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Chapter No1:A Beginning

Disclaimer: I don't own any rights to Naruto. This goes for all the following chapters as well. I found myself standing on water in what looked like a sewer. And I mean exactly that. I was literally standing on top of the water instead of in the water and my surroundings look like what I would expect from a sewer. Not that I'm all that familiar with one. I took a moment to look around. It looked like a hallway in the sense that there was only one path here. Forward or backward. There was nothing but darkness in one direction and in the other there was a faint light. An exit maybe? Obviously, I headed towards the light. That darkness back there looked a little too foreboding. I went to take a step and then- Memories. Foreign ones. A village where people use the rooftops like some type of highway. Four huge heads carved out of stone. Growing up in an orphanage and then a small apartment. Going to the academy to be a ninja. Graduating. Forming a team. Going on missions. A snake. An invasion. Grandfather figure dying. Learning a technique. Returning with a new leader. A teammate going rogue. Chasing after him. A hand through my chest. Darkness. … I come back to find myself on my knees. Still on top of the water of course. And the sewer is still there. I get back onto my feet and look around again but with a new perspective this time. I know where I am now. And I have a pretty good idea where that light is coming from. It's definitely not God. And I'm really glad this is a mindscape instead of a real sewer. Means that getting out of here is possible. But that would only be the start of my problems, wouldn't it? If those memories are correct, then I am now in the body of Naruto Uzumaki. The main character in an anime I used to watch about a boy living in a world where superhuman ninjas exist. Long story short, some seven hundred episodes if you count the unimportant stuff, it's a dangerous setting where the weak are subjugated to the whims of the strong. Where with enough power or dedication, an individual can become a world-ending threat. The stakes just kept increasing as the story went on; from walking on water and spitting fireballs to launching attacks that can destroy cities. And now I'm in the thick of things as the lead. Did I mention that I personally don't like Naruto? Oh, I don't hate him, as a reserved individual I don't think I could ever feel that emotional over a fictional character, but his character bugged me. Idiotic, loud, unskilled, bad taste in females, and just a bunch of other things. I do understand he was made to appeal to a broad audience and that the plot required certain things but I still think he didn't live up to his full potential. Which is why I feel that this situation is a big case of karma. I always said that I could do better and now here I am. Some being out there felt that I should put my money where my mouth is. And I have no choice except to do so because this is my life at stake here. Those memories were simply too vivid, if lacking in emotional attachment, to be passed off as my imagination going wild. No, I'm moving forward with the assumption that this whole transmigration deal is legitimate and doing anything against my personal well-being is a big no-no. That also means following the original script is not a good idea. Aspiring to become hokage while making friends everywhere I go is not a bad way to live, it's just not the best way to ensure I continue living. I can't limit my rate of progression to match the blonde. Too many events came about only because Naruto was who he was and because the creators wanted such to happen. I know very well I lack absurd levels of charisma and willpower so my path has to reflect my own strengths. I want to surv- no, thrive, in this insane world. So there, goal established. How do I make it happen? Power. How do I get that? Training and using what I have at my disposal. What do I have? Uzumaki bloodline which includes large chakra pools, longevity, and vitality. I'm also the container for a tailed beast meaning more chakra, more vitality, and whatever unique traits it provides. I have shadow clones. Clones of me that retain memories when they disperse. An extremely useful tool which I plan to take advantage of. My outside knowledge is perhaps my greatest advantage; I can use that to guide my training and decision making. All that is just me personally. I have access to resources like the library, other friendly ninjas, training grounds, and enemies in the future to test myself against. So even though I likely lost my plot armor, I have other things to rely on. Not going to say my goal is guaranteed, but it is also not impossible. Just have to put the effort in and not be afraid to get my hands dirty. If idiot Naruto could become one of the strongest in the anime, then I will aim for even better. I'll become the best in everything I can be. I'll get the power I need to live my own life. Or die trying. -GoS- Eventually I decided that I had stalled enough. Even though I probably could, I shouldn't stand here and wait until I regain consciousness. Who knows when I will be good enough at meditation to visit with Kurama again? Have to use this opportunity. As I trod along towards the light. I consider what I should say to him. I'm thinking the truth is the best option. Don't want to get caught lying. And he could become my partner someday. It is for the best that we are on the same wavelength going forward. Finally got to the end of the hallway. It leads into a huge chamber where the faint light was coming from. At one end is the gate with the seal on it. The light reaches into the jail somewhat but doesn't illuminate the whole thing. Pretty sure Kurama is in the darkness back there. I head to where I think a safe distance is and sit down. On top of the water. Not sure how much time passes before I hear a voice. He's not shouting but it is still powerful. "So, my jailer decides to grace