Blue and Orange P-14

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Literature Text

After some investigation into the intrusion it was found that the four nin were indeed searching for those with special abilities. The identity of the leader of the group had only been revealed to those with the highest clearance as to not give the public any sort of scare. Naruto had originally been against the idea of shadowing the public of this, but after the explanation from the Hokage and a glare of stubbornness it was the plan they went with. Of all those put to sleep only four had been marked by the searching nin and after knowing what they were looking for it was not very surprising who they picked. At the order of the Hokage each had been held for a week in the hospital for further observation of what the seal on each of them was capable of. With a combined staff looking over them though it was agreed that the seals were a sort of tracking mark, one of need of proximity to use, but very strong. What the enemy saw to gain from such an attack was not yet certain, but who they were dealing with they would not know the outcome until it was upon them. Shika had taken the week off like a champ, not to be unexpected with lying around, though he didn't like people poking at him so much. Both Kiba and Shino had been marked because of their affinity to their beast and insect companions respectively. They had taken the stay at the opposite ends of the spectrum with Shino sighing constantly over the actions of his ex-team member's antics to get out of the hospital.

Naruto had been to see Hinata countless times over the course of the seven days she was forced to stay away from the rest of the village. At one point Jiraiya had jokingly suggested he bring in a cot for the night, but it had been instantly shut down by the nursing staff. They couldn't let him stay the night and inhibit the rest the doctors had advised for the four. Still that had not kept Naruto from being there every morning, and for the most part Hinata did not mind since she loved his company, but she was worried about the upkeep of his team. So after the second day she was making him spend afternoons with them. Every evening though he was back sharing a meal with her and one terrifying evening her father as well. Having never had so much time to sit down and talk, each of them learned all sorts of things about the other. Naruto found out about her favorite food, which was instantly on the menu the next morning, and Hinata listened to Naruto talk about his plans for a garden up on the roof of his house for the better part of an hour. All the while the blond complained about her having to stay there for so long after they even found out what the mark was, but Hinata always cooled him down before he went storming off after a nurse. Hinata had made him promise to take her out after she finally got out of the hospital the following evening and that seemed to have the desired simmering effect.

The week had been hell for two and pleasurable for the other, but they were released no worse for wear, but knowing that something would have to be done about their predicaments. As to what no one was too sure just yet.  

"Naruto Uzumaki you lazy bum get out of bed and come down here," Was called from the front door of the Uzumaki clan home with a familiar growl to the tone.

Inside Naruto grumbled from under a heavy nit quilt that he had stretched out over himself on the couch for the night. It was the morning after the four were released and they were supposed to head to the Hokage tower at nine. He guessed that it was past nine.

"I am coming, relax you two," Naruto called back dragging on a pair of his loose black pants discarded beside the couch just before bed.

Opening the door he was greeted with the sight of an aggravated Kiba and calm as ever Shino looking back. Naruto had not needed to hear Shino at the door calling with Kiba, he could "feel" the weird bug feeling the Konoha ninja gave off. Kiba had seemed a bit surprised that Naruto now his friend, had come along, but Shino of course either understood as to why he was given away or was not showing his surprise. Either way it was the same expression behind those dark sunglasses.

Frustrated Kiba pressed passed Naruto into the main living room of his home that was in need of a little tidying up because of the half eaten popcorn bowl and cups set about, "Naruto do you know what time it is?

Naruto just shrugged his shoulders and closed the door after an almost apologetic Shino crossed into the main room as well, "After nine?"

Shino found a place to sit in the spare chair there beside the couch watching the two of them go back and forth while taking an account of the large home the Uzumaki had come to live in having never been within its walls before. This sort of trouble between the two of them had always been there growing up anyway so it was pretty normal. No reason to get involved. When there was a break in the near shouting he did raise his attention to speak to them.

"Naruto we are looking for Hinata as well, do you know where she might be? We went by the compound and they told us that she had been last seen with you last evening."

Almost on queue a sleepy eyes Hinata padded down the stairs rubbing her eyes as she did. The impromptu sleep over had not been planned, but after the time was realized she had suggested it. She had a point; Naruto would have to make very clear he was sure. Because of this she was dressed in one of his white T-shirts that had an orange swirl on the front of it, oversized to be sure for her, and a pair of his boxers that were more like shorts on her form. The usual perfectly tended raven locks had to have been all over the place that morning because she had them up in a messy bun held up with a hair stick of some kind. Probably a usual morning routine when she was at home.

Pausing at the bottom of the stairs when she saw the three of them though her face lost all color and not a sound was heard about, "Shi….Kib…," Eyes darted from the two then to the blond whose home she was in showing what could only be described as something between embracement and terror.

