beginning of bonds
You can barely remember being alone anymore, but that used to be all you were. You were just alone. Your parents died protecting you and they placed a monster inside of you. It was the same monster that destroyed your village and killed so many innocent lives—the Nine Tailed Fox, the Kyuubi, and Kurama. These are all names that you now know it by. Kurama was sealed inside of you by your father so that you could later learn to use its power. However, by doing this, your father made you a target by others in the village. You held the weight of the deaths of all of those killed by the Nine Tailed Fox and you didn’t even know it.
In your eyes, you were just hated because you were alone. You were looked at with disgust for no reason. What had you done other than want to exist? At first, you fought it defiantly, but as you grew older it became unbearable. You began to act out in order to gain acknowledgment from those around you. You just wanted to be loved. Was that so hard to ask?
You swore that you would become the leader of the Leaf Village someday. You would become the Hokage. Everyone would know who you were then and they would acknowledge you. You would be loved and you would save everyone. Under your rule no one would have to be alone and no one would hurt like you had. You would make sure of it.
No one seemed to understand. No one could understand—no one except Sasuke maybe. He was the sole survivor of his clan, the Uchiha Clan. He was, like you, alone in the world. You saw how people looked at him. It was so similar to the way they looked at you. The people of your village kept their distance from things that they didn’t understand. They viewed the two of you as an omen when in reality you were just innocent children.
You and Sasuke walked very different paths. He wanted to take revenge on the person that caused his pain. You, however, just wanted to find something to fill the void that had been left behind. You saw the love of others around you and you craved it so badly. You would play with your friends Shikamaru and Choji on the playground, but stare in the background as they walked home with their parents.
The rocks you kicked on your way home weren’t enough to ease your mind. They only landed on your chest and weighed you down even more. The sadness was overwhelming and at this point, you would do anything to just belong. That is when Miyuki appeared. You knew of him. He was a Chuunin of the Leaf Village, but you were only slight acquaintances. You were sulking, rightfully so, after failing the Academy Exam. You had trained so hard to pass but it seemed like no amount of effort was noticed or ever enough. What did you have to do to prove yourself? Was it not enough to simply give everything you had? You had sweat and you had bled.
Miyuki seemed to notice this. It was the first time someone reached a helping hand out to you. You saw acknowledgment for the first time so you jumped for it instinctively. He told you a secret—no he told you a lie. Get the Forbidden Scroll and learn one jutsu from it and you could pass the Academy Exam. And so you did as he told. You struggled in the woods after stealing the scroll and mastered the one Jutsu that you couldn’t even muster halfway in order to pass the exams.
Covered in mud and tired from training, you were proud and happy for once. You were getting what you had deserved all along. Iruka, your Academy teacher, the man who failed you, found you in the woods with the scroll. Miyuki had taken you for a fool, but he also told you the truth about who you were. You had the Demon Fox within you. The Nine-tailed Fox. No one had told you before. Why? A secret? Why was it a secret from him over all people? You run, frightened and scared. Your entire life is a lie. They didn’t hate you for being alone; they hated you for something you had no choice over. Iruka stood up for you. He made you feel like you were worth something. You were Uzumaki Naruto not some beast or some orphaned kid.
This is the turning point in your life. You went from having no one, to having someone who cared about you. The feeling is unfamiliar, but it makes you warm inside. You can finally belong to something. While Miyuki did lie to you, the jutsu you learned proved that you would be capable of becoming a Shinobi. This changes Iruka's mind and he allows you to pass the Academy.
Iruka was just the start to snowball effect of good things in your life. Becoming a Genin paved the way to meeting those who would later become family to you. You are placed on a team with Haruno Sakura and Uchiha Sasuke. Your squad leader: Hatake Kakashi. Sakura is perfect in your eyes. She always has been, but she's always had her heart set on Sasuke. Sasuke, on the other hand, is your rival. You admire him, but you want to be better than him. He's cool. You're not and that angers you. He was always better than you at everything but he was always hurting just like you. He was perfect.
