Disclaimer: I do not own Bleach or Naruto
I am glad to see that you guys enjoyed the last chapter hopefully you'll enjoy this one too. Sorry for the wait but I've been pretty focused on my Naruto/Rosario Vampire crossover.
Also concerning the pairing I have decided to keep it strictly Naruto x Sode no Shirayuki. For those of you who wanted Fem Kyuubi sorry but I have never written a harem before and I really don't want my inexperience in writing one to screw up this story. For those of you who like Naruto x Fem Kyuubi and like my writing style then check out my profile because I have written one.
Here's the next chapter
Chapter 5: The Preliminaries.
Team 7 had finished their goal and walk through the Forest of Death and now they stood inside the tower at the center. The room they were in was empty except for a poster with a message on it. Sighing Naruto looked around the room to see if he could find anyone who would tell them what to do next. Unfortunately the only ones in the room were the 3 genin.
"We should probably open the scrolls." Naruto said as he tossed the heaven scroll which Sakura sloppily caught.
"Baka! The proctor told us not to open the scrolls!" she shouted but Naruto rolled his eyes.
"Then tell me, what are we supposed to do now?" he asked with a pointed stare. Sakura was silent trying to think of a response but couldn't find one. "I thought so."
"Just do it Sakura." Sasuke said causing the pink haired girl to have hearts in her eyes.
"Of course Sasuke-kun!" she said with a dreamy expression on her face. Naruto and Sakura opened the scrolls and dropped it when smoke exploded from it. The watched the smoke disappear and Naruto allowed a small smile grow on his face as he saw who was standing in front of him.
"Nice to see you again Iruka-sensei." The blonde greeted.
"Hey kids, it's been a while." The scarred chunin said but he mentally frowned when he noticed how tense Naruto was around his teammates.
"What are you doing here sensei?" Sakura asked brining her attention back to him.
"I have to admit, I'm surprised. You guys got here a lot faster than I thought." Iruka said with a smile.
"Anyway, now that you're here you have some time before the next stage begins. There are some rooms around the tower for you guys while you wait for the rest of the teams to get here." He informed.
"Alright then, let's go rest." Sasuke said as he made his way out of the room, Sakura following right behind. Naruto was about to leave the room too but Iruke stopped him.
"Is everything alright Naruto?" the older shinobi asked. Naruto looked at him and sighed.
"Everything's alright sensei. I just figured out what I mean to my teammates." He said before leaving the room, leaving Iruka alone wondering what he meant by that.
Team seven walked through the tower until they arrived at the room that was assigned to their team. He refused to talk to them but they didn't seem to mind. Sasuke was his usual brooding self, the only time he spoke was when he refused Saskura's request for a date. When they arrived at their room Naruto sat on his bed and got into a meditative pose.
"What are you doing?" Sakura asked not believing that their blonde teammate even understood the concept of meditation. Naruto simply ignored her as he held his zanpakuto across his lap and entered his soul scape.
Naruto found himself sitting in the middle of a field that was covered in a layer of white snow. Although the sky was clear there was a gentle snowfall.
"Shirayuki! Where are you?" he shouted wondering where his zanpakuto spirit was. Standing up he decided to walk around the field in hopes of finding her.
Walking for what seemed like forever he finally found who he was looking for. Right in the middle of a frozen lake was Shirayuki. Naruto watched mesmerized as she danced across the frozen water. Her movements were graceful, not a single wasted motion was made. Her eyes were closed and a delighted smile was on her face as she glided over the ice. Once she finished her dancing she was startled when she heard clapping. She turned around and saw Naruto clapping his hands with a smile on his face.
"That was great Shirayuki!" he complimented as Shirayuki scratched the back of her head sheepishly. She was not expecting an audience when she decided to practice some of her dances.
"Thank you." She said with a smile. She walked towards him titling her head to the side. "What are you doing here Naruto?"
"I have some time before the next stage of the exams so I figured I'd use this time to get to know my new partner." He explained.
"In that case I think it's about time you and I discuss on how to properly use my powers." She said as she sat down in the snow. Naruto followed and sat down in front of her.
"Okay so from what I understand you use ice like when I froze that grass ninja." He said as he recalled his battle.
"That's right and while you did a good job using the first dance on your first try you haven't mastered it." She informed confusing him.
"What do you mean I didn't master it? I was able to freeze him solid. If he wasn't a clone than he would be nothing but shattered pieces of ice right now."
"No you were able to use the move but you didn't master it. What you used was Tsukishiro (White Moon) the first and most basic dance. When you first used it, it took some time to freeze your enemy. Once you've completely mastered it you'll be able to freeze your target in a second. Not only will that, but the range of this attack increase." She explained causing Naruto to nod in understanding.
"Alright, I guess that means I have some training to do. Are you willing to help me?" he asked.
