Crossover Fan Fiction / Crossover With Non-anime Series Fan Fiction / Naruto Fan Fiction ❯ NAvatarUTO ❯ Motives ( Chapter 6 )

[ P - Pre-Teen ]

Chapter Six: Ominous motives

Later, in the main office, Hiruzen Sarutobi sat smoking his pipe at a desk. “So the Avatar and his friends wish to join the chunin exams.” He said. “I cannot fulfill their request. Non-ninja, not to mention benders have never been allowed to enter the exams. The Avatar is here under our protection. There is no reason to put them in unnecessary danger or attention.”

“May I interject, lord hokage,” said a man with grey hair wearing an anbu mask, “I think that it would be unwise to dismiss their request so quickly. We are dealing with the Avatar after all.” The reflection of his glasses glinted through the eyeholes of his mask. In the corner stood another cloaked figure wearing a blue mask.

Sarutobi took off his ceremonial hokage hat and looked at the man who had spoken. “If you see any reason why we should allow four non ninja to participate in the chunin exam, please, enlighten me.”

“If I may be so bold, sir,” Kabuto said behind his mask, “The Avatar may have his own reasons that he cannot safely make us aware of. The boy may be young, but he is no younger that any of our rookie genin, all of whom will be participating in the exam. I might argue that withholding them from participating would bring them more attention than not since they would be the only leaf rookies left out.”

Sarutobi stroked his grey pointed beard. “You make a good point.” He said. “Maybe I am underestimating the Avatar and his friends. I will allow it this once.”

Baki was organizing his ninja tools when he heard someone approach. There came a loud knocking at the door. He knew who it was immediately. No shinobi would be so conspicuous and demanding. It must be a certain arrogant prince. Baki opened the door to Zuko who entered without asking.

“Captain Baki, there is something I must ask of you” Zuko said. “I have heard that the Avatar plans to partake in the chunin exams. Let me join your team so that I may capture him.”

The jonin's face was grave. “No. I cannot allow you to do that. We have already risked too much by smuggling you into The Leaf. We have our own goals to accomplish”

Zuko went livid. “Are you implying that I would only be a hindrance to the team?” he growled.

“I said nothing of the sort.” Baki replied coolly. “There is only so much we are willing to do for another country's banished prince. You hold no authority over us.”

Zuko twitched and his clenched fists began to steam. With great effort he managed to uncurl his fingers and breath deeply. Uncle was probably right that this kind of negotiation could not be handled by throwing fireballs. `Remember your leverage' he reminded himself.

Opening his eyes, Zuko tried to smirk but it turned into more of a grimace. “You're right.” He said, gritting his teeth. “I don't have any authority. So don't think of this as an order, but as a request, from a friend.”

Baki raised his eyebrows, amused at the teen's lack of eloquence. Zuko, smelling that he was being disrespected, shouted, “Not a friend of yours, of the Sand Village. I may remind you captain, that your village is in imminent danger of attack from the Leaf Village. The hidden villages and the feudal lords may be separate entities, but the Leaf Village is still on Fire Nation soil. If you want us to buy you enough time for you to eliminate the danger that is in our land, I suggest you do as I say.”

Baki narrowed his eyes at the literally fuming prince. “Allow me to discuss it with my team.” He answered. Zuko had traveled with these ninja for only a day before they reached the Leaf Village and since the sand siblings had gone ahead, he had not yet seen them. Zuko felt an odd sense of anticipation as he waited to see the three most deadly assassins of the Wind Country.

“Did it hurt?” said a low voice that did not seem to fit its owner.

“Did what hurt?” asked Zuko as he eyed the speaker who stepped out of the shadows. The boy was small, with arms crossed. His presence demanded more fear than his short stature would imply, but his most striking feature was his hair as red as the Fire Nation flag. Zuko looked at this stoic boy who was staring at him so intensely and thought, `if he says, “when you fell from heaven”, I think I will fall in love'.

“When you burned your face” Gaara answered.

His words slapped Zuko out of his fantasy and he replied with an edge of steel in his voice that it did hurt and that he did not do it himself but rather had the pleasure of having his father do it for him.

Gaara nodded knowingly; “my own father tried to have me killed by strapping explosives to my uncle. I imagine that I would have sustained much worse burns than that had the sand not protected me. Where was your mother when your father burned your face?”

Zuko did not like where this conversation was going. He narrowed his good eye until it was even with his burnt one. Thinking about his mother always made Zuko angry. The other two sand siblings glanced at each other and edged into the best places to be if they needed to suddenly intervene.

