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Wind Monk Banishment #3

Naruto: Wind Monk Banishment 3

Author Notes:

As I said in the last set of notes, I don’t plan on having Naruto remove the seals on his hands anytime soon. Despite the increased loathing I have for Konoha thanks to certain fanfics that I highly recommend, I will not be actively bashing anyone. I will point out flaws in their characters and much like Malciah, I claim artistic license.

I may be slightly more cynical though…on second thought, maybe I should stay away from fanfics for a few days.

The Deidara boss battle in this fight has a great deal of influence from Naruto Ultimate Ninja Storm 2. Aside from the idiot who relied on his immortality, the rest of Akatsuki are threats and will be treated as such.

Chapter 3

Land of Fire / Land of Wind Border

Sasuke was leaning against the wall inside a housing building for those crossing the border during a particularly bad sandstorm. It was like a hotel with lousy service. In the room with him were Sai, Sakura, and Kakashi.

Upon arriving, the team was informed that a sandstorm had suddenly appeared, and since traveling through sandstorms were a surefire way to get lost in the desert, they weren’t allowed to cross just yet. At least that was the cover story. While the Suna ninja didn’t show any hostility or anxiety, the group knew better and was taught to “see underneath the underneath.”

Most likely they were being stalled, and they knew that if they did anything suspicious they’d be turned away. Still, Kakashi wasn’t an idiot, or blind. So he had Sai send several of his ink mice towards Suna under the cover of night, where they went unnoticed as they passed two men in cloaks with red clouds.

Kazekage’s Private Training Ground at Night

Naruto sat on the ground in a lotus position, calm and relaxed within the secluded place where Gaara did some of his more private training. The last two days were spent hanging around with Fuu and getting her introduced to the Sand Siblings, along with Matsuri and Kanna. Naruto enjoyed that night with Kanna and Fuu, who used the shadow clone technique to do…things that went well with his stamina.

He had to remember to thank Jiraiya for his part in inspiring Fuu with his Icha Icha series…after kicking his ass for spying on his parents…on the night of his conception…damn Pervy Sage and Demon Fox. That memory will never leave him alone.

Extending his territory, Naruto felt the near absent life around him on the surface of the desert sands, despite the drop in the temperature as night fell. Taking a deep breath he guided his chakra into the loose sand to occupy the space between it and detect the life forms hiding beneath the surface. Naruto’s territory could peer into water and sand with ease, while forcing it into something like solid rock was difficult.

Naruto felt the presence of a scorpion creeping behind him beneath the sand, curious and unaware if he was a predator. Naruto stilled the chakra around the scorpion and then used shape manipulation to shape it into a box and temper it into a solid form. Exhaling, he willed the box to move and it rose inside his domain, the scorpion and the layer of sand it hid beneath inside of it.

The box appeared to float around him, when actually he used mental effort and chakra control inside his territory to push the box. Once it was face to face with Naruto, he stared at the scorpion without any emotion on his face, despite its stinger lashing out against the box in fear. Taking another deep breath, he smiled and gently pushed the box fifty feet way before lowering it to the surface of the sand.

“Careful,” he released the box and the scorpion darted away from him. “Curiosity killed more than a cat.”

Standing, Naruto forced chakra into his feet and leapt into the air. As he reached the summit of his jump, he recreated the box he sealed the scorpion in and solidified it beneath his feet, giving him a foot hold in the sky. Kicking off it, he somersaulted and fell towards the ground with his arms spread.

When he neared the ground, he shaped nine small boxes in a circle around him and increased the density of chakra around them to form nine chakra chains with the same point of origin. Each attached to one of the boxes. They acted as a net, as he landed upright on his right foot.

Extending his hand in a claw-like manner towards a large stone, he commanded the chakra become a second set of finger. Swiftly swinging them down, the chakra lashed out against the stone and created decent sized gashes.

The Temple of Enlightenment was called Naruto’s territory for a reason.

The area filled with his chakra operates according to his control. The chakra lacing the air can make it blow or become a blade, the chakra in the sand can capture and shape it, and nothing was out of his reach. But the greater the area under his influence, the lower the control he has.

In addition, the technique can be disturbed by someone with enough chakra or control. Part of the reason the technique was so effective was that it was unknown to the majority of those who would pursue him, but information was the key to battles and he wanted to maintain his secrecy. He would only use this against someone who could actually see chakra as an absolute last resort.

With his exercises done, he made his way to Fuu’s side. It was times like this he wished he had perfected his father Hiraishin—the Flying Thunder God technique. But unfortunately, he would need a greater reference than his mother’s memories. If only there were someone living who could advise him…

Back in Konoha

The three members of the fourth Hokage’s private guards all sneezed at once.

With Fuu

The green-haired kunoichi was currently lying on her bed at Gaara’s manor and reading more of Jiraiya’s literature, when she noticed her lover walk in.

“Hey, Naruto?” Fuu pointed to a page in her book. “Can we try this tonight?”

Naruto went over to read what she was proposing, before his entire face went red and he backed away slowly. He enjoyed sex, but he wasn’t a hopeless pervert like Jiraiya, and there were some things even the self-proclaimed Super Pervert won’t do. Naruto doubted he could even get as many girls at once that they referenced the previous night.

