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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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259 Chs

CH_7.21 (239)

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The link is also in the synopsis

———

.

The home residence of the Kumi family's head was a lavish walled estate with multiple buildings; rock, sand, and grass gardens; a clear pond with fish; several majestic fruit-bearing trees, and meticulously maintained courtyards. A peaceful serenity permeated throughout the estate which added to the estate's charm.

But the two dozen men dressed in tacky tracksuits lounging around really broke the ambiance.

"It's a beautiful place," Gaku said to the woman escorting the group. Unlike the men she was dressed in a tasteful hakama and had her hair tied up in an elegant bun. She smiled politely, thanked him for his compliment, and provided some historical facts about the estate.

Takuma ignored Gaku's attempt to flirt with the woman and observed the Kumi men. He didn't know if this was normal, but seeing that they were standing around with weapons, it was clear they were waiting for them. He glanced back at Motohiro, Wada, and Miyauchi—they were a couple paces behind him—still fearful from before. He didn't mind it; Motohiro needed time to recover.

As they approached the main building, a young man of less than twenty broke away from one of the groups. He was a skinhead, had his jacket wrapped around his waist, and walked with a strut with his hands in his pockets. Takuma sighed when he saw they were on the same path, set to collide, and realised this was going to be some stupid power play to assert Kumi family's authority over them.

As Takuma expected, the young man shoulder-checked him. The next moment, the young man shot down to the ground with enough force to knock the air out of his lungs, as though he had been slammed by a rampaging bull. Takuma stared down at the young man as he extended his arm to help him up. However, it seemed the young man wasn't pleased as he slapped away the hand and spat curses.

If Arisu was with him, she would've stopped him and managed the situation before it escalated. Unfortunately, she wasn't with him and he responded the best way he thought for the scenario.

"Watch where you're walking! Who the fuck do you—"

He didn't let him complete as he grabbed the young man by his collar and smashed him in the face with a light punch that knocked him cold before he hit the ground.

"You—!" Gaku looked up at Takuma from the young man and back to Takuma in stunned surprise.

Takuma shrugged, "Fuck around and find out."

The aftermath was predictable. The Kumi family men erupted when they saw one of their own go down and charged at the group with their weapons drawn. Motohiro, Wada, and Miyauchi looked absolutely terrified while the Kumi family woman gasped in surprise and quickly stepped away from the group to not get caught up in the brawl about to break out.

"I do not want to do this," Gaku sighed and rubbed his face.

Takuma watched the mob running toward him and considered throwing an explosive tag, but recognised that it would be a bloodbath with limbs coming off, and decided that a good old fashioned beating would be enough.

"ENOUGH!"

However, before anything could start, a loud voice ripped through the estate, stopping all Kumi family members in their tracks. It was so loud that it hurt his ears. Standing just outside the main building was a man in his early thirties, dressed in a simple attire of shirts and pants. He had long hair, dignified features, and an athletic build. The Kumi family men hushed their ruckus and held their weapons down when they saw the man.

Takuma and Gaku exchanged looks.

"He is Gyon, the son of the Kumi's head," Miyauchi whispered to Gaku.

"Let's go," said Takuma and walked forward. The crowd parted to give Takuma the space all the while glaring at him. He ignored them all and kept his attention at Gyon.

"May I know why you attacked one of my men?" Gyon asked, his sombre tone but with his displeasure hidden.

"Do all of your men attack guests first?" Takuma answered with a question.

Gyon's brows furrowed and called out to one of his men. A tracksuit wearing middle-aged man rushed to Gyon's side. Takuma recognised the man

"Did that brat attack them first?" Gyon asked.

The middle-aged man cleared his throat before spouting an explanation of events which, while true, portrayed them in a way that made it seem like Takuma was at fault. However, Gyon saw through that twisted explanation without Takuma needing to interject.

"Knock some sense into him when he wakes up," said Gyon with a stern look casted toward the middle-aged man. He then turned to Takuma. "Youngsters can be impulsive and reckless, you must understand. I hope you won't take offence."

Takuma didn't miss Gyon implying that he saw him as a kid.

"I understand," he smiled. "Of course, I have complete control over my people, but I won't blame you for your inability to keep your men in check. It's not something everyone can do."

A rigid smile crept on Gyon's face; Takuma had hit a nerve. Gyon was already in his thirties and the torch of leadership hadn't been passed on from the older generation—and he was still "son of Kumi's head." And from the looks of it, it bothered Gyon.

"Please, let's head inside. Father is waiting for you."

———

.

They were led to a large tatami room where an old man, the Kumi family's head, Hoshiguro, sat at the head's position with six lieutenants (including Gyon) sat beside him. There were a few bodyguards who stood near the walls and kept a vigilant eye on Takuma and his group.

"Your name is Takuma, isn't it? You looked older in that sketch of yours."

A woman set down sitting cushions for the group, but before Takuma could sit down, Hoshiguro broached the topic he knew would come up. There truly wasn't anyone who hadn't seen the posters. Takuma didn't reply immediately and made himself comfortable.

"It's one of my names, yes," said Takuma, "but I'd appreciate if you address me as Tobi—that's what I'm using currently."

Hoshiguro had a full head of grey hair, wrinkled skin, and eyes that reflected the experience of an old man of his age. Though his kimono hid his body, Takuma could sense that Hoshiguro wasn't frail by any means, and from what he had witnessed outside from Gyon, he suspected he knew the reason behind it.

"I must say I'm surprised to know that the Kumi family has shinobi in their ranks," said Takuma.

When Gyon had commanded the mob to stop, his voice had clear signs of sound amplification using chakra. Takuma was surprised to find another shinobi in Yu who wasn't Gaku or an enemy. He observed the Kumi people in the group; there wasn't any way to identify if someone was a shinobi other than a sensory-nin's chakra senses—but he guessed that there were multiple in the room.

