak, "you are stronger than I thought."
"Did you honestly believe that you could beat two elite shinobi from Konoha brat," asked Kakashi.
"I honestly did," said Naruto truthfully. He had thought that he could fight them like he had single handedly given his level was equal to them, but their experience trumped his own when it came to fighting people with abilities akin to magic, given chakra was just that. But while he was strong in his own right, he was not the Shadow Soldier… no, he was the Shadow Monarch, and it was about time he acted like it instead of going it alone. "But thanks for proving me wrong."
"Well I hope you liked what freedom you had," said Kakashi as he prepared to knock Naruto out so as to transport him back to the village, "since once we get back, you'll be lucky if you ever see the light of day ever again."
"Wait," said Naruto suddenly in a manner that caused them to stop since it was so sudden. "Before you drag me off… Do you wanna see something cool?"
Kakashi looked at Itachi with a quizzical look. This was just getting stranger than they had thought it would be. But while the two of them didn't answer, it was Sasuke who did. The boy had seen Naruto fight off against his squad and began to wonder if they could win in the end since they seemed to be struggling for the first portion of the fight. But now that the man he swore to kill was cuffed up like this, he was in a haughty mood since it was like looking at a caged animal given they could look scary but they couldn;t do shit to you.
"I have a feeling that you are playing us in some way," said Sasuke with a smirk as well as a raised eyebrow, "but honestly I do."
Naruto then chuckled as his eyes glowed once more.
That one word made all the color disappear from Sasuke's face since the memory of that night had come back in full. His trauma had fractured it to the point he couldn't remember most of it other than the name of the man who killed his family. But now he remembered what he did to his family afterwards, and as he remembered, two shadows emerged from the ground in defence of their master. Kakashi was not able to move fast enough and was kicked back by Zabuza's shadow, but Itachi was quicker on the draw and blocked the kunai that the other shadow swiped at him.
"Oh isn't this such a touching reunion," said Naruto as he hopped up and broke the cuffs off his body. He would have done so the second he was able to move his body again, but he wanted his enemies to get nice and close to do as he did. These were chakra suppression cuffs… he didn't use chakra…
"What the hell are you talking about?!" demanded Itachi as he struggled with holding back the shadow who was hellbent on killing him.
"Don't you recognize your own father Itachi?" asked Naruto with a smirk, "now he works for me."
Itachi's eyes opened wide as he looked hard at the thing he was fighting. He was able to recognize key features of his deceased father to see that Naruto spoke the truth, and in his rage he was able to muster enough strength to push his father's shadow away from him and hopped back a bit to stand by Kakashi, who was then followed by Sasuke since he was not an idiot and knew he couldn't handle Naruto alone.
"What the hell are you?" shouted Itachi.
"I am the Shadow Monarch," said Naruto with a smirk as he pulled his hood back on, "one who rules over the shadows themselves."
It was at this point that they started to realize that capturing Naruto might not be possible given he was able to counter most of their jutsu meant to hinder him in a manner he could be brought back alive. Even chakra suppression cuffs did nothing to him. They couldn't retreat given they were on an isolated island that had only a rowboat they came on to get away, and that wasn't fast enough to do so. So Now they had to get far more serious and kill Naruto here and now if they planned to see another day. So Kakashi nodded at Itachi, who nodded back.
Naruto felt as a strange sensation suddenly hit him dead center, and automatically assuming the worst case scenario, he used Shadow Exchange to switch places with Itachi's father to get away from it. It was a smart thing that he did since Kakashi had tried to kill him with the Kamui, yet he had only ended his shadow instead. Naruto felt as his connection to the shadow was severed, which surprised him enough that Kakashi had managed to do that, but the shadow had been weak so it wasn't a loss in his book since it just cleared another space so that he could store another one. It was at this point that Kasumi hopped back onto his shoulder, since she had jumped off when he had been hit with the water dragon since she hated getting wet.