Halfway through the dead silence of the room Naruto had slowly moved as if he was going to step on some landmine of social destruction to the rack near the door to retrieve his heavy red and black coat. Coming around behind Hinata he set it around her form easily shadowing the whole of her and then some leaving her to grasp it tightly around her with death grip fingers. Sighing Naruto realized that he would have liked to enjoy the sight of Hinata so relaxed around him to dress in such a way this morning, having planned on running out to get breakfast for them before she woke, but that plan was crushed now with the addition of the new pair.

Shino cast a glance towards the shocked partner who still had his mouth half open at the sheer surprise of it all, "Close your mouth Kiba,"

Angry at being treated as such Kiba held up a balled fist to the bug user adding to it his usual growl, "How can you be so calm they obviously spent the night together!"

Groaning Naruto pressed a spot in the middle of his back, "Hardly, I slept on the couch she at least got to enjoy a bed." At mention of her Hinata seemed to shrink a bit more into the coat he had cloaked her in, "And I would hardly say we were alone."

Out from the first floor guest room Neji came out clad in his usual attire that almost looked like it had been cleaned then pressed that very morning. Naruto had always found his constant perfect appearance to be annoying and this morning that was brought on tenfold because of the situation.

"Good morning Kiba, Shino," Pausing near the door he cast his pale hues towards the girl wrapped up in the blonds coat, "Hinata your father will want to hear the details of whatever mission the Hokage has given the four of you before you leave. Please remember to come by before you leave."

The two shared a nod, one more reserved and embarrassed than the other, before the elder left out of the front door.

Kiba was having too much to deal with that morning having gone from shock, to anger, back to shock, and finally back around again. It didn't help that now when Shino was pointing to the coffee table that held all the snacks from the past nigh, THREE cups among the mess. Huffing he leaned against the arm of the couch furthest from the group and suddenly became very interested in the bookshelf across the room near the tv leaving the bug user to explain the situation.

"The Hokage has handed down our mission, because of the nature of our seals we are going to temporarily leave the village for the time being for one of allies. The seals work only if the person looking is nearby. She thinks that if we leave until the situation can be dealt with that we will be safe because they will be looking for us here," Shino said this with a level tone that was his trademark. Naruto had joked that perhaps that's what they had been seeking to copy when they marked the bug user. Shino had not laughed at the comment of course.

Instantly Naruto was against this plan. Send them away? That would mean that Hinata was going to be out of reach again of him. He could understand that reasoning behind her plan, but that did not mean that he had to like it. Worriedly at how Hinata was going to take this news after having the night together they did the evening before, he edged his cerulean hues her way trying not to give away his cool.

From under the coat's collar Hinata was frowning at the idea of leaving the village, this was her home and Naruto was here, but she was a kunoichi and she would have to do what she was order to do for the betterment of her village. Poking her head up a bit more from under the coat she said quietly, more so from the reveal a minute or two ago than anything else, "Is there anything else? What village are we going to be headed to Shino?"

The bug users head tilted in the direction of his old teammate and his expression seemed to brighten talking to her, you know, if that was possible with the getup he was always wearing, "We are to head to the Sand Village. Furthermore we are to take our students with us so that we do not slack in their training. It will be a valuable experience for them visiting the Sand."

That was just like Shino, Naruto thought, thinking of the advantages of every situation, never leaving anything to chance. He might not like all the bugs, but there was no doubt that he respected the nin for what he was able to do.

"Of course," Hinata responded to the details of their mission trying not to sound very disappointed. They all knew how long something like this might keep them away from the village. There was no way of knowing how long it would take to get to the bottom of the situation with this new Kabuto.

Naruto paced around to the back of his couch with the kitchen behind framing his appearance while he visibly thought over the situation.

"She can't just send the four of you with students on a trip like this alone. The marks are not totally explained yet.  For all we know the moment you step out of the gates you could be compelled to follow Kabuto," Naruto said without a hit of trust in the decision in his voice, "I am going to tell her I am going with the four of you. Granny will listen to me."

Eyebrows rose above glasses and Shino went to speak, but it was Kiba who leaned off the arm of the couch and scoffed at the idea of having the blond along, "Not to worry Naruto you are coming along to babysit us, your team as well. Shino suggested something along the same lines of what you just did while we were in the office."

Blinking Naruto turned his attention to the darkened sunglasses and he was sure he could feel the old friend smiling behind his collar hidden from view while he spoke, "It made more sense than sending a troop of anbu to follow us all the way there. You are more than a capable match for such strength. Besides…," He trailed off considering his next part while watching Hinata and listening to Kiba, "Hinata would have been depressed for the duration of the mission. It would not have made sense for you not to come along."

