Story

Returning to Tazuna's house, Naruto and Sasuke were immediately assaulted by their team's konoichi. "Where have you two been?" Sasuke ignored her and redirected the attention to his blond teammate with a shrug. "Well Naruto?" Successful, Sasuke drifted past her and up to his room, probably to meditate,e leaving Naruto with Sakura.

"WE have been training. Kakashi said Zabuza would attack soon, so were getting the most out of the little time we have left." Happy with his answer, Naruto also brushed past her, looking for his teacher. If they could get another day or two in of training with Kakashi, they might be ready for the upcoming attack.

"Don't you just…" Naruto was gone before she could turn to follow him. 'No! Even Naruto is ignoring me now.' Inner Sakura exclaimed angrily that Naruto was just an idiot and would never surpass her, but Sakura knew that was a lie. If Sasuke could tolerate training with Naruto for several days, then he had to be strong.

"I'll just have to train even harder than they do!" Inner Sakura cheered her favorite phrase 'True love concurs all!' and Sakura calmly went back to lifting small stones nearby with chakra.

With Sasuke

Sasuke lay balanced on only his left hand, occasionally raising and lowering himself, in a deep state of deep meditation, as 'How can I surpass them?', repeated in his head. After an hour, he started hearing feint speech, but he ignored it assuming it was simply Sakura trying to get his attention. After another thirty minutes, he started retreating from this state so he could shift another one of his clan's mutated training positions, when the voice grew clearer.

'If you wish for power, then I could help you.' The short phrase gained his attention, but when he was back to normal completely, it was gone. Shaking away the desire to find the origin of the voice and gain power, Sasuke switched hands, and sank into a meditative state again as his left arm recovered from the strain he had put on it.

'You are not ready for you true heritage yet. If you set your evil free, my power will be yours to command. Kill and we will grow…' Blocking the odd voice haunting his mind out, Sasuke returned to calculating how much training he would need to match his two sibling's skill. The offer of power, however, stayed in his head. With it, his last memory of Itachi's attack

"I will never be cast aside like that again." If the voice really could give him power, than Sasuke wouldn't be the pride of Konoha much longer. "Forgive me brother." Even he wasn't sure which he was talking about.

Naruto

"Hey, Tsunami. Have you seen Kakashi?" Naruto had located the daughter of the bridge builder, but so far, he hadn't found anyone else.

"Sorry, but father and Kakashi and father have all been going to the bridge to monitor the progress. It should be finished in two days." After thanking her, Naruto drifted back outside to continue his training. Taking a deep breath, he formed one hand seal and summoned chakra throughout his body. The spiritual energy pored off him, supercharging his muscles and activating his sharingan automatically. Then, the glowing boy dashed into the forest, body almost craving the strain.

Once he reached the densest part of the forest Naruto stopped to release the breath he had been holding in for the minute he had been running, simultaneously releasing chakra to stop the drain. "This should be good enough." Smiling to himself and forming one of the few seals he still used, Naruto made a hundred clones, which in turn each made another nine. "Alright, if we want to keep our advantage over everyone, we'll need to be able to form seals so we can copy things quickly." The clones nodded. "Alright. You three hundred practice our jutsu, until your fingers fall off and then disperse yourselves. Two hundred of you watch them practice to see if there are any ways to improve." Half the Naruto clones took off west to follow his orders.

"Two hundred of whoever remains should pair up and try to make new moves with our bloodlines; if you can, figure out exactly how to control activating the different parts of the sharingan. The rest will be working with me." Groaning at getting the most boring part, two hundred Naruto walked away to find a good place to study their sharingan.

The three hundred remaining Naruto quickly prepared themselves for the upcoming fight, his favorite way to practice with extra clones. Each reinforced himself with the small amount of chakra they had, and lunged. Borrowing from Sasuke's tiajutsu style, Naruto kicked five up above him, and jumped away from the next five bushin attacks. The five clones he kicked then violently exploded due to the Great clone explosion technique he had been working on attaching to them, taking twenty five of their slowest brethren with them.

