First off, two things.

This took way too long... again... but I was doing something extremely important so I couldn't devote time to this or most of my other stories for that matter.

for that extremely important thing... Well, a friend of mine pointed out that my writing style could use some work. So, me being me. I decided to do this in an overly complicated and convoluted way.

By starting another story of course.

Now I know many of you might bitch that I haven't really completed any of my other stories yet, and I agree, I'm the lowest scum of the universe for doing this to my poor, poor fans...

But yeah... Annnyhoo, I have a new story in the works that uses this new-ish writing style. I call it Hazard mark II and it's just as in yo face as the previous version, except with a few slight changes.

Chief among them is pacing and the length of chapters.

Now this other story I'm working on is a secret and I won't be posting it till it's well and truly DONE. Then post it weekly over the course of it's life, so far I'm at chapter 12 and working hard to bring it to you ASAP.

But again, this wasn't JUST to start up another story, it was to practice a new more faster paced writing style where I don't go on and on about the subject matter in a convoluted way. I mean look at this. 19 chapters in and around 130K words. Which, to put that into perspective, the first three Harry Potter books clocked in at around 75K, 85K and 107K words in numerical order. My story is ALMOST as long as the first two books COMBINED. And I haven't even made it past the chunin exam prelims yet.

You see why I need to speed things up a bit and shortening the chapters somewhat will allow me to work on more of my stories at a time.

So with only a small bit of further ado, chapter 19 of SotE

Fic o' the day: Narupony by Ethereal Trixster Because I'm a bastard like that. Basically, Naruto dies. This is normal, happens all the time in rebirth fics. Cept this time Death isn't so much a Pale Rider as the Pale Ride. Grim Reaper Pony tells Naruto he's dead, this wasn't supposed to happen but shit happens yo. So Naruto now has a chance to live the life he never had yadda yadda yadda. Basically Naruto's amnesiac, he wont remember a damn thing about his previous life and Kyubi is stuck inside of Ponyto for the next lifetime and he's unable to tell the blonde idiot about it. Lulz was had when I read that.

Oh, and before anything else. To put this plainly Bronies, I do not like MLP. I will use your reaction images, I will look at your porn, I will even (love and) tolerate the shit out of you in civilized conversation but do not under any circumstances start ANYTHING here that relates to ponies. Period. Last time I included something pony related in a one shot story I wrote awhile back offsite... well let's put it this way. Imagine the bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima.

Now Imagine it being made entirely of troll faces.

Basically that. And nothing more will be said of that experience.

Aside from that, even though I despise the MLP fanbase and am not a big fan of the show, I've read five or so chapters in and it proves at the very least amusing. Take of that what you will.

Song/vid of the day: [SFM] Kill The Sound by COBMetalHead Since FF is being a dick with their Anti-plagiary/glitch hunt/anti-copy measures you'll just have to type these out for now.

No words of the day today, sorry.

-ooo-

"speech"

'Thoughts'

"Kyubi speech"

'Kyubi thoughts'

-ooo-

Chapter 19: Round one, FIGHT!

The next two days went by quickly for Team 7 as the three Genin focused on scoping out their competition.

Out of the 8 teams that made it through the second exam, Naruto and company had rated them like so.

Team 8: Kiba, Shino and Hinata. Threat level: Low- mid. Don't Hurt Hinata too bad and Naruto wont have to fuck you up.

Team 9/Guy: Neji, Tenten and Lee. Threat level: Mid-High. Like Hinata, Tenten is a no touchy. Neji needs a desperate ass beating and Lee is not one to be trifled with.

Team 10: Shikamaru, Ino and Choji. Threat level: Low. Ino's a fangirl, Shikamaru is a lazy bastard and Choji is a fatass -Don't tell him I said that... please- Easy pickings.

Team Sand: Kankuro, Temari and Gaara. Threat level: High-don't fuck with. Temari, like the other girls Naruto's sank his claws into, Kankuro may look like a geisha but seems like a credible threat. Gaara... STAY. THE FUCK. AWAY.

Team Kabuto: Kabuto... two other forgettable bastards. Threat level: Low-? Kabuto's the real threat, the other two are a write off that'll probably only be good for meat shields.

Team Sound: Kin, Zaku, Dosu. Threat level: Mid. Both the guys are going to die... painfully. Kin...

Naruto's blood boiled as he put a protective hand around the sound girl who was standing next to his team. This didn't go unnoticed by the other genin who noticed several... bruises on the girls face and arms. While the other two sound nin looked like they had been roughed up rather harshly but nothing that would cripple them in any noticeable way. The blonde Jinchuriki could still feel the ache in his knuckles after giving Dosu that black eye and the burning rage of why he had to do so...

