Disclaimer: "While I don't own the rights to Naruto, I somehow obtain the rights to this fanfic, another worldline in the grand spectrum of Naruto! Truly, this is the goal of Stein's Gate!"

Author's Note: Wow, I'm never making promises again about updating times, jfc.

Yeeeaaahhh, these past couple of months have been shit in a lot of ways. Just a lot of bad news and shit going on that I'd rather not go into much detail. Just that it really took on me mentally and it affected my writing. I REALLY picked a shit spot to take an unplanned hiatus, cause god, the final chapter of the invasion battles. Cause one of the other things about being in a shit place is that my perfectionist tendencies REALLY start to act up, and I ultimately end up writing then deleting then writing then deleting again, and so on and so forth. A Stein's Gate disclaimer was picked for that reason; REALLY felt like I was in a loop

I'm REALLY not satisfied with my writing in this chapter, but as I have learned in the past (i.e. in my year long hiatus between chapters 63 and 64), if I do NOTHING, I'll sit on my ass with the chapter until over a year passes by. So... yeah. I wrote something, and god i know I should have done better, but it'll do for now.

I'll shut up for now and get on with the chapter. I hope you all enjoy!


Upon arriving in the Kamui dimension, Obito came face-to-face with the Deva Path. The final Pain glared at him.

"What are you doing-"

"Calling an end to this farce." Obito interrupted, a scowl developing on his face: "Konan and Kisame are dead, and you lost five paths already!" The Deva Path continued to glare at him, but before it could speak again, the Uchiha interrupted: "Pain is your 'moniker' and a motivator of yours, but I did not think you were the type of let it consume you past basic logic. Use common sense; your useless without your Deva Path!"

Pain tightened its hands into fists for a moment, looking downward. It was quiet for a moment before it shook its head: "I… suppose you're correct. Forgive me-"

He was interrupted as another spiraling vortex appeared in the Kamui dimension. Obito's scowl deepened as he clapped his hands together.

"Fire Style: Blast Wave Wild Dance!"

Obito spat out a giant, spiraling vortex of flames up into the sky, aimed at the dimensional opening to Kamui. Naruto, Yugito, and Kakashi appeared from the opening and, immediately, Naruto made a sweeping gesture with his hands.

"Nine-Tails Twister!"

Naruto released a large gust of wind from his hands that rushed into the flames with enough force that they were extinguished. The three shinobi landed safely on the ground of the Kamui dimension, coming face-to-face with Obito and Pain.

"Following us like rats, are you?" Obito hissed, his eyes narrowing on Kakashi's Sharingan: 'Damn you, Kakashi. This mission's failure was your fault!'

"After all the destruction you bastards caused, you don't get to run away so easily." Naruto shouted.

The Deva Path's eyes narrowed, focusing on Kakashi before moving to Yugito, then to Naruto. He shook his head as he held out his hands.

"It is just you three." He noted. "It was a mistake entering this domain. A mistake all three of you will pay with your lives! Shinra Tensei!"

Pain released a strong gravitational force towards the three enemy shinobi. The gravitational force, however, skipped Kakashi's body and slammed into both Yugito and Naruto, sending them back with great force.

"Agh!" Naruto growled out.

'Such force… even after our earlier fight with him and his other bodies.' Yugito bit down on her lip as both she and Naruto continued to fly through the air: 'Just how much chakra does this madman have?'

Pain continued to watch the two jinchūriki fly backwards before briefly turning to Obito: "I trust you can take care of your old colleague. Once you finish him and your Kamui is no longer neutralized, join me in apprehending them."

Before Obito could reply, the Deva Path launched forward, chasing after Naruto and Yugito.

"Naruto! Yugito-san!" Kakashi called out.

"Fire Style: Grand Fireball Jutsu!"

Before the Konoha jōnin could follow the jinchūriki, Obito spat out a massive fireball from his mouth. Kakashi turned his head around and slammed his hands on the ground, causing a mud wall to rise from the ground and intercept the fireball. Upon impact, the fireball created a massive explosion, causing flames to scatter.

Kakashi turned around once more in time to see Obito charging at him, a wooden spear in his hands. Kakashi pulled out a kunai and intercepted the blade of the spear.

"Just die already, Kakashi!" Obito hissed. "For once in your life, stop getting in my way!"

"If this is what it means to 'be in your way', then I'll never move. And you're a fool to think otherwise." Kakashi said, shaking his head as he pushed back against Obito's spear: "You've forgotten about the Will of Fire, or you really learned nothing from Minato-sensei."

The Uchiha grit his teeth in response: "Spare me the holier-than-thou bullshit, Kakashi. No 'will' is going to give you the strength to fight me back. You've been out of your leave this entire time!"

Before Kakashi could respond, Obito's spear finally overpowered Kakashi, causing him to drop his kunai. Obito punctured Kakashi's heart, causing his body to go limp before dissipating into stray lightning bolts.

A scowl developed on Obito's face as he jumped back, avoiding the bolts. He then turned around to see Kakashi, the Raikiri active in his right hand. He tried to impale the Uchiha, but he leaped backwards, avoiding the attack.

"You are grossly out of your league here, Kakashi. You weren't brought along to assist in this fight against Akatsuki; you're here to counter my Kamui. That's all." Obito hissed.

"Suppose that means I'm still here doing my job, then." Kakashi replied, the lightning on his hands still remaining: "And I'll keep doing it until the end!"

With another shout, Kakashi charged forward again.


