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Walk on the Moon (Naruto SI)

Discussion in 'Creative Writing' started by SixPerfections, Apr 6, 2018.

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  1. azqs

    azqs Getting some practice in, huh?

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    I think they're more creeped out by how sincere the clearly not sincere smile looks, rather than it being a scary smile regardless of context.
     
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  2. steamrick

    steamrick Wisdom is in pursuit, but I'm faster!

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    Agreed - I'd guess that Virulent significantly exaggerated the time they'd need for the mission and that Rei gave them the impression that she knows and disapproves but has decided not to call them out on it.
     
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  3. MissingMind

    MissingMind Getting some practice in, huh?

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    Glad to see this continued! I always thought this had a better look at how an actual reincarnate would turn out.... What type of book are you writing? Any more info on it?
     
  4. disagreement

    disagreement Not too sore, are you?

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    Its a live! It a good time to live right now, cant help but want more. Is Rei leaving the leaf after graduation?
     
  5. Cherico

    Cherico Experienced.

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    when I try to explain to people what a good fanfiction writer looks like six is on my top ten list.
     
  6. Breadnaught

    Breadnaught I trust you know where the happy button is?

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    They could probably cut that down a bit if they realised they don't need to travel back.

    • Travel to location
    • Steal thing
    • Unsummon Self
    • Send word to Rei via other Rats
    • Rei Summons you

    It saves travel time and is basically the perfect exfiltration method. You're instantly on home territory with a single puff of smoke.
     
  7. Izicata

    Izicata AE ALTADOON GHARTOK PADHOME

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    Rei is one of my favourite characters in fiction. She's so strongly realized; she has such a desperate hunger to her that comes through so clearly to the reader. I am extremely happy this fic is updating again, and I hope you take it to completion.
     
  8. Meneldur

    Meneldur Yield All

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    Great to see this again, and happy to have you back! I actually question the idea of sending Rei on deep recon missions, given her fragile (read: non-existent) loyalty to Konoha and her delicate (read: prone to implode) mental state - I'd be worried she'd either defect or reveal herself. I think Gai is probably the best option for a Jounin-sensei for her, someone who is very loyal to the village and embodies all the best traits it espouses, but deep recon? Sounds risky. Though to be fair, I assume they'd only be sent on deep recon missions after they become Chuunin, so maybe it's not so out there?

    That bit of introspection on Rei's part in the beginning was very worrying. She's starting to lose it again. The fact that she now wants power for power's sake is perhaps to be expected, but very worrying in the long run. I warned before of her obsession with power and her equation of power and freedom, and I think this is where we can fully start seeing it. The fact that at the end of the chapter what she wants is just to burn stuff does nothing to reassure me. I only hope her few connections (Ino, Hinata, Neji) manage to keep her connected to things other than power.

    I really like Dagger's characterization so far, it's unique and new. My interpretation on why Virulent and Dagger were backing away from Rei was because she had basically started acting like a Stepford wife, when they know she wants to kill Virulent. On the other hand, we know that acting in a certain way can make it reality and rewire your brain in that direction, so maybe this is what Rei needs to be able to truly make nice with Virulent?
     
  9. B_mod

    B_mod Awoken from mine Slumber

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    Yay! My favorite fanfiction writer is back! Glad you didn't abandon this story, and the fact that its fully planned out already gives me hope that it would be finished someday.

    Really curious to read your original book - while I generally prefer fanfiction over original fiction theese days, I'm absolutely going to give it a try. Plus, fanfiction doesn't pay, so it's understandable for you to try and actually get something out of your talent.

    About the chapter... The direction you decided to develop Rei in continues to be a breath of fresh air - it's rare to see someone so power hungry as a protagonist without them being a massive asshole/edgy wish fulfillment character.

    Rats being creeped out by her being nice was a really funny moment too.
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2019
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  10. wigg55

    wigg55 Know what you're doing yet?

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    Super awesome to see this updating. One of my favorite web novels around.
     
  11. ChaoticSky

    ChaoticSky Know what you're doing yet?

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    Holy shit its alive!

    Please write more of it in the (near) future!
     
  12. BurnNote

    BurnNote Professional Whistler

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    Nice to see this again, and I would be interested in seeing your other work.
     
  13. RichardWhereat

    RichardWhereat The Dawn Will Cum

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    For Neji, wrap around sunglasses.
    For Lee, physical disguise.

    Also, in recon, it's expected they are not found. That team is perfect for this. I hope Rei teaches Lee rat stealth. Being a taijutsu master and a stealth master would be an horrifically lethal combination. So her picking up Gais taijutsu and weight training would be useful as heckfire for her too.
     
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  14. FearIt

    FearIt Getting sticky.

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    This chapter looks like a rewrite of chapter 36 what's up with that?
     
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  15. varoksa

    varoksa Getting out there.

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    I just noticed that, i guess the timeline for the meeting between them got changed? Some parts are def different.
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2019
  16. siddharth1998m

    siddharth1998m Making the rounds.

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    Just throwing this Idea out their Rei Yamanaka The Plague maiden.
    She has rats what are rats infamous for in human history the black death plague (well it was gerbils spread the plague but still). So if Rei is going the villain route i can see that happening she is form the our world right. Plus i dont think i have ever read a Naruto fic where plague were used
     
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  17. RichardWhereat

    RichardWhereat The Dawn Will Cum

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    Hmm, I wonder if an imperfect rat sage mode would turn her into Rei Were-rat?
    She could throw wooden senbon and go by the moniker; Master Splinter.
     
