- previously -
Inoichi reached what seems to be the end of the now dimly lit hallway. In front of him was a door made out of the same dark rotted wood on the portraits. He slowly walked towards it, the anticipation in him was notable. He gripped the knob and was about to turn it when suddenly… a voice was heard from behind him.
"You're wandering where you shouldn't be, Shinobi-san." The voice said, sounding awfully like Naruto but a little distorted and with malice alongside it.
- - - -
Quickly turning around and going into a defensive position, he caught the silhouette of a kid as big as Naruto. Solidifying his belief that it's just Naruto. But he didn't let his guard down just yet.
The silhouette slowly walked forward revealing his appearance to the yamanaka. He looks exactly like Naruto except for a few differences. His hair is longer and has a few patches of red hair in it, his clothes were different from what Naruto usually wears. They consist of a black Shinobi pants, a grey shirt with long sleeves that reached his wrist and a dark blue coat with fur around its neck. His wrist was wrapped with red belt-like material that reached his elbows. And lastly, what scared inoichi was his eyes… His eyes were red and slitted like the kyuubi and his scleras were black like the night.
"You're not Naruto, who are you?!" He slowly backs away still holding his guard up.
"Answer this first Shinobi-san: why are you here?." The copy of Naruto slowly stalked towards him like a predator and although Inoichi knows that he could just leave the mindscape, he didn't do so because he still hasn't finished his task and the sudden appearance of the copy just adds to the list of things he's tasked to find out.
Their surroundings also started to change. The walls started to peel off and crumble alongside the portraits, revealing the scenery beyond the walls. They're inside a clearing with tall dead trees with no leaves in them. The light coming from above was dim and the atmosphere felt haunting. On one part of the clearing was a fairly large pond with an aisle on the middle housing the only tree with leaves, although the tree is also starting to look like the ones beyond the pond, he wondered why that is.
'What is he? A different personality that Naruto made? ,perhaps?' He kept his eyes on the copy of Naruto as it came closer. The Naruto copy then stopped right in front of him and just proceeded to stare at him with its emotionless red eyes.
It then tilted its head to the side before speaking again. Its face, gaining an expression of curiosity. "I'm waiting for an answer Shinobi-San"
'What should I do?' Inoichi is having a dilemma. On one hand he could tell the copy of Naruto what his objectives are and gain its trust enough to tell him what he needs and on the other he could lie and still get it by using his clan's techniques. Although he knows it could backfire if this copy's mind is connected to the original.
He made his choice, but before that he needs to know who or what exactly this copy of Naruto is, because based on his appearance alone he seems to be the complete opposite of Naruto. He doesn't smile, there are no other emotions on his face other than curiosity and also the way he dresses is a complete contrast to Naruto's sometimes bright colored clothing. And lastly his eyes, they're slitted like the kyuubi so there's the possibility that the kyuubi is really starting to influence Naruto.
"Before I tell you what my purpose here is… tell me what exactly you are?" He asked, pointing at the copy of Naruto. It blinked a couple of times before turning and started to walk towards the direction of the pond.
"You're not really in the position to make demands from me but, I'm gonna humor you just a bit."
With a raised eyebrow, Inoichi followed the copy and they both stopped at the edge of the pond. He saw the copy dip his toes on the water. Only now did he notice that the copy was walking barefoot. The copy then stepped on the surface of the water but instead of walking on top of it, he hovered and began floating towards the aisle in the middle.
Inoichi also stepped on the water and started walking towards the aisle. He saw the copy looking towards the slowly dying tree with no visible emotion but he could tell that the state of the tree upsets it.
"What is this?" Inoichi asked. And the copy looked at him with a mischievous yet chilling smile that could make a lesser shinobi's blood run cold. "A tree, obviously. Haven't you seen one?" The clone answered sarcastically.
But Inoichi is not a lesser Shinobi, he's the clanhead of the Yamanaka clan and he's also a jonin.
"I know it's a tree, what I mean is-" the yamanaka retorted, clearly annoyed by the sarcasm. But the copy interrupted him.
" These trees represent the state of our mind. Naruto's I mean." The copy walked closer to the tree before resting his hand on its trunk.
He turned his head to inoichi before continuing. " Earlier this day, this tree looked a little more healthier and vibrant but something happened outside and it affected Naruto's mind. So much anger and desperation affected this tree like the others. I couldn't prevent it from being affected but I successfully minimized that effect." He walked to the edge of the aisle and pointed towards the trees surrounding the mindscape.
"Most of the trees surrounding us already looked like that when I came to be… when Naruto created me. Well, he didn't really create me. I just appeared here and when I saw the state of this place, this mindscape. I started to try and prevent his emotions from affecting his or you could say our mind. I started taking all of his negative emotions and stored them in me so he won't have to endure it and continue using the cheerful persona that he was using, before it becomes permanent."