me with his presence." I won't lie and say that I don't feel some fear. "You are not what I expected." Makes sense that he noticed. I do not consider myself to be Naruto, so my appearance reflects that in this mindscape. I still look like an African American male in his early twenties and my clothes no doubt would look strange in this world too. I'm guessing that as time goes on and I get familiar with this body, I might start to think of it as mine meaning my internal image will resemble my physical one. Or maybe it will never change. Don't have any experience with these type of situations "Hello, Kurama." Going with the plan of showing that I know more than I should. "How do you know that name?" Volume rose, but not quite a shout yet. He comes forward where I can see him. Glowing red eyes are what I see first. The rest of the head and body follow. A reddish orange fox with nine tails moving behind it. The ears look like that of a rabbit and he has human like hands attached to his front legs. Of course, he is also huge. He towers over me by a large margin. Don't know how big he is but I think that his eyes are the size of a regular adult's body. With that last question, his aura started to press down on me. I don't have words to describe it, but it feels like gravity increased and my fight or flight instinct activated. If I had been standing, I probably would have been shaking and maybe collapsed. This is why I sat down to have this conversation. Even then, I have to take a few quick breaths and stabilize myself before I can respond. "As you probably guessed, I am not Naruto. The best explanation is that I'm a dimensional traveler who happened to end up in this body. In my previous world, we had methods to look into various worlds. This one was one of many." Answering his question and probably the following one. "Another world…" He mused, "I know that there are other worlds out there. Father's mother was not from this one. But to think another visitor would end up before me, in my containers body no less…" He didn't appear to be talking to me, more like thinking out loud, so I didn't say anything. He twitched, refocusing on me. "What exactly have you seen of this world? And why are you in this body?" "Quite a bit actually." The next while was spent relating what I had seen and remembered from the anime. The Akatsuki. Obito. Fourth Shinobi War. Madara. Kaguya. Black Zetsu. All the important stuff. I also told him how I didn't know how I came to be here but that I didn't intend to die anytime soon. "I have already given some thought to how I will take care of these problems, but I would like to have you as a partner." "So, you desire my power as well?" "I won't lie and say no. You and I working together would put us in a position to avoid some of the worst events that might come about." I admit. "And beyond that, I need someone to talk to candidly. You just heard my story of where I come from and what this world meant to me and although you may not fully believe me just yet, it has some crazy implications." "That goes without saying." He stared. "Exactly. All these people around me, Naruto's friends and such, I can't tell them this. Well, I could but the consequences could be grave. Maybe deadly if they learn I'm not him." I really don't want to test just how strong this body's bonds are with a bunch of trained killers. "So seeing how I would be hard pressed to keep this from you, I would like to have you as a willing partner. Someone to talk to and strategize with. Someone with whom I could put the mask aside. So what do you say?" Kurama just looks at me for a moment before speaking. "You are correct, your story is quite overwhelming. I need time to reflect." He turned around to go back to the shadows of the cell. I heard his voice one last time before he fully disappeared. "I'll summon you when I have decided." I remain sitting there. It wasn't a yes, but it also wasn't a no. I probably wouldn't have had an immediate response either. Back to planning for the future then. Nothing else to do down here. I wonder what happened to bring me here. Really hope my family doesn't suffer over my disappearance… -GoS- Standing across from the hokage's desk, I can't help but reflect over the past six weeks. I regained consciousness in a hospital room, as expected. The nurses did some last checkups on me and told me that I would be allowed to leave the next day. Before leaving, I went in to visit the other genin that had went on the mission. They were part of the small group that Naruto had considered friends, so appearances had to be kept. Maybe one day I would develop an actual friendship with them. It was during those visits that Jiraiya found me and we went up to the roof to talk. After inquiries about how I was coping with Sasuke's betrayal he informed me about the training trip and that we would leave the village in a little over a month. He kept sending me worried looks, but he didn't say what was on his mind. That he was worried about how quiet I was compared to the usual. Since he didn't bring it up, I didn't say anything either; let him come to his own conclusions. That was probably the best time for me to have been inserted into the script. Being born as Naruto and actually living in the hostile village would not have been fun for multiple reasons. I'm not an expert on the topic but having the mind of an adult in the body of a baby sounds like torture. Even more so when the population doesn't like you. I'm also sure that I would not have been able to play the role of a normal orphan either. Would have raised a lot of eyebrows. Even coming in at another point would not have been preferable. I still would have needed an explanation for my shift away from canon Naruto. The event with Mizuki may have counted but it would not have been enough. Not enough time and not enough trauma. And I also would have had to go through some dangerous moments before I even gained someone like Jiraiya to actually help me get stronger. But now though? I