Chapter 4: Im not going back without you
Iruka looked to the side and saw Naruto leaving the village. He was only wearing his underwear and had two fox ears and a tail. Iruka wanted to call the boy, but somebody grabbed him and put one hand on his mouth. Its no use, he will be a full transformed fox tomorrow morning, a man behind him said. Iruka struggled and the man let go of him. Rakuna, were going. A wolf came out of nowhere. But I want that boy, hes tasty! the wolf protested. Hes no longer in our way. We must focus on our prey. The man and the wolf disappeared and Iruka turned his head to the gate. Naruto was already gone.
A big pile of books, that almost reached the ceiling, was laying on the ground. They were all checked three times, but none of them had a cure for Naruto. Tsunade sighed while reading another book. Somebody knocked at the door; she and the other two kunoichi looked up. Come in, Tsunade said. It was Shikamaru that entered the library. I heard you were here, Hokage-sama. Just came to tell our mission was successful.
Tsunade nodded and wanted to read further as somebody else entered. It was Iruka, he was breathing fast. What is it, Iruka? she asked a bit annoyed. Naruto
he left the village. Shizune let the book she was holding fall down and Sakura gasped in disbelieve.
Tsunade stood up and slammed her hands on the table that it almost broke. Shizune, get team Gai and team eight, except Hinata, she isnt allowed to leave the village. Shizune sprinted away. Do you know why he left the village, Tsunade asked Iruka. He fought with a wolf of some man that was talking about a prey he was after. Naruto seemed to be in the way. Also Naruto had
Enough, we already know about Narutos appearance, Tsunade sighed, if we dont find him fast, something bad is gonna happen.
Almost thirty minutes later five chu-nin and one jo-nin were standing in the Hokage office, Tenten couldnt come. Shikamaru looked troublesome; he wasnt in the mood for going after Naruto. Sakura looked very worried and the others were wondering what was going on.
Listen carefully. Naruto is attacked by some wolf and an unidentified man. Probably a missing-nin. He isnt after Naruto, but Naruto is in a
how should I call it, a bad condition. What do you mean with bad condition? Lee wanted to know. A few days ago he woke up with fox ears and a tail, Sakura answered. Why did he leave Konoha? Kiba asked. Sakura and Tsunade didnt answer that question. Find him quick, go. The six ninja vanished.
Naruto had stopped running and was now walking. He left the road hours ago. Something wet fell on his head and he looked up. It started to rain. Slowly he walked further, when it was dark he would find himself a hiding place, now he had to get as far as he could. Away from the village, away from those eyes with hatred. Memories of the past were spinning around in his head.
Hinata was watching the rain. She was worried about Naruto. What was it that he wasnt allowed to leave his room?
She heard a door opening, sneaked into the hallway and hid herself. Hinata wondered who it was, it was getting dark and it rained a lot. Most likely it was important, or else the person wouldnt have come this way. She heard her father talking with the Hokage. What was she doing here?
Hiashi, is Hinata still all right? Why do you ask? Because she was attacked a few days ago and I have a feeling that the missing-nin is after her. What missing-nin? Hiashi asked a bit shocked. Well, we dont know for sure, only Iruka saw him. We know he had a wolf as his partner and he was wearing a mask. He attacked Naruto earlier today and is after a prey, who, I think, is Hinata. Why do you think my daughter is his prey? He attacked that
boy. Because he said Naruto wouldnt be in his way anymore. Think about it. It was Naruto who defeated those three Cloud ninja. They were probably allies with this missing-nin.
Hiashi growled a bit. I dont really believe you. Just dont let Hinata leave home, Hiashi. Humph, what happened to the boy? Did he die or something? No, he left the village and dont talk about him like that, he saved your daughter!
Hinata didnt want to hear any more. She fled to her room, closed the door and let her herself glide to the ground against the wall. Some missing-nin was after her, but that didnt really matter to her. It was Naruto she was worried about, he left Konoha. She stood up, grabbed her raincoat and walked to the door that let to the veranda. Without hesitation, or thinking about what might happen, she opened it and left. Searching for Naruto.
Naruto was getting cold and shivered a lot. It was pretty dark now; he ran and walked ever since he left the village, without stopping. Now he was tired and was looking for a hiding place. He found one in a hollow tree and crawled inside. Some of bushes covered the entrance and blocked the wind from getting inside. Naruto sat down against the side and looked to the sand with some leaves. His arm was still bleeding and also the other wounds, from the glass, hadnt healed. It scared him, normally the wound were gone within a few hours.