Once there, she opened her mouth and spat out the very fires of Amaterasu that she had devoured not too long ago directly at them. This caused Itachi to react on reflex and use the Susanno as a shield to the fires. It worked in the end, and the fires died down as Kasumi belched out the last of it. Itachi at this point was one hundred percent done with this brat and would end this here and now. So his Susanoo formed its blade and swung it hard down so as to kill Naruto here and now. The size of the weapon made it so evasion at such a close range was impossible, but Naruto didn't move from his spot as he saw the blade nearing him. This puzzled Itachi, but second later he understood why he didn't budge.
Naruto had been busy with Haku the last couple of days, and even though Haku had done the killing, Naruto still used his abilities to resurrect the monsters that were strong, and a few of those he did so to happen to be Cyclopes. So all four of them appeared in shadow form and raised their hands to stop the blade from hitting their master. Once the Susanoo was stuck, Naruto rushed forwards and whipped out his daggers once more. He stopped a few yards short of their group inside the protective field of the Susanoo, and he threw one of his daggers into the Susanoo itself. The blade stuck to it, but it seemed like the Susanoo's protective barrier would hold. But then they saw as the chest of the Susanoo crack fast and then shattered while Naruto simply smirked.
Itachi had no means to defend himself since he had used up too much Chakra by using the Amaterasu as well as the Susanoo. So he felt the full force of the blow to the face as Naruto hit him dead center of hit with enough force to hear the cracking of his now broken nose. Itachi went skidding into the ground as Naruto stood there. He started to feel the fatigue of using up so much magical energy to fight against opponents that had only gotten stronger mid fight. He had wanted to avoid that, but in the end he had to fight them at their full strength. So he purchased a mana potion from the store and uncorked the thing before he began to drink it.
As he stood there, Sasuke had lost it. He saw his brother and teacher get their asses kicked by this guy and even when they got around his strengths and planned out a means to defeat him, Naruto had other things up his sleeve to counter their other plans as well. So in his rage that was driven by his desire to avenge his clan, He did the proper hand seals to conjure up his own Chidori and then screamed as he rushed forward to kill this bastard while his back was turned to him.
"Not a smart idea," said Naruto as he held out his hand to grab one of his shadows he had rise up next to him by the neck. He had sensed as Sasuke did what he did, but the screaming only made it easier to judge his position. He thought shinobi were supposed to be stealthy, so how was Sasuke so bad at that aspect of the job?
"Your minion will not shield you from me!" shouted Sasuke in rage as he continued to rush forward towards Naruto with the Chidori still going strong in his hand.
"You're right," said Naruto with a grin, and as Sasuke was mere inches from attempting to strike at him through his shadow's body, he did what he planned. Sasuke felt as his attack went though what felt like solid flesh and heard a scream of pain as the electricity that made up the jutsu coursed through their body. But then he looked up and felt as his world shattered…
Instead of the shadow Naruto had been holding, there in its place was none other than Itachi himself. His beaten elderly brother could only look down at his brother with a mix of surprise and horror as he felt his life fade away. And within seconds, Itachi Uchiha was no more.
"Now we both have something in common," said Naruto as he snapped Itachi's neck for good measure and threw his body to the side where it landed on Sai's forgotten corpse. Naruto had faced a few monsters that he had thought he killed with a fatal blow, only to nearly be struck from behind so he usually went the overkill route to make sure they were dead. "Both of our hands are stained in the blood of the Uchiha Clan."
Sasuke couldn't look away from the blood on his hands as his mind tried to make sense of what just happened. He had tried so hard to avenge his family. He put his all into the jutsu so as to strike him down, but he had only killed his brother instead. The same brother who had been there as he spent countless hours training to get stronger so that he could kill Naruto. He had just killed the one thing that kept him sane all these years with kind words as well as means to channel his rage into a more productive sort of thing. He fell to his knees as the tears flowed through his fingers and then looked up to the sky and screamed out in pain with all the volume he could manage.
