5 Unexpected Battle

As Aizen walked through the gates of Konoha, his presence seemed to go unnoticed by the two guards stationed there. It was as if he effortlessly slipped through their perception, his actions cloaked in a veil of mystery and intrigue.

Unbeknownst to the guards, Aizen's arrival in Konoha was not a mere coincidence. He had intentionally infiltrated the village, to subjugate Konoha and utilize secretive experiments to further his ambitions, while also keenly observing everything around him.

As he moved through the village streets, Aizen observed the panic and confusion that had engulfed Konoha. The residents, still reeling from the powerful earthquakes, sought refuge and answers. Shinobi hurriedly patrolled the streets, attempting to maintain order and provide assistance where needed.

While these things were happening, Aizen thought to himself, 'I'll make a visit to the Fire Temple in a few weeks, and check on Sora's progress.'

Aizen's gaze lingered on the Third Hokage's mansion, his eyes narrowing ever so slightly. He knew that Sarutobi Hiruzen, the village's leader, would be orchestrating the response to the crisis. Aizen's presence in Konoha was undoubtedly connected to the events unfolding, but his true intentions remained shrouded in secrecy from Konoha.

Taking advantage of the chaos, Aizen moved with purpose through the village, blending into the crowd as if he were just another concerned resident. He observed the reactions of the villagers, listening to their whispers and snippets of conversation, and he heard a few interesting things.

"Hey, do you think it was the Nine Tails?" asked an ordinary looking villager, to another villager.

Aizen's interest piqued at the mention of the Nine-Tails. Intrigued, Aizen subtly approached the two villagers engaged in their conversation, blending in seamlessly with the crowd. With an air of curiosity, he interjected, "The Nine-Tails, you say? A fascinating topic indeed. That monster has haunted Konoha for generations."

The villagers turned their attention to Aizen, their eyes widening with a mix of curiosity and caution. One of them, a middle-aged man, regarded Aizen with a questioning gaze. "Who are you?"

Aizen offered a disarming smile, his voice calm and composed. "Apologies for the intrusion. My name is Aizen Sōsuke. Don't you think the earthquakes are connected to the Nine-Tails? Which other beings could cause such a powerful phenomeon?"

As he said these words, images of a blonde haired young child with bright blue eyes flashed through the villagers eyes, and they started to shift the blame to him.

Their gazes now shifted from curiosity to disdain, their whispered conversations growing more heated and resentful.

The middle-aged man, his voice dripping with contempt, spoke with a tinge of bitterness in his words. "So, you think Naruto, the vessel of the Nine-Tails, is behind these earthquakes? It wouldn't surprise me. That cursed child has brought nothing but trouble to our village."

Aizen maintained his calm demeanor, masking his hidden satisfaction at the villagers' animosity towards Naruto. He raised his hands in a seemingly conciliatory gesture. "Please, understand that I'm merely exploring all possible explanations. The Nine-Tails holds immense power, and it's natural to question its involvement in such catastrophic events."

A young woman, whose eyes were filled with resentment, voiced her agreement. "Naruto has always been a menace to Konoha. We've suffered enough because of him. If he's responsible for these earthquakes, maybe it's time someone finally dealt with him."

Aizen nodded, his eyes glinting with calculated intrigue. "Your frustrations are understandable. The safety and prosperity of our village should be our top priority. If Naruto's actions are indeed jeopardizing Konoha, then it falls upon us to take appropriate measures."

The villagers exchanged vindictive glances, a shared determination emerging from their collective disdain towards Naruto.

"Let's go, let's teach that brat a lesson!" said the middle-aged man. The villagers, who were silently listening from the beginning, also supported this decision.

"Yeah, let's go! That demon caused us so much pain, it's time we repay it with interest!"

As the villagers rallied behind the idea of confronting Naruto, their animosity fueling their determination, Aizen watched with a concealed smirk. Their resentment was precisely what he had hoped for, a catalyst that would serve to further his own plans for Konoha.

With a subtle nod, Aizen motioned for the villagers to follow him. "If we're going to address this situation, we must approach it with caution and reason. Let us gather and discuss the best course of action. Acting hastily may lead to unintended consequences."

The middle-aged man, still seething with anger, hesitated for a moment but eventually nodded in agreement. "You're right. We must plan this carefully. We don't want to cause unnecessary chaos in the village."

Aizen led the way to a secluded spot on the outskirts of Konoha, away from prying eyes and ears. As they gathered in a circle, he addressed the villagers, his tone measured and persuasive. "We must remember that Naruto is not the only factor at play here. The earthquakes are a grave concern for our village's safety. Blaming a single individual without sufficient evidence could lead us astray."

The young woman crossed her arms, her eyes still filled with resentment, but a glimmer of doubt began to flicker within her. "But what if that demon truly is responsible? Shouldn't we hold him accountable?"

Aizen leaned forward slightly, his gaze intense yet reassuring. "Accountability is indeed important, but it must be based on facts, not hearsay or preconceived notions. Let us explore all possibilities before passing judgment. We owe it to ourselves and to the village."

As Aizen spoke, his words resonated with the villagers, planting seeds of doubt and reason within their minds. He skillfully guided the conversation, subtly shaping their perceptions and redirecting their anger towards a more calculated and measured approach. While the villagers initially sought immediate retribution against Naruto, Aizen's persuasive rhetoric encouraged them to pause and consider a more comprehensive perspective.

