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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253 Chs

CH_2.19 (050)

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Author's Note:


Let's fucking go!!!




"I disagree!"

Takuma didn't have the time to rejoice or even completely take in the announcement. He turned his head toward Kameko, who had dared to raise an objection. While it did surprise him that the objection came, it coming from Kameko didn't surprise him one bit.

The group didn't make a single peep. Even Ai, who Takuma was expecting to break into a celebratory dance, stood unmoving. Everyone waited for their instructor... to react.

The hulking Yoshio arrived in front of Kameko with silent steps. The difference in stature couldn't be more pronounced as they faced each other. One looking down, the other frowning up.

"Insubordination will cost you among shinobi, Taketori," said Yoshio, his thick voice heavier than usual. Takuma hid a wince— Yoshio's use of the family name was sparse, but everyone knew why and when he chose it, and that's what made it more impactful. Yoshio continued, "This is my group. I'm your instructor. My word is the divine law. You don't get to disagree with my decisions, genin."

The taciturn Kameko seemingly found her voice as he talked back at Yoshio. "I'm by far the strongest in this group. I deserve to be in the final tournament. I can understand why Ando and Seno were chosen— but I can't see any merit in Oishi participating in the tournament... sir."

Ando Masaaki and Seno Nenro wrinkled their brows but schooled their expressions for the most part. Oishi Taro, though, pulled a fed-up face with no attempt to hide the emotion he was feeling.

"You speak less, so I didn't notice it. You don't use the word, sir, enough in your vocabulary."

Takuma stood on the opposite end of the grid to Kameko, but he could very clearly feel a pressure seeping out of Yoshio that made his already looming frame look more menacing than ever. Takuma felt as if the atmosphere was bearing down on him, compressing his chest and shoulders. It wasn't just him; everyone else in the group looked a varying level of very uncomfortable.

Was it chakra? It had to be chakra, Takuma thought as he glanced at Yoshio from the corner of his eye. He was scared that the feeling would enhance if Yoshio turned his attention to him.

"Did you not understand when I said that the team on the top would represent me in the final tournament? I'm feeling frustrated right now. How can someone not understand words as simple as that?" Yoshio's words drummed in their ears.

"I'm strong—"

"I don't give a rat's ass if you're stronger, genin. It's my choice, and I will make it any way I want to!" said Yoshio, thundering. Takuma held back a flinch even though he was steps away from them.

Yoshio raised his hand and pointed in the distance toward Shady Guy's medical tent. "I can break his bones a hundred different ways, and he would fail to stop me ninety-nine times if given a chance. I could give him the key to my home for assassination when I'm at my most vulnerable— and I'll still survive even if he jumped me in my bed while I sleep." Shady Guy, noticing they were looking at him, looked up from his book and gave them a wave. "And yet, because he practices the rare iryojutsu(medical jutsu), he's considered more valuable than me in most situations. Strength is not everything, get that through your head."

Takuma stared at the Shady Guy. Princess Tsunade, one of the Three Legendary Sannin, the to-be Fifth Hokage, had pushed for any mission team to have an Iryo-nin, a healer, on the squad. The practice was accepted as having an Iryo-nin shot up the team's survival rate to the moon. It was a great enough difference that every single shinobi village adopted the practice. She was lauded for her contribution to the shinobi organization.

And yet, most teams didn't have an Iryo-nin on them. Iryojutsu was a complex field of ninjutsu and required time and effort from a qualified shinobi to be effective. Most shinobi didn't even have the prerequisite of fine chakra control to step into the field. As such, there just weren't enough Iryo-nin to go around, which made them a sought-after commodity.

It was no wonder Shady Guy could spend a good part of the day idling under a tent doing seemingly nothing important. He could do it because he had the leeway to do so.

Takuma had to give it to Kameko for her persistence because she didn't back down. "But it's a combat tournament. I am more valuable," she said.

The pressure bearing down on the group disappeared with Yoshio's sigh. He spoke, "You're very... very lucky that I don't want to get into annoying trouble with your clan," Kameko's eyes sharpened. "Let me put this straight. It's a fighting tournament of genin who haven't even completed a single mission, not seen the real threat of a blade thirsty for their life— none of you are real shinobi. To me, it's a fun little bet with my co-workers, so," his volume suddenly shot up, "I don't care if you're more valuable! It might be a big thing for you, but for me, it's about the same as cockfighting! Get it straight in your head if you think that you somehow hold some importance in my eyes, because you don't!"

Takuma felt offended. He graduated from the academy, he wore the forehead protector of the Leaf, no one couldn't deny he was a shinobi. Did he express his displeasure? No. He wasn't very very lucky like Kameko, and there wasn't anything holding Yoshio from skinning him alive.