Kiba evidently had enough because he stuffed his hands into his pockets and grumbled crossing the room towards the front door, "We are heading out this afternoon so be ready at the gates with your team Naruto, come on Shino we are leaving these two alone."

Nodding with agreement and nothing else to be imparted to the two Shino headed out with Kiba into the morning sun leaving Naruto and Hinata alone to think over the task at hand. They would have to round up their respective teams, inform them of their orders, and help them prepare before they were to head out that afternoon. Just explaining this to them would take the longest amount of time. Such a lengthy mission away from home at a young age was never easy. It had Naruto remembering his mission to the village hidden in the waves where they had actually named a bridge after him. Shuo would flip if he had something named after him.

The look of realization crossed the both of their faces and Hinata was already starting to slip the coat from her shoulders now that they were alone again not fearing Naruto's eyes upon her, " I should probably get goi-."

Shaking his head Naruto took the coat back when offered and hung it up where he had gone for it before, "We have time for breakfast at least. Let the world worry about itself for another thirty minutes Hinata."

With an urging touch at her hip he guided her out of the main room and into the kitchen where he could make her the planned pancakes that she herself had taught him to make many weeks before. She settled down on a stool by the counter and he turned on the stove top trying desperately not to burn his fingers. This simple act was all he thought about while he was away, just the chance to spend this kind of moment alone. Casting a smile her way over at the counter they both settled in for the morning, they had time.

By the time they had finished breakfast the better part of the village already knew about the mission at hand. After the attack the village had been on edge to know just what was going to be done about it all. Usually the student teams were not sent on extended missions like this, but with the teachers being sent away for such a long time an exception was being made. Had they been in the field on a mission for this long they surely would not have been allowed to come, but since they were just going to the Sand village they were arguably just as protected as they were here. Of all the nations the Sand and Leaf held the strongest bonds to one another. There was nothing either village would not give up to help the other. The war had only served to solidify that allegiance. Students though had parents and there in lied the main issue. Taking what were essentially children from their parents for such a long time took a lot of explanation and promises.   Each of the team leaders had surly spent the better part of the afternoon in these explanations.

For Naruto's part Izumi and Shuo had been moderately easy, but it was Kenta's mother that had needed the most convincing that everything was going to work out alright. What with how he was treated in school it was not all that surprising. It did however get Naruto wondering if his own mother would have worried over him before a lengthy mission such as this. When she had been brought around to the idea that the Sand village would be just as safe and that she should look at is as a sort of spring camp away to the other village she started to relax. The blonde could say spring because while it was still winter among the hidden village in the leaves, the Sand region hardly ever felt a chill. Even with all the further explanation Naruto only got out of there with a promise to look after Kenta, promise with a threat of a beating if something did happen to the boy. Naruto had no doubt that she would deliver on the threat no matter if he was considered one of the strongest in the village or not, but she didn't have to worry. With the teacher he had when he was young it would take him giving his last breath for harm to come to her son.

After all was said and done Naruto still had a few hours before he had to meet up at the gate to leave the village and he decided to spend it in the usual way. Stopping in at the old stand to enjoy a bowl of his favorite food and indulging in a chat with old man Teuchi. While he was there he took out the official order scroll and went over the trail they were supposed to take to get to the sand village. It was outdated and would take them far too close to some major towns along the way. It had originally been decided that they would travel undercover as a group of teachers showing their students the lands. While that description would not be particularly false after the attack a week ago Naruto thought that another approach might be a good idea. They were going to be traveling with at least fifteen genin, a sizable class for the undercover idea, but with so many it would be impossible for them all to stay in their roles for the trip that would be the longest any of them had been on to date. The idea he had would work, but the plan would have to be changed drastically, Shino would be the one he would have to win over. Knowing that it would take the rest of his time to prepare he chowed down the rest of his bowl and gave a hearty farewell to the owner and to his favorite food stand and headed in the direction of home.

In the hour before the group was supposed to leave the front gate had started to transform into a center of activity. Tons of people had heard about the mission when it started to spread like wildfire throughout the town and had come out to see the band off. While each of them probably understood the reason for the teams having to leave that did not mean they wanted them to go. Here and there people were coming forward to the teams that were already there and forming up to offer odds and ends to help with the trip. The man with the loud voice and food stand offered the lot a dinner for the night that each stuffed happily into their packs. Of the teams that were supposed to be there the only ones that had not shown yet were Naruto's and Shika's. Hardly out of the ordinary though. Shika did not show up with his team until fifteen minutes before they were to head off cutting it close as ever giving some off putting excuse in a familiar way. When Naruto's team became late Tsunade who had come out to see the group off visibly started to grind her teeth only kept in tow, but a resting hand of Jiraiya on her shoulder giving some joke about the boy never being on time.

