The day after Mizuki tricked Miku into stealing a forbidden scroll. Iruka-Sensei recovers among the Inuzuka Clan. Meanwhile Mizuki learns the price of failing his master.
Volume 1: The Girl with Two Names
Chapter 4: A Wolf and her Patient
Ino could smell flowers from her mother’s shop and feel the warmth of the sunlight shine on her. She opened her eyes to see her sister sleeping next to her. The roles are reversed, Ino thought to herself as she struggled to lift herself to a sitting position. The injuries she sustained from Mizuki and attacking him still bothered her a bit, thankfully the medical-nin had healed much of it before sending her home with her parents.
“Already awake?” Ino instinctively pulled the covers up to just below her eyes before her brain registered, mom. “Wake up your sister, you two have a long day and your father wanted to tell you something important before you leave to get your genin pictures.
The two entered the kitchen to see not just their father but also Shikaku Nara and the third Hokage, Hiruzen Sarutobi. Hiruzen sat waiting with the girl’s cat, Lily, a white furred cat with violet eyes on his lap purring contently. When the girls entered he motioned for them to join him at the kitchen table. They nervously joined him even careful as they moved their chairs.
“Don’t look so down. You girls aren’t in trouble.”
“Mizuki is at fault and I don’t want to repeat myself on this.” Both girls nodded as Hiruzen looked towards Inoichi and Mikiko, it was time. “You are old enough to know some things that we have kept from you. I now wish we had told you sooner, but please forgive an old man for not realizing how fast you had grown up. Thirteen years is a long time for the young but they seem to pass by far too quickly.” They were lucky in a way, Mizuki's attempt to manipulate Miku was childish at best and he wasn't allowed to build it up with as quickly as Ino attacked him. Ino's attack distracted Mizuki from the genjutsu he wanted to use and ruined his plans. It was amazing how such a bold move could tear apart such a plan.
“This is about what Mizuki-Sensei was trying to tell me isn’t it?” Miku could feel Ino’s hand take hold her hers lending her support.
“Miku is my sister, I don’t care what Mizuki-Sensei said.”
Hiruzen chuckled at the stubborn look on Ino’s face. “Yes, that is true. You are sisters regardless of genetics.” He was thankful of that bond. The bond of sisterhood would strengthen, Miku for the hard road that she would have to travel while Kurama was still sealed in her. “Miku regardless of what I tell you here you should know your parents both love you, understand” he waited until Miku nodded her head sneaking looks at her parents and sister. “Miku you have two sets of parents, Inoichi and Mikiko and those who passed along their genetics to you, birth parents. I am telling you this now to prepare you as you may hear it later on. Hold on to your family bonds they’ll give you strength.”
“Who are my birth parents? It has something to do with my nightmares about the demon fox, doesn’t it? Am I the demon fox?”
Hiruzen could see fear in her eyes. “No. You are Miku Yamanaka and not a demon fox. Kurama, the nine-tailed fox is sealed in you, but you are not the fox itself.”
“Why does my sister have a demon fox in her” Ino could hardly hold her anger in at the situation.
“The tailed beasts, of which Kurama is a member, he is the nine tailed fox is sealed in people, many of whom are or were Miku’s age when the beasts were sealed in them, to protect everyone. This was a choice of your birth father Miku. We were attacked that night, and there wasn’t time. If things had not gone so badly then your birth mother would have remained the jinchuriki until you were older and better prepared for it. I was prepared to have the beast sealed into my own body, but your birth father told me of a prophecy involving you.”
Light dawned in the girl’s eyes as they looked to each other, Miku’s birth mother the jinchuriki? That was Kushina Uzumaki… which meant her father, was the fourth Hokage.
“Don’t feel that you are betraying their loyalty for being happy with people who love you. Kushina and Minato your birth parents would have wanted you to be happy and safe. I am certain they are thankful that the Yamanaka clan took you in and have raised you to be a strong kunoichi like your sister. You will need that strength. Now Skikaku and I will let you get to your breakfast, this is a lot to take in so I’ll let you think about it for a bit. Don’t worry your team leader will help you with your training. Listen to him and everything will be okay.”
