Disclaimer: First Chapter
"Sasuke has become overcome by the Emperor, and has vanished."
Honoka's news was bad.
"Sakura has given into the urges of Shuten Douji, and left my area. I don't know where she went."
Ninigi's news only made things worse as they sent their clone bodies to Kukuri to tell her the bad news that they had discovered. They had all been trying to train their humans to utilize the powers of the monsters inside of them, but it would seem that the two people who were most experienced with training exorcists and yokai slayers, had somehow managed to fail to teach either Sasuke or Sakura how to properly control the powers inside of them.
The news that 2 of the 3 Great Yokai had awakened to some degree AND they had vanished was horrible news.
"How is Tamamo?" Honoka asked Kukuri with a more firm stance that she had ever had before.
The ONLY grace about the Great Yokai was that they had never existed at the same time. Shuten Douji, Tamamo no Mae, and Emperor Sutoku had legends that didn't exist in the exact same time periods. If they had existed together in the past, there was no telling how horrible things would have turned out back then. Now they existed together, and two of them had awakened to their evil instincts and powers.
"Naruto is doing fine, he made friends with a Nekomata about a month ago, but his training isn't going well. He's not talented, but he's an amazingly hard worker... I don't know what I'm doing wrong." Kukuri sighed to herself.
She blamed herself.
She wasn't teaching Naruto right, and she was trying her hardest to find the right way to teach him. He was getting stronger, but out of the 3 children, his potential was the greatest of the three. Naruto wasn't talented, but she didn't believe that talent and potential had to go hand in hand. She tried to teach Naruto using books, but they confused him and it didn't help him overall. She tried teaching him by sitting him down and explaining things to him, but that didn't work either.
"That's good news at least, I would rather Tamamo remain weak than have all three Great ones go out of control... he hasn't shown any signs of oddness?" Ninigi asked with a raised eyebrow, arms crossed.
Kukuri thought about that one.
"Naruto has unusually massive spiritual power, even without considering he's blood related to Tamamo AND he has her soul sealed in him. He has Guardian power, but I don't have experience training people to use the power of a Guardian." Kukuri would blame herself again for that. Still, none of that mattered to her too much, not when she just needed to wait until Naruto turned 17 so that she could marry him.
Once he was her husband, she would be allowed to use her powers to truly protect him, and she would finally have a husband to call her own.
"So where is the guy?"
"I'm sure that... wait... Kanaka and Kiriha are doing an Amasogi extermination, so they aren't watching him right now... where did he go?" Kukuri didn't actually know where Naruto was right now. "He should come back soon, it's going to start raining soon." Kukuri could just feel the water gathering and thickening the clouds.
A storm was coming.
'He just doesn't stop.' Nia thought as she looked at Naruto use a rope to drag a boulder across muddy ground. It wasn't a massive boulder, but for a human boy, pulling a boulder even 4 feel tall would be a serious and nearly impossible challenge. With the rainy season going on, the ground was muddy which wasn't making it any easier for Naruto.
His clothes were a mess, and he was a mess, but since he had nobody to train him today, he was taking it upon himself to train. So he grabbed a rope from the temple, tied it to a boulder, and he was pulling the boulder.
It moved inch by inch slowly, through sheer determination, and hours of hard work, he had managed to move the boulder 9 inches from where it started.
Naruto drew a line in the mud 25 feet away that he wanted to drag the boulder to.
"You've set your goal too far away." Nia told him as she just kept an eye open to look at him. She had a pretty good grasp of his character, but this choice was still odd to her. He was just going to tire himself out, but his stamina was quite stellar. His stamina was the one thing that seemed to constantly grow as he trained.
Naruto took her words as encouragement.
For Naruto, her words were encouraging him to reach the goal he set for himself, even if it was too far away. He wasn't going to stop until he got to his goal, and her words didn't matter at all to him.
"I'll get there."
"Not today you won't, lets go back before the rain starts and the river starts to rise." Nia didn't argue, since that was pointless, moreover she decided to let Naruto know that his training today wasn't going to amount to much. 'Then again, yokai don't need to do much training. We get stronger through different methods.' Nia would relent internally that maybe his training was truly helping him, and she didn't see it for what it was.
She was too stubborn to admit her thoughts out loud though.
"Not giving up, not until I cross the fin..." Naruto stopped talking.
2 people appeared where the lightning had struck the ground, and he turned his head towards the two that appeared.
'... These auras... they are terrifying.' Nia thought as she backed up away from the ones who just appeared. She got a good look at them, and she felt pure fear in the gut of her stomach. She couldn't talk or even find her voice.
Youngsters the same age as Naruto pretty much.
A young boy with very pale skin, black eyes, and black hair that was upturned near the back. He wore the finest of clothes, and he was holding a small amount of lightning at the tip of his finger. He had a scowl on his face, his natural expression seemed to be a scowl just going by his aura alone.
A young girl with bright pink hair that was cut to her shoulders, bright green eyes, and light skin as well. Her clothes were messy and thrown onto her body in a rush, as if she didn't give two shits about her clothes at the moment.
"So, this is our Third... Tamamo no Mae, sorry Tamamo, don't know your human name yet. I'm Sakura Haruno, my Yokai is Shuten Douji... want to join us?" Sakura asked, the girl, as she extended a hand towards Naruto.
Nia hissed and jumped in front of Naruto, between him and this girl.
Instantly, she felt her fear try and overpower her and make her run away, but she knew that wasn't an option.
She glanced back, and she saw Naruto was just as terrified as she was.
No, even more so than herself.
'... They are like me... they are Shuten Douji and Emperor Sutoki... I've got to run away... they'll kill me.' Naruto fell to his butt and started to back away.