Kyubi? Whats going on? Why arent my wounds healed? This was the first time he sounded desperate and panicked while talking to the fox, sealed inside him.
So its true.
I already had a feeling my chakra was blocked by something. This is bad, kid, if you lose anymore blood, youre gonna die. Try to make it stop.
With what? Theres nothing I can use over here. He still sounded terrified.
Use some of the leaves; Ill try to find a weak point.
The leaves didnt really work of course. What he needed was a bandage.
Brat, I found a little opening over here. I gonna push a lot of chakra trough it, but its only temporary. Your wounds will heal with it, but after that you have to do it on your own. You wont be able to use my chakra at all.
just do it, Naruto said in a small voice.
He felt the Kyubis chakra in his entire body. It healed the big wound in his arm and the several little wounds. But like the Fox had said, it was only temporary, the chakra was gone. He hugged his knees to get some warmth, what helped a bit. Then he saw his tail, he curled it around his body and laid his face on his knees. Tears were running down his cheeks, as he thought about home.
Hinata was running through the woods, using Byakugan. Wherever she was looking, Naruto was nowhere. The rain had gotten worse and all the animals had taken shelter. Hinata stopped to take some breath and think about which way she would go. She scanned the area and saw something far away. She started running towards the chakra she saw.
Naruto sneezed and felt horrible. He never felt like this before. He heard some footsteps and crawled to the shadow. He held his breath. Do you smell Naruto, Akamaru? A big dog barked. I understand, this stupid rain washed the smell away. Anyway, we wont give up. When he didnt hear their footsteps, Naruto dared to breathe again.
Why are they after me?
He calmed down a little, that was until
Naruto was frozen. He hadnt heard her coming.
Slowly Hinata stepped through the bushes. Although she couldnt see Naruto, he was still hidden in the shadow, she knew he was there. Hi-Hi-Hinata, what are you doing here? he asked terrified and panicked. Hinata was shocked to hear that, she never heard Naruto like that. Why did you run away from Konoha?
Naruto couldnt reply. He didnt know how to react to her after she said she loved him, even though she doesnt know she said it.
Naruto-kun? she sounded concerned.
Why are you here? Naruto forced himself to say, A ninja with a wolf is after you and you werent suppose to leave the village. He heard that from Sakura.
Hinata blushed, because-because I was worried.
Narutos ears went up, glad to hear something like that. She really cared about him. Then he sneezed again and shivered. Are you all right, Naruto-kun? Just cold. Take of your wet clothes, or will catch a cold. Naruto started to blush and he was happy he was in the shadow, so she couldnt see it. Uhm
I only wear my underwear.
Hinata stiffened, gazing into Narutos direction. Dont faint, she thought, dont faint. Slowly she was able to move again and took of her raincoat. It was wet on the outside, but at least something. N-N-Naruto, come over here, she said kindly. I dont think thats such a good idea. No, it-its ok
Ok, but promise not to laugh. I promise, Hinata answered, blushing heavily and wonder why she would laugh.
Naruto slowly came out of the darkness. Embarrassed and still terrified. His ears where down, the same goes for his tail, like an afraid dog. From the corners of his eyes he saw Hinatas surprised face. Though she didnt say a word and lay her raincoat over his shoulders.
So this is why he said not to laugh, Hinata thought, but those ears and the tail are pretty cute.
Thanks, Naruto said softly. He regained some warmth, but he still felt horrible. Naruto-kun, did you cry? He looked up to Hinatas face, she looked concerned and a bit astonished. He bruised the tears away with his arm and looked to the ground.
Hinata looked at the blond haired boy. She had never seen him in a state like this. It was painful to watch and she almost wanted to cry herself. What had happened that he was like this? Naruto-kun whats wrong, she asked carefully, how did you get the ears and the tail? He shut his eyes and Hinata saw some tears coming again. I dont know how I got them. They were there when I woke up the day after the fight with the Cloud ninja. O-baa-chan, Sakura and Shizune were looking for a cure, but then that man with the wolf came
, he sobbed. He was almost like a little afraid child. That ninja said I was in his way. Hes after you Hinata-chan. You shouldnt have left Konoha. Youre not save here.
Naruto shut his mouth abruptly, with a feeling he said too much. He was still shaking and felt awful, but with Hinata by his side he also felt comfortable. Just a second after thinking that he felt a horrible pain in his chest and collapsed. He pressed his arms against it to reduce the pain. Not soon after that everything went black before his eyes.