The Deva Path continued to rush after Naruto and Yugito, who were still flying through the air after his Shinra Tensei. Upon having placed enough distance between himself and Obito and Kakashi, Pain clapped his hands.

"Earth Style: Mobile Core!"

The ground of the Kamui dimension rose-upwards, forming multiple rock formations and walls. Two walls rose up behind Naruto and Yugito, causing them both to collide with the stone. Both jinchūriki growled in pain and response, with both coughing up blood in response.

Pain then made a series of hand signs, which caused black rods to form from the rock wall, attempting to puncture the jinchūrikis' backs. Naruto pulled himself away before he could get stabbed, but one of the rods managed to stab Yugito's left shoulder, embedding itself into it and causing her to bleed.

"Urgh… this–" Yugito's words died on her lips as she noticed her chakra cloak dissipating. "What the hell?"

Her eyes widened for a moment as she gripped the black rod with her left hand and pulled it out. She winced as she finally removed it and tossed it to the ground. Immediately, her chakra began flowing again and she was able to create her chakra cloak once more. Her eyes focused on the rod for a moment before turning back to face Naruto.

"So, that's a new trick. We're going to have to be wary of these." She noted.

"Understood." Naruto nodded his head before he turned to face Pain, who was making hand signs: "Anything else new you have to show us, false god?"

Pain briefly stopped his hand signs, his eyes narrowing on Naruto: "False god? What do you mean by that?" Before Naruto could reply, he finished his hand signs: "Water Style: Water Emergence Jutsu!"

The ground underneath Naruto's and Yugito's feet opened up, creating a massive deluge of water that formed a large bubble. Before either shinobi could react, the bubble swallowed both of them.

Naruto and Yugito immediately began to hold their breath. Their chakra cloaks remained active, however, the flames on both cloaks proceeded to become extinguished. The two tried to swim out of the bubble, but the water's pull seemed to bring them deeper inside the bubble.

Pain took a few steps forward before he clapped his hands together. Making another hand sign, Pain separated his hands, creating a massive, black-colored lightning bolt in his right hand.

'If we get hit by a strong lightning jutsu when we're like this, we'll get obliterated.' Naruto realized. He bit down on his lip as he held out his right hand and began to channel wind chakra in a spiraling motion, in a moment, he created a Rasengan in his right hand, with spiraling waves of wind starting to form around it.

"Lightning Style: Divine Strike!"

"Sage Art: Wind Style: Rasenshuriken!"

As Pain threw the lightning bolt, the wind blades of Naruto's Rasenshuriken grew sharper and began to rotate faster. Naruto then tossed the Rasenshuriken, which flew through the bubble until it managed to escape and collide with Pain's lightning. Upon contact, the jutsus created an explosion that scattered wind and lightning bolts throughout the battlefield. The force of the explosion managed to pop the large bubble of water, freeing Naruto and Yugito.

The two jinchūriki landed on the ground and quickly struggled to breathe after holding their breath, the fires on their bijū cloaks being restored as well. Before they could properly recover, however, they were both struck by several smaller bolts of lightning from Pain's jutsu. Both shouted in pain as burn marks formed on their skin, visible even despite the chakra cloaks. The Deva Path, meanwhile, tried to approach the two, but the winds of the destroyed Rasenshuriken prevented from moving closer and tore into its skin, creating multiple cuts on the Path's body.

A few seconds passed by the battlefield calmed down. With no other jutsu in sight, the two jinchūriki and Pain were able to turn their focus entirely back to each other.

"So that's some pretty masterful earth ninjutsu and lightning ninjutsu, alongside with the ability to create water where there was none before." Yugito noted, scowling: "Is that another trick of you Rinnegan? Master of all the basic elements?"

"What did you mean earlier?" Pain shook his head, ignoring Yugito and focusing entirely on Naruto alone: "By calling me a false god."

"I meant exactly what I said." Naruto replied, his eyes narrowing: "No god would willingly cause as much destruction as you are doing to Kumogakure."

Pain was quiet for a moment. Both Naruto and Yugito got into position to charge forward when the man shook his head and closed his eyes.

"I suppose you could consider this 'destruction'." He acknowledged: "However, how would the two of you consider Kumo's actions during the Third Shinobi World War?"

"Hmm?" Naruto's eyes narrowed: "What do-"

"You were alive back then." Pain's eyes opened wide, focusing on Yugito: "You served during the war, did you not?"

"… Yes, but I only helped with a few missions. I was a genin back then. I didn't even have control over my power yet." Yugito answered: "What are you getting at?"

"You served enough to know what true destructions. Nii Yugito, I ask you; if you consider what I have done to Kumo as destruction, then I would like to know what you think about all the villages throughout Yu no Kuni and Ta no Kuni that were ravaged by your village's army during your conflict with Konoha." Pain stated. Yugito's eyebrow raised slightly, but before she could respond, he turned to Naruto: "And I can ask you the same question, Uzumaki Naruto. If I were to tell you that villages throughout those countries, as well as villages in Kusa no Kuni, Ame no Kuni, and Tani no Kuni, were destroyed because of your village's military, how would you consider those destructions?"

Naruto frowned in response as he shook his head: "That… That's-"

"The major shinobi villages love to fight amongst each other, but you choose to fight your battles in the countryside of unrelated nations, whose villages become collateral to your wars." Pain exclaimed sharply, his Rinnegan narrowing on both jinchūriki: "That is what I consider an actual example of 'destruction'."