Not much later though Naruto with his students in behind him parted the crowd to meet the rest. He had been late, but it had taken time to get all of his stuff together for the trip and he had considerably more to get then the other team leaders. When he spotted just how aggravated Granny was he reached a hand up and scratched the back of his head smiling widely. It was the only apology needed.

"Naruto, why is your team dressed this way?," said Shino with his own students looking on wondering just what the confusion was.

Team Uzumaki had come dressed for a fight. Not just a fight, a war. Each one of the students was dressed in a heavy grey traveling cloak, but when the wind hit and parted the front of them it exposed the assortment of preparations Naruto had been up to in the past few hours. Izumi was carrying double the chakra barbs she had on the first mission having had to add a holster up high just under her left arm so that she could easily draw with her dominant hand. Shuo had an imposing looking Anbu sword set across his lower back, no doubt forged by his parents own hands so there was no telling what exactly it was capable of. Kenta with his fiery red hair looked nearly the most imposing with Kunai holders strapped to both his thighs much like Naruto held his own combat scrolls. Add to this that the inside of his heavy cloak was covered in explosive tags and an image of raw violence started to form. Naruto though took the cake as it were. Many of those ninja here to see him off had seen this assortment before back during the war and that was surly most of the reason for question. He wore his orange and white fox Anbu mask set to the side on his head to still show his face, the coat and vest tailor made just for him, as well as his combat pants with scrolls firmly held. It was the gloves and bracers he wore that drew the attention. Normal enough combat gloves met bracers that disappearing up under his coat road to the elbow. Each of them was lined on the outside with metal plates fitted over one another for the added level of protection that could take a wide variety of attacks. These added fixtures to his combat gear held stored natural chakra allowing him to remain in the mode of his godfather's teachers for far longer than just on his own.  Every one of his students was wearing some form of goggles and bandana around their necks for use when they got closer to the Sand country.

Blue eyes cast across the crowd that was to be the team for the mission to land on Shio who had asked the question, "We are going to amend the plan and route. Traveling showing our teeth is going to work better. I have been back and forth to the Sand village countless times. There are routes that are not on the maps we were provided."

The bug user seemed to be considering it for a long while having been told that he would have to work as tactician for the mission, something Naruto surely was informed of in his official orders. Eyes moved to the Hokage behind shaded glasses as if to ask her what she thought of the change, but there was no immediate response.

Giving a slight nod in response he added to the plan, "Everyone else should outfit the same way if we are going to do this. Scaring off all, but the highest level of nin is the plan after all. We will have to leave how we get there to you though Uzumaki."

Once there was a consensus among the two leaders for the trip each team leader turned to their students and tried to outfit them as best they could for the trip ahead.  While they had not brought the heavy hitting gear they would need to pull off such a look there was many things they could do to offset that. While they were waiting Naruto turned back to his own group and crouched down so that he was on their level. He took in the look of each one of them in turn with a warm smile. The only thing they were lacking was a bit of war paint, but when Naruto had suggested it Izumi had shot it down as silly. Shuo tried to insist on the idea, but Naruto relented and agreed that it might be somewhat over the top.

"Alright, as soon as we get outside the gates we are going to be in hostile territory," Naruto tried to speak with a warm conviction that would raise their own spirits to the task. "This is not going to be like the last mission. Until we make it past the Sand village's doors everyone we encounter is to be considered a threat. Now these other teams have not seen a mission outside the gates yet, let alone combat so it is up to us to lead the way by example." Smiling Naruto held out his hand in a fist to the three students of his looking on with gazes stricken by the seriousness of the task at hand, "Let's make sure everyone gets there safe. We have promises to keep."

Izumi, Kenta, and Shuo pressed fists with their instructor with a shaky understanding of what they were going to be up against, but with Naruto there to look out for them it would be alright.

"Try not to overdo it because your girlfriend is coming with us Shuo," Kenta smirked jabbing over to his teammate.

Cracking a smile in contest Shuo eyed the boy back, "I will try and leave some time for you to show off don't you worry."

Izumi for her part just sighed at the two boys looking up to Naruto, "At least I won't be the only girl along this time."

Breaking the embrace Naruto stood back up looking very pleased with his younger students. Taking a look around the entrance to the village he could tell that the other teams were almost ready to get going. Off to the side he noticed Jiraiya giving him thumbs up and he found himself wishing he would come over to give him a few words of encouragement like he had just given to his own team. It had been a long time since so many lives had been put in his hands. Not since the war. The idea of this brought not the best images to mind but, just as he was about to be brought down by somber thoughts though he felt the familiar hand of an instructor falling on shoulder.

