It was night time and Team Seven had been separated to various places to sleep. Sasuke was staying with his mother, Sakura was staying with Rin, Kakashi had kidnapped Obito had taken him to his younger counterparts place against the protest of both members of Team Minato, and Naruto was staying at Minato and Kushina's place.
They had spent the evening talking and playing getting-to-know-you games. Naruto was sleeping in the spare bedroom, which would have later been turned into a baby's nursery, his nursery.
Minato and Kushina were sat in the living room. Minato was reading a newspaper and Kushina was stitching up yet another one of Minato's torn shirts. The house was peaceful and quiet. The sound of Naruto's gentle snores echoing through the opened door besides the living room.
"Minato." Kushina started softly. Minato lowered the paper down to look at her. "He's hiding something, isn't he?" She hadn't looked up from her work on his shirt. Naruto's day clothes were folded neatly next to her on the sofa. She had insisted on washing, drying and sowing them back to pristine condition. Minato sighed, folding the newspaper up and putting it down on the table in front of him.
"I talked to Kakashi earlier." At Kushina's look of surprise, he elaborated. "I snuck out whilst you were smothering Naruto in hugs under the guise of being cold whilst playing eye-spy." At Kushina's defiant stare and red face, Minato chuckled. "It was cute." He smiled gently, causing Kushina's blush to deepen. "Anyway, I talked to Kakashi earlier, the future one. He told me a bit, but said it was ultimately Naruto's decision to tell us about how he grew up."
"Well? What happened to him?" Kushina questioned after having put down the folded shirt she had finished sowing up.
"The whole of Konoha knew he was the Kyuubi Jinchuuriki." At Minato's statement, Kushina felt a larger wave of dread and fear than she had previously. There was a reason her and Aunt Mito being the Jinchuuriki had been mostly secret. "The Third took back the seat of Hokage after the Fourth died in the attack, he gave his life to seal the Kyuubi and wanted Naruto to be seen as a hero, but when the villagers didn't, and only showed fear and hatred for him, the Third put in place a law which prevented those who knew from telling those who didn't. He did it so that Naruto could at least have a semi-normal childhood with friends, but the children picked up on the adult's hatred, and began to despise Naruto without reason. The Third had to have ANBU watch Naruto in shifts to protect him from the more," Minato paused to think of a word, besides stupid bastards who should die. "Radical villagers who tried to physically harm him. Kakashi was the main guard."
"Wait! Why wasn't Kakashi raising him? He would have taken Naruto in, wouldn't he? We took him in and Naruto would have been like his little brother. So, why?" Kushina questioned with a cracking voice.
"The elders of the council forbade it." Minato answered gravely.
"What!?" Kushina screeched quietly, so as not to wake Naruto. "How could they!? Why would they!? Naruto has nothing to do with them! He would've been a civilian at the time!"
"Because he was the Jinchuuriki, he could never be a civilian." Minato clenched his hands and glared at the table before taking a breath and releasing his clenched fists. "Kakashi did what he could to look out for Naruto. He became the main ANBU guard and requested that, since he had to be a Jounin sensei, that he have Naruto. But since the elders decreed that he must be the one to teach Sasuke, it was up in the air until they realised Naruto was testing as the dead-last and Sasuke as the Rookie of the year. Then it was just the third member of Team Seven that was up in the air."
"But, who raised Naruto then?" Kushina questioned desperately. "I would've asked Mikoto to be the Godmother, and you've asked Jiraiya, so, who?!"
"No one." Minato answered.
"What?" Kushina whispered in shocked grief. "Why would he be raised by no one? Surely, one of our friends…" she trailed off when Minato shook his head.
"The elders didn't want to give the Uchiha clan 'power' over the Jinchuuriki, Jiraiya had his spy-network and was planning to come back when he was older to train him. Jiraiya actually trained him for the final rounds of the Chunnin Exam."
"They're, they are… disgusting!" Kushina growled, clenching the skirt of her dress in her hands. "They don't deserve to have any power in Konoha!" She snapped.
"I know, Kushina. I know." Minato agreed. "There's nothing I can do yet, though."
"Huh?" Kushina looks up. "Yet? What do you mean yet? You can do something later?" Kushina grabbed Minato's arm.
"When sixteen year old Naruto travelled back in time, I met him in Rouran, three years ago. He didn't recognise me as his father, he recognised me as the Fourth Hokage." Minato explained.
"Then you can do something!" Kushina exclaimed excitedly, grabbing both of Minato's hands. "You can make sure Naruto is safe! You can put safety measures in place! ... Why aren't you excited about that?"
Minato looked at Kushina sadly. "By law, I have to erase all memories of the instances of time travel when they return to their own time. We won't remember anything. The only documentation of these events, will be the reports in the Hokage's personal archives. We won't be able to do anything to help him other than what we already did for him. And we already know... that won't be enough."
Kushina crumpled back into the sofa, tears beginning to fill her eyes before she closed the tightly. With a wobbly sigh, Kushina questioned Minato again. "Where and how was Naruto raised?"
"He spent the first five years of his life in an orphanage. He was kicked out not long before his sixth birthday. Kakashi took him in for a little while, but only until the Third found an apartment for him. From there, Naruto lived by himself." Minato looked up with a sad smile. "He wasn't completely alone though." Kushina looked towards Minato, a barely lit flame of hope dancing in her eyes. "Iruka Umino. He was Naruto's sensei during the academy. Sasuke and Sakura's too. He's very caring and loves his student beyond measure, Naruto especially. Kakashi told me, that Naruto and Iruka are like brothers. Apparently, Iruka is very gentle and kind, not able to hurt a fly, but the moment Naruto is in danger or someone does or says something to upset Naruto, in his presence or not, Iruka becomes an opponent fiercer than a Kage." Minato chuckled lightly at this, as did Kushina.
"I'm glad." Kushina smiled softly. "He had someone looking out for him, at least."
"Yeah." Minato agreed.
"You said Iruka Umino, right?" Kushina checked.
"Yeah, why?" Minato asked.
"We should do something for the Umino's. Maybe babysit Iruka for them, so they can have a date night? Then Iruka can be with Naruto quicker?" Kushina questioned Minato.
He shook his head sadly. "No. That wouldn't work. The elders would then forbid the Umino's from having contact with Naruto." Kushina's shoulders slumped at this.
As she was about to say something else, the sound of feet padding across the floor reached their ears. A moment later, Naruto appeared in the doorway between his room and the living room, rubbing his eyes. Naruto's nightcap sat eschewed on top of his head. Kushina stood up and made her way over to him.
"Hey, sweetheart, what's wrong?" She questioned before kneeling in front of Naruto's sleepy form.
"Dun'o. Jus' woke up." Naruto slurred as he lowered his hand to his side and roved his sleepy eyes around the room before they landed on Kushina. "Mum? Can you sing a lullaby for me?" It was a secret desire of his, to have a lullaby sung to him.
Kushina was slightly stunned from the request before a bright smile spread over her face. "Sure! Minato can duet with me, ya know?" She said happily.
Naruto had a small, dazedly happy smile as he nodded and began to head back to his room. Kushina stood back up and dusted off her dress. She turned towards Minato and tilted her head after Naruto. "Come on, Mi-na-to!" She called. "We're going to sing our son into a beautiful dream!"
Minato chuckled as he stood up and followed after his wife and son. "Alright, alright. I'm coming!" He called.
That night, Naruto slept with his parents for the first time. Minato and Kushina on either side of him, holding him between them in a protective embrace.