  18. Jade Isentry

    Jade Isentry Unshakable

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    I wish someone she trusted was there to reassure her that power for power's sake isn't inherently bad. Power is a good thing...

    ...as long as it's both used and obtained in good ways. As long as she can live by that creed, I say, "more power to her!"
     
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  19. Hanada

    Hanada Getting out there.

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    What do you think shikaku reaction to rei using him for the summoning technique, strangely nothing was mentioned about it
     
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  20. SolipsistSerpent

    SolipsistSerpent Endlessly Devouring

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    Yes... Wishing for power for the sake of power is fine... Depending on what you do to get it and how you use it after you've got it.
     
  21. siddharth1998m

    siddharth1998m Making the rounds.

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    hey do you think someone in naruto's world can use use chakra strings like One piece's Doflamingo does with his string-string fruit?
     
  22. Tur

    Tur Your first time is always over so quickly, isn't it?

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    One of the best Naruto-fic AND SI-fic I read. Thank you, SixPerfections!
     
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  23. Dr4gon

    Dr4gon Binge reading Insomniac

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    I usually prefer to quietly read and watch the threads of stories I find enjoyable. My good author, your writing has forced me to take more than 6 breaks to calm myself down enough to continue reading. The weight of the emotions portrayed is Primal, it resonates with me providing similar emotions to that of the MC. I highly enjoy this story as a newcomer to both this forum and story.

    Thank you for writing and giving me a glimpse of another world in another way.
    -Dr4gon

    (Prose aside, excitement evokes similar reactions to fear. To avoid being overwhelmed, I had to take breaks reading this, and as an avid binge reader, taking breaks in reading a story is very rare. Took me 4 hours to read this start to finish)
    Thank you once more.
     
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  24. Onmur

    Onmur Getting some practice in, huh?

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    Just finished re-reading this thing.

    ...

    ... It's way. Longer. Than I remembered.

    What can I say? Rei is a prodigy... at slipping off the slippery slope. She's been going at it for around 12 years! All thorough the story she's been noting herself becoming worse and worse, now she's even forgot the reason why. This might end in tears.

    Also, I had forgot just how screwed up her relationship with Hinata was. Yikes. We'll see how they're doing next time they share the spotlight together?
     
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  25. siddharth1998m

    siddharth1998m Making the rounds.

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    Hey Six!!
    When can we expect you to release the next chapter?
     
  26. SixPerfections

    SixPerfections Know what you're doing yet?

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    Inside a week. Probably in the next 4-5 days.
     
  27. siddharth1998m

    siddharth1998m Making the rounds.

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    YESSSSSSSSSS!!!
    Thanks i am gonna go reread the whole story once again hehehe
     
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  28. varoksa

    varoksa Getting out there.

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    Did you notice you used the same kakashi and guy scene twice?
     
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  29. roseknight

    roseknight Getting out there.

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    The scene has been quite rewritten (much for the better imo). It's also a much better placement for the scene vs the old location.
     
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  30. Threadmarks: Chapter 47
    SixPerfections

    SixPerfections Know what you're doing yet?

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    000

    Chapter 47

    000

    Two months later – 3 weeks before graduation

    The mission to Hidden Rock had been a resounding success. Despite a nagging fear that Virulent and Dagger would be discovered – perhaps even eventually tracked back to her, and wouldn't that have been fun to explain? – in the end the Rats had delivered as promised. It had been hours now since the two sibling Rats had delivered their ill-gotten gains and departed after a succinct and uninteresting debrief. Now Rei leaned back on her chair as she sat at her desk, mind almost numb as she tried to come to grips with what she now had in her possession.

    3 D-Rank, 15 C-Rank, 3 B-Rank, 3 A-Rank and 1 S-Rank fire jutsu were now hers courtesy of the many clans of the Hidden Rock. She now had many, many interesting possibilities that had just opened up to her. Practically none of the jutsu that now sat on her desk were ones she could remember from the story. There was Phoenix Immolation, a jutsu that apparently let the user selectively coat themselves in armor made of flames, something that supposedly made the user an absolute nightmare in a taijutsu fight. White Sword, a jutsu that created a blade of fire so hot the edge supposedly turned white. Great Flame Avalanche, which seemed to do more or less what it said on the tin with an absurd Chakra requirement. Perhaps the one jutsu that made her cackle with glee the most was a B-Rank jutsu called Fire Release: Fire Dragon Bullet technique. Basically, it was the technique Zabuza used early in the story, but with fire and what felt like a third as many hand seals.

    Then there was the sole S-Rank jutsu, Firefiend Stalker. Rei knew she was very eager and perhaps a bit reckless on occasion, but that jutsu seriously gave her pause. Not only did she not have the Chakra required to use it by a hilarious margin, the jutsu was very likely to kill her the first time she tried it without taking a great many elaborate precautions. That she would likely need a lot of help with.

    Yes, that jutsu was definitely getting put on the shelf for later… way, way later. I'll probably end up trying it anyway as soon as I grow into the required Chakra, danger be damned. Rei ultimately really doubted that she'd be able to help herself. Well, that's a problem for another day.

    Funny, Rei had thought she would be ecstatic once the mission completed and she got her hands on all of these jutsu. Oh, don't get her wrong, she was happy. Very much so. But Rei was also a little… not scared exactly, but something similar perhaps. Despite the incredible treasure she now had in her possession, all of it represented was potential. Translating that potential into actual combat prowess was not as simple as someone like Naruto would like to believe.