"Of course. It is my duty to help my master." Shirayuki explained but yelped when Naruto flicked her forehead. Rubbing the sore spot on her head she looked at Naruto, confusion evident in her eyes.
"Never call me master. You and I are partners and friends. So are you ready Shirayuki-chan?" Naruto asked putting emphasis on the suffix. He stood up and offered his hand to Shirayuki with a smile. The ice spirit blinked twice before she smiled and took the offered hand.
"Hai, let's get started then Naruto-kun." She said as she stood up.
"Now then, I need you to put your arms around me." She said. It took a while for Naruto to understand her words but once he did his eyes widened and he blushed a little.
"What!" he shouted. Shirayuki was confused at his reaction but giggled when she saw his red face.
"The first part of your training is me teaching you how to dance." She explained.
"How is teaching me to dance training?" Naruto asked.
"Remember when you wielded my shikai form?" she asked.
"Well as you may or may not have noticed, my shikai is a little different from other swords. It is designed for quick and précised strikes." She explained.
"Yeah I guess so. It really is different compared to other swords like Zabuza's" Naruto said thoughtfully.
"So in order for you to use my shikai to its fullest potential you must learn how to move fluidly. This can be done by teaching you how to dance. It can also help you learn how to avoid making unnecessary movements once you apply this to battle." She said. Naruto listened and he understood what she was saying but he was still a little hesitant. Seeing this Shirayuki sighed.
"Is there a reason you don't want to dance?" she asked before she made a face of mock hurt and spoke in a small voice. "Or is it that you just don't want to dance with me?"
Seeing her face and hearing her voice like that caused Naruto to panic.
"It's nothing like that Shirayuki-chan! It's just…" he trailed off. Shirayuki smirked at his reaction but tilted her head wondering what was bothering him.
"I've never danced before." He muttered but she still heard. She giggled when she heard his reason causing him to blush more.
"It's fine. Remember I said I was going to teach you how to dance." She said before grabbing his right arm and placing it around her waist. She then placed her right hand into his left before putting her left hand onto his shoulder.
"Just hold me like this and follow my movements." She instructed. And he did as he was told but the blush on his face never went away. This was the first time he was so close to a woman as beautiful as Shirayuki let alone held.
Eventually Naruto was able to pick up on her movements and was able to follow. So for the remaining days Naruto spent his time training with Shirayuki only leaving his soul scape for meals and sleep. He never once spared a glance at his teammates.
Day of Preliminaries
"Before we begin, I would like to congratulate you all on passing the second stage of the Chunin Exams." The Hokage started from his spot looking at the group of young genin in front of him.
As the Hokage began his speech Naruto tuned out. His thoughts drifted to his encounter with the grass ninja. No matter what he did his opponent seemed to have been one step ahead of him. Clenching his fist in frustration in mentally cursed. He thought he was ready to prove to the world how far he came but his first battle after his training and nothing really changed. He thought he grew stronger but he was outclassed.
'Calm down Naruto-kun. I can feel your frustration from here.' the gentle voice of his zanpakto spirit said. Releasing a sigh Naruto calmed himself down.
'Sorry about that Shirayuki-chan. It just really bothers me that the grass ninja I faced earlier was able to outclass me like that. I mean I know I was able to get some good shots on him but other than that nothing.' Naruto explained irritation evident in his voice.
'Maybe but remember experience is a big factor in battle. You were just unfortunate in dealing with an opponent who was more experienced then you.' Shirayuki explained. Hearing this caused Naruto to feel more at ease. She was right, he only became a genin recently and the only real fight he had was with Zabuza and Haku and he wasn't alone at the time.
'You're right. Thanks Shirayuki-chan, I feel a bit better now.' Naruto thanked with a small smile.
'Anytime Naruto-kun. Remember, I'll always be there for you.' Shirayuki said causing Naruto's smile to widen. This was what he always wanted. Someone to watch his back, someone he could rely on, someone he could call a friend. Although he never expected this person to be a zanpakto spirit he wasn't going to complain.
'Thank you.' He said one more time before his attention turned back towards the Hokage. He blinked when he saw a sick looking man standing in front of him. Frowning in confusion he watched as Kabuto raised his hand.
"You are Yakushi Kabuto correct? Very well, you may leave." The sick looking man explained. Naruto assumed he was the proctor of the next stage.
'Damn, maybe I should have paid attention.' Naruto thought to himself as he watched Kabuto leave the room.
"Now that we have even number we may begin with the preliminaries of the third stage." The proctor explained. Naruto thought he heard the name Gekko Hayate during his conversation with Shirayuki so he assumed that that was this man's name.
"To decide who advances to the next round we will have individual matches. Basically think of this as a tournament. The winner of each match will advance to the next stage. Since there are 20 of you remaining we will have ten matches." Hayate explained.
"Each fighter will fight until one is dead, unable to continue or forfeits. In order to avoid unnecessary deaths the match will end if a clear victor can be determined. Opponents will be chosen at random based on this electronic board." Hayate explained as a panel of the wall shifted revealing an electronic board.