"Kakashi!," nearly jumping out of his shoes at being snuck up on like that.

Rounding the students startled as well were taking a few steps back from the white haired ninja that appeared holding the newest issue of his favorite book series up for a read. That had been a great moment for the leaf actually. As soon as Jiraiya had returned no sooner did he give the book he had been writing in the rain village to Kakashi did the older teachers mood start to turn around. You could say he was getting back to his older self every day. At least he didn't hold up inside and drink away nights anymore. The single eye ran over the students in front of him and he did one of his classic Kakashi smiles hidden behind the cloth he always wore over his face, a look that each member of Naruto's team would be sporting soon enough during their trip in the Sand region.

"Everything is going to be fine Naruto," Kakashi stated eye going back down to the book he held up in his right hand turning pages with his left.

Speaking lower so that his students might not hear Naruto questioned his old teacher, "You just saying that to make me feel better?"

Smiling without looking up from his book Kakashi responded with a joking tone to his voice, "Absolutely."

Naruto raised his hand up in the usual way and scratched the back of his head shaking it in constant disbelief of the eternally late ninja, "Kabuto used an ability not unlike my father's when I saw him Kakashi. He used it on his subordinates as well. What if he can use it against his enem-"

A blinking Naruto was met with the raised left hand of his old teacher pressed into his blond locks patting his head as if he was trying to console a child, "Just remember what I taught you Naruto and your team will be fine. While you are away Jiraiya and I can look into this ninjutsu so try not to worry too much about it. "

If it had been anyone else Kakashi was doing that to they probably would have been offended at being treated in such a way, but the two were not everyone else. Kakashi knew that Naruto had not the childhood of those around him and Naruto knew that Kakashi had a strange way of making those around him feel better. So when he tugged his hand back the blond just set his jaw suddenly filled with a conviction to get the mission over with and return.

"Thanks Kakashi."

"Hmm what? Oh yes, have a good time."

Smirking shaking his head Naruto turned away from his old instructor and urged his team towards the gate where the rest of the teams were finished and gathered up. Coming to stand in the center of the large group he searched for the hand of the raven haired girl and the strength that it brought him in moments like this facing the better part of the village. Turning back to face them he intertwined those fingers with hers and smiled inwardly at the look she was giving him out of the corner of her eye. It would be a long time until they were going to be back to the village and there was no way around that. The threat that this new Kabuto posed was still unknown, but they would get to the bottom of it. Stepping forward in front of the group the Hokage made her way over to Naruto and the rest of them.

Taking a look over the much more imposing looking bunch she gave a small laugh, "Well you all certainly look the part." Turning her eyes to the one that would one day replace her she leveled her attention and tone, "Naruto Uzumaki you are tasked with the position of Captain for this mission. The lives of those on this mission are your responsibility. Be sure to use those under you to the best of their abilities while underway. We will all be waiting right here for you when you get back." Reaching a hand out he drove her index finger into his center of his vest keeping her tone, but his time there was a hint of demand to it, "As soon as we have this all sorted out I expect to see each and every one of you back here when we greet you. No exceptions."

Naruto had to visibly gulp at that last comment feeling the weight of it coming down on him. An urge of encouragement that came from the grip of fingers against his and a secret smile shared between him and Granny served to help curb the intensity of the order.

"You heard her everyone, move out!"

An order given in his best Anbu Captain voice he could muster was met with a quick look by each and every one of the mission's members out to the crowd that had gathered to see them off. Everyone had someone there important to see them off and if all went well to greet them upon their return. With only that hesitation though to halt them though, they leapt back out of sight into the nearby trees that gave the village its name, out of sight and underway. Only Naruto remained behind standing before the Hokage, all the rest of his charges gone.

"See you soon Granny," Naruto said softly, his goodbye to one that had become so important to him since they met so long ago.

Seeing him disappear out of sight to follow his team she just sighed, turning back to face the village whispering to herself the goodbye he could not hear, "Be safe Naruto."
Chapter 14 as promised. Not at all done with this series just been working on some original stuff. Should have the next chapter out here pretty soon. Thank you for reading and as always the Naruto is owned by its creators.
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Evil-Hinata-Hyuga's avatar
it's been so long!!!!! Are you continuing this.
GraceHasCheese's avatar
This is Great Story!!! I hope you continue it! :D
Evil-Hinata-Hyuga's avatar
yayayayayayayayayayyayayayayayayya. it's finally out. I've been waiting. it's soooooooo good. i love ur stroy. keep it up!