    There was an old martial arts adage from her old world that came to mind. It is better to know one move extremely well than a hundred moves poorly. The same general idea applied to using jutsu, at least as far as the commonly held theory was concerned. To most quickly rise in skill and ability it was best for newer ninja to focus on mastering a small number of jutsu until those jutsu of could be utilized to the absolute highest level. Rei had already learned the C-Rank jutsu she'd "borrowed" from the Sarutobi clan library and she wanted to keep using it as she thought that it had great potential and flexibility. That meant that out of all of these new justu, for now the smart move was to pick one to master.

    Rei sighed. As much as she wanted to pick the one that would let her make a giant dragon made of fire, it wasn't really a good choice in terms of practicality, utility or Chakra efficiency. Afterwards. Maybe after she mastered both the Sarutobi jutsu and something more practical from her shiny new Iwa jutsu collection she'd indulge in giant flaming fire dragons of doom. For now, something a little more… bread and butter would probably serve her best on her projected growth path.

    Ten minutes later, Rei decided which jutsu to add to her arsenal. Not super flashy, but it would definitely compliment her stealth and somewhat hit-and-run fighting style. Rei's lips peeled back, a wolfish grin spreading across her face. Yes. Yes, this will do nicely.

    Now she had three weeks to integrate this new jutsu and finish her preparations. For months now she had been getting ready for her first assessment with her future teacher. Come hell or high water, she was going amaze the absolute shit out of whatever sad soul ended up being her Jounin sensei. Rei was going to have him singing her praises so high that nobody was ever going to forget it.

    000

    Two weeks before graduation

    Rei sat under the wide branches of a tall tree as she watched two of her friends going at it like they were trying to kill each other. Tenten was on the offensive, forcing Neji back with quick and efficient strikes with the naginata she wielded, the weapon's enormous reach giving her an incredible advantage. Neji gave ground steadily, his expression cool and impassive even as Tenten's was set in intense concentration. Her strikes harried him in a businesslike staccato, sharp and conservative, more focused on keeping the long blade firmly between herself and Neji rather than going for a more aggressive move that might give him an opening.

    It was an interesting match. Tenten's weapon choice was unusual for ninja, since it was too large and unwieldy to be practical in many of the myriad situations ninja expected to find themselves in. However in this situation, outdoors and with a lot of room to work with, it was easy to see why the samurai had used such a weapon for centuries. Even for fighters with what Rei would have once considered superpowers, something as basic as having superior reach could allow a lesser combatant to overcome a greater one.

    She really has gotten quite good Rei thought, a small genuine smile coming unbidden to her lips. She wasn't sure if Tenten had been this good in the story at this point in time, but she seriously doubted it. Tenten had thrown herself into trying to keep up with Neji and her, since thanks to Rei they were by far the two people she spent the most time with at the academy. Seeing just how much she had improved and gotten better over time sparked a warm glow in Rei's chest. It just felt good seeing her very first friend grow and blossom before her eyes. Even better was the knowledge that she'd had at least some non-insignificant role in getting her there.

    Of course, that Tenten had gotten so much better did not mean she was yet at Neji's level.

    Neji dodged and backpedaled, but to Rei it never really appeared that he was under any significant pressure. He simply bid his time, probably betting on Tenten making a mistake long before he did. Moments later, he was proven right. Eventually her lead foot stepped on a rock as she advanced, the impediment catching her by surprise. It took less than a fraction of a second for her to solidly recover her footing, but it was enough.

    Neji feinted left, Tenten instantly moving the blade into position to block. She was just a fraction too slow to bring the blade back around when Neji dashed in from the right and low to the ground. Tenten immediately let got of her naginata once Neji was inside the arc of her blade, instantly channeling Chakra into a pair of fingerless gloves she was wearing.

    Out of the sown in storage seals in the gloves came out a pair of tonfa, Tenten grabbing them solidly in her hands just as Neji threw the first empty handed strike.

    Tenten actually lasted a few seconds before Neji got the upper hand enough to start thoroughly dismantling her, which was much better than the rest of their pathetic classmates could boast. First he struck a nerve in her right arm, causing her to drop one of the tonfa and temporarily weakening if not outright paralyzing the limb. After that he restricted himself to regular punches and kicks, refraining from using anything fancier like nerve strikes or the Gentle Fist. After a few more seconds of a horribly one sided scuffle Neji landed a solid punch on Tenten's stomach, forcing her to bend over before he kicked her in the chest, knocking her flat on the ground.

    "Do you yield?" Neji asked, his voice calm and noticeably not short of breath.

    Tenten for her part was panting and gulping in air from where she lay on the ground. She tiredly rubbed at her chest as she nodded, a slightly bitter but friendly smile on her lips. "I yield. Yeah, you got me Neji-kun. If you manage to get close, I don't stand a chance. You really tear me apart in two seconds flat."

    "That's what she said!" Rei singsonged from where she was seating.

    Both of them turned to look at her, Neji giving her a flat look that made it clear just how not impressed he was at her attempt at humor. In contrast it took Tenten about five seconds to get Rei was insinuating before she turned bright red, shaking her head and sputtering denials.

    "No I didn't.. - I'd never, I don't - … Rei!" she said, looking at Rei before turning to look at Neji and then turning even more red. She turned away from him with a pitiful noise and buried her head in her hands. "I hate you so much sometimes."