Aizen knew that if the villagers acted rashly and violently towards Naruto, it could potentially disrupt his carefully laid plans. He wanted to use Naruto as a pawn, not have him destroyed by an enraged mob. By appealing to their sense of reason and emphasizing the importance of gathering evidence and exploring all possibilities, he aimed to channel their anger and resentment into a more controlled approach.

However, just as they were about to continue their meeting, the Third Hokage appeared.

The Third Hokage, Sarutobi Hiruzen, emerged from the shadows, his presence commanding and authoritative. His wise eyes surveyed the gathering of villagers and immediately sensed the tension in the air. With a stern expression, he addressed them.

"What is the meaning of this?" Hiruzen's voice carried a weight of authority, causing the villagers to pause and exchange nervous glances. They hadn't anticipated the Hokage's interruption.

'What is he doing here?' thought Aizen with suspicion.

With a calm and composed demeanor, Aizen stepped forward, his voice carrying a hint of deference. "Hokage-sama, my apologies for any disturbance we may have caused. My name is Aizen Sōsuke. We were merely discussing the recent earthquakes and their possible connection to the Nine-Tails. I believe it is important for the villagers to express their concerns and seek clarity during these tumultuous times."

Hiruzen's gaze narrowed as he studied Aizen, his eyes filled with scrutiny. "Aizen Sōsuke, you say? I am not familiar with your name or your presence in our village. Explain your intentions here, and why you have taken it upon yourself to gather these villagers." said Hiruzen, while raising his guard up, preparing for battle.

Aizen bowed respectfully, not revealing his true intentions, and responded with a calm and confident demeanor.

"Hokage-sama, thank you for your concern. I admit that I am a bit of a newcomer to Konoha.

However, I would like to assure you that I am here with good intentions.

As a loyal citizen of Konoha, I too share the villagers' concerns. I merely seek to provide my own perspective and assistance."

Hiruzen's eyes remained piercing, and chakra began to surge from him, and prepared a jutsu.

"Earth Style: Earth Dragon Bomb"

As Hiruzen prepared his jutsu, Aizen's eyes narrowed, and he swiftly assessed the situation. He realized that the confrontation had escalated more quickly than he anticipated, and revealing his true intentions now would be disastrous.

Reacting with lightning-fast reflexes, Aizen raised his hand, channeling his own spiritual energy to create a barrier of reiatsu around him. The barrier shimmered and clashed with Hiruzen's Earth Dragon Bomb, neutralizing its impact.

Aizen quickly retreated, avoiding Hiruzen's attacks, and continued to evaluate the situation.

"Hokage-sama, there is no need to engage in combat." Aizen said calmly, trying to diffuse the situation.

"I have nothing to hide. I am merely a loyal citizen of Konoha, here to help and provide my own perspective. I wish not to obstruct the village, nor do I pose any threat."

However, Hiruzen paid no heed to his words, and continued to release two jutsu, complementing each other.

"Earth Style: Earth Dragon Bomb"

A dragon-like head appeared, covered in mud, and began to shoot mud balls at Aizen.

"Fire Style: Fire Dragon Bomb" said Hiruzen, quickly forming the seals required for the jutsu. As the dragon-like head launched mud balls towards Aizen, Hiruzen ignited the projectiles fired by the jutsu, Aizen swiftly maneuvered, effortlessly dodging each projectile.

With calculated precision, he avoided the onslaught of ignited mud, his movements fluid and elegant. Aizen's reiatsu barrier continued to shield him from Hiruzen's attacks, deflecting the powerful blasts brought by the fusion of earth and fire.

Aizen's eyes glinted with a mix of intrigue and amusement as he effortlessly evaded the Hokage's jutsu. He analyzed Hiruzen's techniques, recognizing the power and skill behind them. However, Aizen's own abilities far surpassed those of a mere Hiruzen.

With a calm expression, and an air of superiority, Aizen said, "It seems our conversation has taken an unexpected turn, Hokage."

Hiruzen's eyes narrowed as he maintained his defensive stance. "Your intentions remain unclear, Aizen Sōsuke. I cannot ignore the potential threat you may pose to Konoha."

Aizen's smile widened slightly, his eyes gleaming with intrigue. "Ill will? No, Hokage-sama, I assure you that my intentions are far more complex than simple malice. I am here to bring about change and reshape the destiny of this village."

Hiruzen sensed the increasing pressure, his grip on his staff tightening. He realized that Aizen was not an ordinary intruder and that he needed to be dealt with swiftly and decisively.

Summoning his own chakra, Hiruzen released a series of explosive tags, aiming to ensnare Aizen and restrict his movements. The tags scattered around Aizen, detonating in a burst of energy.

However, to Hiruzen's surprise, Aizen effortlessly evaded the explosive tags, gracefully weaving between them with fluid movements. His reiatsu shielded him from their destructive force, leaving him unscathed.

With a wave of his hand, Aizen summoned a surge of spiritual energy, creating a powerful shockwave that sent Hiruzen hurtling backward. The impact was enough to shatter nearby structures, sending debris flying in all directions.

Hiruzen quickly regained his footing, his resolve unwavering. "You are a dangerous foe, Aizen Sōsuke. But I will not falter in protecting Konoha. Prepare yourself!"

Raising his hand, Aizen summoned his Zanpakuto, Kyoka Suigetsu, a shimmering blade that exuded an aura of illusion and manipulation.

As Aizen held his Zanpakuto, Kyoka Suigetsu, a sense of anticipation filled the air. The blade emanated a mysterious energy, captivating the attention of all those present, including Hiruzen.

'This confrontation escalated further than anticipated. But this is also a great opportunity, I'll wait until those who noticed this fight arrive, Hiruzen should have also already called reinforcements.'

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