Ino watched the third Hokage walk by their father she wondered what the three had talked about. The third Hokage was right this was a lot to take in. It didn’t matter, she had a sister Miku and that was all that mattered. She was the big sister and would protect Miku for as long as she could.
On the other side of the village, another injured ninja opens his eyes. Iruka Umino opened his eyes staring right into the muzzle of a ninja dogs, one of the Haimaru brothers. His eyes searched the room finding one of the other brothers curled up by the door. Even now that ninja dog left the room, to find his partner? Iruka wasn’t sure. He knew he wasn’t in the hospital. The Room had a bit of a hunting feel to it and while it was clean it wasn’t the same type of bland neutrality of a hospital room. He wasn’t surprised when Hana peeked into the room. “Good you are awake. I don’t want you to get out of that bed just yet, the blades those rogue ninja cut you with was poisoned. You should be fine but I want to make sure you can stand properly before you leave my care.”
Iruka thanked Hana as she brought him some soup she said had petals that would help counteract the damage the poison inflicted on him. She sat near the bed reading some medical scrolls while he ate. It was at this time he learned about what happened to Tsubaki. Hana didn’t make it in time to save her; the poison had run its course. She barely had time to send one of the brothers to find Yoshiro Nara to counteract the poison coursing through Iruka’s veins. At lunch, she brought him beef ramen along with tea made from the same petals, a bit bitter but tasty.
Down the hall and in the kitchen Kiba sat at the table with his partner Akamaru, his mother Tsume cooking some beef for more ramen. “Mom… why is Iruka-Sensei still here? Wouldn’t the hospital be a better place for him?” He looked down as Akamaru whined and attempted to hide his head under his paws. Waves of killing intent washed over him from behind. “Hana is behind me isn’t she?”
“I could always send you to the hospital if you like the place so much” the normally calm sister growled at both Kiba and Akamaru she walked around him to get more tea for Iruka-sensei. I’ll learn to keep my mouth shut one of these days, Kiba thought as she returned to the guest room with the tea.
“You’d think a son of mine would have the sense to never get between a wolf and her charge.” She smiled as Kiba gave her a puzzled look. Of course, you wouldn’t understand Kiba, Hana is in love and the underworld will freeze over before she lets anyone else nurse Iruka Umino back to health. She knew her daughter well enough to know that there would be no other choice for her now. It was not a bad thing she found Iruka Umino to be a rather responsible if a somewhat boring young man and his position at the Academy was a stable one. “Shouldn’t you be at the Academy to get your genin picture?”
The two girls were returning to the Academy from their photo session when a blur ran at them from an alley barely missing Ino and running directly into Miku nearly knocking her off her feet. “Konohamaru? What is going on you nearly hit Ino, she’s injured.”
Konohamaru Sarutobi the grandson of Hiruzen looked up at Miku; the nine-year-old had a crush on the younger Yamanaka daughter after she had slapped him after he accidently trampled on some flowers during a prank. It was the first time that someone had acknowledged him not as the honored grandson, who they would allow to get away with just about anything, but actually saw him. He gave a mumbled apology; Miku was one of the few people he would so quickly apologize to.
“Good now be careful, If you want to be Hokage you’ll have to learn how to watch out more and not run people over. Are you escaping Ebisu-Sensei?”
more mumbling. “He keeps telling me about the shortcut to Hokage..but..”
“There are no shortcuts” Miku interrupted. If you want to be Hokage you are going to have to work at it and work hard at it. Especially if you are going to be Hokage… after me.”
“After?” Konohamaru might have a crush on Miku but he wouldn’t lose to a girl.
“If you keep trying to take a shortcut to being Hokage then you will be Hokage after I am of course. You really should demand that Ebisu-Sensei train you properly. Keep training until you are far too tired to keep going and then keep going further. It’s what Ino and I do, we never stop training and the same is true of other students as well.”
Ino watched the exchange and could see the mixed emotions on Konohamaru’s face. He really wanted to be elsewhere, but the competitive side of him couldn’t let a challenge pass.