"Now then, let's begin." Hayate said as two names appeared on the board.
Uchiha Sasuke vs. Akado Yoroi
"Everyone who is not participating in this fight please move to the balcony." Hayate instructed.
The genin that were not scheduled to fight made their way towards the balcony. The jounin sensei followed suit and headed for their respective genin team though Kakashi paused by Sasuke and leaned in to whisper something in his ear.
"Remember Sasuke, if you let that curse mark get the best of you we'll have no choice but to disqualify you." Kakashi said shocking Sasuke who unconsciously clutched his shoulder.
Sasuke gritted his teeth as he recalled the events that transpired in the Forest of Death. Naruto the dead last was able to fight off that grass ninja when he could barely touch him. Then when those Oto genin showed up they took care of him and the rest of the Konoha shinobi their like they were nothing but amateurs. Sure he was still worn out and weakened after that fight with the grass genin but still he was an Uchiha.
But then Naruto shows up again and defeats the Oto genin alone. Where did he get those powers all of a sudden? They only separated for 10 days before the exams and he was trained by Kakashi. As far as he knew Naruto only received some basic chakra control exercises so how did he get so strong?
He walked through the tower as he tried to clear his mind. His team has been in the tower for one day and he was starting to lose patience. Sakura kept annoying him as she continued to try and persuade him to go out on a date with her and Naruto…no matter what he did he couldn't get an answer from the blonde. Whenever he or Sakura asked him a question on his new skills he just scoffed and turned away so he could meditate. That was another thing, since when did the hyperactive dobe meditate?
"It doesn't make sense. How did he get so strong? How did he fight against them so well when they were able to defeat me?" he muttered to himself. He heard someone chuckling and his eyes narrowed as he looked behind him.
"What's so funny?" he asked in annoyance as he saw some random chunin with a Konoha headband.
"Oh nothing but I can practically feel your negative thoughts from here. If I'd have to place a bet I'd say that it has something to do with your teammate? Perhaps the fact that the once weak dead last is now stronger then the rookie of the year?" he asked tauntingly. Sasuke glared at the chunin hatefully as his body tensed.
"That fool is not stronger than me." He snarled but the chunin just smirked condescendingly mush to Sasuke's ire.
"Oh Sasuke-kun, that's where you are wrong. I'll admit that I too was surprised by Naruto-kun's newfound strength." He chunin taunted.
"Shut up! He is not stronger than me!" Sasuke repeated but grunted in pain when he felt something prick his neck. The chunin in front of him smirked as he disappeared in a cloud of smoke. He looked to his side and saw the same chunin that was in front of him earlier biting into his neck.
"What the-?" Sasuke said as the chunin backed away. He turned around clutching his neck as the chunin turned away.
"Think of it as a little gift." The chunin said as he turned a corner. Sasuke ran towards the corner but saw that the man was gone.
"What was that? Who was that?"Sasuke said as his vision began to blur.
"Sooner or later you'll seek me out. Until then enjoy my little parting gift.' He heard someone whisper before his vision blacked out.
"I found a method that will help you but you'll have to wait. You cannot allow this curse to take over." Kakashi added before leaving.
'Hn, just great.' Sasuke thought sarcastically. 'This mark reacts to my chakra. Unless I want to get disqualified I'll have to be careful.' Sasuke thought as he remembered what happened after he recovered from that mystery chunin's attack. The mark spread and this strange dark feeling took over him. His instincts took over causing him to attack anyone who showed any signs of strength.
"Begin!" Hayate said as the two genin engaged in battle. Naruto noticed Sasuke's opponent, Yoroi, make a hand seal before his right hand began to glow.
'I wonder what that is.' Naruto thought curiously before frowning as he noticed Sasuke's sloppy performance. During his time at the tower he avoided his teammates whenever possible so he was unaware of the attack on Sasuke.
'Weird, his movements are off and he's not even using his Sharingan.' He thought to himself. Ever since he unlocked his kekkai genkai Sasuke always used it.
"I knew he should have quit while he had the chance. Kakashi-sensei you have to do something." Sakura said wincing when Sasuke received a particularly hard blow.
"You know how Sasuke is. There was no way he would just walk away." Kakashi said in a casual tone but hiding the concern he felt as he watched Yoroi grab onto Sasuke. From the looks of it he had the ability to absorb his opponent's chakra. He looked at his other genin and saw Sakura's face etched in worry but Naruto had a look of indifference. Mistaking that look as confidence for his teammate Kakashi eye smiled. "Besides have some faith in Sasuke. Look at Naruto. He isn't worried about him."
Hearing this caused Naruto to scoff. "I'm afraid you're mistaken Kakashi. It's not that I have faith in Sasuke, it's just that I don't care whether he wins or not." He explained causing them to frown.