"Oh, we aren't, Takuma. Chakra isn't just restricted to shinobi. I'm assuming you're one," said Hoshiguro, chuckling. He then looked at Gaku. "I know he is one."

Gaku smiled. "And I'm surprised I didn't know there were others."

Hoshiguro only returned a smile in response.

Takuma knew that chakra didn't belong to shinobi; samurai were chakra practitioners. And since there were retired- and ex-shinobi in the world, there were chakra practitioners who weren't associated with the Hidden Villages. They couldn't restrict the spread of chakra as there were plenty of groups who practised it—monks at temples, religious groups, shinobi clans who never joined the Hidden Villages. However, the Hidden Villages did limit the spread of Jutsu—when the biggest shinobi clans formed the villages, they brought along their vast libraries of jutsu—and they put down the restrictions that jutsu beyond D-rank classification couldn't be copied.

They also spread threats that any retired- or ex-shinobi would be hunted down if they taught jutsu they learned during their service—which was why rogue shinobi were hunted down with much fervour.

"You must've bothered quite a bit for them to put your face around the city," said Hoshiguro.

Takuma didn't miss how Hoshiguro called him by his name despite being asked to call him 'Tobi'. Like father, like son.

"I wouldn't be doing my work properly if they weren't bothered."

Hoshiguro nodded in agreement. "So what brings you here? I must admit, I don't know a lot about your group; you've done a good job keeping it a secret. From what Motohiro told me when he was setting this meeting up, your group has a partnership with his group. I only know a little, but I believe I get the gist of it all. You want a similar partnership with the Kumi. Am I correct to believe that?"

"Indeed. The Hidden Steam has sent us to Yu on the orders of the Hot Waters Daimyo. We're working on liberating the city from the enemy occupation, and we need the community's help. The Kumi family, of course, has a lot of influence in the city and we would like to use that to our advantage."

"What are we talking about?" asked Gyon.

"Manpower, connections, information. We would like the Kumi family to be our eyes, ears, and mouthpiece in the city. You can reach into the city and to its people much better than we ever could. We need your help," Takuma answered.

The team was about to make some waves in the city and they needed someone like the Kumi family to ensure that the people didn't misinterpret it. Today, Takuma had been painted as a criminal, villain, an enemy to the city with one poster—he didn't to what extent people would believe it, but the experience told the Kumi family's support could be extremely helpful.

"Let's say we help you, what's in it for us?" asked Hoshiguro.

"You get your city back; isn't that enough?" said Gaku.

"If only, but we need more," said Hoshiguro, smiling. "We are putting ourselves in danger by associating with the rebellion. We need something to make "

Takuma had expected it. The Kumi family weren't nice people; they held their self-interest front and forward before anything. And he didn't blame them; they were indeed putting themselves in danger. Motohiro and his group were quite selfless in their decision to help an unknown group. Fortunately, Takuma had seen this coming and had prepared some benefits for them.

He exchanged a look with Gaku, who returned a nod.

"We can provide the Kumi family with food—grain, rice, spices, flour—a lot of it, enough to feed your men and their families for a good while," said Takuma and saw a wave of interest rise up in the room. Hoshiguro, the lieutenants, and the bodyguards, all looked interested and pleased with the offerings.

Food was valuable and even though the higher-ranking members would have no problem procuring food with their wealth and influence, the same couldn't be said about their lower-level members. That was sure to create some tension and dissatisfaction in the organisation—one moment the Kumi family were kings with mighty influence, but the next moment, they had fallen down and they couldn't even eat properly. Takuma was giving them an opportunity to fix a major problem in their organisation—and the leadership in the room understood it.

And finally, Takuma decided to give them a deal they couldn't refuse.

"When the time comes, we will assassinate the higher-ups from the Goharu family." The moment he said that, the atmosphere in the room changed drastically. "The Kumi family can regain their former place in Yu... and who knows, even surpass it."

To be honest, the Goharu family higher-ups were going to die for their traitorous actions by supporting the enemy. But by claiming that they were doing it for the Kumi family, they had turned that into an offer too valuable for them to refuse. He was offering to take out their competition and free the field so they could rise up again.

"So, how about it?" he asked.

The lieutenants glanced at each each other and they looked like they wanted to jump at the offer while looking they didn't believe what Takuma had just offered. They then looked at their leader. Hoshiguro started unblinkingly at Takuma, who couldn't see through the old man's poker face. Because he wasn't lying, he allowed Hoshiguro to stare all he wanted.

"That's quite something," said Gyon, clearing his throat, trying to hide his surprise from the stacked offer presented to them. "We will consider it and get back—"

"You have the Kumi family's support," said Hoshiguro, still staring at Takuma.

"Father?" Gyon was taken aback—the other lieutenants shared his expression. They were surprised that he had agreed so quickly without even discussing the offer with others.

Hoshiguro ignored them and spoke to Takuma. "If you can fulfil those promises, you'll have the unequivocal support of the Kumi family."

"That's nice to know," Takuma smiled, pleased about Hoshiguro's quick decision. He expected them to haggle for more things like assassinating someone from the Goharu family immediately—so not getting that request raised his impression of Hoshiguro. "I look forward to this—."

"However, I have one condition," said Hoshiguro.

Maybe he was quick to raise his impression, thought Takuma. "And what might that be?"

"I want you to prove that you're capable of doing what you promised."

Takuma held back a sigh. There it was. He was sure that Hoshiguro was about to ask him to assassinate someone from the Goharu family.

However, what came out of Hoshiguro's mouth was completely unexpected.

"I want you to fight my son. If you win, you'll have our full support."

.

———

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The link is in the synopsis!