A Living Lie @pencyke
The second chapter

Hey everybody!

Don't worry, I'm just as surprised as you are at how fast I pumped this one out. Heh, I guess sometimes inspiration does strike the same person twice. Or is it lightning?

Eh, who cares? Let's get to the story!


After getting his picture taken, Ryuto retreated to a secluded area to really see what he could do with his new jutsu. Since the scroll he'd learned the jutsu from only had instructions on how to do the jutsu and nothing concerning what it actually did other than the half-explanatory name the boy had taken it upon himself to figure out the limitations and advantages of the shadow clone jutsu.

Currently Ryuto could be seen sitting in a meditative stance as quite a few clones of himself could also be seen sparing with each other in pairs. Suddenly with a poof one of the clones dispelled and Naruto was assaulted with the memories of the clone's short life span, It seems that clone had been insulating himself with chakra so that when his opponent was surprised that he didn't go poof he'd be able to get in an attack of opportunity while his opponent was busy celebrating their 'victory'. It was a simple tactic really, lull your opponent into a false sense of confidence and then strike when your opponent thinks they've got you down for the count. Ryuto sighed in thought, Hmm, it seems that the clones dispel involuntarily when they run out of chakra. Well I guess that makes sense, most jutsu do end when they run out of chakra. But that negates the advantage of refilling his own chakra with whatever's left over from the clones when they dispel. Definitly something to keep in mind.

Ryuto nodded to himself as he shifted his focus from his thoughts and the holes in his fighting style back to his chakra control work out. It was a training regimen of his own design focusing on the improvement of his control over the flow of chakra in different parts of his body while still working to increase his strength. Currently he was focusing chakra to the tips of his fingers to stick them to the bottom of a tree branch while he simultaneously performed chin-ups. He continued like that as his clones fought each other while the sun continued on it's trek across the sky.

Finally with a poof, there was only one clone left in the clearing. He looked beaten and scratched as he fought to catch his breath but the triumphant grin on his face was impossible to miss, "So boss," The clone looked up at the original expectantly, "You ready for this?" Ryuto allowed himself a smile as he dropped down from the branch and landed next to his neatly folded shirt, "You know me, you are me. I'm always ready for a fight." As he said this his clone rushed at him, fist cocked back in preparation for a punch. As the offending fist flew forward Ryuto used his hand to brush the clone's arm out of the way as the boy whipped his head forward to bash in his clone's nose. When the boy didn't feel an impact his muscles contracted as he tucked into a barrel roll and kicked out at the clone's legs. The clone dodged but that was expected as Ryuto stood up and in a fluid movement nailed a jaw shattering uppercut into a log. Wait, a log?

Naruto narrowed his eyes but used a substitution instead of commenting, just in time as the fireball that had landed where he'd been standing a moment before died down to reveal the clone huffing and puffing even more than he was before. The boy grinned before substituting again with the now charred log and nailed the nearly depleted clone in the face with a direct hit. The clone disappeared with a satisfying 'poof' and Ryuto was alone in the clearing once more.

On the way back to his apartment the boy allowed himself a slight smile, he was pleased at how much he'd learned about the shadow clone jutsu and was already thinking about ways to implement it both with his training and in combat, If I get to the point where I could make the cones without using the handsign then I could use it to- The boy was knocked out of his thoughts when he felt a pair of pale eyes glued to his back. Ryuto turned around and with a loud display pointed at the perpetrator, "Hey, if you don't come out right now I'll be forced to blow this place sky high along with myself!" The boy lifted his shirt up to reveal that it was indeed covered in explosive tags.

"W-w-wait! P-please, I d-don't want y-you to b-b-blow y-yourself up." It was a shy looking Hyuuga girl that came out from behind a lamp pole. Naruto even recognized her as one of the graduates in his class. He dropped his shirt back over his midsection with a sigh, "Oh, it's just you. Why were you watching me anyway?" And did you use your Byakugan? Naruto had learned early on that the Hyuuga clan could see through pretty much anything with their special eyes, including his disguise. That was why the boy had made it a point to avoid the people with the white eyes. So why had this girl been spying on him, and doing such a mediocre job as well.