Hinata was shocked. In the little light that came through the bushes what made her able to see his face. It was red and his eyes were closed. Hinata picked Naruto up and laid him at the other side out of the draught. Then she felt his forehead. It was pretty hot. She laid the raincoat over him again and grabbed a bandage out her pocket. She made it wet in the rain and laid on his forehead. Soon after that Naruto opened his eyes and tried to get up.
Hinata pushed him back. Stay down, you have a fever, she said caring.
A fever? I never had a fever before. Kyubis chakra prevents me from being ill.
But right now our chakra is separated. Sorry kiddo, but you have to endure it.
Like I dont have enough problems already.
Hinata made the bandage wet again and laid it on his forehead. Naruto was watching her how she did that and didnt feel cold anymore. More like on fire. And if his face wasnt red from his fever, she would have noticed he was blushing.
Slowly Naruto drifted to sleep and a few hours later his fever went down somewhat. Tired she fell asleep next to him.
If we stay out much longer, were getting a cold, Sakura said. The others agreed with her. Lets go back to the village and search again tomorrow, when the rain has stopped, Shikamaru said, searching in the rain is troublesome. The six ninja and dog ran back to the village. Sakura went to run next to Shikamaru. Ill report Tsunade-sama, just go home. Shikamaru nodded and when they were back in the village, Sakura sprinted to the Hokage building. She knocked and heard her sensei shouting to somebody. Carefully she opened the door.
Im telling you again, I didnt send Hinata after Naruto! I told you she had to stay at home! Then why is she gone! Hiashi shouted. She probably heard Naruto left the village! Its your fault, if you hadnt come to
Shut up, or you gonna be sorry, Hiashi. My daughter is missing because of you. And Naruto is missing because of you and all the villagers that treat him like trash. Hes transforming into a little Kyubi, do find it strange! He isnt transforming into Kyubi, he
Tsunade looked hopefully to her student and ignored Hiashi who was getting pretty angry. Did you find him? Sakura shook her head. No, we found a trail of blood in the beginning, but when it started to rain it was gone. Its also impossible for Kiba and Akamaru to find him in this weather. Tsunade sighed. Did Hinata go after him? Sakura asked. Yes, I think so and I hope she found him. Tsunade stood up and walked to the door. We better get some sleep. Tomorrow were gonna search for Naruto and Hinata.
When Naruto opened his eyes, he was alone in the hallow tree. He got up and immediately fell down again. His body felt heavy and he still didnt feel well, although it was a bit better than yesterday, but just a bit. He wondered were Hinata was and gazed at the bushes that covered the entrance. Morning sunlight lighted up the little hiding place.
Fifteen minutes later Hinata crawled trough the bushes with some fruits and berries in her arms. Naruto got up and Hinata offered him some of the food she had found. He took a bite of the apple, but wasnt really hungry. He let the apple fall when he had one of those pain attacks again. Now they were going through his whole body. When the pain finally stopped, he breathed fast and Hinata was looking at him with a concerned expression on her face. Naruto-kun we have to go back to the village. You have to go to the hospital. No! Naruto said, panicking again.
Hinata saw the fear in his eyes. Dont worry about the tail and ears. Sakura, Tsunade and Shizune were searching for a cure, right. Once the tail and ears are gone, everyone forgets about it. Naruto shook his head. No they wont, he said with a soft voice. Naruto-kun, dont be so stubborn, Hinata thought. You go back, but dont tell anyone where I am. I am not going without you, Hinata said so strong that she surprised herself.
You have to! Youre not save here. I dont want you to get hurt by that man and his wolf! I dont want to put you in the same danger I went trough because I
Naruto abruptly stopped, turned red a fell behind. He closed his eyes.
I almost said it, he thought confused. Why? Im not even sure, or am I?
He opened his eyes when he felt her hand on his forehead again. That made him turn even redder than before, he hoped she thought it was because of his fever.
Now I know why she was always warm, when I did that.
Hinata didnt dare to look Naruto right into his face, too afraid she would faint. He was pretty hot again. If he doesnt go to the hospital, he would die from his high temperature. Naruto got up and she removed her hand quickly, blushing a bit. Naruto, you really have to
No Hinata-chan, Im sorry, but I dont want to go back there. Why? I dont understand. She started crying a bit, because of his stubbornness, You die if you dont.