"Naruto that's not something you say about your teammates." Kakashi scolded.
"He's right. How could you say that about Sasuke-kun?" Sakura added glaring at Naruto who shrugged it off.
"Like this. I don't care if he wins or loses. The same could be said about you too." He answered casually.
"Naruto what's gotten into you? You would have never said something like about your team." Kakashi asked with narrowed eyes. He knew that his genin could argue and get on each other nerves but he didn't think things would turn out like this.
Although he didn't know about Sasuke and Sakura leaving Naruto alone against an opponent that outclassed him to save themselves. Sasuke and Sakura weren't going to be telling anyone anytime soon and Naruto just didn't care anymore. They made their choice and so did Naruto.
Kakashi stared at him for a while before turning back to the match just in time to see Sasuke kick Yoroi in the air.
"Shishi Rendan (Lion's combo)!" Sasuke said as he hit Yoroi with a series of combos before finishing it with a devastating reverse heel kick.
"Winner Uchiha Sasuke." Hayate announced after checking to see if Yoroi could continue.
"He did it! He won!" Sakura cheered with a bright smile.
Medics came to escort both Yoroi and Sasuke away but Kakashi shunsined to the arena stating that he would take care of Sasuke. The medics looked hesitant but eventually relented and the student and teacher disappeared in a swirl of leaves.
"Where are they going?" Sakura asked with a frown.
"Who cares?" Naruto asked dully.
"What is with you? Ever since we got back from the second exam you've been a real jerk!" Sakura shouted getting frustrated with Naruto's new attitude. However she flinched under the glare Naruto threw at her. His eyes held so much anger that she couldn't help but release a frightened whimper.
'Is she fucking serious? They abandon me and left me for dead and she has the nerve to ask what's with me?' Naruto thought furiously. However he felt a calming presence in his mind that helped relax him.
'Calm down Naruto-kun. Just ignore them for now. They aren't worth all this stress.' Shirayuki said in a soothing gentle voice. Naruto took a deep breath and released it.
'Thank you Shirayuki-chan.' Naruto thanked feeling the tension leave his body.
'Anytime.' The ice zanpakuto spirit said before the mental link between the two was cut. Releasing a sigh Naruto turned to Sakura.
"Haruno I am not in the mood to deal with you right now so please do the both of us a favor and shut up." Naruto said in a tone as cold as the ice his zanpakuto wielded.
Unused to and slightly afraid Sakura nodded meekly before turning towards the screen where they would announce the next fight. She silently prayed that Kakashi would return soon so she wasn't alone with Naruto.
Aburame Shino vs. Abume Zaku
"What a shame. I would rather face that blonde puck that did this to me." Zaku said nodding towards Naruto who smirked at him. Shino said nothing as he stared down his opponent.
The match was short but pretty good. Naruto had to admit that Zaku's will to fight despite his injured arms was impressive. Turns out the casts he wore around them were for show and he could still move them. When he was about to unleash an air blast his arms exploded. Turns out Shino clogged the air tubes with his insects. With no way to escape the air destroyed Zaku's arms from the inside.
As soon as the match was over Kakashi reappeared. Sakura began to bombard him with questions about Sasuke and Naruto ignored him looking at the screen hoping his match would be soon.
Kankuro vs. Tsurugi Mitsumi
Naruto was a bit interested in this match. The only other Suna genin he interacted with was Gaara so he was a bit curious to see how they fought. Like the previous match it was rather short. Mitsumi started with a jutsu that allowed his body to stretch and bend his limbs as if they were rubber. He quickly got though Kankuro's defense and began to strangle him.
Mitsumi gave Kankuro the chance to surrender but he refused so he proceeded to snap the Suna genin's neck. Unfortunately for Mitsumi it turned out that Kankuro was nothing more than a puppet while the real one was hidden in the cloth on its back. Various blades appeared on the puppet's body impaling Mitsumi as he squeezed the life out of his now dead opponent.
"Kugutsu no jutsu (Puppet technique) huh? First time I've ever seen something like that, pretty interesting actually." Naruto said to himself before looking at the screen. He couldn't help but release a groan.
"Something wrong Naruto?" Kakashi asked noticing the annoyance of the blonde.
"Out of everyone here those two had to fight each other." He complained as he pointed at the screen. The others heard Naruto's statement looked at the screen.
Haruno Sakura vs. Yamanaka Ino
"God this is gonna suck." He complained causing Sakura to get annoyed.
"What is that supposed to mean?" she demanded but Naruto ignored her. Huffing in irritation Sakura stomped towards the arena.
Naruto watched with uninterested eyes as the two battled. From the looks of things it would appear that neither girl has taken their training seriously since they graduated from the academy. Not only that but he had to listen to them go on and on about how they wouldn't lose Sasuke's heart to the other.
Although it looked like Ino took her training a bit more seriously than Sakura because she was able to use her hair like a trap and then used her Shintenshin no jutsu (Mind Transfer Technique) and forced Sakura to forfeit the match.