He turned to inoichi again and looked him straight in the eye. " And to answer your questions of what I am… I am the manifestation of all of his negative emotions. His hatred towards the villagers, his bitterness to the lies the hokage told him, his fear, his resentment, his frustration and lastly… I am his sadness… and sorrow"
"You could call me na-... No, call me N" N said. He was about to say a different name for himself but he caught himself at the last second. Something that Inoichi didn't miss. But he ignored it for now.
N sat down at the base of the tree and put both his hands on the ground to lean back, before speaking again. " It's your turn now, Shinobi-san. What is the purpose of your visit?"
" The hospital asked me to check whether or not you sustained any damage to your mind and see if you've been traumatized by the attack. That is it." he answered simply.
"Also, for someone who claims to be the manifestation of someone's negativity you seem pretty calm and collected. That brings the question whether what you just said to me were lies."
"Well first off, Naruto isn't really traumatized by the experience, if anything he just finds it annoying. Knowing him when he wakes up he's just probably gonna groan and blame it on his 'bullshit luck'."
" Second, who said I'm calm? I'm resisting the ultimate urge to grab your arms and legs with my chains before pulling you apart. " The clone slowly raised his right arm and pointed at Inoichi while projecting an incredible amount of negative emotions. Nine golden chains coated with malicious red chakra appeared behind him, swishing in the air as if they were threads underwater. His face regained the sinister smile as he did so. Inoichi also felt as if some menacing entity was glaring over him when Naruto pointed at him.
"And lastly, we both know that what you just told me… was a lie. So don't try to point fingers at me and accuse me of lying! Yamanaka!" N stated firmly.
"I know who you are, you know why? Naruto just happened to be in the same class as your daughter, and she can't let every opportunity she gets to brag about you. About how you have a 'high position on T&I' even though she doesn't seem to know what that is and about how you 'serve directly under the hokage'. Let's just be honest here and get this over. I'm slowly losing my will and I'm beginning to think that ripping you to pieces is a good idea. And although I know I'm not on par with you, I can still make you feel pain, considering that we are on Naruto's mind and I got almost complete control over here.
Now. I am gonna guess the reason why you're here, please just agree or disagree.
You got sent here by the hokage to try and find out whether or not I'm being influenced by the fox and to try and find out what other things I know and how I came to know them. Am I right?"
The yamanaka sighed and just confirmed it. " You are correct." There is no other reason for him to retaliate to 'N' as he already got most of the things he's tasked.
"Thank you! " N exclaimed. Stopping the continuous wave of negative emotions, And also making the chains vanish into light particles."See! Things are better when we tell the truth. Now after you get out of here, please tell the hokage to not do anything rash that would push Naruto away even more, he's not really that mad at him, just extremely disappointed. He'll eventually lose all of that anger and forgive the old man. Just don't do anything stupid like asking someone to enter his mind. Don't misunderstand my intentions and think that I care about how Naruto feels towards the hokage, no, I just want the constant streams of negative emotions to stop because frankly, I'm getting kind of annoyed of dealing with it"
"You may go now, Yamanaka-san. I suspect that Naruto is about to wake up and it's better he doesn't see both of you when he does." N advised. His face then returned to the previous emotionless expression.
The yamanaka just nodded, weirded out by the sudden changes in N's emotions.
"Wait, show me Naruto first, I need to see that he's fine. It's one of the reasons I'm here."
N just groaned and relented "fiiiine". With that he transported the yamanaka to where Naruto's unconscious mind is… in front of the kyuubi's cage.
He snorted, taking enjoyment from his mean prank.
"Well at least he didn't see the future memories. It's a shame I wouldn't see his reactions when he finds himself in front of kyuubi's snarl." He leaned against the tree and sighed heavily.
His expression changed into pure seriousness as he thought of the effect that the fight had on Naruto.
'the seal has been loosened slightly when he was fighting the masked Shinobi. This could be annoying to deal with, thankfully I was quick to provide him with negative emotions enhanced chakra, things could have gone way worse had I not done so.' sighing heavily again, N decided that he's just gonna leave it for later.
"Ahhhh~ I played the deranged child act there pretty well. If I do say so myself, there's no audience though. Ahhhh what a shame-what a shame"
Inoichi appeared in a place that he can only describe as a 'clean sewer'. He looked around and immediately saw Naruto's unconscious form, laying on the shallow waters. He got close to see him clearly and sighed in relief. 'it seems like N was telling the truth.'
He prepared to leave the mindscape but before he could do so, he was stopped by a booming voice.
""WHAT ARE YOU DOING HERE? HUMAN?"" He felt a sense of deja Vu and remembered N's line earlier. He looked behind him and almost had a heart attack when he saw the snarling face of the kyuubi and its hateful eyes. He hurriedly got out of the mindscape then and there.
- end -
That's the end of this part. I hope you enjoyed it, see you next time!
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