    Tenten, as it turned out, was easy to fluster with innuendo. Though to be fair one would be hard pressed to find a twelve year old girl who wasn't. Her mortification was always worse when Neji was around or when the innuendo was somehow associated with him, which had some interesting implications. Though to be fair, if Rei had been a regular twelve year old girl there was a fair chance she would have been a bit gaga over Neji like every female in their age group seemed to be. At least Tenten had enough sense not to ogle (much) and was able to interact normally with him without making an idiot out of herself. Usually.

    Feeling a bit bad, Rei pushed herself to her feet and quickly gathered Tenten's weapons for her before setting them down and kneeling next to the girl. With a friendly grin she said, "I'm sorry, but not too much. If you want me to stop then you need to stop giving me such interesting reactions."

    "Hate you. So. Much."

    "Love you too," Rei chirped happily, wrapping a friendly arm around Tenten's shoulders. "Now come on. We're done for the day. Let's talk about our training for bit before we go home."

    A minute later, with some minor prodding from Rei, the three of them were seated and chatting under the shade of a tree. Unlike most groups of young people however they were not gossiping. Instead they were picking apart their training for that day and trying to find and suggest avenues for improvement. Eventually the conversation came around to what Rei had been pushing for the last month – that is, training specifically to make as good an impression as possible on their Jounin sensei when they graduated in a few weeks.

    "Hey Neji," asked Rei. "So how has the resistance training with the poisons been going?"

    "Eh?" exclaimed a surprised Tenten, having never heard of this before.

    "Nothing outside of what you told me to expect," Replied Neji, ignoring Tenten. "It has been… unpleasant, but none of the more dangerous side effects you told me about of have manifested. It seems that my body is adapting well to the substances."

    Rei nodded. "Good to hear. An unpredictable reaction was a small but definite possibility."

    "So, what?" asked Tenten, managing to look troubled, worried and intrigued all at the same time. "You've been getting Neji to build up an immunity to some poisons? Why?"

    Rei gave Tenten a long considering look before she spoke. "You know I use poisons, right?"

    "I mean, I know that sometimes you use some 'harmless ones' when you spar with Neji but that's about it. What does that have to do with getting him build up an immunity?" asked Tenten.

    Surprisingly, it was Neji who answered. "Since we're going to be teammates, it would allow us for more tactical freedom if we didn't have to always be worried about friendly fire when it comes to some of her more common poisons. Also, more indiscriminate use could potentially be deadly or at the very least hamper our enemies, while leaving us immune to the effects." He made a face at the words 'indiscriminate use', not really his style, but he didn't say anything else about it either.

    Rei for her part was nodding along with him. "It potentially opens up some interesting team combinations for us. If we're lucky, we might even be able to catch our Jounin-to-be off guard."

    Tenten considered all this for a few seconds before she spoke. "That… makes sense I guess. Though... I still think you're maybe taking this impress-your-Jounin thing a bit too far. They are supposed to train us to be better, right? As long as we do well for what is expected of us at our level, does it really matter how much strength we show off on our very first meeting?"

    "The sad reality is that to advance in our careers, it's ultimately more important what people think about our competence than how competent we actually are," replied Rei in an authoritative tone. "And sadly, first impressions tend to stick around far longer than they should. It's not just about the Jounin sensei per se, but also about everyone else he's going to talk to about his new team. And trust me, ninja gossip a lot. If you can start your career with everyone thinking you're the next coming of the Yondaime or whatever, as long as you don't screw up too badly, that's still what most people are going to be thinking about you several years down the line."

    "That… sounds really cynical," said Tenten with a frown, but not in a tone that suggested she disagreed with Rei.

    The blonde girl shrugged. "Is it really cynicism if it's the truth? The idea that if you're just a good little soldier who does what they are told then you will eventually achieve greatness is fundamentally flawed. If we're going to climb to the top of the ninja world, we need to do everything in our power to take our destiny into our own hands."

    Neji was nodding along with this, already having heard these arguments before and agreeing wholeheartedly. Tenten, for her part, was looking a little intimidated and trying hard not to show it. With a sigh she shook her head.

    "I don't know if I'm sad or grateful that I'm not going to end up on a team with you guys. No offense," she said with a rueful smile.

    Rei shrugged, giving Tenten a smile that was just a tiny bit sad. "Unfortunately the gender ratio of our class makes that impossible, too many girls dropped out early on. As it is we're going to have at least two all-male teams. I would have really liked to have had you on my team though, Tenten. You're my friend, and I'm genuinely proud of how far you've come over all these years. I know that you will become a fantastic kunoichi and an even better teammate."

    "I too think you are the least objectionable person in our class," added Neji unprompted, surprising both of the girls. Coming from him that was practically a heartfelt declaration of eternal broship, or something.

    Tenten, for her part, seemed overwhelmed by what her two friends had just said. Tears gathered at the corners of her eyes and a gentle smile blossomed on her face. "Ano… t-thank you. Both of you. That actually means a lot to me. So… thank you."

    Rei scooted up to her and gave her a warm hug while Neji did that noble thing where he looked away and pretended not to notice anything.

    000

    One week before graduation

    While her years in the academy had been generally tolerable given the freedom to self-study granted to her by Nao-sensei, the kunoichi classes had been the bane of her existence.

    For one, Yukira, the old battleaxe of a sensei they had been saddled with, absolutely refused to let Rei do something more productive such as study treatises on tactics or the political histories of the various nations. Instead she had to sit and pay attention to her droning on about whatever nonsense they were supposed to be learning that day.