"Called it. I knew it would suck." Naruto muttered to himself but Kakashi still heard it and frowned. Seriously what happened to Naruto? This was not the same blonde haired knucklehead he knew before the exams started.
Tenten vs. Temari
Now this was clearly a one-sided battle in Naruto's mind. He was impressed with Tenten's skills with weapons but it was all for not. No matter what she did it had no affect on Temari. It turned out that Temari was a wind user who used that particular element to deflect any and all weapons that Tenten unleashed. The match ended when Temari pulled out her giant fan and swung it creating a large whirlwind that sent Tenten flying add that to the weapons that were caught in the wind cutting her…well Naruto could tell that she would be sore for some time.
He had to admit that these Suna genin were talented but he frowned as he watched Temari carelessly toss Tenten's unconscious form. Tenten was a talented kunoichi and fought with everything she had, she didn't deserve that kind of disrespect. Luckily her teammate Rock Lee caught her and brought her back to the balcony.
Nara Shikamaru vs. Tsuchi Kin
Shikamaru lazily made his way to the field as he complained about having to fight a girl. If he were honest with himself Naruto thought that Shikamaru would lose. From what he remembered Shikamaru was always lazy and unmotivated. But it turns out though that Shikamaru was a lot smarter than Naruto gave him credit for. The lazy Konoha genin mostly played defense allowing his opponent get over confident. What she didn't know was that Shikamaru was subtly manipulating her so that she was backed up near the wall. After using her own wires against her, Shikamaru was able to trap her in his shadow. After that they exchanged a few words engaged in a game of chicken involving shuriken. Shikamaru leaned back and thanks to his shadow Kin followed his example the only problem was that only one of them was too close to the wall. The end result? Kin banging her head against the wall with enough force to knock herself out.
'I always thought that Shikamaru was just a lazy ass but he's a lot smarter then he looks.' Naruto thought to himself impressed.
'True, I guess this is one of those examples of not judging a book by its cover.' Shirayuki agreed. Naruto nodded before turning to the screen and couldn't stop the grin from appearing.
Uzumaki Naruto vs. Inuzuka Kiba
'Oh hell yeah! It's about time!' Naruto mentally cheered.
'It looks like it's your time to shine. Good luck Naruto-kun.' Shirayuki said as Naruto made his way to the arena.
"Oh man it looks like we lucked out huh Akamaru? Facing the dead last, talk about an easy win." Kiba said with a confident grin as his faithful companion barked in agreement.
"I'm not the same as before Kiba. Get ready because I'm going to kick your ass." Naruto warned as he placed his hand on the hilt of his sword but he didn't draw it. Hearing this Kiba couldn't help but scoff.
"That's some big talk from someone who couldn't even make a simple bunshin." He taunted trying to rile Naruto up but frowned when he saw Naruto's calm face. Shrugging it off he got into a stance.
"Begin!" Hayate shouted commencing the match.
Kiba was about to move but was surprised to see Naruto right in front of him. His eyes widened when he saw his opponent draw his sword. Ducking to dodge the coming slash he smirked only for it to be wiped off when he received a knee to the face. He staggered a bit and glared at Naruto only to pale when he felt steel against his neck.
"Surrender." Naruto ordered as he lightly pressed his sword against Kiba's neck.
'What the hell?' Kiba thought in shock. Never in a million years would he have guessed Naruto was capable of this. It all happened so fast. Hell he barely blinked and he found himself with a sword at his throat.
"I said surrender." Naruto repeated only to wince in pain when he felt something bite his wrist.
Seeing his master in danger Akamaru lunged at the arm holding the zanpakuto and chomped down. Seeing this Kiba quickly jumped back as he launched a few shuriken as Akamaru backed away.
Naruto mentally cursed realizing that he forgot about Akamaru as he blocked the incoming shuriken with his zanpakuto. However the attack served its purpose and gave Kiba enough time to prepare his attack.
"Shikyaku no jutsu (All Fours technique)!" he said as he dropped on all fours and charged at Naruto at an accelerated rate.
Naruto had just finished deflecting the shuriken so he was not prepared for the elbow he received to the gut that sent him flying into the wall.
"Ha! Only one hit and he's down for the count! I knew he was a loser!" Kiba cheered thinking that he already one.
"I'll admit that he surprised me in the beginning but in the end he wasn't good enough." Kurenai stated. She read the files on Naruto and was confident that Kiba could defeat him. Like she said though she truly was surprised by Naruto's first move but thought that it was due to Kiba's overconfidence.
"I figured this would happen. No way could Naruto beat Kiba." Ino said as she watched them.
"I wouldn't be so sure." Shikamaru said getting the attention of his teammates.
"What do you mean Shikamaru?" Choji asked his best friend.