have a lot more freedom. Because I just went through a traumatic experience, I can use that to my advantage. I don't have to act like the loud and excitable child that Naruto was and that's fine because people will not blame me for it. They'd see a sad child recovering from his 'best friend' abandoning him for another traitor. I could then study and train in ways Naruto didn't and they will just see it as an effort on his part to better himself and bring back Sasuke. A lot of differences in behavior will be justified without me having to say anything. Furthermore, this training trip coming up will provide even more room for me to change because I will be away from people who knew the old Naruto. I won't have to keep pretending upon my return. The only person who might notice is Jiraiya who I'm not too concerned about because he had barely interacted with me pre-insertion. I just need to make those changes somewhat gradually. So yes, this is a good time to be me. Once the Toad Sage left me alone, I started the plan that I had concocted while in my mindscape. Forming the proper hand seal, I performed my first jutsu in this world. The shadow clone technique. It was weird seeing so many Naruto's standing around me. So much orange. But I overcame the horror. They knew the plan but because I made so many, it fell onto me to split them into groups. Five were sent to the library to learn about chakra theory and application, anatomy and physiology, and history. Only five were sent because I didn't want an overload of pure information assaulting my brain when they dispersed. Those five were henged into random people just to be safe. Thirty clones were sent to training ground three to work on chakra control. They would combine water walking with leaf sticking in order to get the most out of those exercises. One final clone was tasked with finding out where Lee got his weights from and purchasing a set. With the groups assigned, the set of thirty followed me to the training ground while the others went about. By the time I finished warming up, the clone with the weights arrived. I was expecting something like the ones I saw in canon but was pleasantly surprised instead. The set he bought consisted of a belt with two seals on it that went around the midsection. The instructions that came with it said that sending a pulse of chakra directly into one seal increased the weight on the whole body by one increment. Sending chakra into the other seal undid all the weight. The first level was approximately fifteen kg and each increase raised the weight by another fifteen. Doing the math, once I reached the last level, ten, then I would be carrying an extra hundred and fifty kg. I was intrigued by the idea but also not looking forward to getting there. The instructions also made it clear that training without the use of chakra would provide the best results. It made sense, work on the base body and all physical enhancement techniques would see marked improvement. After putting the belt on, I got started. Sprinting until I dropped, variations of pushups and sit-ups, squats, lunges, planks. I pushed the famous Uzumaki stamina to the limit. Needless to say, I could feel every bit of those extra fifteen kilos before I called it quits for that day. Periodically I would create a different set of thirty clones when all the ones doing chakra control exercises ran out of chakra and dispersed. The clones in the library also dispersed sometime that afternoon after open hours passed. They were nice enough to come find and warn me before they sent over their memories. The sensation of receiving memories felt odd but not uncomfortable. I suddenly knew stuff that I didn't have to waste time learning. Truly, shadow clones are the best. Except for the weekends during which I rested; the time I had before leaving was spent in that fashion. Wake up. Eat breakfast. Five clones to the library. Thirty on control. Spend the morning working on accuracy with kunai and shuriken and then physical workout. Have lunch. Practice taijutsu based from academy books and memories. Practice ninjutsu and absorb memories from the library clones. Dinner. Watch television and relax. Meditate while lying in bed. The weekends were used to acclimate and keep up appearances with the people Naruto was friendly with. Not going to lie, it was hard. Going from a civilian in twenty-first century America to basically a child soldier? Drastic change. At times, it was an honest struggle to keep going. This was the case mainly with the physical training as I never had to push myself this hard back on Earth. But I had to do so now. Having a strong, capable body and later on excellent taijutsu skills was the foundation for my goal of being S-rank by the time the war starts. Beyond that, thoughts of what awaited me if I wasn't strong enough served as potent motivators. Therefore, I pushed myself and the results can speak for themselves. I progressed up to level 4 with the weights. My accuracy with kunai and shuriken improved. Chakra control skyrocketed and with that so did proficiency with the rasengan, substitution, and body-flicker. The main ninjutsu that I focused on. I picked up all the chakra theory that was available to me in the library. Advanced control exercises that I couldn't use yet but would be beneficial later. Shinobi tactics, plants and poisons, etiquette. Anything that I believed could be useful. That being said, I noticed a lack of fuinjutsu material. Guess they didn't want untrusted amateurs messing around with seals. Common sense, I guess. Anyways. It was a productive month. … As the exterior would suggest, the hokage's office is actually circular. Walls made of some type of earth with a number of large windows across from the entrance that provide a good view of the village. Along with the few portraits the only other thing of note is the desk placed in front of the windows. A simple desk that wouldn't look too out of place in a classroom back home. Comes with a stack of books and