You and Sasuke rivaled each other. It seemed like there was always more to the two of you than even a brotherhood. Something always drew you together. Perhaps you were so much alike that you could only struggle with one another. Sasuke chose not to make the bonds that you wanted so desperately. He chose to stay alone and that is what separated the two of you. It drove you apart. Your biggest regret is not being able to save Sasuke from himself. The darkness within him consumed him. You felt his pain but you couldn't ease it. It seemed as though no one could. His hate was too strong and it changed him.
The time had come for you to progress even further. The Chuunin exams—a three stage exam where ninja from every village could attend to show off their strength. Only the strongest could pass. You were strong, but were you strong enough? You passed the written exam by pure luck, and the second phase you piggy backed your way through. Now, there was a preliminary fight, and you again won by pure luck. The third phase was a one on one battle and you were pitted against the strongest Genin in the Leaf Village: Hyuuga Neji.
This fight proved to be difficult for more reasons that just physical fighting. Neji was a hurting soul just like you. His Clan's rules were wrong. He was cast aside from the very people who were supposed to raise him with love and care. His father was used as a political pawn and Neji's powers were suppressed under a hierarchy that made your blood boil. You somehow won, swearing that you would change the ways of his clan once you became Hokage.
During Sasuke’s fight with Gaara of the Sand, the Leaf Village was attacked. Orochimaru, a rogue Sannin from the Leaf was pulling the strings of the Sand Village behind the scenes. He had misled them into attacking the village. You are ordered to follow Gaara along with Sakura, Shikamaru and a ninja hound named Pakkun. Sasuke has already begun pursuing them.
One by one you are forced to leave your friends behind to battle members of the Sand. You finally catch up to Gaara who is being carried by his older sister Temari. He has been injured slightly from his fight with Sasuke, but you know he’s a powerful opponent.
During this fight, you learn that Gaara too is a Jinchuuriki, a container for a Tailed Beast. Within him lies the One-Tailed Beast. He is just like you, suffering from the judgment of those who don’t understand. However, Gaara had never had love. He never made bonds like you had and he suffered still. You were probably the only one who could ever understand him. You’re able to stop Gaara’s rampage, and in the process you manage to change something inside of him. This is one of your many powers. People always want to believe in you. You only needed to show Gaara that he was not alone in the world.
During the attack, Orochimaru killed your Hokage. The village was left in shambles. Orochimaru’s men left Sasuke a message. They told him that Orochimaru could give him power if he came with them. Given time to think, Sasuke left the Leaf, and you promised to bring him back. You swore you would for Sakura. You would hold all of the hate that he had if it meant that one day he could be happy. But you failed, didn't you? You couldn't keep your promise. You fought him as hard as you could to try and bring him back, but there was nothing you could do. Sasuke had made up his mind to find power his own way, but danger loomed over him.
The man that said he could give Sasuke power had plans much more complex than just that. He wanted to use Sasuke so that he could someday take his power. You wouldn't have it. No one was going to take your friend from you. But what could you do? You were strong but you weren't strong enough. Besides, how could you become Hokage if you couldn't even save one friend?
Someone is after you. More specifically, they're after the Nine-Tailed Fox within you. What they want with your power you don't know, but they seem determined to take you. Sasuke's brother, Itachi, it one of those men. How can you stop the man that slaughtered his entire clan? He left only Sasuke alive. The leader of this group unknown to you at the moment, but please keep in mind: they will bring you great Pain.
The fight isn't about you though. You don't care about you. You care about your friends. You would find a way to save Sasuke. It didn't matter how much pain you had to endure. You made a promise to Sakura. Remember that. You travel with Jiraiya, a Sage who agrees to train you further. He already taught you the Summoning Jutsu for the Chuunin exams, but you needed his help if you were to bring Sasuke back home. You spend three years under his care and during this time you become so much stronger than you could have ever hoped. Your bond with Jiraiya is strong. He's like a father to you--the one you never had. Even though he's a pervert, he means the world to you. Even more so than Iruka, he is the one you see as a father.