    A great deal of it Rei already knew. As the scion of a noble clan, even a ninja one, she had picked up from an early age many of the intricacies of proper behavior and etiquette, tea ceremony, flower arranging, the works. As someone who had the memories of a grown woman many of the "pearls of wisdom" Yukira handed out to preteen girls over the years on how to deal with men and various situations "as a woman" were a joke.

    However, Rei could admit, some of the things she had learned in the class over the years might one day prove useful. The slight differences in court etiquette between the different nations, for one. The timing and manner in which one picked up a tea cup, for example, could quickly mark one as a foreigner if one were attempting to infiltrate a noble household in Earth or Lightning countries. There were also things about the meanings of how Wind country nobility tied their robes and about how pathetically weak and subservient peasant women in Water country were expected to act. Potentially useful knowledge, though Rei wasn't sure the trade off of aggravation and wasted time over the years was worth the effort.

    The worst, however, were the implied (but never overtly stated) lessons that Yukira-sensei had been slowly drip feeding them over the years. A kunoichi's usefulness to the village was paramount. A kunoichi was generally not suited for heavy and prolonged front line fighting as men were. A kunoichi's usefulness was more as a honey pot, since that was a task men would have a much more difficult time achieving. A kunoichi had to use her "charms" to accomplish a mission at any cost. A kunoichi was expected to do whatever was necessary to accomplish a mission. And didn't you know, unlike with the civilian nobility there was no taboo among ninja about a woman who was no longer a virgin before marriage being spoiled goods? A kunoichi must smile and harden her heart to do what is necessary for the village. A kunoichi sometimes had to resort to extreme measures to acquire necessary information or intelligence from a target. A kunoichi who succeeded in a successful infiltration mission her male counterparts could not have done was considered a hero. And hey, did you know that the birth control treatments we will supply you with free of charge have a virtually one hundred percent proven track record of success?

    That kind of crap had begun when they had first started kunoichi classes at eight years old. Generally speaking, the girls in her class had all been too young to pick up on any of the subtext until the final year or so, but that didn't make any of the "lessons" that came before that any less effective. It was, to Rei's modern Western sensibilities, outright fucking disgusting to be feeding this crap to anyone, let alone impressionable preteen girls. The thought of Tenten, but somehow especially Ino and Hinata having to sit through the shit coming out of that woman's mouth made Rei's blood boil. Though ninja were admittedly far more progressive than any other group in this world, there were still plenty of hints of that old-time assumption that a woman's most valuable trait lay in between her legs.

    Though Rei was quite happy being female, there was no doubt that in some ways life would have been a lot easier if she had been reborn a man.

    "Now girls," began Yukira, something in her voice drawing Rei out of her dark thoughts and making her pay attention. "Now that all of you are almost real kunoichi of our village it is time to talk about an unpleasant topic. However, it is a topic that you must be educated about if you are going to be active duty kunoichi. That topic is about what we, as women, can expect in the unlikely case that we are captured by the enemy."

    Rei's expression turned grim, knowing exactly where this was going. Looking around the classroom Rei could tell that maybe a third of the girls actually got it, while the rest were just looking at Yukira-sensei with attentive but slightly worried expressions. Rei wasn't sure if she was glad or not when she saw that Tenten was one of the ones who looked unsure as to where their teacher was going with this. For all that they were all training to be killers in many ways the girls in class with her were all still naive little children.

    "Before we get into that, however, a short lesson on sexuality between men and women is required so that you may understand what I am about to impart with proper context. While I'm sure some of you already know this information, I guarantee you that some of your classmates do not, so please bare with me while we make sure that everyone is up to speed."

    Thus Rei had to sit through the first equivalent of a "sex-ed" class she had ever had in any formal setting. At least her mother had taken her aside a couple of years ago to explain to her "the realities between a man and a woman" but she didn't doubt that, much like in her last world, some parents had decided to neglect the topic altogether because it was an uncomfortable conversation to have with their children. What came next was a short but thorough explanation on sex, sexual desire, menstruation and it's relationship to sex and pregnancy. Not only was sitting through that in a room full of twelve year olds bad enough, but knowing that it had only been brought up in order to explain what might happen to them if they were captured by an enemy just made it a hundred times worse.

    "Now, we come back to the original purpose of this lesson: to explain what we, as women, have to expect when we are captured by the enemy. You should make every attempt to avoid capture since, aside from the obvious reasons, it is extremely likely that the enemy will use the opportunity to take liberties without your consent. Konoha shinobi are prohibited from doing so to captured enemy combatants, of course, but other villages are not nearly as enlightened or as civilized as we are."

    Somehow, Rei didn't think those rules about Konoha-nin taking advantage of captured enemies stemmed from any sort of superior moral fiber unlike what Yukira-sensei was implying. What came next was a thorough and frankly somewhat horrifying explanation of the realities of a woman captured by violent and hyper aggressive enemy ninja. Even Rei was left feeling a bit cold and shaken when it was all said and done.

    "Though, on a brighter note, as a result women statistically have a much higher chance to escape capture than men as a result. Remember, if you ever find yourself in such a situation, to always look for any advantage you can get since men in such situations have a very high tendency to let their guards down. Think of your teammates, think of Konoha, keep your head about you and do not despair. Be patient and look for an opening. That is the best thing you can do if you find yourself in such a situation."

    So, lay back and think of England but with a different twist? Classy. Looking around the room, most of the girls looked disquieted and slightly ill, Tenten included. Rei resisted the urge to sigh. In truth, though unpleasant to sit through, this was a needed and necessary lecture by any metric.

