For those who need this:

Kyuubi thinking/talking

Two or more talking/yelling

Naruto thinking

Hito thinking/talking


Chapter 2

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Two Years Later

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"STUPID GAKI!" Kyuu yelled.

"Stupid Fox!" Naruto yelled back. The eight year old had impressive lungs for his age.

Hito sighed. This had been going on for about two hours now, and he was starting to get a headache. He pinched his nose as if stemming the flow of blood would help his pounding head.

"Could the two of you tone it down a little?" he asked politely.

"NO! STAY OUT OF THIS!" they yelled together with the sound echoing.

"STUPID GAKI!"

"Stupid Fox!"

"STUPID GAKI!"

"Stupid Fox!"

"STUPID GAKI!"

"Stupid Fox!"

"STUPID GAKI!"

"Stupid Fox!"

"What I need is a pair of muzzles," Hito said to himself, closing his eyes in resignation.

"STUPID GAKI!"

"Stupid Fox!"

"STU-MPHH!"

"MPHHMPH!"

Hito opened his eyes to find both Kyuu and Naruto wearing muzzles. He laughed. Fate seemed to have a sense of humor. At least in his opinion. 'Cause Kyuu and Naruto didn't think so. Hito settled down and closed his eyes.

It was time for that long awaited nap.

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"Naruto, Nii-san, come on!" Hinata said impatiently. (1)

"Wazzah?" Naruto mumbled, finally waking up and rubbing his eyes.

"We start at the academy today, don't you remember?" She rolled her eyes.

"Ah!" Naruto shot out of bed and got dressed in record time. Hinata giggled at her brother's antics as he scrambled about. After Hiashi had disowned her last year, Arashi had formally adopted her. Though their last names were legally Kazama, both Hinata and Naruto were going into the academy under the name of Uzumaki. Arashi didn't want it known that he was alive yet. A still giggling Hinata followed Naruto downstairs to the kitchen.

"What's for breakfast Dad?" Naruto asked brightly.

"Pancakes today," Arashi replied, before smiling. "And yes, Naruto, they have chocolate chips in them."

"YEAH! ALRIGHT!" Naruto yelled. Hinata giggled again and grabbed a plate.

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Neji Hyuuga was watching from the shadows as the new Academy students arrived. There was one in particular he was looking for. His cousin - or rather, ex-cousin Hinata. Hiashi had disowned her a year before but the Sandaime would not allow him to claim her dead for any circumstance. So Neji was told to wait at the Academy entrance to see if she would show up. If she did not, then no matter what the Sandaime said, Hiashi would declare Hinata Hyuuga dead to the world. Neji followed his logic for such a decision and didn't like it.

As Neji saw two figures come running up the street, he smirked, for Hiashi Hyuuga would never get that pleasure. Hinata was indeed alive and very well. He turned and silently glided into the building before him, his class starting at the same time as his ex-cousin's.

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"Hurry, Naruto!" Hinata called, running to the Academy entrance. "We're going to be late!"

"Not…at the rate…we're running," Naruto huffed half asleep. Naruto was running out of breath showed you how far away their house was from the academy. Pretty damn far, really. Though for some reason Hinata didn't show any signs of being tired at all. Naruto attributed it to her being a morning person. Usually, when awake and ready to go, he could out do her easily.

They started searching for their class the moment the two of them got into the academy starting on the first floor and moving up to the second floor steadily. For some reason all the teachers and instructors glared at Naruto viciously…till they saw Hinata glaring back at them with just as much venom while Naruto seemed oblivious. Hinata's glare was the scariest thing in the universe in Naruto's opinion, no contest at all. The two of them finally got to the right class and took their seats just as their teacher came in.

The man smiled at them all and took roll. Before he even finished, Naruto was asleep, his desk partner not far behind him.

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Sarutobi sighed as he picked up his grandson and followed Hiashi Hyuuga who was currently storming through the halls of the academy like a man possessed...Okay, the only reason Sarutobi knew he was upset was because he knew the man well enough to tell. And right then Hiashi was a little pissed that his daughter Hinata was out of his reach. Sarutobi hid a smile with his large brimmed hat.

Hiashi had come to the school demanding to see Hinata. From there he was led to courtyard where she was having lunch with another child, her bento box full of silly looking food.

As he approached her he was stopped by a Chuunin telling them that if he wanted to talk with her he had to be in the presence of the Hokage. He flushed a little at the man's interference.