"Now you know how I felt for so long," said Naruto as he whistled towards Kasumi. She got the hint and hopped over towards Itachi's dead body. She then blew out a small flame that was hot enough to ignite Itachi given its magical nature. The body burned along with Sai's as Naruto continued to talk to Sasuke. "Broken inside with no means to overcome it in sight."
"Why?" was all Sasuke was able to manage to say. His mind was breaking in a manner that would be hard to recover.
"The saying goes 'do onto others what you want done to yourself'," said Naruto simply since it was as easy as that, "and since your family found so much amusement in my tortue when I was a kid, the last of my Clan in the village, I thought to replicate the situation with you. And I have to admit it is amusing to see you like this."
"You… You…" seethed Sasuke before he felt a pain in his eyes as he began to cry blood. What he was unaware of was that in the act of killing his own brother, his closest friend he had, he had unlocked the Mangekyo Sharingan.
"Can't even come up with an original name to call me can you?" asked Naruto as he lifted his hood back up to hide his face, somehow it had come off since he had put it back on the last time. "But it matters not to me. I'm not going to kill you."
Sasuke's eyes looked at him in shock as he heard this since it didn't make sense in his mind. It would seem that Naruto wanted his clan dead, yet he was not killing him like he expected.
"Don't think this is an act of mercy or anything like that," said Naruto with a shrug of his shoulders, "this is nothing more than an answer to a question I had. You see, I can see this going in one of two ways. Either you will finally give up and fade away in shame since the one person you want to kill is someone you can't, or your mind will finally snap and you will put everything into becoming stronger. You will forsake everything and everyone and go mad in your mission to end me, but no matter how many times I beat you, I won't kill you and will only leave you beaten within an inch of your life like I was so many times. In the end, you will either kill yourself in shame of how weak you are, or you will end up breaking yourself in a manner you will never heal from. Either way works for me since it will be fun to watch either way." Naruto then rushed forward and kicked Sasuke hard upside the head with enough force to knock him out.
"And now to deal with you," said Naruto as he saw Kakashi still on the ground nearly tapped out of chakra. He had gambled too much of it in the Kamui, and yet Naruto had a means he hadn't expected to get out of it. He had hoped Itachi's skills would be able to deal with him long enough for him to muster up some amount of chakra to do anything to put Naruto down, yet Naruto had dealt with Itachi faster than he had expected. Whatever training the brat had gone through to get this strong was showing since he had dealt with them so easily. Plus his ability to summon shadowy constructs that would make the Nara Clan jealous only helped to prove it.
"You won't win in the end." said Kakashi weakly.
"You would think that," said Naruto as he walked over to Kakashi's downed form, but he did manage to kick the kunai Kakashi had used to swipe at his legs in some last ditch effort to do something to him. He then kicked the cyclops prick in the head hard enough to force him onto his back as well as darken his face mask with the blood coming out his nose. "But let me tell you something. As I am now? Not even my strongest point, and yet I was able to beat two of the Elite from Konoha by myself. Do the math, or at least try to since this is going to hurt way too much."
Before Kakashi was able to even wonder what Naruto meant by that last part, he had stabbed both his daggers into Kakashi's arms to the point the tips were in the ground as well. Kakashi yelled in pain as he felt them, and what made it worse was the poison they were coated in was slowly coursing through his veins. Shinobi had a natural resistance to poisons, this Naruto knew, but Naga poison was stronger than what they dealt with on the norm so it wasn't enough of one to be immune to it. But even still, Kakashi's resistance to poison was higher than most and so the poison took longer to spread. The cruel thing was that it was more painful this way, but Naruto didn't really care about that since he made these weapons with the design of being cruel to his enemies.