    However, thinking a little deeper about, the timing of it didn't sit well with her. At all. This was an unpleasant and horrifying reality of what could happen as an active duty ninja. Something that might well convince a young girl to drop out of the ninja program if she was aware of it instead of having her head filled with patriotism and the "cool life of a ninja." Instead the stark ugliness was withheld until they had just one week until graduation, making the odds that someone would drop out of the program at this point virtually zero.

    Looking back on it, this had actually been the pattern in all their lessons at the academy. Bright and inoffensive stuff at first that gradually became more grim and unpleasant as the years wore on. In the early years for example taijutsu was treated like a fun game to win. Now in their last year they were given specific instructions on how to use what they had learned in taijutsu to quickly and efficiently kill, if necessary.

    "Now," said Yukira-sensei, giving the class a rare smile. "Enough about that. Let's talk about what we can do to make sure all of you pass your Genin test next week, shall we?"

    000

    Graduation day

    Rei was sitting in her typical chair at the back of the classroom, head tilted back looking at the ceiling and bored out of her mind. The written portion of the exam had finished hours ago, which Rei had completely aced with hilarious ease. They were now being called one at a time for the practical portion of the exam which took anywhere from five to ten minutes per individual. Multiply that by fifty students and just waiting around for her turn to get tested was taking all damn afternoon.

    Honestly, they should have just given her the damn headband. It's not like anyone in the village for one second thought she wasn't going to meet the insultingly easy minimum requirements.

    There had been one or two failures in the practical final exam so far, but most students came out of the examination room with a shiny new Konoha headband in their hands, with big smiles on cheeks that still had far too much baby fat on them. Most of those happy students, she knew, were destined to head to the Genin corps. It wouldn't be very long after graduation when the glamour of the ninja life would quickly begin to wear off for most of these clueless kids.

    "Hayashi, Tenten!"

    At hearing her name the girl sitting next to Rei jerked awake from where she had been half-dozing on her desk, suddenly visibly becoming nervous. Tenten looked over at Rei, a poorly hidden look of trepidation on her face. Rei gave her a reassuring smile and a pat on her hand. "You got this Tenten. This is going to be much easier than you think it is. Now go get them, tiger."

    Tenten gave her friend an amused little smile, the air of nervousness thankfully seeming to diminish a great deal. "Yeah. You're right. When I come back, I'll be a Konoha ninja," she said decisively, before standing up and walking with her head held high to the examination room.

    About five minutes later Tenten came back out of the examination room, a brand new headband in her hands and a happy grin on her face that stretched from ear to ear. A few of their classmates mumbled their congratulations as she came back up to her seat next to Rei. Despite her mixed feelings about the situation, Rei managed to dredge up a convincing enough looking smile for the other girl. "See? Told you it would be easy. Congratulations."

    If possible, Tenten beamed even more. Part of Rei thought she was going to be sick.

    It wasn't long before another familiar name was called.

    "Hyuuga, Neji!"

    Neji rose from his typical seat on the very fist row of the classroom, walking to the examination with no sign of nervousness or hesitation. A few minutes later he walked out of the examination room, looking down at the headband he now held loosely in his hands. He looked up at Rei and their eyes met briefly, the girl giving him a subtle nod that he returned in kind. Usually that was how it went. Rarely did too many words need to pass between them.

    After Neji returned to his seat, it was another long and boring wait for her turn. One thing Rei noticed after it occurred to her was that Rock Lee was not in the classroom that day. Odd. Then again, it wasn't like it was possible for him to pass the practical test as Lee could not perform normal jutsu. Had the boy been excused? Failed to show up in shame? Had Maito Gai already poached him as his potential martial arts protegee?

    "Yamanaka, Rei!"

    Finally.

    With a wink to Tenten she got up and strode confidently for the examination room. Subtly looking around the room, most people's eyes are on her. There was some mix of awe, jealousy or even fear on the faces of all the students. As it should be. She was far beyond any of these immature children, and they would do well to remember that moving into the future. Rei did have a vested interest in spreading her reputation, after all.

    Walking into the examination room, there was a lone chair positioned in front of a desk that Nao-sensei and the Chuunin with a mustache that had a few months ago officiated the testing of her anti-Genjutsu technique sat behind. Rei didn't bother to sit down, instead she came to a parade rest and stood at attention in front of the desk. This will be over quickly.

    Nao-sensei didn't bother wasting any time. "As I'm sure you know, Rei-san, the practical portion of the test is for you to demonstrate proficiency at the three jutsu taught in the academy. Please go ahead and demonstrate the Bunshin technique."

    Honestly, it's like being tested on my ability to put on my own clothes in the morning. While it was still a bit hit-and-miss on the more complex fire element jutsu, Rei had long ago mastered how to do the academy three without the use of hand seals. With a thought and an exertion of will, a half dozen perfect illusory copies of herself suddenly materialized all around the room. Mustache Chuunin showed a bit of surprise, but Nao-sensei remained impassive.

    "Acceptable." Her teacher said. "Please demonstrate the Henge technique now."

    Dismissing her clones, Rei was about to comply when a thought struck her. She had been curious about Nao-sensei's apparent agelessness… and this was technically the last day they would have any sort of official relationship. As Rei had discovered months before, through some clever uses of clothing, accessories and makeup Nao-sensei appeared to age appropriately, when in fact as far as Rei could tell she had not physically changed one bit in six years. She still looked about sixteen or seventeen years of age under all her makeup and her old granny glasses and non form flattering clothes. If she didn't do something now, she may never have a chance to get to the bottom of this mystery.

