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Naruto: The Outsider's Resolve

[A Naruto Fan Fiction] Make the best of what you have, they said... But what I am supposed to do when the best I have are red-eyed freaks, a child who's supposed to be the jailor of the most dangerous being in the world, a snake bastard with serious boundary issues, and a whole world of super soldiers with licences to murder. And you know the best part? None of them like me so much... Oh shut it, old man! Take that Will of Fire and shove it up your— Yeah, this second swing at life isn't panning out... --------------------------------------------------------------- DISCORD SERVER: https://discord.gg/w5dJ82SfMr --------------------------------------------------------------- PATREON LINK: https://www.patreon.com/fictiononlyreader --------------------------------------------------------------- DECLARATION: This story is also present on: FFN, Ao3, SpaceBattles, SufficientVelocity, and ScribbleHub RoyalRoad [to be verified] --------------------------------------------------------------- DISCLAIMER: I don't own any character other than my OCs. The cover pic was commissioned from Kodah.art on Instagram

FictionOnlyReader · Anime & Comics
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256 Chs

CH_2.20 (051)

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The link is also in the synopsis.

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Takuma furrowed his brow as he twirled the shuriken in his hand as he tried to locate the target. The thick white mist obstructed his vision, hiding the painted wooden stump from him. It was so thick he wouldn't walk outside with the visibility he was left with in the fear that a car would run him over.

The quiet of the morning helped him focus as he tried to recall the position of the stump. But his mind had other plans as it let the thoughts of the tournament creep in. Less than two hours remained before he had to head to the training field for the tournament and fight like a prize fighter for the C-rank jutsu that was on the line. He was going to fight people who he had never seen fight before— even his academy classmates in other groups were an unknown as he had only ever seen them use taijutsu, rest of their combat style was a mystery to him.

He needed to face five(or four if he was lucky) people and win. He was worried… he had never won four fights in a row. His record was dotted with losses. Now he was going to face the best from each group and the chances of him winning five straight against the elevated opposition didn't look great.

But, he had to win.

Takuma threw the shuriken into the white mist and a moment later the sound brought back the thud of the shuriken hitting the wooden stump. He walked through the mist and reached the tall wooden stump with the red and white target that had no shuriken on it. He had missed the target by an inch. He sighed, the nerves were getting to him.

———

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"See, I told you there was money on this!" suddenly Takuma was not feeling the nerves from before.

The training field which was usually full with only the genin in basic training was host to a small crowd of shinobi who were definitely not in basic training. All of them shinobi and from the color of their flak jackets, all of them were chunin.

"They're not even trying to hide it!" Takuma could see someone going from person to person with a laminated paper, collecting money.

"Do you think we can participate?" said Taro, a look of calculation flashing in his eyes. "Because I think if we work together, we can make some serious change."

"Are you talking about match fixing?" asked Nenro.

"I didn't say that, but if you want to put it that way, sure."

Takuma glanced across the field at the team from another group with their chunin instructor. Some distance from them stood another team with their instructor. All the teams had their chunin instructors with them which prompted him to ask the question, "Where's Yoshio?"

Masaaki pointed to a group of chunin and among them stood Yoshio's towering figure laughing with them.

"I… I think it's the first time I have seen him laugh," Ai said with a weirded out face. It was indeed a strange sight to see Yoshio laugh.

Takuma caught Yoshio's eyes, who then walked towards them. "I hope all of you're ready to show your best today," he said. "All of these people are here to see you perform. It'd do you good to put a good impression, and who knows, they might look at you favorably in the future."

What did that mean? In Takuma's eyes it was obvious all of those people were here only for fun. He couldn't think more about it as a shinobi walked to the middle of the field that had been left empty— clearly to be used as the fighting stage.

"Don't disappoint me," Yoshio said to them before walking away to rejoin the people he was previously talking to.

"Welcome all to another iteration of the rookie genin tournament," the shinobi announced with a charming host smile on his face. "Today, we will see twenty of best rookies fight for the tantalizing prize of a C-rank jutsu. Until yesterday, they were teammates, but today, they're going to clash against each other to prove that they're the strongest! Are you excited to see who rises to the top and who gets crushed behind."

There hoots and cheers across the crowd.

'God, it's like a gladiator colosseum,' thought Takuma. It also told him that this tournament was in no way official.

The announcer continued, "As there are twenty contestants, we will have to weed some people out to make a proper bracket. That's why the first round will be a preliminary consisting of four matchups.

The announcer then named the people part of the preliminary round. Two people from each team were chosen. From Team-5, Ai and Taro were called up.

"People with the worst records?" noted Masaaki, bluntly.

"At least, you're not fighting each other," said Nenro, "meaning both of you have the chance to move to the next round."

Both lost their fights.

"I did say that it was a clear possibility," Taro shrugged, unbothered about his loss as he rolled his shoulder that had been cleanly dislocated in the fight.

Ai did look genuinely down as Nenro consoled her.

Betting money exchanged hands in the audience before the announcer took the stage again.