How he got the research for such a thing will escape Naruto’s mind forever, but it was an abomination to all but those who worshiped the ground the author wrote on and carried his books like a religious text.

Land of Wind/Land of Fire Border

Kakashi was reading said unspeakable acts when he sneezed.

“Did you catch a cold, sensei?” Sakura asked.

Back with Fuu

“Remember what I’ve said about limitations?” he reminded her.

“You consented to doing anything I wanted already.” Fuu told him, getting off the bed.

“When was that?” he asked.

“The night we were with Kanna,” she crossed her arms. “After the clones. You never go back on your word, right?”

“Now Fuu…” Naruto muttered, as Fuu inched towards him with a predatory look on her face, her mind thinking of several ways to try this. It didn’t help that Choumei was giving her advice and Kurama was laughing his tails off. “That’s not fair, no man would be thinking rationally then!”

Kinky things that Pervy Sage indirectly corrupted her with aside, Fuu was a great woman. Strong, smart, reliable, caring, she was perfect for him. Hell, Naruto could see raising a family with her.

They’d have to keep privacy seals in the bedroom, due to her insatiable behavior at times, but other than that…

“Naruto…” Fuu pounced and he wound up with his back against the wall and Fuu pressed against him. “Don’t resist…just enjoy.”

“But I need to save my energy to apply the seal on Gaara tomorrow!” Naruto made one last desperate plea, but it fell on deaf ears.

Before she could act, Naruto’s ears twitched and he looked out the window as a muffled explosion went off nearby. It was accompanied by a small flash that illuminated a portion of the night sky…and a white bird with a male Ino in a black cloak with red clouds being chased by sand?

“Salvation—I mean, oh no! Akatsuki’s attacking! I’d better go help Gaara!” Naruto said, before he leaped out the window.

“I’m killing them for this,” Fuu muttered under her breath and started getting dressed for combat. “I was so close!”

With Gaara

White wings of clay took to the desert sky of the night, avoiding a barrage of sand tendrils that slid through the air and grated against each other while acting like the sand jinchuuriki’s limbs. Golden hair swayed in the air, as smaller clay birds were released and swatted from the sky.

“Not bad….! Hm.” Deidara chirped as twin tendrils lashed out and batted him off his ride and towards the ground. The sand darted to catch him from above and below, entrapping him, but the clay bird swooped in and retrieved him in time. “That was pretty close… Hmmm.”

“You won’t get away in one piece.” Gaara told the Akatsuki member. Sand gathered behind him in the shape of compressed spheres and became bullets. Leaving a trail that shimmered in the moonlight, they flew towards the clay bird whose acrobatic superiority saved its master from a death without grace.

The city became an obstacle course as they navigated throughout it with agility. Through the looping passages and roads, around the buildings and towers, they flew. The exchange of bombs and sand woke the sleeping residents who witnessed the flight of their leader as the Akatsuki member rose higher into the sky.

“Pretty good,” Deidara mused before he pulled out a clay figure. “But this is it…For you and the whole village!”

The clay figure became a giant and followed the whims of gravity. Falling towards the village below, the blast element infused clay would rupture and bestow the art of death in an instant. Gaara’s eyes widened and then steeled themselves.

“Sky Sand Defensive Wall!” he raised his arms and the sand obeyed.

Towers of sand rose at the beckoning of the desert master, the fifth Kazekage. Spreading like a great wave and then hardening, the sand spout separated the village from the explosion that lit up the night sky with hue of destruction, as a certain blond watched on and made his way towards them.

Gaara leaned on one knee as he dealt with the exhaustion from the effort of raising the wall to protect his village.

“Blocking that is amazing…Hmmm.” Deidara commented, and Gaara glared.

The sound of shifting sand and the all consuming shadow were the only warnings he got as twin-tipped sand arms began to enclose the very sky.

“Sand Prison!” Gaara announced and the sphere of sand was sealed.

“Blast!” Deidara’s voice echoed and his bird exploded, leaving a gap in the prison for him to fall through. As he made his way to the earth and sand tendrils rained from above, the mouth on the left hand spit of a certain figure and filled it with chakra. A plume of smoke gave way to another bird and he landed on it in a crouch as they pulled away.

Gaara raised his hand and concentrated. The sand of the desert ruptured and roared as the head of Shukaku took form.

Deidara hovered in place as the sight. “Whoa…” he muttered, relatively impressed before he took off. “Guess I’ll back off for now…Hm.”

The mouth of the Ichibi raccoon’s avatar opened. Sand and demonic chakra of the Bijuu merged and swirled to the fierce howl of wind and sand. Gaara’s eyes glowed luminous golden for but a brief moment as he took aim.

“Hear the howl of the desert…” he ominously proclaimed. “Roar of Shukaku!”

The trigger was pulled.

The light of the golden roar painted the night sky and parted the clouds while the desert sands were pushed back in the shockwave. The wrath of the desert was unleashed in its entirety. The flight of the explosive artist was cut short as the light consumed him, his only salvation with the detonation of the bird carrying him allowing him to escape the full force of the blast.

He fell to earth as the form of Shukaku faded.