Somehow, he no longer felt the joy of getting to the final tournament. Yoshio didn't care if he was sending the strongest within his group— it was, as the man had put it, a fun bet with his co-workers. For Takuma, however, obtaining a C-rank jutsu was a key mark even in his life.

He felt small.

The difference between someone like him and Yoshio was too great... and Yoshio was only a chunin. Takuma couldn't even imagine what he would look like in the eyes of a jonin. What was he worth in the eyes of the top brass— was he just a dispensable pawn? He didn't think he wanted to know that answer.

The thought alone made his stomach sink.




Celebrating the win did bring Takuma's feeling of joy back.

He took a sip of his honey banana shake and looked around the restaurant. Taro didn't eat out much, so he didn't have a recommendation; the trio was from outside, so they had no idea either. The responsibility fell on Takuma, who was equally as clueless— but he ended up recommending the same restaurant that Maruboshi had taken him to. And here they were. He did tell them it was a little on the expensive side, but they didn't seem to mind.

It was his first time eating out after Maruboshi had taken him out on convocation day and the second time overall since he had found himself in the world. The first time around, the celebration had turned from happy to sad real quick when he heard of his assignment to Genin Corps. Takuma looked at his team, and he had to say... Genin Corps wasn't that bad.

"Yoshio sure dug into Kameko," said Masaaki. "I felt bad for her."

"I didn't," Ai said as she flipped through the menu.

Nenro asked, "Did you all feel the pressure coming from Yoshio when he was talking to her?"

Takuma nodded. "It was really heavy. It felt like I had a weighted vest on me. Some kind of chakra manipulation, for sure," he looked at Taro.

"Why are you looking at me? I don't know," Taro said with a half-confused half-frustrated face. "Why do you guys, you in particular," he pointed at Takuma, "think I know the answer to everything? I don't know!"

Takuma did think Taro would know.

"Maybe he was exerting his chakra outwards," said Nenro with an inquisitive look on his face.

Takuma shook his head. "It has to be more than that. I exert chakra outwards when I walk up a wall, but it doesn't happen then. And if he is exerting his chakra outwards— is he pushing it out of all the tenketsu all at once? Isn't that like really difficult? Also, how does it flow out so evenly," he didn't remember seeing anything like that when he read the manga.

"Order first," Ai pushed the menu into Nenro's face as he tried to reply, "then you can talk all you want." She looked at Takuma and then pointed at the menu on the table.

The food was great. Last time around, he was stressed about the Genin Corps, so the experience didn't stick.

"How are you feeling about the tournament tomorrow?" Masaaki asked with a broad grin on his face. "I'm feeling excited. Who would we get to fight against? Hey, do you know?" he addressed the last part to Taro.

"Again, why are you asking me? I was with you the entire time," replied Taro, sighing.

The ninety-seven genins in their batch were divided into four groups. Three groups of twenty-five and one with twenty-two people. The groups trained in the same zone were allocated to the basic genin training, but they didn't share the same training field.

Takuma didn't know about the others in his group, but he didn't meet the genin from other groups other than sometime in passing. If they met eyes, he would nod to them, but other than that, he didn't have much interaction outside his group.

"Twenty people," he said. "Four groups, five people each. If it's single elimination... it'll be four or five rounds, depending on if we get a first-round bye."

"Or we could get eliminated in the first round."

Everyone looked at Taro, who shrugged. Takuma could see Taro tapping out in the first round if the fight got tough. Takuma... didn't want to see that happen. Taro was an easier opponent to fight than most other people. If Taro went far and somehow met him in battle, it would be easier for him to win a fight.

"I won't go easy on anyone if you fight me," Masaaki announced with his arms crossed.

"Neither would I," said Nenro.

"Try me," Ai smiled.

They naturally looked at Takuma, so he thought for a moment before saying, "I'm going to do whatever it takes to get that C-rank jutsu, even if it means beating all of you and whoever fights me into a bloody pulp."

He had a faint smile on his face, but he was serious in what he said. He had invested too much to convert the chance of obtaining the C-rank jutsu. For the next two days, Team-5 would no longer be a team. Every man for themselves, no holds barred.

"Ah," uttered Ai before looking sullen. When Nenro asked, she answered. "Team-5 is over, isn't it... The teams were only supposed to hold until the end of basic training."

'Ah,' Takuma had forgotten about that for a moment.

For Genin Corps, missions were assigned by the Leaf Genin Resource Command— everything from mission objectives to the teammates was pre-described for them.

Today indeed, was the last day for Team-5.

There was a silence between the group for a moment. For the last two months, they had fought each other, they had laughed with each other, they had eaten together, they had trained together. They had spent a majority portion of the waking day with each other.

It was a short time, but they had become a team…

"Doesn't matter. We will still be a team, even if it's not official, and we will still be friends," Nenro raised his glass of water and said, "To Team-5."

" "To Team-5." "



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The link is in the synopsis!