Ryuto stared intently at the shy girl. She hadn't answered his question yet, she was poking her index fingers together as she mumbled incoherently and as Ryuto took a closer look she was blushing furiously. She took a quick glance to see if he was still there and was startled to find his face mere inches from hers. The girl promptly feinted. Ryuto rubbed the back of his head, "I can't just leave her lying in the street. Oh well, I guess lunch will just have to wait." His mind made up, the boy who appeared wholly unremarkable on almost all accounts hoisted the unconscious girl over his shoulder and turned around and headed to where he remembered the Hyuuga clan compound to be.

It wasn't long before he arrived.

Naruto knew that most members of this particular clan weren't exactly friendly in any definition of the word but the two guards at the front were being down right rude. When they first saw him approach the only thing they had to say was a hostile, "Who goes there?!" Now Naruto could overlook that, it was their job to be suspicious after all, but when he showed them the girl he'd brought the only thing they actually did was sneer. No 'thank you' came from them, if anything they only became more unwelcoming, demanding that he give them 'Lady Hinata' Which Naruto guessed was the girl's name. That would have been fine if they hadn't made some comment about him being some 'unsavory commoner' and how he had 'no right to even look at Lady Hinata.' That had pushed Naruto the wrong way. The boy had been looked down upon enough in his life, at the beginning it had been because the people thought he was some kind of demon or something (he didn't really understand), then after he became Ryuto it was because he was just some orphan, then when he joined the academy it was because he didn't have any sort of clan or special talent and while he'd kind of done that last one to himself that didn't mean it was any less infuriating. So he retorted, "At least I'm not apart of some clan full of guys with kunai jammed up their ass!"

In the Hyuuga clan it was a well known fact that Yoshino Hyuuga wasn't exactly a stable guy, in fact he angered extremely easily. So it wasn't a surprise when he blew up when Ryuto disrespected the clan in the way that he did. It went a little something like this, "HOW DARE YOU DISRESPECT THE HYUUGA CLAN LIKE THAT?! YOU PATHETIC COMMONER! YOU CAN'T EVEN FATHOM THE GREATNESS THAT IS OUR CLAN! YOU SHOULD BE GREATFUL THAT WE HAVEN'T DECIDED TO KILL YOU FOR YOUR DISRESPECFUL WORDS! YOU THINK THAT BEING A CLAN IS A GAME?! IT'S NOT! SURE WE GET BENEFITS BECAUSE OF THE GREAT POWER THAT OUR FAMILY HOLDS BUT THAT IS NOTHING COMPARED TO THE PARANOIA THAT COMES WITH BEING THE BEST! DO YOU KNOW HOW MANY PEOPLE WOULD KILL TO STEAL THESE EYES?! HOW MANY HAVE KILLED IN AN ATTEMPT TO STEAL THE POWER OF THE HYUUGA CLAN?!" The man paused to catch his breath as he glared triumphantly at the young ninja and to wipe the foam out of his mouth.

Ryuto wasn't impressed in the slightest and instead of letting it go unchallenged he responded in kind, "YOU KNOW WHAT?! YOU CLANS THINK YOU'RE ALL THAT JUST BECAUSE YOU GOT SOME SPECIAL POWER THAT GIVES YOU AN ADVANTAGE! YOU ACT LIKE EVERYONE ELSE SHOULD BE PRAISING THE GROUND YOU WALK ON! YOU AREN'T GODS! YOU CAN BLEED! YOU CAN GET HURT! YOU GET ANGRY AND YOU MAKE MISTAKES JUST LIKE EVER OTHER MOTHERFUCKER OUT THERE! YOU'RE HUMAN JUST LIKE THE REST OF US AND YOU HAVE NO RIGHT TO TREAT ANYONE LIKE THEY'RE BELOW YOU!" Naruto paused for a moment but continued before the guard could make a move to take advantage of the silence, "I JUST BROUGHT YOUR PRECIOUS 'LADY HINATA' BACK HOME WHEN I EASILY COULD HAVE LEFT HER PASSED OUT IN THE MIDDLE OF THE STREET! BUT I DIDN'T! NOT BECAUSE SHE WAS APART OF ANY CLAN BUT BECAUSE THAT WAS WHAT ANY DECENT HUMAN BEING WOULD DO! REALLY! WOULD IT HAVE BEEN THAT HARD TO JUST GIVE ME A SIMPLE 'THANK YOU FOR BRINGING ONE OF MY FAMILY MEMBERS HOME' AND BE DONE WITH IT THEN AND THERE?! I MEAN COME ON!"