With Naruto

“…How come every jinchuuriki I meet has some cool technique or bloodline ability and I only get stuck with faster healing?” Naruto said to no one in particular. “I want to blow stuff up too!”

Heh…” Kurama chuckled. “I guess this would be a bad time to tell you about one of my Tail Beast Skills then?

“You’ve been holding out on me?”

In my defense, imagine if you had access to that kind of firepower when you were a small kit? The village would have burned down…Well, I couldn’t really care about that, but you’d most likely have killed yourself.

“…We’ll discuss this as we make our way to Gaara,” Naruto closed and started leaping over rooftops, the buzzing of beetles following him.

With Gaara

Gaara made his way towards the fallen form of Deidara on a rooftop that served as his final resting place. His breath ran ragged from the exhaustion of the fight. Lethargy set in as the adrenaline faded from his system.

“Is it over, then…?”

“I would say…not,” the voice of the explosive artist came from behind the weary Kazekage.

He turned to face his hunter while the fallen figure lost its color and became clay once again.

“That was pretty close…” Deidara admitted.

He took that and still…Gaara thoughts ran rampant.

“But…” he formed the seal of the explosion with his right hand. “In the end, victory’s mine!”

Clay spiders broke through the sand gourd and crept along Gaara’s body. Before he could mutter a word or protect himself, the final words were spoken.

“Blast!” The spiders ruptured and the blast element was ignited within.

Point blank explosions rocked the rooftop as the Kazekage’s body stood at ground zero. He fell to his knees and was consumed by the rising tower of constant explosions and smoke rose in the air with the scent of charred flesh. The sand armor protecting his body was cracked and exposed raw skin beneath.

The Kazekage fell into oblivion.

“Man…” he approached the fallen jincuuriki, his hands chewing a new sculpture. “That took some doing. Mixing detonating clay in the sand in the gourd.” A smirk etched its way across his face.

“You weren’t giving me any openings, either. You’re as tough as I figured, Kazekage…” The clay expanded to form another fowl with more girth than his regular breed. “All right. Now I’m gonna take you someplace fun…Hmmm.”

“I DON’T THINK SO!” roared another voice.

On instinct, Deidara leapt to the right and off the rooftop, his left spitting out another bird to ride on. The carrier game that was to house the Kazekage’s body was split in two by a blue crescent arc that cleaved through the figure and an explosion rocked the rooftop.

Standing amidst the dancing flames and formless smoke, a cloaked figure stepped from the backdrop without injury. The wavering air added to his presence and was blown away as his chakra roared with fury. There, wrapped in a blue aura stood Naruto, brandish his chakra broadsword of Uzushio.

“Naruto!” a second figure hovered next to him, her green hair shifting in the wind.

Green hair…Wings…Blonde hair…Whisker marks…Hmmm. Deidara pooled his observations into a single thought. The Nanabi and Kyuubi…

“Get Gaara to the hospital!” Fuu told her lover. “I’ve got this!”

“Alright, but be careful!” he deferred to her wishes and hoisted Gaara over his shoulder. “He’s got an Iwa band and that clay is probably earth element, so lightning will short it out. These guys move in a pair so I’ll search for any out of place signatures and find the other one.”

Naruto leapt off the rooftop that smoldered with his old friend in tow.

Another two jinchuuriki? Sasori-danna won’t be happy that one got away, but maybe if I bring this one or the other one…Deidara checked his supplies. I’m glad I bought extra clay…Hmmm.

“Now then…” Fuu looked at the artist being hoisted in the air by his artwork, her wings glistening in the moonlight among burning orange the contaminated the sky. Water gathered into her hand and took the form of a curved blade.

“Payback for ruining my Naruto time!” From above a horde of beetles descended upon the artist, whose creation took off like a jet.

He’s too fast for the beetles right now…Spreading her wings the jinchuuriki took flight and flew after the artist.

“Come on.” Deidara chided the jinchuuriki. “Let me show you a night on the town. I’m sure we’ll have a blast…Hmmm.”

The pair began the dance of the sky once again, with bombs exploding in the background.

With Sasori

“What is taking him so long?” the puppet master of legend sighed. He hated waiting, despite being a puppet and therefore having all the time in the world. “I am going to turn him into a human puppet for this.”

A wave of chakra washed over the puppet master and his steel tail whipped. Leaving a silver arc in the air the metal batted away the projectiles that came towards him. His gaze was drawn to the figure landing ahead of him.

“…This was unexpected…” Sasori mused. “Chakra needles. Looks like Kakuzu didn’t gloss over your growth when it comes to using chakra constructs after all.”

“Akatsuki…” Naruto pulled out the pole and formed a blade for combat. “It’s time for the hunters to become the hunted.”

“Is that so?” Sasori chuckled lightly. Then he ripped off his mask and exposing the puppet’s mouth.

The slots of the mouth slid down and a barrage of silver senbon rained down forward towards the jinchuuriki in a spread pattern. Heading to the left or right would hold no salvation for those caught in the spray. One touch would mean a long death.

Yet, Naruto advanced forward.

The slicing of the air as the senbon passed by; the clashing of the chakra blade against the metal; the sand being littered with the needles of death; these constant sounds echoed throughout the night air outside the walls of the Village Hidden in the Sand.

