I don't own Naruto or Negima.
Tri World Adventure
A redheaded teen made her way down the halls of Mahora Academy alongside Shizuna. The older woman had insisted that the teen visit the class, if only for a few days. Saying her former classmates would be glad to see her again. So, with a minimum of grumbling, Uzumaki Kushina, the female guise of Uzumaki Naruto, conceded to visiting her old classmates.
Though most of that grumbling had to do with how her body functioned compared to the original male body. Generating and using chakra, for instance, was a lot harder in a body that wasn't really Naruto's. Pure physical stamina was only an issue in the way it wasn't natural to control. It felt alien to her, though there was a lot of it. Kushina could still go longer than most, but would have nowhere near her male stamina or coordination. It made her feel physically tired all the time, which had its own pros and cons.
Shizuna brought her up to date on her old class. Some new girls had joined, and the teacher had changed from the older Takamichi to a young Englishman by the name of Negi Springfield. Young as in ten years old young. Shizuna assured Kushina that Negi was a sweet boy and didn't let genius status go to his head. Fortunately, Kushina would not actually need to join the class, given her visitor status, but just listening to someone go on about a language she didn't need sounded incredibly boring. Being with friends helped there.
"You in character, Kushina-chan?" Shizuna asked impishly.
"Yes, Shizuna-sensei. Good old, chronically tired Kushina is here," the teen grumbled.
When they reached the classroom, Shizuna knocked politely, and hearing the commotion inside, opened the door slightly to see the class hard at work building something in their class room. Everyone looked stressed, but the class rep, , looked out of her mind with worry. Kushina leaned over and saw the chaos. She blinked a couple times, and looked at Shizuna.
"Did they start a carpentry class or something?"
Shizuna laughed, "No, it looks more like they are putting things together for their Festival class activity. I wonder just what it is they're planning this year."
Kushina shrugged, not really getting why, just understanding that the class was doing it for some reason. She opened the door the rest of the way and announced her presence, "Hey, what're you making?" Even tired, she could be loud.
It was rare to see the dozens of girls making up the class being quiet, but seeing an old friend yelling at them did the trick. For a few moments anyway.
"Kushina! When did you get back? Are you rejoining the class? Is your brother around? How are you doing? Does he have a girlfriend? Where've you been?" A cascade of voices greeted her and she laughed.
"One at a time, ladies, I can't answer if you all ask at once!" Kushina laughed at the response she got. She starting ticking off all the old friends she had made, both as Kushina and as Naruto. The Library Trio looked like they were still doing well together. The class fighters seemed interested in the questions, though they were more interested in Naruto as a sparring partner, compared to the boy crazy girls of the class. And Konoka was her usual smiling self, with Asuna looking a bit disgruntled with the whole situation. Kushina then noticed the young teacher holding pieces of wood and a paper bag. "Is this the famous Springfield-sensei I've heard about?"
The young teacher scrambled to set items down to greet the two visitors properly. Once he was presentable, he bowed in greeting to Shizuna and Kushina, "Hello Shizuna-san, and Kushina-san, wasn't it?"
Kushina grinned and nodded. "Yep, Uzumaki Kushina! Nice to meet you Springfield-sensei."
"So respectful, Kushina-chan," chuckled Shizuna. "You don't need to feel obligated to be so formal due to Naruto-kun's casualness."
Kushina looked at Shizuna and grimaced, "Naruto just has too much energy to deal with stuffiness. I'm lazy enough to pay attention to things like that."
Haruna latched onto Kushina, "How long are you here for this time?"
Kushina smiled, "Just a few days, but I expect all of you to take care of my brother when he gets here to help with the festival for a week."
Many squeals were unleased on unsuspecting ears. Kushina rubbed hers and looked over the class, "What was that about?"
Setsuna, the usually cool headed swordswoman, answered, "There are rumors going around that Naruto-san has grown since you both were last here." A competitive spark in her eyes told Kushina just what the raven haired girl wanted. Kaede, secretly a ninja, had a similar look, though in her smile, since her eyes were almost perpetually near-closed.