"That's…" Yugito bit on her lip again, looking away slightly: "That's war. No one wants war to happen in their village. That's why-"

"It's why your village decided my home was worth fighting in." Pain crossed his arms: "That my home was worth destroying, despite the fact it was already recovering from the previous war, to spare your village and Konoha and Iwa and Suna from violence."

"That's… I'm sorry about your village…" Naruto mumbled for a moment before he began to glare at Pain, his resolve returning: "But that doesn't excuse what you're doing now. Uzushiogakure was destroyed and you don't see me or any of the other Uzumaki trying to bring down Kumogakure!"

"You are a Konoha shinobi; not one of Uzushio. You cannot claim their hardship as your own" Pain shook his head: "I, too, trace my origins to the Uzumaki of Uzushio. Your words ring hollow in my ears. You know nothing of their plight, nor of my own as a resident of Ame no Kuni."

"Masakado-jī-san does, though, and he's here fighting on behalf of Kumo right now!" Naruto stated sharply: "Fighting you! To stop all this needless destruction!"

"Naruto's right." Yugito nodded her head: "We can apologize on behalf of Konoha and Kumo all you want, but nothing the villages did in the past justify what you are trying to do in the present! You don't have the moral high ground, asshole, so stop talking like you do. Your organization promotes the same violence you're speaking against, and you're literally in the middle of an invasion!"

"Heh." A deep chuckle escaped Pain's lips: "I am aware of my own hypocrisy. I, too, am a cog in this Cycle of Hatred and Pain. That's why I know I need to be the one end this. That way, I can let this vicious cycle die with me and observe a world incapable of such Pain. And once Akatsuki has reached its goals, this reality will come to pass." The Deva Path's Rinnegan narrowed on the two jinchūriki as he lifted his right hand: "So for the sake of this world; Uzumaki Naruto and Nii Yugito, stay down. Shinra Tensei!"


"WHERE. THE. FUCK. IS. MY. SCYTHE?"

Hidan's shouts could be heard throughout Kumogakure as the Jashinist rampaged his way through the streets. He was so focused on his search that he attacked only the shinobi who attacked him first or got on his way, as opposed to slaughtering haphazardly in his religious glee.

His search took up more-and-more time as he moved through street after street, looking for where his scythe landed. Hidan's face grew distraught as he continued to comb the village looking for his cherished weapon.

'How far did that fat bastard chuck my precious scythe?' Hidan wondered, as he grit his teeth. 'He'll be rotting in hell, experiencing Jashin-sama's wrath in no time, and it won't be enough to make up for this transgression-'

Hidan's thoughts came to an end as he found a familiar-face; a purple-haired woman, in her Kaima form, pulling out his scythe from the body of an Iwagakure shinobi.

"YOU!" Hidan snarled: "HAND ME MY SCYTHE, BLASPHEMER! YOU HAVE NO RIGHT TO TOUCH IT!"

"Geez, nice to see you too." Isaribi grumbled as she brought her left fin to her ears, rubbing them slightly: "If you didn't want someone grabbing your scythe, you shouldn't have lost it."

"I never lost it; it was taken!" He hissed as he held out his right hand: "And now, it's found it's way back to me. Now, hand it over!"

"Fine. Fine." Isaribi shook her head as she tossed over the scythe to Hidan. The Jashinist grabbed it, his demeanor softening, as he began to caress the blood-covered blades, which earned an eyeroll from the Kaima-hybrid: "I tried using it, but that thing's just too clunky to properly use. I'd rather use my scales to cut enemies."

"You wouldn't understand." Hidan replied, a grin developing on his face: "Someone who does not know Jashin would not understand how functionally perfect and designed this weapon is." He then gripped it tightly as he looked out into the crowds: "And now, to continue His righteous genocide-"

Before he could charge at the nearest enemy, the ground by his and Isaribi's side opened-up. Both turned their attention as Zetsu rose from the ground, its eyes moving between the two.

"Sorry to ruin your fun, Hidan, but it's time to go." 'White Zetsu' spoke. "The invasion's over."

"Over?" Isaribi asked, glaring at the Akatsuki member: "And what's that supposed to mean?"

"You're one of Kabuto's associates, right? Stay if you want; it won't matter if you die." 'Black Zetsu' snorted. It then turned its attention back to Hidan: "Pain-sama is retreating. The jinchūriki have won, for now."

"Seriously?" Hidan rolled his eyes: "Then maybe I can back them up. With Jashin-sama's blessing, I'll turn the tide-"

"Did you not hear. This mission's over." 'Black Zetsu' stated sharply: "Kisame's dead. Deidara's dead. Konan's dead. We can't afford to lose any more of our resources, so you need to retreat. Now."

"Wh-What?" Hidan's eyes widened in response: "They're all… dead?"

'Zetsu' did not bother responding, only retreating into the ground. Hidan and Isaribi remained still for a moment before Hidan turned, facing the exit towards the village.

"We… should probably get out of here." He mumbled.

"Hmm?" Isaribi tilted her head slightly: "You aren't rattled by what that plant guy said, are you? You never struck me as the kind of guy who'd care if someone else died." Hidan proceeded to walk forward, which caused Isaribi to raise an eyebrow: "You care about them or something?"

"No, but I recognized their strength. And I'm not dumb enough to recognize a bad omen." He grumbled in response: "Can't afford to die here. There's still much I need to for Jashin-sama before I can pass on."

With those words, Hidan began to hurry towards the exit of the village. Isaribi blinked for a moment before she shrugged, following right behind.