    Now, what could she do about that? The most logical course was to give Nao a reason to seek her out in the future, or at the very least give herself an excuse to seek the older (and how much older?) woman out. Now, how should she go about this? In this culture, and twice so as a ninja, it was considered extremely inappropriate to just directly verbally confront someone with something that was obviously meant to be kept hidden. Somewhat more indirect methods of communication were considered both more refined and appropriate. If Rei didn't want to ruffle too many feathers a more… subtle approach than she would normally take was called for.

    Well, time to spice things up a bit. Rei felt a pang of sadness as she remembered Anko training her in this particular technique that she was about to perform. It had been a… long while, since the two of them had spoken. Shaking off the sudden bout of melancholy and nostalgia Rei gave Nao-sensei a slight nod and concentrated.

    Gripping the patterns of both Henge and Kawarimi, Rei let her senses settle on the chair a few feet away from her and twisted. She felt both techniques execute at once, one second standing in one place and the next she was a few feet away, wearing someone else's body and face entirely.

    Rei ignored the reaction of the second Chuunin and kept her eyes firm locked on her teacher. Nao-sense's face twitched slightly at seeing her new form in what Rei chose to interpret as shock and surprise. The blonde girl allowed a slight teasing, knowing smile to grace her lips. Her teacher very quickly regained her composure and her eyes seemed to cool a few degrees as they regarded her. Their eyes met, and the two of them locked stares for a few very long seconds before an unwanted comment interrupted them.

    "Well, I really am impressed that you were able to do two techniques at once. Quite remarkable, as expected from you, Yamanaka-san. However perhaps you need to work on it a bit more. Though your Henge into Nao-sensei is reasonably good, I myself can notice a number of details that are quite off," said Mustachio Chuunin.

    Rei shot him an absolute acid filled glare, which caused the idiot man to startle in shock. She didn't need practice, that buffoon of a Chuunin was clearly just a moron, Rei could see it plain as day now. Rei had Henged herself into Nao-sensei as she has first looked on their very first day of classes, six years ago now. It was a not-so-subtle way of telling her I noticed, I know. The replica was as close to perfect as you could reasonably expect from anyone. Rei had always assumed all the academy teachers were in on Nao-sensei's little secret. If this idiot didn't recognize what she had just done, then clearly she might have been mistaken.

    "It's all right, Tadamichi-sensei," said Nao, eyes never leaving Rei's face. "The Henge is quite good. This appearance she chose is just a joke in poor taste. I'd have expected someone like you to take this test more seriously and show a little more discretion, Rei."

    She turned back to look at Nao-sensei before shrugging carelessly. Rei's lips tugged into a little lopsided smile that looked odd on Nao-sensei's face. "What can I say? I just wanted to go the extra mile to show off all that I've learned while in your care, Nao-sensei."

    Mustache seemed a little lost by the byplay and neither of the two teachers looked particularly pleased with her.

    However, after another few moments of tense silence Nao spoke in a cold, calmly controlled voice. "Well, it is clear you possess the minimum required jutsu proficiency Rei Yamanaka. Come and take your headband. Congratulations. You are now a Genin of Konoha."

    000

    It took another couple of hours before everyone was tested and they were finally ready to read the team assignments. All the students were back at their desks, and except for the three who had failed, every single one of them was practically vibrating in their seats from barely contained excitement. Only the presence of Nao-sensei prevented them from practically exploding with glee. They had graduated, they had passed, and now they would be placed with their team who would be like their family for the next few years. Now they got to be real ninja. Why wouldn't they be excited?

    Of course, most students didn't know that about two thirds of them would be going to the Genin corps, where, unless they got extremely lucky, they would never have a Jounin teacher and they would never rise above the rank of Chuunin. Rei was actually somewhat impressed that the academy managed to keep something that big mostly a secret from all the academy students. Then again, most students in their graduating class were still oblivious snot nosed brats.

    "Team 84! Suichi Monmon, Ren Higurashi and Sakai Shimura."

    The Konoha headband felt heavy where she had put it away inside her battle kimono. To say she had mixed feelings now that this day had finally arrived would have been a world class understatement. Still, she had spent nearly every waking moment for the past decade preparing herself in one way or another for this moment. Rei knew, took solace in, the fact that she was most of the way there. Just five more years of this, on the outside, and she would be ready to make her move. Maybe sooner. Maybe a lot sooner. It was impossible to tell for certain at this point, unfortunately. It was a generally accepted fact that talented ninja generally made the jump from potentially dangerous to absolutely absurdly dangerous somewhere in their mid to late teens. She would just have to play it by ear and judge when striking out on her own would no longer be just an elaborate form of suicide.

    "Team 85! Nobuchika Hasekura, Yukiro Nakasone and Keiji Mori."

    With a sigh, Rei decided that the best thing to do was to bring her mind back to the present. At least they had finally deemed to tell them what the deal was with the team numbers. All teams graduating from the academy would get a number in ascending order, starting at one and ending at ninety nine. Whatever number the previous class ended up at the next class would pick up the next number. After the cycle finished it would reset back to one. Given that her class started with team eighty four, it made sense that her sister's class would be in a position to start the cycle from one again next year. Hence the formation of the "famous" team seven from the story. This system actually made some sense, since if every class had a team seven things would start to get confusing real quick.

    "Team 86! Masao Inuzuka, Tenten Hayashi and Taro Suga!"