“You saw through it…” he raised the arm that held a dozens of cylinders attached to a larger one and launched it into the sky. It spun and released the cylinders, which further split into a shower of senbon that dotted the sky silver. “How about this?”

Naruto howled and flared his chakra outward. The pulse it released batted the needles out of the sky and sent them spiraling around the jinchuuriki, who continued his charge towards the puppet master with a fist shrouded in the white cloak of wind chakra and a chakra blade in the other.

The steel tail of the Akatsuki member flashed and made its way towards Naruto. Skidding along the desert sands, he twisted and avoided the piercing edge that refracted the moonlight in his eyes as he passed with his blade arcing. Drawing a blue crescent arc it cleaved through the tail.

“SHATTER!” Naruto finished his rotation and slammed his fist into Sasori’s body. “HARDLINER: GALE FIST!”

A cloud of sand was thrown into the air. The sound of crushed wood echoed with the sound of explosives from the village. Splinters fell like leaves as the cloud of sand cleared and Naruto leapt back.

“You’ve proven yourself worthy of learning my name…” a redheaded boy appeared from the remains of the broken puppet while donning the cloak of Akatsuki. “My name is Sasori of the Red Sand. Allow me to show you my masterpiece.”

He unraveled a scroll…

With Fuu and Deidara

Two ninja danced in the night sky as the villagers watched below the dazzling yet deadly display above them. The sky would be filled with bolt of blue lightning one second and orange flames and smoke the next. The flaps of bird wings from the clay fowls were countered by the buzzing of insect wings.

“These are a lot faster!” Deidara launched numerous quad-winged games at the caramel-toned woman with mint-green hair. They swiveled and darted it a helix pattern towards Fuu before accelerating.

Fuu twisted her body and ascended towards the moon, two blades of hardened water in her hands. Her figure became silhouetted in the moon along with dozens of dots that represented her flying beetles. Halting in midair, her wings folded while lightning climbed into her blades and she fell to earth.

Twin trails of lighting circled into their own helix as she spiraled towards the ground. The quad-wings that failed to break away from their ascent were cut down and riddled with lightning to diffuse them. The pieces fell with Fuu until she opened her wings and fluttered parallel to small oasis below with the clay game carpet bombing from above which exploded on impact and threw up spouts of water.

Deidara looked on as his hands were producing more sculptures. He abandoned his current ride instantly when a shadow descended from the sky above. Hidden in the darkness of the night were the beetles Fuu had before her descent.

“Blast!” the large bird exploded with enough force to light up a tenth of Suna as it incinerated the insects. With a flick of his wrist and a bit of chakra he landed on a more slender bird than the bulky one he had before. He applied chakra to his feet and leaned back as far as he could as the lightning streaming blades crossed at the point where his head once was.

Meeting Fuu’s gaze with a smirk, he tossed up five clay figures that became spiders and were heading for the jinchuuriki while forming the seal for his element. Blurs from dragon flies that Fuu gathered from the oasis nearby tore past and captured the spiders as he muttered the trigger phase and the explosion was set off the side, sending both of them into a spiral, recovery, and subsequent chase once again.

“Have you ever experienced the art of a single moment?” he asked the fleeting jinchuuriki of the sky as his hands began jointly chewing a large amount of clay from his pouch. “That single moment where true beauty takes hold and shines while leaving an unforgettable memory?”

“Yes, although it’s only seen when I’m with Naruto.” Fuu replied while she began infusing lightning chakra into her cylinder. “I’ll never forget those moments in my life.”

Deidara smirked, as both his hands spat out another sculpture that fell while he ascended. Sending his current method of transportation on a crash course, he released all the remaining pre-made figures into the sky save for one and they became a flock of birds of prey while Fuu’s cheeks puffed out and she gathered chakra into it.

Hidden Art: Hiding in Scale Powder!” she mentally recited as the powder blanketed the sky and refracted moonlight to create a blinding glare. Deidara released his chakra grip on the bird and fell, while Fuu unleashed her lightning chakra infused beetles and they scattered.

The birds swarmed on her supposed location hidden in the light and impacted with each other to set off a chain reaction that she avoided. Fuu dove toward Deidara who had gotten himself a new ride. A much bigger ride…

“C2: Dragon!” Deidara looked smugly at the jinchuuriki. “This would be the moment where you flee…Hm.”

Lucky Seven! I’m running low on chakra!” Fuu telepathically told her tenant as she took to the skies with a predator in tow.

Well Fuu-girl, that’s what happens when you converted so much into lightning and fed the little ones.” Choumei chided her. “I can give you a quick refill, but you’ll be feeling the effects for the next few days depending on how much.

Just enough for summoning a large water beetle!” Fuu abandoned her water blades and flew beyond the walls of the village while avoiding roughly a dozen mini-dragons with main one trailing.

Got it, but you’ll be feeling buggy for the next three days!

Choumei flared its chakra over the girl and a thin green outline formed. Her pupils became compounded and glowed green. Her wings flapped faster and she accelerated, rising into the sky and going through hand seals until—

Summoning!” a large beetle with sapphire scales that the moonlight washed over appeared. The beetle’s elytra were opened while its hind wings moved too fast to be seen as anything but a blur.