'That guy mentioned many Akatsuki names, but he didn't say Kabuto… Kabuto-san, you better still be okay.' Isaribi told herself as she hurried on out of Kumogakure.


"Wood Style: Cutting Sprigs Jutsu!"

"Raikiri Sharp Spear!"

After forming another wooden spear, Obito attempted to impale Kakashi with it only to be blocked by Kakashi's Raikiri, which was fashioned into the shape of a sword. Upon collision, the lightning blade caused scattered bolts of lightning to shoot outward and into Obito's body. The Uchiha hissed in pain, but did not slow down his efforts in striking at Kakashi as he applied more force with his spear.

"Wood Release: Great Spear Tree!"

While the two shinobi were locked in their stalemate, the ground underneath Kakashi's feet opened up, creating roots that grabbed onto his legs and pulled him down. The Konoha jōnin grunted upon impact, the Raikiri on his hands dissipating. Obito quickly positioned himself on top of Kakashi and prepared to shove his spear into his heart, but Kakashi caught the blade of the weapon before it could pierce his heart.

"You're using so much Wood Release, Obito." Kakashi noted, shaking his head.

"Got a problem with that?" Obito stated, rolling his eyes, as he continued to apply pressure: "I see you're still using my Sharingan with no moral dilemmas, so I hope you're not about to get preachy and hypocritical about using a bloodline I wasn't born with."

"It's how you got the bloodline that concerns me." Kakashi asked, his eyes narrowing: "So, how did you? Did Pain grant it to you? Or Orochimaru experiment on your body? How-"

"Why the hell are you asking?" The Uchiha growled out as he finally overpowered Kakashi's guard, impaling his chest: "You wanted your lasts to be a question about my power?"

In response, Kakashi's body broke apart once more, converting itself to lightning. Obito bit his lip in response as he jumped backwards, avoiding the strike. He then jumped again as the ground opened up, with Kakashi appearing, having attempted to uppercut his jaw.

"You keep switching yourself with lightning clones and nothing else." Obito noted with a snort as he charged at Kakashi: "I heard with my eye, you became 'Copy-Cat Kakashi'! Why don't you show me some of that and not this boring one-trick pony?"

Obito attempted to punch Kakashi in the face, but Kakashi blocked with his left hand. With his right hand, Kakashi ran through hand signs before breathing out a fireball from his mouth. Obito replicated the fireball with one of his own, causing the jutsu to collide and explode on impact. As smoke filled the area, Obito clapped his hands on the ground as more tree roots rose, trying to grab onto Kakashi's body. The Konoha jōnin proceeded to jump up, landing on top of the roots as they rose as he began to move closer towards his former friend.

"You keep saying 'my' Sharingan as if I stole it. Last I recall, you gave it to me." Kakashi replied sharply as he jumped onto the ground, channeling chakra into his feet: "Earth Style: Stalagmite!"

The ground underneath Obito's feet opened up, creating two sharp stalagmites. The Uchiha tried to jump away in time, but one of the stalagmites managed to pierce his left leg, causing him to bleed heavily. He hissed in pain as he rushed at Kakashi, using the shunshin to get close.

"It was a gift, yes, and now I need it back!" He stated sharply as he punched Kakashi in the stomach before he could block. Kakashi choked up some blood in response as Obito proceeded to channel fire elemental chakra into his fist, causing it to ignite: "It's a gift I never should have given, so just die already so I can take it back!"

Kakashi hissed in pain from the burn of Obito's punch as it started to char away a part of his flak jacket. The Konoha jōnin proceeded to kick the Uchiha away, creating distance between the two of them. He then brushed away at the remnants of a flame on his flak jacket before turning to look back at his friend, frowning behind his mask.

"If you really regretted it, then you should have come back and I would have gladly given it. But you didn't. You never came." Kakashi replied, tightening his fists: "Why? What was so important that you couldn't have come back?"

"I couldn't." Obito shook his head: "You killed Rin, Kakashi! I was never going to step foot back-"

"Then where the hell were you before that?" Kakashi shouted back, interrupting his former friend: "Rin didn't die the very next die. So where were you, then? You… You could have saved her. You could have saved everyone."

"I…" Obito bit his lip, closing his eyes in response as memories came back to him.

Memories of an elder Uchiha, sitting in the cave.

Memories of a spiraled-masked Zetsu who took care of him.

He shook his head, his eyes narrowing back on Kakashi: "None of your business."

"Is that so?" Kakashi shook his head, a glare returning to his eyes: "You're as culpable as me, then."

"Perhaps so… but things will be better in the new world." Obito said, taking in a deep breath: "Rin will be there, Kakashi. So will Minato-sensei and Kushina-san. My grandmother. Your dad. They'll all be there." His eyes then narrowed on his friend, reddening slightly: "As shall you. So just do me a favor and die already so I can meet the real you in the true reality!"

'More of this reality crap… he's truly lost.' Kakashi sighed.

With that sentiment in mind, Kakashi charged forward again at his former friend.


"Sasori. It's time."

The fight between Sasori and Kurotsuchi came to a halt as Zetsu appeared from the underground directly next to Sasori's side. The plant-like creature focused entirely on Sasori as Kurotsuchi's eyes narrowed on it.

'Another Akatsuki member, dammit.' She grit her teeth in response: 'I'm at my rope keeping up with him and keeping Shikamaru safe… this is getting too much. I need Katsuyu-sama's slug to get back with the backup already-'

"What do you mean?" Sasori asked, his eyes narrowing on Zetsu.

"The invasion's over. The retreat order is already in place." 'Zetsu' replied.