-The day before-

Naruto giggled. Not chuckled, snickered or laughed, the blonde maverick let out an uncharacteristic set of bubbly snorts that would have been rather unbecoming of one of his masculinity if said male hadn't been holding a damning piece of blackmail in his hand.

A picture of Karin, laying half naked on top of a certain sleeping Uchiha... both of them in a rather... embarrassing and erotic pose... courtesy of you friendly neighborhood Uzumaki.

Naruto giggled again as he made his way to Anko's room, this sort of thing would have the kinky special Jonin rolling on the floor.

That's when he heard it.

The meaty contact of flesh on flesh. Something was definitely wrong. It wasn't a punch as most would think when hearing that kind of impact though the groan of pain that accompanied that noise did put Naruto on edge.

Sealing away the picture, Naruto crept silently down the hallway to a far out of the way room that he had discovered was the room for the Sound team just a few hours earlier. Expanding his senses into the room behind the closed door Naruto picked up several disturbing things.

The smell of blood and fear along with anger and the distinct feeling of violence. His sharp ears picked up several grunts of exertion and the sound of a woman trying and failing to hold in her tears. The conversation that the three voices within were having during all this sent red flags blaring.

"You stupid bitch! We almost had them, but you had to go and get your ass kicked by the pink haired loser. " Another slap resounded.

"Zaku is correct." Dosu said in a strange strained voice. "If you hadn't lowered your guard to that woman, we would have completed our mission. Now that Sasuke is here in the tower it is all but impossible to complete our objective, this is your punishment.

Kin sobbed quietly.

"Hey, Dosu. Hurry up I want a tur- hrk." Whatever he was about to say was cut off as the air in his throat was choked out of him.

"What was that Zaku I didn't hear-" Dosu looked up to see angry red eyes with dagger thin pupils inches from his face. "Ahh! Who the hell are yo-" Blackness covered his vision before he could say another word, a sharp pain in the back of his head alerting him to a blunt strike, though he was already unconscious by the time that registered.

"Bastards." Naruto spat on the scum at his feet. The blonde turned to the... girl, who was tied down to the bed Dosu had just been occupying. Kin's face was bloody, with a swollen eye and her lip was busted in several places, all along her arms were bruises where it looked like she had been grabbed and around her wrists where she had fought her restraints.

She was also completely naked. That only confirmed and angered Naruto further as he kicked Dosu in the face, breaking the man's nose. Hopefully he'd choke on his own blood, maybe that would atone for this travesty.

Naruto cut the girls restraints and helped her sit up. "Shh, it's gonna be alright." She immediately grabbed the blonde's shirt and sobbed into his clothing. Naruto grimaced, after Sakura's near encounter with much the same, having to see the act in progress and it's inevitable aftermath was much much worse and it only sent his blood boiling more. As soon as he got another crack at these guys, they were going to die... but not right now. No, now he had to help Kin out of here. Enemy or not, no one deserved this.

"W-wait..." Naruto blinked and looked down at the girl in his arms, even though she was only a few inches shorter than he was, she seemed absolutely tiny right now, huddled into his chest. "P-please, I don't... I don't want to feel like this." She wiggled in his grasp while rubbing her legs together, a pleading in her voice that made the blonde uncomfortable. "Please, help me forget."

Naruto gulped. "Are you asking me what I think you're asking me?" Kin nodded. Naruto swallowed a hard limp in his throat. Put on the spot, the blonde was having a hard time saying no to the girl. Sure, he could come up with a myriad of reasons to deny her. But then he superimposed Sakura's face on kin's and his heart clenched up. He couldn't say no to someone who's eyes seemed so... lost, she was asking him to help her forget the feeling of her rights as a human being violated, callously tossed aside like cheap trash. Anyone would find some reason to take control of their existence and here she was asking of him, begging him, pleading even. Resigned, Naruto nodded, using shunshin to quickly move them to his room and do as was asked. Though he didn't enjoy it, he just couldn't say no to someone who seemed so desperate.

He made sure to honor Kin's wishes and consequently made sure she never forgot about him.

-ooo-

Anko's eyebrows rose as she watched Naruto's actions with Kin from the control room of the tower. Her assistants: Raidō Namiashi and Genma Shiranui sat at the console, gaping somewhat at the blonde's gall.

"Should we do something?" Raidō asked cautiously, glancing over his shoulder at Anko.