What is the meaning of summoning me in the middle of a desert young one?” the beetle complained. “I am better suited for aquatic ventures or areas with more moisture. Just because you hold the great one does not mean you can summon me in such an environment.

“Sorry Mi-sama, but I need you to spray the area!” Fuu begged.

Fine.” The summoning bellowed before converting its chakra and opening its mandibles. Water sprayed out in a fine mist of condensation and hung in the air before the summoning vanished.

“I’m all wet…Hmm.” Deidara shrugged…until he heard the buzzing of beetles around his main ride and saw several small beetles with translucent abdomens…filled with lightning. Crap…

Sorry little ones,” Fuu muttered to the tiny insects before giving the final command. “Hidden Art: Flash Beetle Bomb!

The beetles shone with the flash of life before their abdomens burst and released the lightning into the cloud of mist. Lightning jumped from water particle to water particle; arching lightning conducted and was sent throughout the air; the dragons and the artist fell to the desert sands below with a loud thud and impact cloud.

Fuu lowered herself gently until she was hovering over the artist who was burned and smoldering.

“How…” his voice came out rasp and weak. His organs were failing; ruptured from the electricity flowing throughout his body.

“My beetles were infused with a majority of my converted lightning chakra,” she told the dying artist. “As a result, they become no different than your explosives: they shine for but a brief moment to kill an enemy and then return to the world as ashes.”

“Heh…” a soft but fragile smile graced his lips. “Beautiful…”

With those last words, the artist known as Deidara passed from the impure world and his body went still. Fuu used a final lightning technique to ensure his clay was completely diffused and his body was dead, before placing his corpse in a preservation storage scroll.

“You may have been an enemy, but nevertheless, rest in peace.”

With Sasori

“Iron Sand: Drizzle!” the puppet master announced.

The greatest puppet in Sasori’s arsenal had been released—the third Kazekage. The gathered iron sand was fired like bullets towards the Uzumaki who had to reseal his conducting rod as the metal construct was constantly being drawn by magnetic field and raised a barrier with chakra chains as a cloud of dust was throwing up. The shots halted once visibility was lost.

Sasori fingers stood rigid, his puppet hovering over his right shoulder. They twitched and began a complex pattern as a barrage of chakra needles were fired from cloud to bring up a wall of iron sand. It was then a shadow grew on the ground and Sasori looked up.

Naruto’s hand was wreath in chakra and formed the blade he once showed Gaara. Swinging the blade down he severed the chakra strings as Sasori jumped back and sent the puppet to ground with a side kick as the iron sand lost control.

Sasori extended his hands and a tube emerged from both palms. A stream of pressurized water was fired at the Uzumaki jinchuuriki who dodged as he felt the thin streams with in his territory. Once he used up the water, Naruto acted.

“RAIN DOWN!” his blonde hair ruffled as he raised his hand. Dozens of chakra needles were shaped above Sasori from Naruto’s chakra permeating his territory. They flew towards the androgynous man.

Sasaori hopped lightly on his feet and avoided the barrage. Finishing with a dodge roll he extended his hands and chakra strings were launched from all ten fingers. The right five connected with Naruto’s forearm and sent it curved towards his head with the chakra blade active and forced him to drop the shape manipulation to avoid decapitating himself before streaming chakra into his free hand and severing the strings attached with them.

Naruto’s eyes widened as he felt movement behind him and somersaulted backwards. The third Kazekage puppet’s claws and saw cut off a tuff of hair as he landed and slid back. He looked up in curiosity as the iron sand gathered into the sky and formed a dense sphere that hovered above the center of battlefield.

“Iron Sand: Needle Sphere!” the sphere ruptured and iron spikes were launched from the sky and Naruto ran.

Swerving left and right, jumping backwards and rolling forward at opportune moments, he avoided the constructs that littered the sky and ground. He slid to halt when the downpour stopped. Then spikes shot out like thorny tendrils from the implanted the construct and Naruto dodged as best he could but was scraped on various points of his body before they formed a cage.

“It’s over…” Sasori told him. “My poison is in your system. Unless you receive the antidote from me, you’ll die painfully in three days.”

Naruto smirked as his chakra blade vibrated using chakra control and became shrouded in white wind chakra. The blade flashed as he swung it and cut through his cage. “Poison doesn’t work on me.”

I may have over-relied on it…Sasori thought before replying. “Let’s test your resistance then? You don’t need all of your limbs anyway.”

“Iron Sand Gather: Sword!” the sand took on the shape of blades. With a twitch of the finger, the puppet’s magnetic field gathered the senbon from the desert sand that were used earlier and embedded them inside the blades to make an even more lethal weapon.

“…That might do the trick,” the Uzumaki muttered. “For someone who needs jinchuuriki alive, you sure as hell are going for a lot of kill strikes!”

“Even if it takes a few years, the Kyuubi will reform eventually…” the Kazekage puppet clacked. “I think I’ll turn you into a puppet and add you to my collection. I can replace anything missing.”

The blades fell with aid of gravity. The puppet’s chest cavity opened and a burst of chakra made the blades fall faster. The last visible sight of Naruto was his widening eyes turning red with slits with pupils as the impact threw up a cloud of sand and the shock wave shattered the chakra control that maintain the Temple of Enlightenment.