The words rang through both Kurotsuchi's and Sasori's heads, their eyes widening in response.

"And what does that mean?" Sasori hissed in response: "Pain-sama was blunt about us being behind schedule! We can't afford to be wasting time-"

"We've already lost enough members today, Sasori. Be reasonable." 'Black Zetsu' stated sharply: "If you have issues, take it up with the Boss after. But retreat, unless you want to be left to rot here alone."

With those words, Zetsu retreated back into the ground.

'We've lost that many numbers that a retreat order was put in place? How badly did everyone else screw up this mission?' Sasori grit his teeth in response as he turned to Kurotsuchi, glaring: 'Deidara lost his life in this mission, and you're telling me to simply retreat as if his death did not matter?'

The puppeteer was still for a moment, keeping his eyes on Kurotsuchi for a moment. The Tsuchikage, in response, was doing the same, waiting for the Akatsuki member to make the first move. The two were locked in a standstill for a moment

After thirty seconds of inaction, Sasori finally called back his puppets. In an instant, four of his puppets were sealed away, with only the Ōnoki puppet remaining.

'An order's an order. If the rest of the organization is retreating, I am not going to be the only one here simply to get captured and executed.' He noted, gritting his teeth. 'Pain, we are going to have a serious 'chat' about this decision, though.'

"Hey!" Kurotsuchi shouted as she clapped her hands and began channeling Dust Release chakra in her hands. "I don't give a shit what your orders are; I'm not letting you get away!"

In unison with one another, both Kurotsuchi and the Ōnoki puppet created and released a Dust Release three-dimensional cube at one another. The two jutsus collided, creating a large explosion that scattered dust and debris throughout the battlefield. Within seconds, as the dust cleared, Sasori and his puppets were nowhere to be found.

'Dammit!' Kurotsuchi hissed. 'I can still sense his presence. He's not far-'

"Kurotsuchi-san, I found someone!"

The Godaime Tsuchikage turned her head in time to see the smaller Katsuyu slug wiggle its way over to her direction, with a Kirigakure medical ninja following her. The medic immediately rushed to Shikamaru's side, providing him with medical attention.

"Oh, thank god. Thank you so much." Kurotsuchi said, smiling at the medic for a moment before her attention went back to Sasori. Immediately, a frown developed on her face. 'Shit, I stopped paying attention for a second and he's gone already? How'd he get away so fast?'

Kurotsuchi was still for a moment as she tightened her fists. The image of both her father and grandfather as puppets entered her mind once more before she grit her teeth: 'Next time, it'll be different. Akasuna no Sasori, I will kill you. Mark my words.'

With the Akatsuki member no longer in sight and combat now over, Kurotsuchi immediately hurried over to Shikamaru's side as she began to watch the medic slowly heal at his wounds.


"Shinra Tensei!"

A strong gravitational force slammed into Naruto's and Yugito's body from above, slamming them into the ground hard.

"Earth Style: Ground Imprisonment!"

The ground underneath the jinchūriki rose-up and began to change shape, swallowing the jinchūriki's bodies and forming circular bindings that covered their hands and legs. Both Naruto and Yugito tried to pull themselves up, but they were unable to break the bindings.

'Seriously, how strong is this guy's earth ninjutsu?' Yugito hissed as she tried to pull herself out.

'I can't even use the Headhunter Jutsu to get out of here!' Naruto bit his lip as he continued to struggle. His eyes briefly glanced over towards Pain, who was rushing over towards them, two black rods developing from the palm of his hands: 'We need to break out now-'

"Naruto!" Yugito called out: "Use the Bijūdama and quick! Channel enough chakra to break my bindings, and I'll do the same!"

Naruto's eyes widened before he nodded his head and began channeling positive-and-negative chakra. Within seconds, the two were able to produce small-sized bijūdama in their mouths.

The two jinchūriki launched the orbs at one another, which collided with their entrapments. The bijūdamas exploded, causing debris to scatter everywhere as the jinchūriki freed themselves.

'Now, to-'

Yugito's thoughts were interrupted as Pain had rushed at her, stabbing her with both black rods before she could move, one through her right shoulder and one near her chest. The Kumo jōnin choked blood in response as her chakra cloak began to fade for a moment.

"Yugito!" Naruto shouted.

"Relax, Nii Yugito. I missed your heart." Pain said, chuckling as he dug both rods deeper, causing Yugito to choke out more blood: "I will confess, though, seeing you in pain like this does give me more joy than I'd care to admit. It most certainly does not compare to what you did to Konan, but it is-"

"Ōdama Rasengan!"

Pain jumped backwards, separating himself from his rods as Naruto attempted to slam a large Rasengan into his stomach. Naruto grit his teeth as he began to propel wind chakra into his palm before launching the Rasengan towards Pain. The Deva Path's eyes widened for as he held out his right hand once more.

"Shinra Tensei!"

Just before the Rasengan could make contact, Pain released a gravitational force that send the orb backwards once more, towards Naruto. Naruto proceeded to sink into the ground, avoiding his own attack.

Pain's eyes narrowed on the ground for a moment before he slammed his hands on the ground, channeling earth release chakra into his palms. Within seconds, the ground proceeded to shake heavily. Naruto was forced out of the earth, getting launched into the air directly in front of Pain's body.

"This shall be the end." Pain stated sharply as he generated a black rod in his palm. He then lunged forward. "Submit to your fate, Uzumaki Naruto!"