"I will alway remember that night," said Naruto into Kakashi's ear, "the night I had managed to escape my tormentors, only to be stabbed in the back by you. And you laughed as you electrocuted me from the inside out to the point I passed out after my body shut down from the pain. So allow me to return the pain tenfold!" Naruto then channeled magical energy into his weapons so that the electricity shocked the hell out of Kakashi. But unlike that night all those years ago, Naruto had no higher up telling him to show a miniscule amount of restraint so that their weapon did not die. He had no qualms about killing this fucker, and in fact was looking forward to it. So Naruto did not cease his attack as Kakashi continued to scream out bloody murder, and he wouldn't stop until Kakashi's mind was fried.
His eyes were lifeless, and his body was twitching sporadically as one could still see the energy that coursed through his body like some strange form of conduit. Naruto then stood up and dusted himself off and walked over to where Sasuke was. He picked the young man up as well as dragged Kakashi's dead corpse along by the hair and walked towards the shore where he saw a boat. He threw the Uchiha into it while he chucked Kakashi's body into the water and summoned the shadow of Zabuza himself with the orders to not only paddle this kid to the other side, but to follow him back near Konoha. He was to follow and harass Sasuke in a manner that people would think he was crazy since he was to remain hidden to all but Sasuke. Let the fear sink in deep. Naruto then walked back towards the area he was just in and saw the elderly man from earlier hiding behind a crate, too afraid to move in fear that Naruto would kill him.
"Hey old timer," said Naruto so as to get the man's attention. Tazuna literally jumped since he had no idea that Naruto had walked by him to do as he did and saw him right there. He had been too paralysed by fear to notice anything other than the screams he had heard. "Are you Tazuna?"
"Please don't kill me!" said Tazuna as he got on his knees and bowed his head in submission, "I don't know what Gato is paying you, but give me time and I will match it if you spare me!"
"Whoa there old man," said Naruto with a chuckle as well as a wave of his hand, "put your mind at ease. I don't work for Gato."
"You don't?" asked Tazuna as he looked up and saw Naruto standing there with his arms crossed. He wasn't making any sort of movement to attack him or the like.
"No," said Naruto with a shake of his head, "Gato has been dead for the past two weeks. Your village is safe, and the people are making repairs to their homes as well as beginning the construction of the bridge you see there."
"But how is this possible?" asked Tazuna more to himself than Naruto. "No one knew about our plight."
"To be honest," said Naruto with a laugh as he held out his hand to help the elderly man up to his feet, "it was pure random luck I came to these shores. I had no map and ended up here. Wanted to ask the people here where I was, saw Gato's men harassing the people and decided to help. Learned the full story and eliminated the threat at the source so you no longer have a problem."
"But we had no funds…" said Tazuna in thought as he wondered why someone would aid them like this.
"Sometimes people just want to help since it is the right thing to do," said Naruto with a shrug of his shoulders, "but I was paid after the people raided Gato's mansion, so in the end I was still given money for my services."
"But if you don't work with Gato," said Tazuna while pointing an accusing finger at him, "then why did you attack the shinobi I hired to protect me?"
"Because," said Naruto as he spat to the side in remembrance of them, "I have bad history with Konoha and their shinobi. It was personal, so leave it at that since I am not going to hurt you."
"I don't know whether to believe you or not," said Tazuna as he backed up a bit, but slowly, away from Naruto in the off chance he had to run for his life.
"And I can respect that given the things you just witnessed," said Naruto with a smile, "but if you don't want to believe me, well let them tell you." Naruto then pointed behind Tazuna, which caused the man to look behind him. What he saw brought a tear to his eyes as he saw his family running towards him. His daughter and grandson hugged him with all the love they could muster while Kaiza just patted the older man on the back in respect. But they weren't alone since many others were there since the lunch break was over and the people working on the bridge were coming back now to resume work. They all greeted Tazuna and spoke about what had transpired since he had left the village to find help.
And as they were all catching up with one another, Naruto went back to his usual spot under the shady tree and quickly fell back asleep for another nap…