Oh for father’s sake, what are you waiting for?” the fox howled as his host leapt back out of the cloud with enhanced speed and landed on all fours, the scrapes on his body were evaporating as steam poured from his body. “Breaking down this poison in your system isn’t easy when you keep getting bathed in it.

I’m up against a fucking Kage, puppet or not! It’s like fighting Gaara but with poison instead of crushing!

Are you that daft kit?” Kurama sighed. “All those books and scrolls you’ve read since your exile and you never picked up a chemistry one? Iron sand’s main component is magnetite, which loses its charge once sufficiently heated.

“…How do you know that?” he mentally questioned his tenant.

I’ve been around since the sage of the six paths final days. My hosts have both been involved in the great wars. Do you honestly think either I or they wouldn’t have learned the abilities of an enemy Kage?” Kurama snorted. “Just roast the damn sand already!

I don’t have a fire seal scroll on me right now, I didn’t think I’d need to make one just yet and I’m not a fire-user…” Naruto paused. “Well, I guess we could use that skill you’ve been holding out on me.

The heat from my Bijuu skill depends on the number of tails I’m using. Your three-tailed state should be enough to disrupt the magnetism from the puppet and charcoal it into kindling…You’ll also have a dry throat after this.

Naruto’s whisker marks became engorged. A crimson shroud emerged from his body and took shape as bits of his skin began to peel. Donning his three-tailed state, a murderous grin spread across his face as he howled to the heavens.

This does not bode well…the puppeteer felt alarmed and metallic protrusions emerged from his back as Naruto gathered air and chakra into his lungs and his chest and cheeks swelled.

NINE-TAILED FOX FIRE STREAM!” Scarlet tongues of fire raced across the desert and roared. The sky grew blood red as it flared and turned the sand into molten glass from contact with the flames that devoured the iron sand and the third Kazekage puppet.

The puppeteer decided to cut his losses and took to the skies. The blades on his back rotated and he flew off in the distance while Naruto slowly exited his tailed beast state exhausted.

“Damn it,” Naruto swore while he clenched his dry throat and coughed. “He got out of my range in the middle of the attack…now even puppets can fly.”

Kurama scoffed. “You’ve still got a long way to go. When all this is over, you better make some more sealing scrolls and training from those samurai in Iron. And hurry up with that genjutsu blocking array. You won’t be able to fight that masked man when he returns at this rate and I’ll be damned if I fall under his control again…damn sharingan users.”

“Whatever,” Naruto stood upright. “At least Akatsuki is two members down now if Fuu took care of the other one.”

Naruto began to make his way back to the village to check on his lover and friend. As he passed the gap of the defenses that served as the entrance, he failed to notice the legion of black mice that hid in the shadows.

The mice looked at each other and established two groups, all but one to carry the information they had back to their master, the last to trail Naruto who joined up with Kankuro. It slipped inside the puppet on his back.

Kazekage’s Office

Gaara donned his hat once again after leaving the hospital despite the doctor’s insistence. In his office were the two other jinchuuriki, his brother, and an elderly pair of siblings.

“To think my grandson went so far as to turn himself into a puppet…” the elderly woman sighed. “He even killed the third Kazekage and turned him into one as well.”

“Indeed,” the older man shook his head.

“How did Akatsuki get past our village defenses without raising an alarm?” Gaara asked. His brother stepped up.

“Yura…he sabotaged and killed the guards at the entrance.” Kankuro told him. “I was in the middle of a fight with him when I saw Naruto heading to confront Sasori, but by the time I finished, the third Kazekage had been unleashed and I doubted I could keep up as a puppeteer.”

“You couldn’t,” the woman chuckled. “Only someone of my skill would be able to keep up with my Grandson now. If it bothers you that much, I’ll see about giving you some hands-on training. Still this poses a bit of a problem.”

“Chiyo-baa-sama is correct,” Gaara rubbed his forehead. “Konoha has a team waiting at the border and I can’t hold them there for another day without reason. Naruto, while you and Fuu are both technically free of any village, I’m sure they’ve heard rumors of your arrival and we’ll need to relocate the pair of you until they leave.”

“That’s fine, but where?” Fuu asked while nursing a steadily growing headache from Choumei’s tainted chakra.

“The Wind Daimyo and I were going through her father’s predecessor’s assets and found a certain hidden piece of property,” Gaara referred to the Wind Daimyo whose greed helped trigger the invasion years ago. “Only she, Matsuri, Temari, Kankuro, and I know of its location.”

“That place was great,” Kankuro nodded. “It was like a desert paradise. Given how much it cost, I wouldn’t be surprised if a good portion of the budget that was supposed to be used to support Suna as retainers went into it.”

“Regardless,” Gaara sighed. “This will be the perfect location for you to hide. The villagers are grateful for your help and will stay silent, but rumors will leak somehow. I’m not foolish enough to doubt that we have spies in our ranks.”

“Alright, but can we have a few hours to restock on supplies?” Naruto asked. “I need to resupply my sealing materials and get some new clothes since the ones I’m wearing are shredded. Also, I need to apply the seal array to you in case this crap happens again.”