"Yes he has, and yes, I'm sure that he'd love to spar with you when he gets here. Especially since he inherited something nice from our parents."
Setsuna raised an eyebrow, "You two found out about your parents?"
Kushina grinned, "Yep. We pretty much look like them with whisker marks. I'm even named after Mom. Both died saving us the day we were born. Still, it is good to know about them."
Setsuna smiled slightly, before getting quietly teased by Konoka, which prompted blushing and stammered denials. That got a few looks and laughs, but the other fighters' eyes also gleamed competitively. Kushina knew that she'd be challenged when she got back as a guy, though seeing Setsuna actually talking with Konoka made her happy. 'Should be a fun few days,' she thought.
Kaede walked, "So has Naruto-dono gotten stronger, Kushina-dono?"
Kushina just smiled, "Yes, he is a lot stronger. Won't be a punching bag this time around."
Kaede's lidded gaze opened slightly, and the lazy grin she usually wore took a slightly predatory grin. "I look forward to it, Kushina-dono."
"Enough about the fighting," chided Yue. The juice drinking teen walked up to Kushina and stared hard. "You've been keeping up in your reading, right?"
Kushina smiled, having expected that. "Yup! It even let us know how Naruto got his name!"
Yue raised an eyebrow. "Which book?"
Kushina grabbed the book from the bag she'd used when she was here last, "Tale of the Gutsy Shinobi. Written by Er-ah-Jiraiya-san." She handed it over to Yue.
Some of the class gathered around to look at the current attraction and looked at the simple looking book. "What's it about?" asked one of the newer girls. Kushina didn't think she knew the girl's name anyway. She looked a bit like Ku Fei, though not as tan.
"It is the story of a shinobi who didn't give up on a dream to break the cycle of hatred," Kushina said with a soft smile. "Naruto was named after the hero."
Three of the fighters struggled not to laugh while other girls giggled at the news. As Naruto, she'd made no secret about his dreams and goals. It made for a funny karmic joke that the boy who dreamed of being a hero was named for one.
"Yeah, yeah, go ahead and laugh, we did too when we realized. Though it did come in handy when we had a… disagreement with one of Jiriaya-san's old students. Needed to remind him about the story." Kushina felt as tired emotionally as she did physically for a moment.
Then her old class rallied and dragged her into their madness, and soon she was listening to wild tales and helping build a haunted house. She really wondered why anyone would build a house meant for ghosts. Oh well, she already knew they were crazy.
Kushina got more into the haunted house as the class explained what it was, and given that it was pretty much a fear-prank setup, she had lots of input on how to get maximum result from a minimum of effort. Shikamaru might be a strategy genius, but Kushina was a pranking genius. Little tweaks, like a recording of the entire class cahnting. moaning, and screaming getting played through the whole thing. Good scary ambiance.
Though now she was leaning against a bookshelf, reading a book while the Library Expedition Club read their own literary choices. One of the pros of being tired physically was that her mind was still as sharp, and without the sheer need to burn energy as Naruto, focusing and learning were a lot easier. This didn't make her automatically smart, but it helped the thinking process when you could actually focus on one thing outside of fighting and eating.
And it felt good to just sit around and read with friends. Sometimes someone shared what they read with the others, and they'd talk about it. When she first started out as Kushina, this was the biggest plus of visiting the Academy. Then she figured out the seal that Jiraiya had used and was able to switch back and forth, which while painful, was worth it. And Naruto could make friends with some of the class fighters. He hadn't been able to use any jutsu, had to maintain cover or Jiraiya would have punished him somehow, but his taijutsu improved from the repeated sparring.
'Of course,' Kushina mused, 'This time I'll be able to keep up with people who actually got trained to fight as children. No offence to Iruka-sensei, but the Academy didn't really do a good job with me.' She couldn't wait to see how she stacked up against her old sparring partners. She also wondered about the weird chakras she'd been picking up. Sage training helped open that awareness, and despite the problems this body had, it could feel something in class. Getting a better read on that was something else she looked forward to when she went back to being a he.