paperwork as well. All in all, smaller and less decorated than what I would expect out of the personal workplace of a powerful leader. Standing behind and to the left of the desk is Shizune. Dark hair with eyes to match them, fair complexion, and wearing her dark blue kimono with white trimming. White obi around her midsection. Attractive young lady. The only thing detracting from her appearance is the pig in her arms. Fortunately for me, it doesn't stink. At least not from back here. My soon-to-be sole companion, besides Kurama, for the next few years is standing off to the side leaning against the wall with his arms crossed. Dressed in his typical green and red outfit and physically bigger than most people Naruto has seen, he draws the eye. Especially with that white hair and the red birthmarks on his face. Makes me wonder how people get those. I know the Inuzuka clan all have some type of marking on their faces but so did Rin and obviously Jiraiya. Were they just born with them? And what happens with white hair and aging? Does it start greying? Does it stop being spiky? So many questions. Anime creators, explain. And finally, the lady in charge. The legendary sucker herself. Tsunade Senju. Last of her clan. Best med-nin alive. Biggest bust this side of the universe. When I was first introduced to her character, I just applauded the anime for including another attractive female in the cast. Even if it was only a genjutsu. She also became another of Naruto's precious people and was pretty strong. All was fine. But later I really gave it some thought. This was a person who left the village, for personal reasons, and spent the next decade or so drinking and gambling away money she didn't possess. And then all of a sudden, she comes back and is placed as the leader of a militaristic village. Didn't make much sense to me but I realized that there really weren't better options. No one in Minato's nor Kakashi's generation was strong enough, had the right disposition, and supported enough to be hokage. That left the two loyal sanin as the options and since Jiraiya was there to plead his case he was able to throw Tsunade under the bus. Throw her to the wolves actually; no buses in this place. It worked out for the best from what I saw. Jiraiya was able to maintain his spy network while Tsunade became the leader and helped the village in the way of creating better med-nin. If Konoha started racking up debt behind the scenes… well it couldn't have been that bad since they never showed it. Currently, she is seated in the only chair in the room behind the desk. Fair skin, blonde hair, brown eyes, diamond shaped seal on her forehead. Green haori over a grey blouse that looked like it needed additional support to contain her breasts. I'm sure Jiraiya would be the first to volunteer for such a worthy cause. Or maybe he would be on the side for wardrobe malfunction. Those three and I were the only ones present for this send off, not counting the pig and the anbu I'm sure were stationed around the room. I had already told Naruto's friends that I would be leaving soon but not the exact date, so they were probably out doing whatever they do when off camera. No need for drama today. Just this one stop and then the training montage can begin. "The village is going to feel different without you around brat." I'm grown thank you. "Finally get to enjoy some peace and quiet." "Very funny granny." I rolled my eyes. "Just make sure you don't gamble away the village's budget while I'm gone. Shizune, keep an eye on her please." "Of course, Naruto-kun. Stay safe." She didn't even bother to hide her giggles. Both of us ignored the indignant look on Tsunade's face. "I'll try. And thank you for the stuff. You're the best." Gave her the Guy-style thumbs-up. While I did learn a lot from the library, there were certain things that I was unable to find in there. Stuff like the advanced chakra control techniques that the med-nin used as well as their healing ninjutsu which I found out was called iryojutsu. Normally to learn them you had to start the process to become a medical-nin like Sakura but then I realized that I had inside connections. A trip to the hokage's office and some expressed interest in the healing arts and Tsunade pulled some strings for me. I mainly wanted them for improving my control but learning ways to heal oneself should always be taken. "Ah, you're welcome Naruto-kun." She was smiling now, probably recognizing the joke I was playing and willing to play her part. "I'm happy that I could help." I could feel the amusement coming from Jiraiya and the ire rising in Tsunade. "… just leave already. Last favor you're ever getting from me." Arms crossed under her chest while mumbling. "Annoying, blonde brats." "You're blonde too." I decided to have mercy on her. "Thank you. I really do appreciate it." I tried to show her how sincere I was through my eyes and face. That was definitely one thing that Naruto always had; a very expressive face. It seemed to work as her eyes became warmer. "I know. Make sure you come back in one piece." Maintaining the eye contact, I nodded. I had an idea of what or perhaps whom she was probably seeing in her mind. Jiraiya came around to stand beside me while placing a hand on my shoulder. "I'll watch over him hime." "You had better, pervert." Was her response to which he just laughed and gave a gesture similar to what I had done with Shizune. "We'll be back before you know it. Let's go Naruto." With one last wave goodbye we left. Through the window of course. My first time doing that. It was much faster than going down all those stairs. We ran along the rooftops and hopped down at the gate to be signed out. It didn't take long, probably due to the presence of the toad sage, and then we were off. My journey to the top was finally beginning.
Uploader's Thought : The formatting on this platform is throwing me off. While I figure that out however, you can find this story on Fanfiction.net and AO3 under the same penname and title.