“you just wait I won’t lose to you” he ran off back in the direction he came from.
Ebisu-Sensei was far closer than the three had ever suspected. He watched the exchange from his hiding place dreading it. Miku didn’t respect the rank that was bestowed on the Honorable Grandson. She certainly didn’t understand the maneuvering he had to go through in order to herd Konohamaru along the path to Hokage. If only the grandson would listen to him, but no he would listen to a teenage girl first.
He could still remember the first time the two hand run into each other. Konohamaru had destroyed some of her flowers while escaping from yet another of his pranks. Had it been anyone else in the village they probably would have patted Konohamaru on the head and asked him to be more careful next time. Miku didn’t, she outright slapped him, a slap from a girl four years older than him had come as a shock to the child. Something unique happened, Konohamaru started listening to her where he would ignore just about everyone else shy of his grandfather.
It was also then that Konohamaru had altered the poster in his room declaring his dreams. ‘I will be Hokage, and then I will Marry Miku Yamanaka”
Ebisu had noted that the crush was a useful thing to have to get Konohamaru to do his homework. He would allow the child to visit the Yamanaka flower shop where both of the Yamanaka daughters worked part time if Konohamaru did his homework and if he listened to him. He suspected that he would have his hands full now. With one small exchange, she had put a fire in him, a will of fire to work as hard as he could to become Hokage first. Ebisu marveled at how so few words could cause such a change. He could have said the same thing but it would never have had the same impact.
Did it have something to do with that time that she slapped him? Is the reason that Konohamaru listened to her related with how she treated him rather than most of the village? As he watched the two sisters continue their walk to the Academy he wondered about that. Is that the approach he should have taken? He thought he had been showing Konohamaru the upmost of respect but he wondered about that. The look the child gave the girl spoke wonders of respect that Konohamaru had for just two people Miku and his grandfather, the third Hokage. Neither of the two would put up with Konohamaru’s pranks, but both of them did show that they listened to him as well. He hated to take the advice of a child but there might be merit in it. When Konohamaru approached him for training like the girl had suggested he would train the honorable grandson, no wait he would train Konohamaru himself as hard as he could so that Konohamaru could achieve his dream, or rather one of them. He resolved to send Miku some marigolds in thanks for inspiring Konohamaru to work hard for his dreams rather than taking the easy route.
Alarms rang out over the headquarters of the intelligence division of Konohagakure. Inoichi had been about to return home when he heard the alarm. There were far too many alarms in such a short amount of time. When he reached the main hallway he determined the location of the alarm. The jail cells? Did someone try to escape? When he reached the scene the shock hit him. No, there wasn’t an escape attempt, but an assassination. Mizuki lay on the floor of his cell, his body clearly broken and twisted into strange angles that were not humanly possible. One of his assistants, a member of the Hyuga clan, reported to him the results of their scans. Every bone in his arms and legs were shattered along with nearly every bone in his chest. The breaks in the bones were in an odd pattern as if someone had coiled a rope around him then pulled both ends using the pressure of the ropes to break him.
This was a disaster, how did someone sneak into the heart of Konohagakure, into the intelligence division, and then assassinate a heavily guarded prisoner without altering a single anbu op or intelligence-nin. Orochimaru certainly could pull it off and they would find out how he pulled it off which lead him to wonder, why?
Whatever Mizuki knew must have been damaging to Orochimaru, damaging enough to risk discovery and to risk what was clearly an easy way into Konohagakure’s intelligence resources. Could they use it against Orochimaru? An idea popped into his head and continued to form as he made his way to his boss, Ibiki Morino’s office. They would have to move the intelligence division, and it wouldn’t be easy. Could they do so in such a way that whoever Orochimaru sent to break in would think that the intelligence division hadn’t moved? It would be an elaborate illusion to pull off, but it might give them insight on what Orochimaru was interested in and perhaps why Mizuki was important enough to assassinate.
Naruto Alternate Contents https://scriggler.com/DetailPost/Story/40985