She finished the page she'd been reading. She preferred books that didn't require a knowledge of history to make sense, since Kushina barely knew the history of her own world, let alone this one. Her current reading material dealt with a talking lizard trying to solve a murder in a ghost town, with an odd collection of talking animals both helping and hindering the detective. Fun and interesting, it made Kushina wonder how Gamakichi would fit in there.
Glancing up at her friends, Kushina smiled at how good a quiet moment with friends felt. Yue sipped some new odd flavored drink while reading a book with magic in the title, and Haruna studying a manga for her own artistic goals. Kushina looked forward to seeing what her friend came up with. And Nodoka seemed to be reading a romantic book, also with magic in the title. Given what Kushina had seen, magic seemed a lot like ninjutsu or fuinjutsu, though she did find it strange the idea of using a stick to do things that handsigns and chakra control could take of.
Still, it was a good day to spend with friends.
Three days passed quickly, and Kushina gave a smile as she said good-bye. It had been good to see them like this before she came back as Naruto and started his mission. Not that Naruto enjoyed being Kushina, given the constant fatigue and weird physical quirks, but spending time with friends was worth that frustration.
The girls threw a party for her as she left. Small but fun, the farewell left a warm feeling of contentment in the temporary girl's chest. She smiled wide and waved as energetically as she could manage. "Remember to take care of my brother when he gets here! He'll be waiting for sparring at the usual place!" The last comment directed at the grinning fighters, and then she walked away with Shizuna.
"Not so bad, was it?" Shizuna asked.
"No", Kushina whispered. "Definitely worth it."
They walked in silence back to Shizuna's apartment. Kushina went right to the guest room and changed bodies and clothes, coming back as Naruto with black jeans and a navy blue shirt with an orange spiral on the front. "This feels so much better." He stretched and moved around, relishing the natural feel of his real body.
Shizuna smiled as she watched him bounce around the apartment. "So, I'm guessing you'll be getting some sparring in tomorrow?"
Naruto grinned, "Oh yes. Be good to see how far I've come. All that training and fighting should put me in good standing here."
Shizuna giggled, "Don't be surprised if they can keep up with you. They haven't been lazy in training you know."
Naruto's grin took a feral edge, "Good."
The next day, Naruto checked in with the Principal, and the old man gave him the time and place the festival security meeting would be held at. Naruto acted with his best manners, trying to be professional about all this. With that done, Naruto wondered over to the clearing in the forest on campus, waiting for his friends among the class fighters to arrive from class.
After stretching and bouncing around a bit, Naruto, feeling a bit bored, decided to practice Sage Mode a bit. Seated with his back to tree and his mother's blades in their disguised case across his lap, Naruto felt the swirl of energy around him. He wondered at the different taste of the natural energy in this place. In some ways it felt more refined than what he felt in the Elemental Nations, or even on Mount Myouboku. He could feel a rhythm in the energy, a quiet but steady beat he hadn't noticed until he dipped himself in it.
He stretched out with his newly enhanced senses and quickly got confused by what he felt. He knew from repeated and painful, "educational" reminders that chakra was in everything, but here chakra felt different. Focused in a few, vague in others, and no one seemed to have balanced energies either. Natural energy seemed to pool in quite a few people around the campus. It wasn't like Sage Mode, no balance of energies like he felt himself or from the toads, but like canteens really. He'd need to get closer to really see what was going on, but he quickly realized that he wasn't as strong as he thought he'd be in comparison.
He could feel multiple, familiar chakras coming towards him. He smiled, and studied them a bit more. They weren't moving fast, but they felt strong. And the energy coming off of Setsuna wasn't the normal ki he felt from the others. He could see that this would be a fun match, even if he couldn't go all out. Didn't want to destroy sections of the forest after all.
He got ready by bleeding off Sage Mode with a few frog katas and some Kage Bushin as a warm up.