Returning home was hard. Having to face Sakura again was hard. You failed her once before, how could you look at her again. You've grown though. You're more powerful and taller, but perhaps not much more mature. The training was not for Sasuke alone, though that was your plan originally. You needed to be able to protect yourself. The Akatsuki was hunting your kind down. They were hunting the Jinchuuriki.
Word traveled fast. The Sand Village had been attacked. Now allies with the Leaf, you are sent to rescue Gaara from the Akatsuki. This is your chance to redeem yourself. You couldn’t save Sasuke. You had to save Gaara. Again, you weren’t strong enough. You chased his captor, but you were too late. He was dead. Gaara was a husk lying before you and you could feel anger raging inside of you. It wasn’t fair. Gaara had never known love. He deserved so much more than this.
Granny Chiyo, a healer from the Sand Village, had come with you and your group to help rescue Gaara. She and Sakura fought another member of the Akatsuki who turned out to be her grandson, Sasori. After your fight and theirs, Granny Chiyu sacrificed her life to bring Gaara back from the dead. Your actions and words moved her. A lady who once did not believe in a possible bond between Villages or the power of the future generations was moved to save Gaara based on the whim of Naruto’s promises. With the mission a success, the alliance between the Leaf and the Sand was now stronger than ever. You’ve also learned much more about the Akatsuki and their plans.
Jiraiya was sent on a mission to investigate the Hidden Rain Village. It was the birth place of the Akatsuki. He did not return alive. This is the pain the Akatsuki brought you. The man who you viewed as a father was killed. You've known loneliness and you've known love. Now you felt loss. Nothing could be worse than the pain you felt now. Jiraiya left a message in code. The Cipher Unit couldn't read the message. It was something only you could figure out. Jiraiya left the message for him to be able to read. It read: The real one is not among them.
The Toad Elders that fought alongside Jiraiya agreed to train you. You would need to be stronger to be able to defend yourself against the Akatsuki. They would come for you eventually. While you were reluctant to leave the village, this was the only way. You were summoned to Mount Myouboku to train with the Toad Elders. There you learned to draw in Nature chakra and call forth a power known as Sage Mode.
While training with the Toad Elders, the Leaf Village is attacked by the Akatsuki. Pain has destroyed the Leaf. You arrive to see the village completely leveled. Many have died. The man before you is the one who killed Jiraiya. There is so much hurt within you. You are stronger now, but Pain overpowers you. Hinata, a fellow Genin of the Leaf and someone who you have always admired, steps into the fight after Pain pins you down. Pain nearly kills her and this awakens the Nine-Tailed Fox’s chakra within you. You are put into a wild rage, the Nine-Tails beginning to take over. As you reach Eight Tails, you are complete lost in your psych. The Nine-Tailed Fox tempts you to remove the seal that is keeping him locked away within you. Feeling there is no other choice, you begin to remove the seal…and that is the last thing you remember.
You are again alone. You are furious and inconsolable. Your village is being torn apart. The people you love are dying and you’re stuck in another world. You could not save Sasuke. You could not keep your promise to Sakura. You could not save Gaara. You could not save Jiraiya. You could not save your village.
It takes you quite a while to even understand the concept of there being another world, and even longer to accept that you’re trapped in Elysuin. There seems to be no way to return back to the Leaf Village. Every bond you ever made has been stripped from you. The hurt of Jiraiya still aches. You can’t allow yourself to be bitter. You are restless and you can’t seem to stay in one place. The option of life is given to you wherever you want it in Elysion, but nowhere is home but the Leaf.
The world still has its own problems, but you try not to concern yourself too much with them. You choose the life of a Wayfarer, one who travels between the sectors. There’s no end to your search for your friends and a way back home. Perhaps someday you can accept to live for yourself here, but today is not that day. And neither is tomorrow.