"Troublesome…did you two forget that he took on the Oto genin during the second exam?"He said causing them to widen their eyes. They had completely forgotten how Naruto took them on by himself.
"Procter-san call the match. He's not getting up after that one." Kiba said but Hayate remained silent. Kiba frowned wondering why he wasn't declared the winner when he heard Akamaru barking. He turned to his friend before looking back towards Naruto. His eyes widened when the dust from Naruto's impact cleared and Naruto himself stood up.
"Nice attack, but if that's the best you can do then you have no chance of beating me." He said. Recovering from his shock Kiba only scoffed.
"That's some pretty big talk coming from you loser but it you want me to do my best then here it is." He said as he dug into his pocket pulling out a military rations pill. "Eat up Akamaru." Kiba said tossing the pill to Akamaru. The small dog ate it and Naruto watched as his once white fur turned red.
'Naruto-kun I sense an increase in the dog's energy. Do you want to use my shikai?' Shirayuki asked but Naruto mentally shook his head.
'As much as I want to show off your abilities I want to keep it a secret and use it as a trump card for as long as I can.' He answered getting a nod from the zanpakuto spirit.
"Jujin Bushin (Beast Human Clone)!" Kiba said as a cloud of smoke consumed Akamaru. Once the smoke cleared it revealed an exact copy of Kiba. "You're going down Naruto."
"Alright I've had enough of your mouth and I've had enough with being underestimated." Naruto said glaring at the two Kibas as he raised his arm. "Bakudo #4: Hainawa (Crawling Rope)."
Everyone watched as a strange yellow energy surrounded Naruto's hand before he threw it at one of the Kibas. The energy took the form of a rope and entangled itself around one of the shocked Kiba's. He tried to get free but it proved futile.
"Now get out of the way. Hado #1: Sho (Thrust)." Naruto said pointing his finger at his trapped opponent. He gathered enough energy before unleashing it. Once it hit it target the trapped Kiba was hit with a strong force that sent it back a few feet before hitting the ground.
"Akamaru!" the still standing Kiba shouted revealing that Akamaru was the one on the receiving end of Naruto's attacks. Kiba looked at the still disguised Akamaru who was struggling to get up, the strange yellow rope thing was proving to be an obstacle before growling at Naruto. "What did you do to him?"
"What did I do? Why should I explain to my opponent what I did when it doesn't matter in the end because I'm going to win?" Naruto said with a shrug.
"We'll see about that! Tsuuga (Tunneling Fang)!" Kiba shouted as he charged at Naruto. He leapt into the air and began spinning at such a high speed that he resembled a drill.
If Naruto was worried he didn't show it. Instead he lazily raised his hand.
"Bakudo #8: Seki (Repulse)." Naruto said as a light blue orb appeared in the front of his outstretched hand.
Naruto stood completely still as Kiba's drill like form approached. Everyone expected him to get blown back by the attack but when he connected with the strange blue orb in Naruto's hand Kiba was pushed away as if hit by some powerful force and bounced off the ground.
"Is that all?" Naruto asked bored as he watched Kiba get up on shaky legs.
"What is that Kakashi-sensei?" Sakura asked never seeing something like that before.
"I don't know." Kakashi admitted surprising her. "Naruto has been using some interesting techniques but I've never heard of them before."
A few feet away Neji was had his Byakugan activated as he watched the match with a thoughtful frown. At first he wasn't going to pay attention to this match because he has only heard derogatory things about Naruto so he never considered him a threat but that wasn't the case right now. He activated his Byakugan to study Naruto's techniques since he could be a future opponent but he was confused by what he saw.
Sensing his teammate's confusion Lee asked, "Is something the matter Neji-kun?"
Neji was silent before speaking. "There's something about these techniques he's using. Or more precisely there's something off with his chakra." He explained gaining the others attention.
"What do you mean?" Guy asked inquisitively. For once Neji's usual cool confident look was replaced by one of confusion.
"It's almost like he doesn't have chakra." He said shocking them.
"What do you mean he doesn't have chakra? What about all those weirdo moves he's been using? How can he do those things without chakra?" Ino asked loudly but Neji shook his head.
"I said it's almost like he doesn't have chakra. I don't know if it's something else entirely different or just some unique property of his chakra but something is different. I've never seen something like it before so I can' really explain it." He explained.
Kakashi frowned as he looked back at Naruto. 'Naruto, just what were you up do during those 10 days?'
"What the hell was that?" Kiba asked in frustration. How could he have such trouble against the dead last?
"Like I said before I don't have to explain my techniques to you. Besides…I think it's about time I end this." Naruto said plainly.
"Who do you think you are? Stop talking as if you've already won!" Kiba shouted in anger but Naruto ignored him.
"Ye lord! Mask of blood and flesh, all creation, flutter of wings, ye who bears the name of Man! Inferno and pandemonium, the sea barrier surges, march on to the south!" he chanted as the audience looked confused wondering what he was saying.