Before he could stab Naruto with the rod, Naruto blocked by grabbing onto Pain's wrist, pushing the rod away. Naruto's eyes narrowed, glaring intently at the Akatsuki leader.

Pain's Rinnegan twitched in response for a moment: "Fire Style: Burning Circle!"

Fireballs developed around Pain's body and pushed backwards, slamming into Naruto's body and pushing him back, causing Naruto to hiss in pain in response.

With Naruto staggered, Pain tried to skewer Naruto with the black rod, but before he could stab him, another black rod flew through the air and struck Pain's, causing it to crack in response. Pain turned his head towards Yugito, who had pulled the rod out of her chest and was now pulling the rod out of her shoulder.

"You're a real bitch, you know that?" Yugito hissed as she tossed the second black rod onto the ground. Upon losing them, Yugito took in a deep breath as she began to channel her chakra cloak once more. "All those different bodies, the elemental manipulations, these rod weapons… I'm getting sick of fighting you."

Pain shook his head in response: "You are stalling the inevitable."

"I'm sick of tired of hearing you go on and on about fate and inevitabilities and 'god's will' or whatever!" Naruto hissed as he stood side-by-side with Yugito once more. "Was it 'inevitable' that we killed off your allies earlier?"

Pain grit his teeth in response as visible anger began to shine in his Rinnegan: "Watch your tongue, Uzumaki Naruto."

"Why? I mean, you're 'god' after all! Everything has to go according to your plan, right?" Naruto replied: "That means their death was part of your plan, right? Then-"

"SILENCE!" Pain growled out as he clapped his hands.

For the first time in over a decade, tears developed on Nagato's face as an image of Konan's face entered his mind. His tears fell harder as her image began to shift, turning into a younger version of herself alongside an image of Yahiko. The man gritted his teeth as he ran through hand signs; hand signs that the Deva Path body mimicked in the Kamui dimension.

"Ryōiki Tensei!"

Gravity became heavy for both Yugito and Naruto as they fell to their knees. The air around them proceeded to change shape. Within seconds, black rods formed throughout the air, creating a dome around their bodies. The number of rods was limitless; both Naruto and Yugito could not see past them to see Pain anymore. It felt as if they were locked in a separate domain from even the Kamui dimension.

"Our plans be damned! I will take my role as a cog in the Cycle of Pain to make sure you two truly process it!" Pain hissed out as he made one final hand sign: "You will know Pain, even if it means killing you!"

With those words, the rods rushed forward, swarming Yugito and Naruto.


A wave of chakra rushed through the Kamui dimension. Kakashi and Obito, who had been locked in a standstill, turned their heads and looked towards the other combatants in the alternate dimension.

Where Pain, Naruto, and Yugito had initially been, a black-colored dome filled the area in its place that appeared to be radiating chakra.

'What kind of jutsu is that?' Kakashi's eyes narrowed on the dome: 'It feels… otherworldly.'

'Nagato, what the hell are you doing?' Obito hissed: 'You really are going to kill them?'

The Uchiha tightened his grip into fists as he shook his head. His head moved from the dome back to Kakashi for a moment before a scowl developed on his face and a swirl of chakra surrounded his body.

Immediately, Kakashi's eyes turned back towards his former friend as he tensed up: "And where do you think you are going?"

"Away." Obito replied, glaring back at Kakashi for a moment: "Follow if you want, but I'd advise you go and help the jinchūriki. They'll die if they remain in that field."

'I'm not going to stand here and do nothing while you kill the jinchūriki, Nagato!' The Akatsuki member's scowl deepened as the spiral of chakra around his body began to swallow him: 'Kakashi, do something useful for me for once in your life and prevent him from killing them. I don't want to be behind schedule more than we already are.'

Before Kakashi could properly reply, Obito had vanished from the Kamui dimension. The jōnin stood still, almost as if he was expecting the Uchiha to return back and continue the fight.

A few seconds passed by before he finally got his confirmation; Uchiha Obito had retreated.

'Why would he leave like that? That-' Kakashi shook his head as he turned his attention to the black dome: 'Nevermind that; Naruto and Yugito-san need my help!'

With those thoughts in his mind, Kakashi rushed towards the other fight.


Time felt frozen for a moment after Pain's declaration. Yugito and Naruto tried to pull themselves off the ground as they watched the black rods slowly close in on them. The gravity of Pain's jutsu was overpowering, however, and the two became completely skewered.

Rod-after-rod impaled their bodies. Both Naruto and Yugito choked up blood in response as each rod punctured their bodies, with no hope of escape. Each strike send waves of chakra throughout their body, creating a disconnect that separated them from their bijū chakra cloak.

"Yugito, breathe!" Matatabi hissed in her jinchūriki's eyes. "You can't… die… here…"

Slowly, the Nibi's voice grew quieter-and-quieter in Yugito's head. Yugito took a deep breath as she closed her eyes, trying her hardest to remain conscious.

'Dammit… Dammit!' Naruto hissed.

Pain continued to stare at the damage with little concern for the increasing amount of blood they were spilling. With no end in sight, the rods continued to come down-and-down, tearing into their bodies as slowly and torturously as possible.


Within a moment, Naruto's consciousness was pulled to his mindscape, where he came face-to-face with Kurama, who was pacing around the area frantically.

The mindscape was slowly starting to fall apart, crumbling into dust. The trees around them were falling apart and a shaking could be felt, as if they were in the middle of an earthquake.

"Kid, you're going to die at this rate!" Kurama shouted in his head: "Get up! The longer these receivers are in your body, the more our energies get disconnected! If our connection is severed, then there's no way your body will heal from these wounds!"