"Aside from assaulting another team -which they rightly deserve, mind- he hasn't done anything wrong and there aren't any rules against... fraternizing... as long as nothing important is revealed." Genma shared his companion's hesitation as he eyed the snake mistress. "You're not going to go on a murderous rampage because your boy toy is sleeping with another woman... are you?" Blunt, but so was Anko and she only appreciated bluntness when facing something like-

"Nope." Except when Anko casually dismissed it like an everyday occurrence. Both her stooges stared.

"...Why?" Was the general question between them.

"Because." Anko turned her nose up at them. "I know how to share and my husband already has several other woman in his little harem." Anko let out an evil and slightly perverted ufufufufuu that made both men pale several shades of white. Anko walked off, still laughing as the two special Jonin leaned in close together.

"Did she say husband." Genma whispered conspiratorially.

"What? You didn't know?" Raidō whispered back.

"When did she say she was married, I thought that was a joke."

"She was married to the Uzumaki kid when he was seven. It was a political maneuver to protect the kid."

"Ugh, politics." Genma's face curled up in disgust. "A necessary evil I guess... and Anko actually agreed to it?"

Raidō nodded "From what I can tell it was a mutual thing. And don't tell anyone I know this, but she's already slept with Uzumaki."

Genma blinked. "What? Really? How did you find out?"

"We got her drunk a while back and she spilled her guts about it to Kurenai. Had the Ice Queen's face as red as her eyes."

Genma nearly choked on his senbon. "She did what!?" The man blinked. "Wait, if the kid could satisfy Anko..." Genma stared at the screen where Naruto and Kin disappeared into Naruto's room. "Well damn, I kinda feel sorry for that sound girl now."

Raidō Nodded sagely "She had a limp for a couple days and a very, very satisfied smile on her face for the longest time. She was also a bit more frisky in her torture sessions, poor bastards..."

"May the log have mercy on their souls." Genma intoned.

"Amen." Raidō agreed.

-Present-

"Ahem."

Naruto and the rest of the gathered genin turned as one to see the Hokage step up onto the dais along the back wall of the room facing them.

And then went into a twenty minute long speech that has no real importance for anything but padding out an otherwise boring topic of the basis for the Chunin exams. Chunin exam's are a substitute for war. See how easy that was? Moving on.

A sickly looking Ninja stepped forward to speak. "My name *Cough* is Hayate Gekkō and I will be the proctor *Cough* for the preliminaries."

'Is this guy contagious?' Was the gist of what most of the genin were thinking, several of them leaned away from the coughing and sickly looking special Jonin.

"Preliminaries?" Kiba's voice rose up, sounding rather incredulous. "Then what the heck was that out there?" The Inuzuka threw a thumb over his shoulder at the doors behind him and presumably the forest beyond.

This time the Hokage spoke up. "The Chunin exams are held to determine the best of the best of our Genin" Hiruzen lit his pipe and took a small drag on it. "These select few are then graded by their performance by a group of lords and peers. Ideally it is your own village who has the final say if you get promoted or not, the Chunin exam is merely a stage with which you can show off your potential, as well as show that your village is a good place to do business, as opposed to those that would otherwise be... adverse to a clients time and money."

"So we're basically grandstanding to make our village look good?" Kiba again.

"Indeed." The Hokage nodded to Hayato to continue his explanation.

"And by the same *Cough* reasoning." Hayate motioned to the gathered crowd. "Those that participate *Cough* Must be of a certain quality and finite *Cough* amount. There is only so much time *Cough* in the day after all."

Kankuro sneered. "So we're getting weeded down to make time for a bunch of rich bigwigs?"

"Money is Money." Hayate deadpanned. "And Ninja villages *Cough* need an income. Always remember that *Cough*

"Oh don't worry." Kankuro muttered bitterly. "We're well aware."

If Hayate heard that he chose to ignore it. "Very well then." The special Jonin's gaze rose to a certain section of wall, the genin's eyes followed to find a small TV screen. "Since full teams are no longer *Cough* required to proceed, you may all choose *Cough* to continue or leave at your leisure, I will give you time *Cough* to back out before we proceed."

A certain white haired medic gave the entire group a once over before his eyes met another certain Sound Jonin sensei. In those eyes a small bit of goading could be found, as if saying "Show off a little." Kabuto adjusted his glasses 'Interesting, my lord' For a moment the medic's eyes turned sinister before they disappeared in the glint of his glasses.

Orochimaru, disguised as the Sound Jonin smirked knowingly. 'That's right Kabuto-kun, continue my little experiment, I'd like to see what a few of these children can actually do.' His eyes roved the crowd, picking out Naruto and Sasuke in short order. 'Especially those two ufufufufu.' His attention briefly found Kin and Karin, his wayward servants before writing them off as inconsequential. Neither knew enough of the plan to do anything more than tip off the fact that Sound was planning an invasion and the Snake wouldn't have put it past the old monkey to already know about that little fact, or at least assume that was the case regardless.