"Shikyaku no jutsu (All Fours technique)!" Kiba shouted as he charged at Naruto high speed. However that proved to be a mistake because once he was close enough Naruto unleashed his attack and unfortunately for the Inuzuka he was too close to dodge.
"Hado #31: Shakkaho (Red Fire Cannon)." He said as a red orb of energy appeared in his hand. He aim and unleashed the attack hitting Kiba square in the chest the impact sending him flying. The attack was hot enough to completely burn his jacket off showing that Kiba was covered in multiple burn marks.
"He received that attack at point blank range, there's no way he can continue." Naruto said snapping his fingers. The strange rope of energy that trapped Akamaru disappeared and the white dog immediately ran to his master's prone form.
Hayate looked at Kiba and saw that he wasn't getting up anytime soon. "Winner, Uzumaki Naruto!"
'Congratulations on the win Naruto-kun.' He heard Shirayuki say in his mind as he made his way back to the stands.
'Thanks, sorry that I didn't really use you.' He apologized but Shirayuki just shook it off.
'It's alright. I understand that you want to keep some things hidden for another day.' She reassured.
'Thanks but don't worry. Pretty soon you and I will kick some major ass together.' He promised earning a light giggle from her.
'I'm look forward to it.'
After his short conversation he returned to his spot on the balcony and leaned against the wall waiting for the next match. If he noticed the stares he was receiving from the others around him then he made no indication. It was Kakashi who broke the silence.
"Well Naruto…that was quite a match." He said with an eye smile.
"Thanks." Was the only thing Naruto said.
"So…care to explain those new moves of yours?" Kakashi asked trying to get some information. The others leaned in curious as well.
"No, I'm good." Naruto simply stated cusing them to face fault.
"Why not baka?" Sakura said annoyed. Ever since the exams started something happened to her teammate and she did not like his new attitude.
"I'd rather not explain my skills in front of the competition." Naruto said. 'Not like I'm going to explain anything to them willingly. They never gave a damn about me before but now that I actually have some strength their suddenly interest?' he mentally scoffed.
"I suppose that makes sense." Kakashi sighed letting the matter drop despite how curious he was. The others realized they weren't going to learn anything so they turned to the screen.
Hyuga Hinata vs. Hyuga Neji
This matchup caused Naruto to raise an eyebrow. From what he remembered about Hinata she was a shy girl who was always blushing up a storm for some reason who couldn't fathom. Neji on the other hand he knew nothing about the boy personally but seeing the way he carried himself Naruto could tell he was arrogant.
He looked at the two next combatants and frowned. Neji looked sure of himself if that condescending smirk on his face was anything to go by. Hinata on the other hand looked like she was about to pass out she looked so nervous.
He never really interacted with the girl but when he did she was always kind so he decided to boost her confidence. He waited until she walked by him on her way down to the arena.
"Hinata good luck, kick his ass." He whispered. Hinata looked at him surprised as her face turned red but offered a small smile and nodded in thanks. Kurenai saw this brief interaction and smiled as well. She was well aware of the girl's crush on the oblivious blonde.
The two genin faced each other waiting for the signal to start. Hinata felt a little encouraged by Naruto's few words so she put her best game face on but Neji just sneered at her.
Despite her best efforts Hinata didn't stand a chance. From the beginning Neji was in control. It started with a verbal assault on her saying how she was nothing but a failure and a disappointment to the Hyuga clan. This seemed to have struck a nerve with her but she was able to preserve and fight back. Then he allowed her to believe she was winning with her jyuuken strike but it turned out Neji had been cutting off her tenketsu points from the beginning make her attacks useless. But despite that Hinata kept on fighting until she received a jyuuken strike in the chest courtesy of Neji.
But the thing that really set Neji off was when Hinata was able to get back on her feet and look at the older Hyuga in pity. She said that she actually pitied him stating that he was suffering from the clan. Neji's eyes flashed with anger as he charged at her intent on ending her but before he could hit her he was stopped by multiple Konoha jounin.
After that Neji was declared the winner but Hinata collapsed to the ground severely injured. The medics had to rush in and take her to the infirmary. Naruto glared at Neji with anger. He was an orphan and the thing he wanted most was family so to see the way Neji treated Hinata angered him greatly.
'What and asshole, how could he do that to her?' he thought irately.
'Calm down Naruto-kun. Don't let your anger get the best of you, you wouldn't want to do anything rash.' Shirayuki warned in a gentle voice trying to sooth him. Naruto took a deep breath and release it calming him down a bit. He was very greatly he had Shirayuki now to help him when he needed it.
'Thank you.' He said.
'Anytime.' She said before the screen flashed and the next two fighters were revealed.
Gaara vs. Rock Lee
Now this match got Naruto's attention.
'Shirayuki-chan, make sure to pay attention to this match. I don't want to miss a thing.' Naruto said.
'Alright but is there any particular reasoning?' she asked curiously.