Naruto gazed into her purple eyes. He couldnt bear to see her crying. She really cared about him. O, Hinata, you dont know how much this means to me, he thought. If
he started, If I go back, they will treat me like a monster again, but more than ever before. But youre not, she said still crying a bit. One of those pain attacks came again and he fell on the ground, pressing his arms against his chest. When I was attacked yesterday, I was in the middle of the street. I-I saw their eyes
He stopped to endure another wave of pain. The hatred in it and their fear. They thought I was turning into
Naruto got up slowly; he was sitting on his hands and knees. Heavily breathing, while cold sweat dropped to the ground. What do you mean by it? Hinata asked, her voice still sounded worried. Dont-dont hate me because of it, he sounded desperate.
Hinata looked at Naruto. Of course I wont hate you. I could never hate you. I love you Naruto, I wish I had the courage to say it out loud. You know about the Fourth Hokage, right, Naruto said. Hinata nodded, but then realized he was looking to the ground and couldnt see it, so she said, Of course. Do you know what he did? He sealed away the Kyubi and died because of that. Hinata was getting a bit afraid. What had this to do with that it-thing he talked about? Precisely, Naruto said.
Naruto turned his head a bit to Hinata. He was wet, but not only from the swat, he was crying. The reason why everyone hates me is because of Kyubi. The Fourth Hokage, he
Naruto looked at the ground again, he sealed it me.
Hinata was shocked and before she knew, she was crying. Naruto had one of those pain attacks again and growled because of it.
The Kyubi, the reason why everyone treated him like trash and called him monster. Even her father did. When she was little, she was told not to come near Naruto, because he was dangerous. Hinata had felt sorry him, but was to shy to tell him. She wanted to become friends with him. She always watched him from a distant, wondering why everyone hated him so much. He was everything except dangerous. And now she knew the reason for all that, she felt even sorrier for him than before.
The pain finally stopped and Naruto got up. He saw Hinatas face, she was crying again, but to his surprise didnt look afraid but empathized. That made Naruto cry also and closed his eyes.
Naruto, I understand that you dont want to go back, but if you dont
Hinata didnt want to think about the consequences, Your temperature is around the forty degrees!
Naruto wanted to say something but got giddy and lay down. Hinata crawled to the entrance, saying, Im gonna get some water.
Hinata used her Byakugan to look for a lake or river and found one seven hundred meters away. She dashed towards it until she noticed someone else was nearby. A man stepped in her path and she stopped. A wolf was standing next to him and she knew immediately it was the ninja Naruto told about. The one that was after her.
Naruto was still lying on the ground. Maybe he should go back with her. Hinata was right, if he stays here, hes gonna die. But he didnt want to face the villagers; he didnt want to see their eyes again. He heard a scream from far away. His ears turned up. Hinata-chan! He forced himself to get up.
Kid, your killing yourself! And me!
He didnt pay attention to the Kyubi. Hinata was in danger, that ninja with the wolf probably came and was now hurting her. No, he couldnt let that happen.
Hinata fell down; she was nearly caught by the wolf. It was now standing up again, amazed that Hinata jumped away. A low growl escaped its muzzle and it jumped again. This time Hinata couldnt escape and she fell back to ground. The wolf on top of her. Are you as tasty as that boy I have bitten yesterday? it asked with a nasty grin. Just when it wanted to burry her teeth in Hinatas flesh it was kicked away by someone.
Naruto was breathing fast and he had some complications to remain standing. But he was in time; the wolf hadnt bitten Hinata, yet. He saw Hinatas look, it was concerned, that of the ninja was completely different, surprised and with disgust. So, you havent turned into a full fox yet. Whats your secret? the ninja asked evil.
No, Naruto, Hinata thought, Why are you fighting? You have a fever and still you fight for me. Why? Why are putting yourself in danger for me?
Tears came again as she watched the blond ninja, with his foxy ears and tail.
You seem to know more about it, Naruto managed to say. He felt one of those pain waves again and tried to ignore it. But before he saw it even happening, the masked man was in front of him and kicked him aside. Naruto smashed into a tree. Before he fell to the ground, the man grabbed him by his neck and pushed him against the tree. Naruto tried to free himself, but wasnt able to.
run, Naruto said. Hinata stood up, but not because she was going to run away. She was about to help Naruto, but then the wolf jumped on her again. Her teeth were coming closer again. Rakuna, stop that. Let her enjoy how her friend is gonna die, the masked ninja said wicked. The wolf closed its muzzle and looked at Hinata, growling that she couldnt kill her prey.