Eight clones behind him launched various fire jutsu, but luckily, the flames lost power quickly thanks to lack of control and pure chakra. The attempt earned each a kick in the face, and a punch into a different area of the clone swarm, destroying roughly forty total.

'This is a perfect chance to try that new combo.' Not bothering to fall into a fighting stance, Naruto lunged backward into the army of clones, activating his sharingan as soon as the first two were beside him. 'Fire style: burning dragon claw technique.' Rang in his head, as he formed the seals for the 'transformation jutsu', once for each hand. The large claws that replaced his hands immediately ignited and the clones nearby started showing signs of trying to use Mudslide Torrent when he sliced through ten of them nearby.

The heat travelled through both the clones and the air between them making causing angry welts and large blistering on the scorched skin of several others. His shoulders, which were completely untransformed, grew red in irritation as the heat radiated back at him.

"Thank god I remembered to transform my arms." His voice was followed by a grunt as a clone kicked his stomach from an odd angle. Like a magical beacon, the clones Naruto hit earlier almost didn't give a warning as they exploded around him, starting a chain reaction. The clones who didn't foresee this were caught in the blast, extending the self destruction cycle by an excruciating minute.

Naruto, without normal hands to perform a replacement jutsu was helpless as the techniques flung him about from self-destructing copies to their exploding allies, never getting a chance to escape or even perform a seal-less jutsu. Once the barrage was over, the three remaining clones dropped from the trees, they had taken refuge in and inspect the scene.

"Naruto?" Trees had been uprooted, large stones were pounded into gravel, and in the epicenter of this disaster lay Naruto. His dragon arms had been de-scaled, and were rapidly becoming more human, leaving nothing to protect them from the sword sized stone fragments and wood chippings. Amazingly, the damage had been concentrated on his arms and legs, leaving his head and chest unharmed; that wasn't what had drawn their attention. Wherever there had been some wound or injury, a red chakra had manifested, sewing the area back together. The several spikes that had embedded themselves in him flaked away, leaving soon to be healed, gaping wounds.

After a few minutes, all injuries had healed over, and the original Naruto was snoring in the large crater, his arms looking sunburned and raw. The trio of clone looked at each other, then back at Naruto, then at each other again.

"What now? We only have a little time left." The other two clones shrugged, so the Naruto clones dispelled themselves gently, hoping for the best.

Within the seal

Kyuubi tensed, lying within his cage, before lunging forward and slamming into the bar that held the strongest seal. Not making any progress at directly breaking the damaged seal, he collected himself and with as much dignity as he could muster, stalked deeper into the cell. Near the back, on a bed of chains that had once tried to restrain him, he settled down and prepared to sleep.

Where he had been lying, a complex swirl of carvings pulsed. In response to the pulse, red chakra rolled of the giant fox and oozed into the indentations. What started as a something like a liter of thick red liquid, from each glob of chakra, slowly rolled through thin branching paths, half of it turning into large amounts of thinner blue liquid. The other half continued following almost the same path as its blue counterpart, occasionally dribbling into further branching channels.

Suddenly, one of the larger branches of the red chakra ran into a large hole and oozed down smoothly onto a crystal half submerged in a reservoir. Within the large crystallized red stone, sat a Naruto, whose sharingan eyes spun with the demonic energy flowing over him, creating a black ring in place of normal tomoe. The red chakra flowed over the stone, then slid off the edges, adding to the liquefied energy already collected.

Once the pulses that drew the chakra subsided, the red chakra swirled around the stone, lapping against it from all sides. After a minute of this, all of the chakra condensed into a new layer, making the stone a few millimeters thicker than it was earlier. Then, a small trickle of red chakra leaked down upon it, starting the process anew.

AN:

Almost ready to release the new chapter. I just need to finish editing these already released ones.