Down in the arena all of the gathered genin stood resolute, if a bit tired for a few cases.

Hayate looked over the assembly and nodded. "Very well, seeing as none of you are forfeiting." A dull racking sound like that of a slot machine started up. A quick glance confirmed that the TV on the wall was cycling through the names of the combatants at a fast pace. Slowly, the names came to a stop-

Sasuke Uchiha VS Dosu Kinuta

"Hm." Hayate turned to the assembled Genin. "All but those called for *cough* move to the upper viewing area."

'Seems luck is on my side.' Dosu mused, as the other genin walked past him. 'I have another chance at the Uchiha's head after all.'

Sasuke glared at the mummy man. 'Sakura said he and his team-' Sasuke glanced over at kin who was still clutching Naruto tightly. 'Correction, make that him and his spiky haired teammate are out for my blood. Kin mentioned he has sound based powers that can affect the inner ear and by extension my balance. Judging by that shiny new gauntlet on his arm he had a spare... whatever that is. Better play this by ear then and keep my distance.'

Sasuke's eyes flashed to the Sharingan, visually feeling up his opponent as he prepared for him to make so much as twitch of movement, though a slight twinge of pain went through his shoulder from the activation of his dojutsu. He quickly realized it was the curse mark trying to strong arm it's way into his mind and squashed the attempt like the irritating bug that it was, leaving the flesh around the sealed mark throbbing and red.

Orochimaru up in the stands watched in amusement. 'A basic containment seal with a lock keyed to emotion? How cute. But how long can you fight your want for power Sasuke? How long until you come to me for the strength I can easily give you?' The snake Sanin smirked as his subordinate made his move.

Dosu started off the fight with a kunai, throwing it towards Sasuke before following behind it, gauntlet leading the charge.

The Sharingan saw through the pathetic attempt at an initiative. With a rough application of chakra to his feet Sasuke shot up to the ceiling of the room. Now upside down he flashed through several handseals, sending a barrage of Phoenix flower fireballs at Dosu.

"You think that paltry flame can hurt me?" Dose growled, raising his melody arm up. "Hidden Art: Echo Bell!" He tapped the side of his melody arm, releasing a ringing noise that grew into a large cone of force that stopped the flames cold.

It however didn't stop the shuriken that were hiding within the flames.

Dosu raised his gauntlet to block the projectiles which bounced harmlessly off his Melody Arm's metal surface. When he lowered his gauntlet his eyes widened as his view was filled by Sasuke's heel.

Sasuke smirked evilly, feeling his foot connect with the mummy man's head.

*poof*

Sasuke grunted as he hit the ground, a log landing next to him. 'So, the enemy knows of the log's greatness? Blessed that it be.' Sasuke rolled to his feet, instinctively raising his arm to block the punch that would have caved in his skull.

"Gotcha." Dosu smirked under his bandages as he flicked his melody arm again.

Almost immediately Sasuke's eyes crossed as the liquid in his inner ear vibrated, causing severe vertigo. A kick from Dosu sent him flying back into a wall, spreading spider web cracks through it.

'Damn, this isn't a fun feeling.' It felt like his insides were spiraling in a washing machine and his guts were set on rinse. It was only thanks to his Sharingan that he was even standing at all, the photographic imaging of the eyes telling his brain that despite it having no sense of balance that yes, you are standing up straight. To keep from having a confusing overlap as his eyes swam, the boy closed his left eye and allowed his right to focus on the enemy. "That's a nice trick." he hawked, spitting out a wad of bile. "But you'll have to do better than that."

"Cheeky brat." The sound nin rushed in for another punch. Sasuke swapped out with the log that Dosu had used, making the other nin smack his hand painfully into the wooden thing's surface. Dosu quickly realized the danger and rolled out of the way of several more fireballs. "Quite the pyro aren't you?" Dosu pointed out using his gauntlet to again clear the small flurry of fire. "Is this the best you have or are you just a one trick pony?"

"Come at me and find out." Sasuke growled, covertly molding lightning release chakra in his hands.

Taking the boast as a challenge the Sound nin rushed forward, completely confident in his hand to hand abilities.

That poor, poor bastard.

Sasuke's Sharingan spun wildly as Dosu closed in. Then, in one of the most brazen and ballsy moves anyone had ever seen, the young Uchiha didn't even try to block the punch. Instead he took the hit with a strained grunt and groaning ribs, his hands latching around the metal gauntlet. "Gotcha." The Uchiha mimicked the mummy's earlier words as a spark traveled down his arm, igniting a blue buzzing aura in the boy's hand.