“How dare you.” Zuko growled. “How dare you tiny dirt peasant compare yourself to me. I am the son and heir to fire lord Ozai.”

Kankuro snorted. “Yeah, and we are the children of the fourth kazekage.”

“Enough!” shouted Baki. “You all will cooperate with each other during the chunin exams. Understood?”


Iroh heard the door slam. “Nephew!” he said, “So good to see you. How goes your search for the Avatar?”

“Well, uncle.” Zuko replied as he hung his cloak on the door. “I just made preparations with captain Baki so that I may participate in their stupid exam.”

Iroh coughed and spurted out the hot tea he was drinking. This brought on a spell of hacking. Zuko ran to pat him on the back. Once he had finally caught his breath, he asked, “Why would you do such a thing nephew? You're not considering becoming a ninja, are you?”

Zuko stood and paced the room. “Of corse not, uncle. I overheard the Avatar say that he is going to join the exam.” Iroh thought for a bit. His nephew had actually spotted the Avatar without immediately rushing in to attack. Maybe Zuko was growing up a little. Still, Iroh didn't quite see his reason for entering the exam. Zuko spoke as if he had read his uncle's thoughts. “Participants will have little outside interactions once the exam begins. Joining the test will give me access to the Avatar that I would not otherwise have. Besides, in these tests, fighting is expected. I can't very well engage him in battle in the middle of the street but I can in the exam.”

Iroh furrowed his brow. “That is very good reasoning, prince Zuko, but I'm afraid you don't have all the information you might need to make your decision.”

Zuko rolled his eyes and sat at the low table across from the retired general. “What more could I need to know uncle?”

Iroh stroked his beard. “Let me tell you about these exams, Nephew. Shinobi are very deadly, and this test challenges all skills of survival. It will be very dangerous. Not even the Avatar could make it through this test without injury. I suggest you wait until the Avatar has finished the exam and then move in for your attack. When he is weakest.”

“I'm sick of waiting uncle!” Zuko yelled at the old man.

Iroh sighed, shaking his head. “Please prince Zuko, be patient and don't put yourself in unnecessary danger. This exam will be a war.” Closing his eyes, Iroh thought of the purple eyed, orange haired man, face skewered with peircings.

“You underestimate me uncle.” Zuko spat. “I can take care of myself. I have entered the test and there's no going back.” He stood and walked out, leaving Iroh alone with his spilt tea. Your loyalty to your nephew is the only thing that keeps you a danger to us. I could remove the boy and then your interests would not conflict with ours. You can be free of us whenever you wish Iroh. The memory of Pain's words rung in the old man's head. `It's only a matter of time until the Akatsuki no longer values my cooperation more than eliminating the risk that Zuko poses to their own quest to capture the Avatar.' He thought. Holding his head in his hands, Iroh wondered what he should do.


Orochimaru smirked. “Do we have a deal?”

“Yes.” Iroh whispered.

“Good. By saying so you have sworn alegence to the Akatsuki. You are now under our command as a member of this organizaton.

“Fine. Just give me my son back.” Iroh growled.

“All in due time general.” Orochimaru smirked. “First you must procure me some…Ingredients. The jutsu I must perform is forbidden because it requires sacrificing the life of another.”

Iroh's mouth went dry. Could he justify killing an innocent person to bring his son back to life? Well, Orochimaru never said they had to be innocent…

“Bring me the prince.” Orochimaru ordered. “He was recently banished, was he not? Surely no one would miss him.”

“What! How could you sugest such a thing!” Iroh yelled in outrage. “Zuko is my nephew!”

“Tsk, Tsk Iroh. How self centered you are.” Orochimaru chuckled as he slithered around the old general. “The boy's relation to you gives his life no more value than any other. Bring him to me.”

Iroh stared into the cold eyes of the snakeman before him. “No.”

You refuse? We thought you might say that. In that case, I shall give you your first mission as Akatsuki member.

Now see here. I'm not following any of your orders until you bring my son back to life by sacrificing some criminal already sentenced to death!

“Mnn hnn hn” Orochimaru's effeminate laugh sent shivers down the old general's spine. “No. That wouldn't serve our purposes general. I'm afraid it is either Zuko or nothing.”

“Then to hell with your organization! I want no part of it.” Iroh made a dismissive flick of his wrist and turned to go.

“I'm afraid you have no choice.” Orochimaru replied coolly. “Now that we know what Zuko means to you, we can use him as leverage. You will do as we say or your nephew will join Lu Ten in the afterlife.”

Iroh's fists shook with fury. Orochimaru took this as a sign of defeat and continued. “Your mission is to prevent Zuko from finding the Avatar.”