It was to this scene that Hiashi Hyuuga, the head of the Hyuuga clan and incidentally Hinata's father, had come out to in an effort to see what was causing this racket that was keeping him up from his midafternoon nap. What he saw was one of his guards arguing loudly with a kid who looked like he was fresh from the academy with his daughter slung over his shoulder like she was a sack of potatoes. The other guard was desperately trying to get the two to calm down but that was of no consequence. The clan head calmly made his way up to the argument and ended it with a few strokes of the gentle fist to his guard, thus silencing both sides as the boy was frozen in shock and his guard was completely immobilized.

The angry looking man silently motioned for his daughter and the boy numbly complied. Once his daughter was in his hands Hiashi spoke in his commanding voice, "Why did you have my daughter?" It took Ryuto a few moments to find his voice but he finally succeeded in his endeavor and when he did in stead of answering he asked a question, "Um, is that guy gonna be alright?" Hiashi frowned at the boy and said, "He will be fine now answer my question." Ryuto got a bad vibe from this new character that told him not to mess with him, "Oh, right. Well she fainted in the middle of the street so I figured I'd be a decent fellow and bring her home before anything seedy happened." The clan head nodded and with no feeling at all said, "You have my gratitude." With that the clan head obviously felt the conversation was over as he turned and walked away.

With a quick check with the second guard to make sure the first guard was going to be okay Ryuto turned and made his own way back to his house with a simple thought on his mind, I'm glad none of them used their Byakugan.


The rest of Ryuto's day went smoothly and he'd even been lucky enough to find someone just starting to learn a new jutsu. He memorized the hand signs that the genin used and did his best to brake down how they were shaping their chakra as he watched while in the guise of a wayward squirrel. The boy didn't recognize the qenin so he had no qualms about 'learning' from him. After Naruto grew bored of watching the kid get the technique right twelve times in a row Naruto decided to make good on the capabilities of his shadow clones and sent a few to go and recreate that jutsu. While his clones were busy with that, Ryuto was left to his own devices, Hmm, it's not often that I've actually got free time. What should I do? Ryuto snapped his fingers as he was struck with an idea, "I heard there's a ninja library around. I'm a ninja now, that mean's they'll let me into the ninja library now, right?"

His mind made up, Ryuto to a casual stroll in search of the building. He spent the better part of a half-hour strutting his stuff before he discovered that 'somewhere around here' really meant something more akin to 'across the village'. When the boy spotted the building he was looking for he allowed a bright smile to spread across his face as he made a bee line strait for the front door. One tug later and the smile was replaced with a frown. The door wasn't opening. Ryuto scratched the back of his head as he looked up and down the street, What? Is the Library closed today? Well actually I guess the right term would be toni- Ooh. The boy did a mental face palm Of course the library's closed, it's nearly midnight. Well there goes my plan of checking out the library. Well I could go in anyway. The boy actually face palmed at this, Smooth move, idiot. This is a ninja facility, it's bound to have traps that even a high level ninja would have a hard time avoiding not to mention systems that would alert someone that someone else was braking in. No, it's better to wait. Patience is a virtue.

That thought in place, Ryuto was still faced with the predicament of what to do. He certainly wasn't tired so sleep was out of the question, he could go back to train with the shadow clones, as always there was definitely room to improve. It was at that point that the shadow clones dispelled in rapid succession. Well that option was out the window, the clones had made considerable progress with the jutsu compared to what Naruto had been able to do on his own in the past. They had all worked on different parts of the jutsu so Naruto was fairly confident he could put it all together and it'd come out fairly decent.