'Do you think I'm not trying?' Naruto hissed in response: 'This jutsu… I can't move! Even with your chakra, I can't move!'

Kurama grit his teeth in response, but said nothing for a moment as he tried to think of a solution. After a few seconds, an idea came to the mind of the fox.

"Naruto, use that seal. The one that old Uzumaki was trying to teach you." Kurama stated.

'What?' Naruto's eyes widened in response: 'But I-'

"You have one on your person, don't you? One that Masakado created." The Kyūbi asked: "From the last you practiced it. I can sense the chakra inside of it, so it must still be working."

'I do, but I haven't mastered the fūinjutsu yet!' Naruto stated, biting his lip: 'If I mess it up, it'll destroy me – and maybe you too!'

"And if you do nothing, both you and Matatabi's jinchūriki are going to die! And if you two die, both Matatabi and I will be captured when we respawn for Akatsuki's plans!" The fox growled in his head: "I'm willing to risk my existence on your fūinjutsu, if it means I won't be forced to become a part of the Jūbi! So just try it, dammit!"

Naruto was quiet for a moment, his eyes widened for a second before he nodded his head. A grin developed on his face as he nodded his head, his right hand going to his chest.

"You're right… I have to try it." Naruto stated as he ran through a series of hand signs – snake-dragon-hare-snake-dog-rat-dog-snake-monkey-ox-dragon-monkey-horse-bird-boar-snake – and took in a deep breath: "Uzumaki Fūinjutsu: Chrono-Reversal!"

As Naruto began to release a large amount of chakra from his body, a light blue aura began to develop around his body.


'Hmm?' Pain's eyes narrowed within his domain at Naruto's body. A blue light had completely surrounded it: 'Is he using a jutsu? I am impressed he has any connection to any of his chakra – or the Kyūbi's chakra – considering the amount of receivers embedded in his body. But no matter.' He shook his head as more rods began to come towards the body's body: 'Nothing you can do will be able to pull you out of my jutsu-'

Pain's thoughts were interrupted as the blue light swallowed Naruto's body entirely and pulled him backwards, out of the Ryōiki Tensei. In an instant, the black receivers that had been embedded into his body had fallen to the ground, as if they had been aimed at nothing.

'What?'

Pain turned around and saw that, outside of the domain of his jutsu, the blue light had faded away, revealing Naruto's body, with none of his recent injuries. The Deva Path's eyes widened.

"H-How?" He muttered in response.

As the blue light had faded fully, Naruto opened his eyes, glaring at Pain. He took a step forward, staggering slightly, as he rushed towards Pain.

"Because 'God's plan' says 'fuck you'!" Naruto managed to growl out as he reached his fellow Uzumaki and punched him in the face.

Pain was staggered backwards in response. Upon the forced movement, the Ryōiki Tensei collapsed, with shards of black chakra falling to the ground that dissipated upon contact with the Kamui dimension's floor. The black receivers in the sky all fell to the ground, while the black receivers that had been impaled into Yugito's body seemed to shoot out of her body and fall to the ground, joining the others.

Pain rubbed his cheek in response, his eyes still wide as he continued to stare at Naruto for a moment. After a few seconds, he finally took a step forward, shaking his head.

"What was that jutsu?" He asked: "How… did you have enough chakra for that?"

"I… don't have to say shit… to you…" Naruto hissed, breathing heavily: 'God, how did I have enough chakra for that? I can barely feel any chakra in my body at all…'

"I'm not certain. You used more chakra than I was expecting with that fūinjutsu, and exhausted yourself in a way I have never felt before." Kurama's voice echoed in his head: "Even though you rewound your body's physical condition, there is still a disconnect with your chakra and mine. You need to be careful, because you are not healing at the level to fight recklessly."

'Or fight at all.' Naruto admitted, biting down on his lip.

The Deva Path's eyes narrowed on Naruto for a moment before he held out his palms. Another black receiver developed in the palm of his left hand while chakra began to be released from his right palm.

"As impressive as that jutsu was, all you manage to do is, once again, delay the inevitable." Pain stated sharply: "Perish, Uzumaki Naruto. Banshō Ten'in!"

Naruto's body became weightless once again as he flew towards Pain. He tried to channel chakra in his mouth to create a bijūdama, but the chakra was forming slowly. He closed his eyes in frustration as he focused solely on channeling the chakra he could.

'Dammit, come on! Channel chakra already!' Naruto hissed. 'Come on, chakra network, work-'

"Raikiri!"

Before Naruto could reach Pain's side, Kakashi had rushed forward at the Akatsuki leader, a Raikiri active in his hands. The Deva Path's eyes widened as he tried to jump away in time, but Kakashi managed to impale his right side with the lightning, piercing skin with the sound of a loud crackle.

Pain pulled himself out and jumped back, a large hole on the Path's body. Naruto's body, in response, fell to the ground with a thud.

"Hatake Kakashi…" Pain grit his teeth in response before his eyes began to look around the Kamui dimension for a moment: "You… you managed to escape from Uchiha-"

"I didn't escape." Kakashi interrupted, shaking his head: "Obito abandoned you."

"Abandoned?" Pain's eyes widened in response.

"Most likely he understood that this battle was pointless. This whole 'invasion' was pointless." Kakashi stated sharply.

"All you're doing…" Naruto spoke with a hiss as he pulled himself off the ground. He steadied himself as he glared at Pain before he started to run towards him: "… is delaying the inevitable. It's over, Nagato."