“Matsuri and Kankuro will escort you both to the safe house after the seal is applied and supplies are bought,” Gaara droned. “Also, about that matter involving the Suna contractors we discussed. It’s done and they’ll arrive on the location shortly.”

“Contractors?” Kankuro looked at the blonde.

“We’re keeping it a secret for now, but let’s just say that it was money well spent on a future project.”

Two Days Later

Team Kakashi finally arrived at Suna.

The ink mice made it back to Sai, who recorded a transcript and log of the conversations, as well as visual information in the form of pictures on a book. After Sai passed out from chakra exhaustion, they stayed one day to discuss matters before they were given permission to cross now that the “sandstorm” had settled.

While Sai passed by Kankuro, the ink mouse in the puppet that went unnoticed melted and shot up the inker’s leg and into a container. When he sat down and poured the ink onto a map, it created a black trail indicating the path the puppeteer took to the safe house and back. He rolled it up and joined his teammates minus Kakashi, who was meeting with Gaara.

“Kakashi Hatake…” Gaara looked at the bandaged jounin and activated a privacy seal. “What happened to you?”

“One of your elderly shinobi mistook me for my father…” he scratched the back of his head.

“My apologies. Chiyo-baa-sama is getting along in years.”

“The matter has been settled at the very least,” he chuckled before getting serious. “Anyway, we came to tell you about an organization named Akatsuki, but you’ve seemed to have run into them already.”

Gaara wasn’t surprised he knew. “That information would have been helpful much sooner, but in the end we were able to drive them off. I’ve sent the body of one back to Iwa.”

“Well, that sandstorm lasted a really long time…” Kakashi sighed and then tried to run the guilt angle to ask about Naruto. “Otherwise we would have helped and the number of lives lost would be much smaller.”

“Let’s stop beating around the brush,” Gaara dropped all pretenses. “You’ve known about Akatsuki for years and now you decided to send the information? Right around the time rumors of a certain blonde reached the ears of the Hokage?”

“Kazekage-sama, it was only rumors then,” he argued. “We only heard whispers and nothing concrete.”

“Despite the fact that they appeared four years ago? When they tried and catch Naruto?” Gaara glared at the man. “It is bad enough that we jinchuuriki are called weapons and scorned for things we had no control over, or that the demons themselves were captured and sealed to start this so called balance of power and kept as weapons. But it is that type of isolationist thinking that leads to war because of incidents that could have been avoided if the information was shared.”

Kakashi stood silent.

“If you raised the alarm then, steps could have been better taken to neutralize the threat they present to the nations that are housing jinchuuriki and I wouldn’t have several dead men and women from the surprise attack. You don’t go around hiding the fact that an organization of S-class criminals are targeting those similar to me and then try to slip it in at the last minute in order to guilt me about leaving you at the border while we had a guest.

“From my point of view, instead of giving all the information about Akatsuki to every nation holding a jinchuuriki, you opted to keep it to yourselves in hopes of letting the rest get captured to weaken them. Your sudden reactions make it clear that you had another goal and not in good faith coming here.”

“Every nation has its secrets.” Kakashi made his point, but Gaara had a rebuttal.

“Maybe, but we’re dealing with an international group of Kage-level opponents who can overthrow nations, destroy villages with massive bombs, and have had ample time to do whatever the hell they wanted for at least four years. They have already attacked Taki and Suna in order to claim their ninja who contain chakra demons, and by now I’m sure they moved onto the others by now.”

“May I inquire how you discovered this information?” the copy cat asked.

“My source has firsthand experience, as have I. If the purpose of this visit was to inform me of a threat to my nation then you have come too late. Tell your Hokage that I will be compiling all the information I have on the subject and sending it to the five great nations to take steps to avoid having this incident repeat itself and more of my kin going missing because they weren’t aware they were being hunted nor their hunters capabilities. This meeting is over.”

Translation: Get Out Now.

In an Akatsuki Base at the same time

“Capture of the Gobi was successful,” Itachi announced.

“Does something smell like steamed shark?” Sasori added.

“Kisame opted to handle him alone and didn’t listen when I told him that the jinchuuriki could use steam techniques.”

“So that’s what you really look like?” Kisame chuckled at Sasori. “You look more like a girl than Deidara does…”

Kakuzu noticed the missing member. “Where is Deidara anyway?”

“Dead I’d assume,” Sasori mused. “Our plan to capture the Ichibi were thwarted by the Kyuubi jinchuuriki. I’d hazard a guess that the Nanabi jinchuuriki was there and killed Deidara.”

“It would seem that we’ve lost another member…” Pain solemnly said. “Let us mourn for him in privacy once this meeting has concluded.”

“The fox brat managed to destroy my favorite puppet and Hiruko…” Sasori began informing them of Naruto’s techniques and skills. “—agility, chakra control, and access to a Bijuu skill…he’s becoming a pain to deal with. Send Kisame after him already. Leave the corpse in one piece so I can replace my Kazekage with him.”

“If its bloodline bodies you need, I may know a few bounties that can tide you over until then.” Kakuzu volunteered. “The bodies are mostly intact after I take out their hearts…although I still need a lightning element one.”