The man turned his head to Naruto again. So brat, tell me, why havent you changed yet. Youre supposed to be a fox by now. Then first tell me why, Naruto grinned, Why do I have to by a full fox. The ninja snarled, but an evil grin came on his face. Do you remember your fight with the three Cloud ninja? One of them had one of my poisons with him. Im not talking about normal poison. Its very tricky stuff. Its used to turn his opponents into animals, then acts that hes defeated until theyre panicked because of the tail and ears they get. The prey runs away from their homes and change into animals after six days. After killing the animal, the body turns back to that of a human. But the six days have passed and you are still looking like a human. Naruto remembered. He had saved Hinata and got hit by a kunai. A human with fox ears and a tail, you mean. The ninja pushed Naruto harder against the tree. The pain attack came again. You really are some strange person. You have a fever, pain attacks from the poison and still youre trying to save that girl, the ninja laughed. He was digging in his little bag with his empty hand.
I see something further ahead, Neji said to the group. Is it Naruto? Sakura asked, while jumping to the next tree. Neji nodded, Yes and Hinata is with him, but
But what Neji, Lee asked. There seems to be another one and an animal. Like finding the two isnt enough, Shikamaru said. The group sprinted to their friends.
Naruto saw the man found what he was looking for. It was a kunai. Theres probably not enough poison in you, so let me give you some more. This kunai belonged to the poison Cloud ninja you killed, I had given it to him but took it back when I found him dead I thought it might be useful. He hit Naruto in his arm who was screaming from pain. This time you can feel how it spreads out in your body, isnt it. The man grinned, enjoying the torture. Eventually he let Naruto fall to the ground.
The pain was almost unbearable. It was hurting, hurting everything, in his whole body. Naruto screamed, although he didnt realize that. The man kneeled down and grabbed Narutos chin. He made Naruto look into the man's face. Naruto saw his evil deep red eyes. Your body is trying to fight it, but its no use boy. You will be a fox before the end of the day. And then Rakuna will hunt you down. She never forgets tasty blood.
Hinata tried to get the wolf off her, but it was no use. It was too heavy. Naruto, she thought, I cant help you, Im so sorry. She closed her eyes and shed some tears.
Rakuna was still looking at the girl. Waiting until her master allowed her to bite the prey. Too bad she couldnt get that boy now, but this prey also smelled delicious. Her blood will be good. She saw tears falling down the girls cheeks. Her master wasnt only torturing the boy, but also this girl. Just like he had planned. Rakuna liked it, though it reminded her of her former master. A nice woman that always took care of Rakuna as if she was a cute pet. But that was many years ago, her previous master was dead for years. Why did she even think about her?
Not only Naruto was hurt from the poison or the kicks the man was giving him, he was also hurt emotionally. He couldnt help Hinata and thats what hurt him the most. He was unable to help a friend in need. Hinata, Im sorry, he thought and then he passed out.
Heh, worthless trash, the masked ninja said and wanted to give the boy one more kick, but was suddenly unable to move. He heard a howl and saw Rakuna hitting a tree in front of him. What was this?
Hinata, are you ok? Sakura asked and was checking her. Hinata nodded, still somewhat dazed from the unexpected save. Akamaru had attacked the wolf that had been keeping her on the on the ground. Whats going on? the masked nin said. Let me allow you to take a look. Shikamaru, who hold the man in his Kage jutsu turned his head to the left. Backup? the man said with a evil grin. The group looked at the ninja and then to Naruto. They never saw the expression on his face he had now. Hurt, panicked and a bit disappointed. Rakuna, were going! the masked ninja said.
Rakuna ran to the man that was keeping her master in the shadow jutsu. The boy had to release it and jumped a few meters backwards. Her master disappeared and she did the same.
Crap, they escaped, Kiba shouted. Sakura went to Naruto and started checking him. What scared her was that his wounds hadnt healed. They were still bleeding. And also he felt pretty hot; his temperature was above the forty degrees. First she healed the wounds and bandaged them. Hinata where did you two stay? She asked, not looking up. Not far away, in a hollow tree, Hinata answered, I tried to take him back to Konoha, but he wouldnt listen. He has that high temperature together with waves of pain since I found him. Everybody looked at her and then at Naruto. We have to take him to the hospital and quick, or else he might die, Sakura said.