'I had a brief meeting with him before the exams started. He's interested in fighting me. I haven't seen him fight before but he's' a strong one.' Naruto explained.
'Very well.' Shirayuki said before looking at the match through Naruto's eyes.
Naruto had to admit that he was very impressed with the match from Lee's high taijutsu level and speed against Gaara's control over sand. Despite how fast he was Lee could not land a hit that was able to get through Gaara's defensive sand wall. Deciding to kick things up a notch Lee removed the ankle weighs he wore and Naruto's eyes widened to comic proportions when he saw the weights create large craters when they hit the ground. With this new found speed he was able to bypass Gaara's sand and land a few solid hits but Gaara revealed another trick. He wore a shell of sand acting like a second defense making Lee's attacks harmless.
'That sand of his is pretty annoying.' Naruto thought to himself as he watched Lee run in a circle around Gaara picking up speed. Lee decided to make his move by charging at Gaara and kicking him multiple times into the air. He then wrapped Gaara with his bandages and drove him into the ground with the Omote Renge (Front Lotus).
Thinking that he won, Lee was surprised that it was not Gaara he drove into the ground but a sand shell of him. Gaara appeared behind him, a sadistic grin on his face. He proceeded to punish Lee, slamming him into the walls with his sand. After a while, Lee got his second wind and began to speed up and was able to dodge Gaara's attacks. Lee then proceeded to open three more gates, the Gate of Healing, the Gate of Life and the Gate of Pain. Lee's skin turned red and looked like his body was about to burst. He took off like a rocket at Gaara who was not able to defend against Lee's supersonic speed.
'Damn. His strength just skyrocketed.' Naruto thought watching this match continue.
Everyone watched as Lee battered Gaara in mid-air. The Sand Armor was useless and Gaara felt immense pain for the first time in his life. Lee decided to end this and opened the fifth gate, the Gate of Limit. He vanished and reappeared in front of Gaara. He sent him toward the ground but he was suddenly jerked back to a charging Lee. Gritting his teeth Lee hit Gaara with an Ura Renge (Reverse Lotus) and Gaara hit the ground hard creating a large cloud of dust.
Lee was lying on the ground panting for air as the dust cleared. Everyone was shocked to see Gaara lying on the ground his sand armor having multiple cracks. As it turned out he transformed the guard on his back to sand and used it to cushion the fall. Gaara looked worn out but raised his hand as he commanded his sand. Naruto couldn't help but wince after hearing Lee's scream of pain as the sand crushed his left arm and leg. Lee fell to the ground unconscious but Gaara wasn't done. HE sent another wave of sand to finish him off but luckily Guy appeared between them and blocked the attack. After Gaara was declared the winner he returned all the sand to his guard and walked towards the balcony while Lee was sent to the infirmary.
'I knew Gaara was strong but…shit is he really just a genin?' Naruto thought a little disturbed after the match.
'He will be a difficult opponent in these exams.' Shirayuki agreed.
The final match was between the remaining Oto genin Dosu and Choji. Despite his best efforts Choji was easily defeated by Dosu who used his sound jutsu to knock out the Akamichi.
With the matches now over the Hokage stood from his seat and called for the genin that won to stand in the arena. Once they were lined up he took a moment to look over them before speaking.
"First of all I wish to congratulate those of you who have advance. Now I will explain the final stage of the exams that will take place in one month's time. This will give you the opportunity to learn a new trick or two." Sarutobi said as Anko stepped forward with a box.
"All right each of you will pick up a number from this box. Whatever number you get will determine who you will face in the final stage." She announced. The genin walked up to her one by one and got their numbers.
"I have number 8." Dosu stated as he looked at the slip of paper.
"Number 1." Naruto said.
"I got 7." Temari stated.
"5." Kankuro simply said.
"3." Gaara said in a monotone voice.
"I'm number 10." Ino said.
"I gave 8." Shikamaru said in a bored voice before quietly muttering troublesome.
"I have 2." Neji said with a smirk.
"I have received the number 6." Shino said.
"Which leaves the 4th sport for Uchiha Sasuke." Ibiki muttered as he wrote down who had what number on a clipboard.
"Now that we have your numbers the matches for the final stage have been step." Sarutobi said as Ibiki showed the genin the clipboard.
Uzumaki Naruto vs. Hyuga Neji
Gaara vs. Uchiha Sasuke
Aburame Shino vs. Kankuro
Temari vs. Nara Shikamaru
Yamanaka Ino vs. Kinuta Dosu
Once Naruto saw who his opponent once he glanced at Neji who was looking at him condescendingly.
"Now that you know your opponents the preliminaries are officially over. Take this next month to prepare yourself for your upcoming matches." Sarutobi announced.
Time to find Urahara-sensei. I need to up my training.' Naruto thought as he made his way out. He had a whole month to prepare himself and he wasn't about to waste any time.
End of Chapter