"Don't use that name!" Pain growled out in response before his eyes moved from Naruto to Kakashi, then back once more to Naruto. "Even if this body fails, I have more! All that matters if I kill you all!" He held out his palm once more: "Shinra-"

Pain's words died on his lips as he was stabbed in the heart. His choked out once more as his body began to shake as he took in the sight of what had impaled him: a set of cat claws.

"Y-You…" Pain grit his teeth as he turned his head slightly, coming face-to-face with Nii Yugito: "I… had assumed… you had fallen unconscious by now…"

"Close to it…" Yugito hissed back, breathing heavily as if it was a struggle to remain standing, "But… I'm not going down yet… not until I see your corpse…"

Pain's eyes narrowed in response as he held out his right palm, placing it against her chest: "Shinra Tensei!"

Sending a gravitational pulse directly into Yugito's body, the Nibi jinchūriki choked out blood as she was sent flying backwards. Pain then turned his head back around.

He now came face-to-face with Uzumaki Naruto, who formed a spiraling orb of chakra in his left palm.

Pain's eyes widened: 'I wasted my Shinra Tensei!'

The Akatsuki leader tried to jump backwards, away from Naruto, but Naruto grabbed onto his wrist with his right hand and pulled the leader of the Akatsuki closer to him.

"Rasengan!"

With a shout, he dug the Rasengan into Pain's face. He gritted his teeth as he continued to dig his jutsu further into the man's head.

A few moments passed by before Pain's head was no more and the body fell to the ground, completely limp.

Naruto breathed heavily for a moment, standing directly above the Deva Path's unmoving body. His eyes tried to focus on it, making sure it was not going to start moving again.

'It… It's over…'

With that thought, Naruto fell to his knees, his eyes closing

"Naruto!"

The last noise Naruto heard was Kakashi shouting his name as he finally closed his eyes. The last sensation he felt was the feeling of himself falling to the ground.

And the final thought that came to his mind before succumbing to his exhaustion and injuries was that the invasion was finally over.


Original Plans: Okay, I'd like to go over this particular invasion, cause DAMN did I end up cutting a lot of content out, because somehow when I was storyboarding this chapter, I had planned for EVEN MORE FIGHTS, with the intention of it all being five chapters... Yeah. That happened. I barely managed to fit what I did in six chapters! But just for reference, I'd like to talk about the cut fights!

1) Darui, Neji, and Tenten vs. Nasumareta: Nasumareta is my first OC and I do feel a connection to him, so I wanted to expand more via a fight with Darui. Neji and Tenten were going to provide support as I really wanted Neji to fight alongside a Kumogakure shinobi in the war. Fight got caught, however, as I sorta thought it was distracting

2) Karin vs. Ajisai: I WANTED to feature Karin in a fight to show off her strength in my story at this point. Battle was cut, however, as I had not planned on killing off Ajisai in the fight, and as a result, it started to feel a little more like filler

3) Tsunade vs. Edo!Tensei Hanzo: This one was actually mentioned to be happening off-screen, but when trying to write it, I couldn't really envision it well. It's a shame it got cut out, because I think the premise of one of the Sannin getting a chance to rematch Hanzo would have been super fun to have read

4) Kiba/Risho/Roto vs. Edo!Tensei Kakuzu: Another one was that was mentioned to be happening off-screen, but spoiler-alert: Kakuzu wasn't going to get sealed away after the fight. The fight started to feel more like filler the longer it took me to introduce it, so it was ultimately cut. Another shame, because I would have liked to have actually featured Risho and Roto in a fight for the first time in a long ass while...

5) Koharu/Homura vs. Edo!Tensei Kinkaku/Ginkaku: The second-last fight that was cut and believe me, THIS ONE HURT TO CUT! I wanted to show off Koharu/Homura fighting again, and I know they have some loose ends to quash after Tobirama's death at the hands of these two and their squad. The main reason this one got cut out... jfc, fuck the Kinkaku/Ginkaku duo and their bullshit weapons that are annoying to write around. It was easier working with Itachi's Susanoo's bullshit powers in comparison. Nothing I was writing felt natural or 'good enough'... so the fight was cut. And damn did it hurt...

6) Han vs. Kabuto: Final fight cut, and was even referenced in the last chapter than Han was going to be chased after Kabuto. I... I really don't have a good explanation for it, other than neither Han nor Kabuto were going to die, so it felt like filler in a chapter that was already killing me to write. I did have a lot of cool things planned with the fight i think, but... I couldn't make it work. :(

Just thought you all might be interested in those little tidbits, is all. Looking at them, though, reminds me to scale back my own plans for future arcs and future stories.

(seriously what the fuck how was i expecting to fit those six fights, alongside all the ones i already featured, in the story and have it be just five chapters, what the hell man)


Author's Note: Whelp, y'all, this was chapter 128! ... er ...

Yeah, as I said, I'm not as satisfied with this one as I was other chapters. But god i needed to write this one out and just let it exist, otherwise there would be no writing done.

Promise, promise, that my writing will be better for this next chapter and onward. That I assure you all! (... ESPECIALLY AS I ENTER MY FIRST NON-FIGHT CHAPTER IN ALMOST A YEAR HOLY SHIT, I CAN ACTUALLY WRITE NON-FIGHT SCENES, OMFG I MIGHT CRY IN EXCITEMENT) ... ahem.

I hope you all are doing well and are staying safe this new year! Hope 2022 is good for you all! I'll see you all when chapter 129 is done. Until then:)