Negi Springfield followed his students as three of them walked to a match with an old friend of theirs, that apparently had been hired to help guard the festival. His description reminded him a bit of Kotaro, short, brash, and a bit animalistic. It might be interesting to see how they'd all get along. The group heading to the forest clearing had the Setsuna, Kaede, and Ku Fei as the fighters looking forward to a good spar, along with Konoka, Asuna, Asakura, the Library Trio, Negi, and Kotaro as curious spectators.
Or, more accurately in the case of Kotaro, a young pup looking for a fight.
They reached the clearing to find a young man with bright gold blonde hair sitting with his back against a tree, and what looked like an instrument case sitting in his lap. His wore a black t-shirt and blue jeans. The whisker marks the young teacher got used to seeing on Kushina were there, though her brother radiated strength in a way the sister had fatigue.
The young man opened blue eyes and smiled at them all. "Good to see you all again. Kushina enjoyed her vacation here." He held the case in one hand and pushed himself off the tree into a standing position. When he stood his full height, everyone seemed shocked at how tall he was. Given that everyone kept talking that he was about Negi's size, the teacher guessed that could be understandable. The young man looked to about Kaede's height, maybe even a little taller.
"Oh, it seems the reports of your growth were downplayed, Naruto-dono," drawled Kaede. Negi wondered when she changed from her uniform to the brown ninja outfit she wore now. The tall girl smiled wide, "I no longer have the height and reach advantage."
Naruto grinned back at her, "Yep, this will go differently than the last time I was here. Lots of training and experience since the last time we sparred." He set the case down and lifted his hands in a fighting stance. "Same as before?"
Ku Fei bounced in front of him, taking her own stance, "Yes, I will start! Let's have a good fight, aru." Negi noticed how both fighters wore identical grins.
Negi and company watched as the two observed each others movements before bursting into motion. Both were showing high speed, and it grew difficult for Negi and others less accustomed to battle to keep up. What the young teacher could follow showed two fighters with rough yet powerful moves. Blocks, counterattacks, and counters to the counterattacks chained together as they moved around the clearing, forcing the others back to the tree line to stay out of their way.
Haruna grinned, "This is better than any kung fu movie I've ever seen!"
Yue finished a pull on her oddly flavored juice and deadpanned, "It being real helps, I'm sure."
Negi spotted a moment where Ku Fei grabbed Naruto's wrist and tried to throw him over her shoulder. Naruto responded by somehow rooting himself to the ground and fought Ku Fei with brute force for that arm. Naruto had size but Ku Fei seemed able to keep up in the strength department, especially with the added leverage. It came down to their feet, with Naruto rasing one foot, with the other firmly planted on the ground, and launch a side kick while the Chinese girl was distracted with the tug of war on his arm. She went with the blow, and rolled to her feet.
"You have gotten much better. Your balance really improved! I thought I had you there," she said with a grin. She looked fine, though her breathing was a touch heavier than it had been on the walk over.
Her opponent looked just as fresh as when they walked in. "Got some really good training for that, among other things."
Ku Fei grinned, "But you still don't know how to use ki properly, aru!" She blurred behind him and threw a fast punch that seemed to drag the wind with it. When her fist reached Naruto, he blurred as well, though he went about ten feet forward from where he previously stood. Wind exploded from the missed punch, rustling Naruto's clothes.
"I told you I use chakra, not ki, dattebayo! Though I think I'm starting to get a handle on after feeling yours." He put his hands together with pointer and middle fingers extended and the left hand on top of the right. Negi couldn't feel anything, but the Ki users all seemed shocked by something. Naruto lowered his hands and grinned, "Lets see how this goes."
And both fighters vanished again. They reappeared midway between them and the fight became more of a blur than before. Finally they parted again. Ku Fei looked a lot more tired now, sweating and breathing heavily. Naruto had some sweat and his breathing slowed quickly.
He grinned, "Well, that was different. Guess ki and chakra have more in common than I thought. What do you think?"
Ku Fei, still looking like she'd had a rough workout, said, "Impressive speed and strength like that, but you use ki strangely. I could barely anticipate what you were going to do. And you still don't know how to really use ki."