So after glaring at the Chuunin, whose name was Iruka, he set off for the Hokage tower and demanded to see the Hokage himself. The demand was imperious at best and the ANBU had barely restrained from throttling the man where he stood.

He argued with the Hokage for a while who very kindly reminded him that he had disowned Hinata and therefore she was no longer his daughter. In any form.

He was also informed that her it was adoptive father, whose name was apparently an S-Class secret, who would not allow him to talk with her unless the Hokage was present.

All in all, this pissed off Hiashi Hyuuga beyond his limits of patience. Way beyond. Which meant Fate was happy with herself. The sun was shining brightly for days afterward.

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Hinata nearly giggled when she saw Hiashi come into the courtyard followed by Sarutobi holding Konohamaru. Hiashi seemed a little upset, his legendary calm crumbling bit by bit.

"'Nata! 'Ruto!" Konohamaru called before squirming his way out of Sarutobi's arms and running to them. He giggled and held his hands up to Hinata. (2)

"Hinata," Hiashi spoke coldly.

"Hiashi," Hinata spoke in the same tone. Naruto stifled a snicker at the look of absolute disbelief before Hiashi recovered.

"You will address me as sa-" Hiashi started with authority and anger in his controlled voice.

"Pardon my interruption," Hinata said bitingly, almost bitterly. "But it is not your decision on how I address you. You have done nothing to deserve any respect in my eyes and therefore will not be addressed as sama by me or my brother. You want someone to suck up to you, go find Hanabi." Hinata turned from Hiashi and started to play with Konohamaru a grin on her face.

Hiashi turned and marched stiffly away, his eye twitching. When he was out of hearing distance, Hinata and Naruto shared a look before laughing out loud.

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Four Years Later

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"Alright class, I have your genin team assignments here," Iruka chuckled with evil intent in his eyes. "Team one…" Naruto and Shikamaru were both taking naps, Naruto drooling lightly on the desk top. Hinata and Choji would fill them in on team assignments later. But that didn't mean they weren't going to be teased afterwards.

"Team Seven. Shino Aburame, Ino Yamanaka, and Sasuke Uchiha." Sasuke's eye twitched, Ino cheered (and stuck her tongue out at Sakura) and, if you looked really, really close, you could see Shino twitching too. They, other than Ino, were not very happy.

"Team Eight. Sakura Haruno, Kiba Inuzuka, and Choji Akimichi." Sakura sighed, Kiba looked like he wanted to bang his head on the table, and Choji just continued eating his chips. This one might not work too well...

"Team Ten. Shikamaru Nara, Hinata Uzumaki, and Naruto Uzumaki." Hinata smiled slightly while Shikamaru and Naruto both snored at the same time. She hid a grin behind her hand and locked eyes with Kiba, smirking at him coyly.

"You're jounin sensei will be here after lunch." Iruka dismissed the class and walked outside to the training area. Hinata grabbed her bento and pulled Naruto and Shikamaru up by their collars and shook them.

"Wake up, you two. Time for lunch and I think we need to get to know one another better. And I want to waylay team eight and seven. They need to learn about each other, too."

Naruto growled. "I don't care..."

Hinata smacked him upside the head with a sisterly swat."Come on, kit, get going. Kiba, Choji, Sakura, would you like to eat lunch with us?"

Kiba and Choji jumped on the chance to eat Hinata's cooking (apparently she was very good for her age...And with the help of Arashi of course) and Kiba dragged Sakura along behind them as she sighed.

Hinata looked at the remaining three friends, though calling the stoic Shino, the rude Ino, and emo Sasuke friends was a bit much, and motioned them over with a smile. She had packed enough food to feed a small army for today, her bento boxes nearly double their usual amount.

"Hinata! What cha' got for us today, huh?" Kiba leaned over the boxes, his nose twitching eagerly.

Choji nodded and inhaled the scent of good food, his mouth watering. It might not be up to Akimichi standards, but it was damn close! Shino and Sasuke sat close enough to get some food, but not near enough to actually be engaged in conversation. Of course, Sakura and Ino commendered either side of the Uchiha who tried unsuccessfully to move away. Shikamaru took his place under a tree in the shade, a bento half empty already.

Naruto was of course stirring up trouble with someone...Hinata shook her head.

"Stupid dog-breath!"

"Stupid dobe!"

"Dog-breath!"

"Dobe!"

"Dog-breath!"

"DOBE!"

"I don't know if it's worse when you argue with Kyuu and Hito-kun or with Kiba."

"But Hinaaaataaaaaaaaaaaaaa! He started it! Tell her, Sasuke-teme!"