"The genins fought valiantly and while some lost, they're winners are heart," the announcers said some nice words and then got boo-ed at from the crowd. He ignored the crowd like a deaf person and continued, "Now that we have a proper bracket in hand, we can get started at the real fun," he said and money once again begin to exchange hands.

"Let's begin with the round of sixteen," the announcer read from the slip in his hand. "The first game matchup is going to be Yoshio against Chinatsu, represented by Takuma and Ohta."

Takuma got slapped on his back by Masaaki as he stepped out, as did the Ohta from Chinatsu's team. There were hoots and cheers as they took the stage. Ohta was taller than Takuma, almost as tall as Masaaki, but was wider than him— Takuma could see Ohta growing into Yoshio's build if he hit the gym twice a day.

They faced each other as the announcer addressed them. "You know the rules," he said. "Don't kill each other or lop something off that can't be fixed. Stop the fight the moment I say so. As long as you follow that, you're good. Do you both understand?"

Takuma nodded while Ohta replied with a 'yes'.

"Good, then take it away, young fellas. Make the fight as entertaining as possible."

The moment the announcer moved away, Ohta started to speak,

"I heard you're a big loser."

Takuma was surprised by the sudden trash talk, but he indulged after a moment's thought. "Oh, yeah? Do you know what I heard? I heard you choke big time, so this fight is going to be really easy for me," he said. Ohta's team had two of his academy classmates, so he knew who must've said that about him.

"Oh, who said that?"

"Your mom did," Takuma grinned, "when I visited her last night… and you know what, she was doing the same thing as you," he then mouthed: 'choke'.

Takuma hadn't heard that since he had come to this world. But boy did it work like a charm. At first, Ohta was surprised, but anger soon overtook him and he rushed like a raging bull. Takuma quick-stepped out of reach, avoiding a kunai slash to the face, and countered with a front kick to the gut. Ohta folded in half as he flung backward, but he was as strong as he looked as he regained his balance before he hit the floor and landed with his feet dragging tracks on the ground.

Ohta snarled and rushed forward without skipping a breath. Takuma threw himself backward and Ohta's swinging kick sliced air, a handspan from hitting.

Following up, Takuma closed the distance, and Ohta, having being enraged by Takuma's comment, attacked with unadulterated aggression. Takuma blocked every swing and hit, and though he was ratcheting up the pace, he did it slowly. If he was to take advantage of Ohta's rage, he was going to do it thoroughly. He used no true attacks but blocked and countered with precision, while pushing the pedal on the pace.

Ohta's heavier build matched his fighting style, he wasn't a nimble fighter, and his heavy swings showed that he was power hit. The fighting style suited Takuma because he could actually keep up and control the momentum. Which was why even though he lost regularly to Masaaki, he found Ai more challenging.

The needle on the pace had moved to a point where Takuma felt rushed, and he knew that Ohta was slower than him. The rage and free space to attack was the only reason why Ohta hadn't noticed how unfavorable pace had become.

Takuma made his move. Ohta swung his arm wide, Takuma ducked under it before taking advantage of the Ohta's bodies moving momentum to step in and stamp a fist into the face. Ohta's aggression suddenly came to a panicked halt. Takuma danced on his feet, bringing himself to the side. He kicked behind Ohta's knee.

Ohta, forced to kneel, hurriedly turned his torso back to bring his hands in a better position to block. He caught the late glimpse of a kunai coming down until and then it was the pain that told him there was a kunai embedded behind his shoulder. The screams ripped through the gallery's cheers as blood spluttered out in the air.

Takuma didn't let his feet rest for a moment. He glided from Ohta's left to right and slipped two senbon into the base of Ohta's neck, pushing them deep into the resisting flesh, avoiding anything vital as to not kill. He had spun a full circle around Ohta and for the 'finishing blow' he grabbed Ohta's head and made him kiss his rising knee, caving Ohta's face in.

Takuma grabbed another kunai out to continue but he saw Ohta dropped to the ground on his back, falling on the kunai left in his back, digging it deeper. Ohta passed out before he hit the ground.

"And, that's it!" the announcer called the fight.

Takuma let the breath go he didn't know he was holding and took a couple unsteady steps back. He could hear his heartbeat as he watched the two young Iryo-nin in charge of injuries rushed in to take Ohta away. Takuma stared at Ohta's broken face and he stared at the pool of blood he had left behind as the announcer grabbed his hand to raise it as the victor.

"You did great, Takuma!" Nenro greeted him with excited slaps on the shoulder.

"The knee to the face? A great touch," Masaaki nodded in appreciation.

"How're you feeling?" asked Ai.

Takuma stared at his friend's face. What was he supposed to say? That it didn't feel real. Everything had gone by so quickly and smoothly. That he was expecting his plan to fail or at least face some hiccups along the way. That he had seen the fight go an entirely different way in his mind.

"I'm feeling…"

He thought about the last two months. He had worked hard. He had contributed to the team that had won in the group. He had been the first to complete the tree-walking challenge. He had won some tough fights which he didn't think he would've been able to win two months back.

The stunned disbelief gave way to something else as he thought about it.

"… confident."

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The link is in the synopsis!