Naruto smiled and laughed, "I'd say that was good for a first attempt. Ki seems great for taijutsu, though limited. Still, something to work on. Thanks, Ku Fei."
Ku Fei returned the smile, "You really have grown. Only got a few hits on you, instead of you just getting up from everything, aru." She looked over to the group, "Kaede, you're up."
The tall ninja strolled into the clearing and took her position six feet from Naruto.
He tilted his head in question, "Rules?"
She glanced over at the crowd, then back at Naruto, "No weapons, and only three Kage Bushin at a time."
He looked surprised by that. "They know about those?"
She smiled and nodded.
He shrugged and grinned, "Let's go wild."
Both ninjas made signs with their hands and three copies appeared behind the originals. The crowd got more interested as the teams of four clashed in the clearing. Naruto's team seemed to used each other's bodies as vaults and pivot points to make changes even in the air, making it very hard to track, even though he didn't blur with speed as much. Kaede, in contrast, had a team of reeds that dodged and bent around attacks, snapping quick attacks into the chaos.
One of Naruto's clones fell first, a solid hit to the chest dispelled the clone in a puff of smoke. One of the remaining three made the cross symbol with his hands and a new one appeared. The rest of the combatants didn't stop fighting and quickly three more clones, two more of Naruto's and one of Kaede's got taken out. The lost clones got replaced and the furious hand to hand continued in a growing cloud of smoke. Negi found it hard to track the action in the cloud, just sounds of rustling clothing, flesh contacting flesh, and pops of clones disappearing followed by the sounds of new clones being made.
The action came to an end when two bodies flew out of the cloud and landed heavily on the grass. Naruto sprawled on top of Kaede with her arm firmly tucked behind her. She tried to escape, but Naruto's position made that difficult. After struggling for a minute and seeing her clones get taken down by kamikaze tactics from Naruto's clone, she conceded the match.
Kaede inquired, "How'd you know I was the original?"
Naruto smiled, "I could sense more chakra in you."
"I use ki, you use chakra."
Letting her arm go, Naruto grinned wider, "I'm thinking that ki is a form of chakra, just mixed differently than normal. I'm getting a feel for it. Sensing energies is something else I got trained in recently. One of the reasons I got hired for this festival."
After rolling onto her back, Kaede whispered, "Oh, not because you could be in a hundred places at once?"
Naruto grinned back and offered a hand up, "Oh, I could be a thousand places at once these days, but if I needed to, I could sense the energies of the entire campus. So yeah, I make for good security either way."
The young woman laughed, "You continue to surprise Naruto-dono."
"I am known as the most surprising ninja back home, so it makes sense."
The onlookers started approaching the pair. Kotaro asked excitedly, bouncing from on the balls of his feet, "So you know Kage Bushin like ninja-nee-chan? Why only three? I know she could make more than that."
Naruto shrugged, "I do know Kage Bushin, and I'm the one who helped her learn it. As for why only three, you'd need to ask Kaede-chan."
Said kunoichi smiled, "Three was enough to see how good Naruto-dono has become, and if we went all out, he could easily outnumber me."
Kotaro stared at the blond teen with wide eyes, "How many can you make?"
Naruto shrugged, "First night I learned it, I could make a hundred of them. Got better since then." He gave a small smirk that seemed to rile Kotaro up.
"I'll believe it when I see it," the younger boy scoffed.
Naruto grinned and looked at Kaede, "Can I?"
She looked back and forth between them and nodded. "Show them what you can do, Naruto-dono."
Naruto beamed at that and made the now familiar cross finger hand sign and shouted, "Tajuu Kage Bushin no Jutsu!"
The clearing and the forest around it became filled with white smoke that dissipated to show many clones of Naruto grinning at everyone. Some had arms crossed, some were twirling knives in their hands, and one particularly vulgar one had turned around, leaned forward, and started smacking his own backside. He got dispelled by a punch to the head from a clone next to him.
Naruto shook his head, "Always a jerk, group this big."
Kotaro just stared at the mass of blond ninja, with mouth agape.