    Rei's eyes snapped up at that, her lips twisting into an involuntary sneer. Masao Inuzuka. Rei had had to save Tenten from that tub of lard and his cronies bulling her on their first year. Ever since then he'd been smart enough not to go near Tenten, but the idiot was still the biggest bully in the class, throwing his size and weight around and acting like a thug even when his skills could charitably be called mediocre at best. He was on Rei's permanent shit list, and she beat and humiliated him whenever they sparred or whenever the general mood struck her. The thick idiot had never made the connection that his distasteful behavior was the reason she'd repeatedly and gleefully made an example of him over and over again. The dogs his clan raised had a far higher intelligence and capacity for learning than he did, it seemed. Rei's eyes sought him out, and she found him on one of the rows below looking up at Tenten with a look of mild distaste on his face. Then he noticed Rei and flinched as he saw her glaring fire and brimstone down at him. She smiled a cruel smile at him, one that seemed to almost cause him to wilt in on himself. He couldn't quite hold her gaze but looked up in her general direction with a sour and defiant look on his face. Not that his bravado did anything to hide the fact he was terrified of her. Rei found that somewhat amusing. If he must be on a team with Tenten, it's best I go and explain to him how things are going to be, now isn't it? As she kept her eyes locked on the boy who was trying so valiantly to pretend she didn't scare the piss out of him she made to rise out from her seat, only for a hand to grab her wrist and stop her.

    Rei turned to look, surprised, only to find Tenten holding her wrist and giving her the closest thing to a genuinely angry look that she had even gotten from the girl. Confused, Rei raised an eyebrow, as if to ask what?. Tenten's expression softened, and in turn she gave Rei a long look and mouthed something to her.

    Let me figure it out.

    Rei's automatic reaction was to feel and look defiant, to which Tenten responded to by tightening the hand around Rei's wrist. The look on the girl's face was at the same time both demanding and pleading. Tenten knew she couldn't stop Rei, but that didn't stop her from challenging her in this instance. After thinking about it for a moment, Rei could understand where Tenten was coming from. If it was going to be her team then she needed to learn how to deal with the people in it, after all. But would it really be so bad for her to make sure the idiot Inuzuka knew what permanent damage she would do to him if he dared to step even a single toe out of line when it came to her friend?

    Please, Tenten mouthed to her.

    With a disgusted huff, Rei yanked her hand back and crossed her arms, looking away from Tenten. The other girl audibly sighed in relief. She then scooted over and gave Rei a quick hug and whispered "thank you" in her ear, to which Rei only made a sour grunt of acknowledgment. With that Tenten stood up and walked down the aisle, to where it looked like her other two teammates had already gathered together. The two boys on the team had already started talking among themselves in hushed tones, sending worried glances in Rei's direction every couple of seconds.

    Grow a fucking spine, pussies Rei thought in disgust.

    The team assignments went on for a while, and to be honest Rei quickly lost interest once Tenten was assigned to her team. Rei had edged out Neji as rookie of the year, barely, so in theory they were slotted for the common "best boy and girl and the dead last" team dynamic. From what Rei had gathered, that particular team dynamic tended to happen more or less by default unless there was pressure from higher up for it to be otherwise. On top of that, Hiashi Hyuuga had promised to use his not inconsiderable political muscle to place her and Neji on the same team in exchange for her mentoring Hinata. At this point the only thing left to see was if her assumption about their sensei and the third member of their team panned out. The lack of Lee in the classroom was a bit troubling in that regard.

    As it turns out, she need not have worried. Their team was the very last one announced.

    "Team 99! Neji Hyuuga, Rei Yamanaka and Rock Lee."

    Rei closed her eyes. So, it was exactly as she had predicted years ago. With Lee being on their team then the chances that Gai was their sensei just jumped from 'most likely' to 'a complete certainty.' It made sense, really. Who else where they going to assign as her Jounin sensei if not someone at the very top, one of the elite among the elite in the village? Rei could say with ample humility that she was too good and too valuable to do be placed with anything but the best. Neji too deserved someone of equal caliber.

    Things were about to start getting interesting.

    "Everyone, get together with your teams and wait for your Jounin-sensei to arrive. They will be here to pick you up soo-"

    Nao was interrupted by someone throwing the door to the classroom open so hard Rei was surprised it didn't fly right off the hinges. On the other side of the door stood a tall man, well over six feet tall. He wore a standard issue Jounin vest with a dark green bodysuit underneath that did little to hide the very impressive physique. His hair was black in a bowl cut, and the giant grin on his face showed off teeth that somehow looked far too white to be natural. Aside from his dramatic entrance, the man also seemed to have an aura that commanded the attention and focus of the entire room. He strode purposefully forward, ignoring (Rei didn't think for a second he didn't notice) the sour look Nao-sensei sent his way. It somehow made sense that, while Kakashi was always the last to arrive at anything, this man would be the very first of the Jounin instructors to arrive.

    "Team 99!" the man practically bellowed. "Front and center! It is I, your future team leader. We will all now race to training ground seventeen for our first ever team meeting. Now hurry up and hop to it! One! Two! Three! GO!"

    Gai… no, Gai-sensei had arrived.

    000

    A/N: I got this out a bit later than I had hoped. But, as promised, it is here! Hope you enjoyed the chapter. Stay tuned for another update in the coming weeks.

    Also, several people pointed out a repeated scene in the last chapter. I didn't even realize I had doubled up on it! It's fixed now. :)
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2019
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