Somewhere intermixed with that buzzing was the smell of cooking bacon but Dosu was too stunned to move.

Having electricity running through you and a metal gauntlet that could easily be turned into a parabolic radar dish makes for a very, very bad situation as Dosu's arm was literally cooked like a rotisserie chicken. It didn't help that the tazer running through him kept his muscles from moving more than a fraction of what they were capable of.

It was a solid thirty tense seconds before the buzzing stopped and Dosu was able to break free, but by then the damage was done. Dosu clawed the smoking metal off of his arm and found to his horror that his arm was dark and shriveled like a piece of bacon with painful lesions up and down the area that was covered by his gauntlet.

It was an injury that would cripple him but he wouldn't be conscious enough now or ever to realize this.

Regaining some of his advanced motor function with that applied lighting jutsu, Sasuke flipped backwards until he was standing atop the large handseal statue in the back of the room. Sasuke Uchiha was the kind of person who buried his enemies, he wasn't like Naruto who could sweet talk the Shinigami himself if given the incentive. The Sound bastard had tried to kill him and his entire team, he wasn't going to give him a chance to attempt it again.

Seeing a perfect chance to try out a new technique, Sasuke pulled out a pair of fuma shuriken and threw the windmill blades at his opponent, the wires attached to the spinning wheels of death wrapped around Dosu once before the shuriken slammed into the walls behind his opponent. Now standing there, wrapped in wire Dosu struggled in vain as the last loyal Uchiha of Konoha flashed through several handseals, ending on Tora, which also clamped around the wire held in his mouth. "Fire Style: Dragon Flame Jutsu!" Flames erupted around Sasuke, coiling around the wire before being sent down it like the roaring dragon of it's namesake.

The fireball struck Dosu head on. None of the proctors tried to help him as he hadn't forfeited and was still strong enough to be a credible threat to Sasuke, the proctors saw no need to step in and save the Sound nin. The fact that Raidō and Genma might have spread the word of that particular contestants actions towards his teammate the day prior had absolutely nothing to do with it.

Nothing at all.

Let it be known that Konoha respected it's teams and it's teams didn't look kindly on other teams who willingly and maliciously brutalized their own teammates, a fact many would regret as they were mowed down mercilessly by said Konoha ninja.

"The winner is Sasuke Uchiha!" Hayate announced as the medic nin carted Dosu's smoking body away, surprisingly enough the man lived through the attack but his career as a ninja was now unequivocally over.

Sasuke nodded with a quick 'hn' As he made his way up to the upper platform.

"Now for the next match!" Hayate called, the TV in the back scrolled through the remaining names for several moment

*Ding*

"Hinata Hyuuga VS Neji Hyuuga!"

-ooo-

Yes, I made Dosu and Zaku rapists. They also seemed like the type and I personally don't like either of them. I'm not bashing, like I said I don't like doing that. However, I do not have to save their characters if I don't want to. I'm a diabolical bastard like that.

Yes, I mentioned the most venerable and holy Log, bout damn time I did that actually.

And thrice yes, I only pitted Dosu against Sasuke because I wanted to point out that wearing a large metal inverted satellite dish on your arm is a very bad idea for someone who can turn said tool into a microwave oven. If you've ever left a hotdog in the microwave for too long... you get the idea... Bacon flavored arm jerky and such.

So as you can see, the prelims are going to be a tad bit different than last time, obviously. Plus I think a few of the curb stompy battles might actually be a bit more interesting when paired with someone else, make them less curb stompy and give some time to work on my fight scenes, I'm a tad bit rusty.

Speaking of, how was the fight? A bit short I know but I wasn't going for longevity, Sasuke is stronger than Dosu, said sound nin just has an annoying ability that can screw anyone over -no matter how powerful-

Till next time my cute little audience.

-Jutsu-

Hidden Art: Echo Bell

C-Rank.

Using the Melody Arm, the user can produce a cone of sound waves to disrupt anything that uses air as a medium, by this definition fire and lightning jutsu up to low B-rank can be disrupted before being overwhelmed. Solid objects (both thrown and held) are not affected by this in any significant way.

Lightning Style: Heat Burn. Or. Lightning Style: Smells Like Bacon Jutsu (for teh evulz)

C-Rank

Using very specific frequencies of electricity, the user contacts with a metal surface -Preferably armor attached to your opponent- and proceeds to 'cook' your opponent from the inside, out. Contact must be maintained for the entire duration of the jutsu, which can last as long as it takes for significant damage to be done. Use of the Lightning Style: Tazer in tandem with this technique can give significant time to aid in it's usage.