“Kakuzu and Sasori,” Pain addressed them. “You two will work together on bounty hunting and information gathering. You two are to stay away from the Nanabi and Kyuubi at all costs. You’re in charge of our finances and information networks, losing either of you would cripple us further.

“I’ll have Zetsu work together with Tobi to find us two new recruits and possibly retrieve Deidara’s body from Iwa if they’ve sent it for a burial. Itachi and Kisame, capture the Nibi from Kumo. If the two of them continue to be a threat, I shall personally capture them when the time comes.”

“But I want a crack at him!” Kisame whined. “Come on! He uses fire; I use water. He uses chakra weapons; I have a sword that can eat chakra and massive reserves. Unless you can do those things, I have the best shot!”

Pain could do all those things, but why argue when Kisame is rationally explaining his point? As long as it leads to peace, it doesn’t matter who does it. “Fine…but only if you don’t have a target at the time. We need him last and try not to kill him or we’ll be waiting years for the Kyuubi to reform.”

He shot a glance at Sasori at that last comment.

“What?” the puppeteer shrugged. “So I may have gone a little into the overkill section. He lived and I didn’t use my final performance.”

“You and Kakuzu are going to get along fine.” Kisame chuckled.

Safe House in Land of Wind

“Owww…” Fuu whined while lying next to Naruto on a bed in her undergarments. Her fingers were wrapped around the amber necklace and charm he gave her. “Naruto, it still hurts…”

“Choumei warned you that you couldn’t take in unrefined chakra with the side effect,” Naruto told her while gently kissing her neck and cradling her. “Remember, your seal isn’t perfect and I still have a long way to go without running the risk of killing you mid-process.”

I told you Fuu-girl,” Choumei chimed in. “The effects should fade later today…uh oh.

Just as Choumei said that, an alarm seal Naruto set up was triggered and alerted the pair.

“Intruders!” Naruto said as he got out of bed. “What do your bugs say?”

“They say its four people…” she stretched her arms and a dragonfly landed on it. “One smells like tomatoes, one has pink hair and smells like medicine, one has the scent of ink, and the last one has silver—”

“Aw hell,” Naruto slipped on a new orange long-sleeved shirt and black pants, followed by a hooded cloak similar to what his father wore, but black with orange flames licking the bottom. On the center of the back was an orange spiral inside nine points that made it look like the sun combined and around his waist was a belt with scrolls attached. “They sent my old team and one other person…”

“Why the belt?” Fuu dressed up in shorts and a sleeveless shirt over her chainmail undershirt. She strapped on her cylinder and a new set of forearm bracers from Suna. “You have seals all over your body?”

“Because I don’t want them to figure that out too soon and the clothing will probably hinder Kakashi since it’ll remind him of my father. It’s a tactical advantage…” Naruto argued. “Plus it looks cool.”

“Point made.” Fuu agreed before she stumbled slightly and Naruto grabbed her.

“Fuu, you aren’t in the best condition right now…” he warned her. “Kakashi is not a joke; he’s up there with Akatsuki members and preaches of teamwork so they’ll probably work together. Neither one of us can risk going into a tailed state right now without losing control.”

“I’m a kunoichi and I won’t leave you to fight your old team alone,” she countered. “Besides, I have a personal grudge against them from everything you’ve told me. I’m more worried about you losing your temper in the middle of battle and it clouds your judgment.”

“That…may be a risk, but I don’t plan on a fight to the death in my current condition. I can’t use the temple since they have sharingan and can see chakra, and that’s too much to their advantage.”

Damnable eyes!” Kurama roared. He still took being controlled personally.

“Even if I did kill some of them, I’m sure at least one of them will get away and Konoha will try to use that to get me labeled a threat and Granny Tsunade won’t be able to overturn it. I don’t like Konoha very much, but I don’t want hunter-nin after me right now while we have to deal with Akatsuki.” Naruto sighed and bit down on his thumb. “We simply need to last long enough to get away clean…”

He rubbed the blood over his summoning seal…

More Notes:

Cliffhanger. I’m so evil.

Originally I planned on having Naruto and Fuu versus Kakashi’s group in this chapter…but given how many people are familiar with how long I tend to make fight scenes, I figured I should ease up on it a bit so it doesn’t go past 10K words.

Fuu has an aerial advantage for the most part and I tried to make her graceful but effective, distracting the enemy and then letting her traps take hold. Naruto is more aggressive in combat and better suited to close or mid-range.

I hope I did Deidara and Sasori some justice. Originally I planned on having Sasori killed instead but somehow it ended like that. Oh well, maybe I’ll have him and Orochimaru throw down.

Now I need to decide whether to kill off Kabuto early or let him live long enough to take a level grind like in the manga. Raising dead badasses to serve you is cheap, but highly efficient and I value pragmatism over flair depending on the situation.

Next chapter will be “Team 7 Reunion” and we’ll see what’s going on in Konoha and other locations. Leave a review on what you thought about the battles so far, I’m trying to improve my descriptive writing skill to make things seem more vivid.

Non – Canon Jutsu:

Hidden Art: Flash Beetle Bomb – Fuu feeds her larva a large amount of lightning chakra and turning them into electrical bombs that can discharge, but they kill the insects in the process.

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