Sasuke looked at him.
"He hasn't awakened yet, Tamamo is still sealed strongly. We'll have to draw her out, if we're to destroy human society, we're going to need his power." Sasuke pointed his finger at Naruto, and the lightning turned into flames as the element changed. "We won't kill you, but this will be very unpleasant until you awaken."
Naruto grabbed Nia and held her to his chest.
"GOOD Naruto, we need to get out of here as fast as possible, we don't have a chance against them!" Nia jumped out of his arms and landed on his shoulder, so he could use his arms as he ran. She refused to look back to see if they were actually getting away though.
She was too terrified to see if they were being followed.
She saw a shadow appear above them though, and she was forced to turn her head to see the boulder Naruto was dragging had been sent flying at them. She snapped and bit Naruto's ear, forcing him to react by stumbling to the ground. She didn't have enough time to warn him, and the boulder sailed over his head and sank into the ground in front of him.
'She threw the boulder... she threw it so far.' Naruto glanced back and saw Sakura with her arm extended.
"Damn, and here I thought the coward would awaken if his life was in danger. Seems I need to beat Tamamo awake." Sakura started to walk forward, cracking her knuckles.
An ass appeared in Naruto's eyesight.
A nicely shaped ass, with two black cat tails sticking out of the tailbone. He could see a lean, petite frame for a decently tall girl with long, beautiful long hair, straight as could be, shapely thighs that had lean muscle to them, and cute black cat ears on top of her head.
She turned around and grabbed Naruto, before she jumped up into the air with super fast speeds. Naruto saw her yellow eyes for a brief moment, and he saw her pretty face, and her smaller sized breasts. That didn't matter much though as fear stilled coursed through his veins.
She was beautiful, but not beautiful enough to erase his fear.
'I should be fast enough to get us to the temple, we will be safe at the temple with Kukuri there.' Nia thought as she curled one of her tails over her crotch, going between her legs, and covering her boobs with one of her arms. 'As strong as the girl is, she didn't chase Naruto, so she must be a power type, not a speed type... the boy uses elements to fight. With my speed-' Nia stopped when lightning struck the ground 30 feet in front of her.
There they were, blocking her path.
"Nekomata, release Tamamo and let him join us... don't you want to destroy humanity just as much as us?" Sasuke asked as he extended his hand towards her, despite the reach distance between them.
She grit her teeth.
Sakura started to drink heavily from a bottle that she was carrying with her, and a strong booze scent drifted through the area. The veins on her arms and legs started to thicken, and she tossed the bottle to the ground and shattered it.
"Don't bother trying to get her on our side, that Nekomata doesn't stink. She has a scent that don't hate humanity. We'll get Tamamo, kill the Nekomata, and then tell Tamamo that she abandoned him." Sakura stated as he stomped across the ground. She ripped a tree out of it's roots and swung it.
She knocked down a dozen trees.
Nia was forced to abandon the trees, and landed on the ground, but she smelled blood. She smelled blood before she heard the boom. A burst of lightning had shot from Sasuke's fingers and went right through her thigh. She dropped to the ground and grabbed her bleeding leg with grit teeth.
Escape was now impossible.
"Naruto, wake up and RUN! It's okay to be a coward, as long as you can live! You'll never reach your goal if you die!" Nia shouted at Naruto.
Sakura was in front of her with her arm pulled back.
She didn't punch though as she looked away from Nia and at Naruto, who was standing up. His right hand was bleeding heavily as he sank his teeth into it. He was biting his own hand so hard that a good portion of his arm was covered in his own blood.
Nia felt her soul try to leave her body and go towards Naruto, and the strong urge to let it was hard to resist.
Pain was all he could do to give himself the courage to stand up.
"... Sakura, it seems our time here has come to an end. We aren't strong enough to deal with a God just yet." Sasuke stated as he extended his hand towards her. She sniffed the air, before she grinned and laughed.
"Well, it seems you're lucky... when we're stronger, we're coming back for you Tamamo!" Sakura grabbed Sasuke's hand.
They vanished in a strike of lightning just as Kukuri landed on the ground where they had been, putting a crater in the ground with her strength. They were already gone though, and Nia let out a sigh of relief when she realized that they were safe. Kukuri ignored her though as she rushed to Naruto.
"Naruto, those two didn't hurt you... you're bleeding!"
Naruto just looked down at the ground in shame as Kukuri grabbed his hand and looked over him.
"Thank goodness, you're healing is kicking in... it's going to be okay Naruto, they are gone and I am going to make sure you never see them again!" Kukuri promised Naruto as she wrapped her arms around him, pulling him flush to her body.
Naruto gripped his fists tight.
'... I didn't do anything... I couldn't do anything at all but freeze up and run away. What has all my training even been for?' Naruto didn't listen to a single word that Kukuri said.
No relief came over him, and he didn't relax. His hands were shaking, his heartbeat was pounding, and tears of self-loathing were shining in his eyes.
'The sensation of my soul being pulled is gone.' Nia returned to her cat form, and she felt her heartbeat slowing down as she left battle mode. 'That came out of nowhere.' Nia looked at Naruto, and she saw the look of self-blame in his eyes. She knew nothing she could say would calm him down, so she just looked away.
She could guess what happened.
This was the anniversary of Emperor Sutoki's death, so the child who bore his soul must have been overcome by the spirit inside him. Then, he tracked down Shuten Douji's spirit holder, and forcefully awakened her. It would be a big problem for everyone if they got to Naruto though, and Tamamo was reawakened.
'... I'm never going to run away again... no matter what.' Naruto thought as he stared at his bleeding hand.
Today was the last day that Naruto would allow fear to control him.
Never again would it happen.
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