"Don't call me 'teme', dobe."

"TEME!"

"Hn."

"OW!" Naruto had two lumps gracing his head thanks to Ino and Sakura, both of which were fuming and yelling at the blond. Hinata saw her Nii-san flinch at the hateful words but watched as he smiled with "the-light-was-on-but-no-one-was-home" look used to keep burglars away...Empty but convincing if you didn't look too hard or too long. His eyes darted to her and away almost guiltily.

When the two girls ran after Sasuke, as he had escaped while they were distracted, Naruto turned his conversation to Shino and Choji, drawing them in regardless of their usual somber or noisy stuffing respectively. They covered topics from simple foods that the kikaichu could eat to energy and chakra and how it was utilized by both young shinobi. And it appeared that Naruto had been playing with one of the bugs freaking out Choji and Kiba a bit. Hinata smiled kindly and just chatted with Shikamaru, learning about his jutsus was just too fascinating.

Naruto excused himself from his sister and teammates, running off quickly and Hinata sighed. Her Nii-san's crush on the pink-haired koniochi was rapidly becoming a sore point with them. She shrugged. He would not listen and he needed to know...Not that she wouldn't slap that little witch when she broke his heart, but Hinata really couldn't do anything yet.

Kiba and Shikamaru laid their heads in her lap for a nap, their time still good for close to an hour or so. Choji joined them, taking a spot near them with his head resting on Shikamaru's stomach. Hinata smiled at them and laid her head against the trunk at her back, the shadows of the tree cool in the near summer heat. She already liked them as friends, and now at least one of the boys was to become part of her team. Shino sat near her, his back to the same tree and basked in the warmth of the simple koniochi and the day.

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Naruto felt his stomach cramp with a sick realization: Sakura would never see him with Sasuke bright in her eyes. Hell, she probably wouldn't see him with or without the Uchiha anyway. What was wrong with him, then? Was he that different to everyone? Or was some unimaginable thing wrong with him? He sighed and trudged away, his henge flickering off when Sakura couldn't see him anymore.

He made his way slowly to the academy and watched fondly as his sister slept with most of their graduating friends under a large oak. How could one girl bring such different people together, he would never know. He only wish he had half her talent...

Looking to the sky, he had about thirty minutes before he had to wake them up. Being silent and careful, he jumped into the tree and sat in a fork, watching his friends sleep quietly, calmly. Maybe one day he could sleep like that too, just with someone he loved and who loved him back.

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with the jounin instructors

Kurenai watched Asuma and Kakashi as they bickered and fought like little kids. Sighing, she brought them back on topic: the genin teams. "I still can't believe they split the Ino-Shika-Cho trio."

Asuma took the bait quickly. "I know! I mean, their parents are waiting for them to come home with that kind of news, not that they are on all different teams!"

"I just can't believe Naruto passed. He slept the entire time he was in class...I asked the Chunin instructor Iruka-sensei. And now one of us have to cater to the brat. He's caused so much trouble with his antics." Kakashi looked like he was half angry with the mask covering most of his face. He closed his orange book and sighed.

Kurenai shook her head. When a child half their age could hide easily from jounin and chuunin without getting caught...especially after the hokage mountain incident, he wasn't hopeless. "We all had pre-designed teams. I propose a simple idea. Why not teach the entire nine together? They of course would have missions and special treatment for whatever they needed to learn, but then we could work with the students we had aspired to do so since watching them enter the school."

Asuma looked pleased. "I want the Yamanaka, Akimichi, and Nara every second Monday, Wednesday, and Friday and every Saturday. I'll work with my original team everyday that I'm not working with the ISC."

Kakashi might have smiled, but it was hard to tell with the half mask covering his lower facial features. "I want exclusive rights to Uchiha every Saturday and Monday. I'll work with him and an edited team Wednesday and Friday. Every other day free will be for the original genin team."

"I personally want to work with the ex-Hyuuga girl and Aburame. The Inuzuka wouldn't be bad for reconnaissance either. I also like the Haruno girl, she's got potential and I want to work with her. We'll switch off every third Saturday for one day to impart our knowledge on these young minds. On Sunday we'll have a lecture and a practical."

The jounin shook hands and departed to round up their respective teams and then...have a little fun...

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(1) Hinata is the same age as Naruto but was born on December 27th, while Naruto was born on October 10th, so she's younger than him and calls him big brother.

(2) Konohamaru is currently four as Hinata and Naruto are eight.