So training is out of the question, He conceded to himself, I know I can go night and day when it comes to that. So what else can I do to tire myself out? Wait, what was that? The boy moved to investigate the sound he heard. From what the boy could tell it had come from inside one of the houses, he could see a faint light coming through one of the windows. As the boy stalked closer to the window he morphed into the form of a house cat he'd seen the other day, he deftly leapt onto the window sill and peered in with yellow eyes.

It was one of the villagers, digging through his fridge for a midnight snack. That gave the boy turned cat something to work with, Hmm, not a bad idea. Not a bad idea at all. The cat leapt from his perch and as he moved became a boy once more, his destination someplace very specific. His kitchen. He'd learned from experience that it was way easier to fall asleep on a full stomach, so he'd make a snack and then head to bed. It was a plan, a direction to go, a goal to work towards. When the door closed behind him, Naruto dropped his disguise and turned to look at the lone mirror on the bare wall, silently reminding himself that this was his true form. Blazing blonde hair, piercing blue eyes. The blonde absently brushed his fingers over the whisker marks in his cheek, he hadn't been able to find any sort of explanation for them. They were just, there.

Letting that thought slip away, the boy spoke in a low voice, "This is who I am. My name is Naruto." This was a sort of ritual of his, he did it nearly every night when he entered his sanctuary. It was the only thing he could really do to remind himself of who he really was. He was the only one who knew his name, except for the third hokage. That thought bothered the young boy, how had he seen through my disguise? I didn't sense anything from him and even though I was tired that was no reason for my disguise to weaken. The old man shouldn't have ben able to se who he was. And yet he did. The boy shook his head in an effort to banish the unsettling thoughts from his mind as he pulled off his sandles and made his way into his kitchen, careful to avoid all of the noisy floorboards.

"So, what do I have that's quick and easy? Hmm." Naruto's eyes wandered around the various contents of his cupboard until they landed on his emergency stock of instant ramen. Involuntarily the boy's toung snaked out to lick his lips in desire, then the boy shook his head in an attempt to master his stomach, "No, that's the emergency stash, and this definitely isn't an emergency."

The boy hung his head as he decided on sushi for dinner, again. The blonde sighed, "I wish I knew how to make ramen."


So what did you think? You can let my know by using the review bar just below this story.

Don't worry, I don't bite. Unless you're a sandwich. In that case, BE AFRAID, BEVERY AFRAID...

Tootles!

1. Chapter 1 3061 0 0 2. The second chapter 2732 0 0 3. Third time's the charm! 2789 0 0 4. Four Man Team! 2365 0 0 5. Five on One 2229 0 0 6. Six Eyes Watching Me 2654 0 0 7. (Un)Lucky Team Seven 2637 0 0 8. Ate the Dust 3084 0 0 9. Nine Tales 2692 0 0 10. Pending Ignition…10…9… 2800 0 0 11. Cranked up to Eleven 3131 0 0 12. Twelve Tolls of Death's Bell 1761 0 0 13. Baker's Dozen 1970 0 0 14. Break time 3032 0 0 15. Tantrums Work! 2291 0 0 16. Oh boy, FLASHBACKS! 1110 0 0 17. Smoke signals 2153 0 0 18. Great Acting 2812 0 0 19. Days Spent Well 4242 0 0 20. The First Bout 2116 0 0 21. Sasuke vs Kiba 1170 0 0 22. Sakura vs Tenten 1579 0 0 23. The Rest of the Prelims 3112 0 0 24. Emergency Therapy Session! 3230 0 0 25. A Real Bad Time 3083 0 0 26. True to Form 2871 0 0 27. Impact 2434 0 0 28. Aftermath 2859 0 0 29. Day 1 2520 0 0 30. Memory Lane 2884 0 0 31. Midnight Stakeout 3346 0 0 32. Tournament Part 1 3358 0 0 33. Tournament Part 2 2864 0 0 34. Tournament Part 3 2300 0 0