Tenten's Final Dance
Kasumi: So now we're getting to reference the teaser at the end of the Movie Chapter!
Neokenshin: That it is. I think everyone's been waiting for this.
Tenten:I just hope I can do them all proud. I mean this is a big responsibility for me!
Neokenshin: You're gonna do just fine. Now go out there and have fun.
Tenten: You bet! Ok, everyone remember that Naruto is owned by Masashi Kishimoto! Let's get this dance started!Chapter 9: Tenten's final dance
Three days after Yugito sent her messenger cat…
"Hey nee-chan, we got something." Mai said, picking up the small cat that had just entered the village. "It seems to have a message from Yugi-chan."
"Really, what's it say? Did she agree to the alliance?" Akane asked.
"Hmm, let's see…" Mai began to read.
Dear Moonie and Birdybird,
You two think it's real funny to have Haku-chan tell me I'm still a spoiled brat! Well I'll have you know I am NOT spoiled! And where do you get off telling her my nickname! You know how much it embarrasses me to get called Mew-Mew-Chan! You know what I'm gonna do? When I get to Konoha, I'm gonna do something you two will both regret! I'm telling daddy that you were picking on his little kitten again! Nya!
Love your baby sister,
P.S. I'm still gonna agree to the Alliance thing because we really do need to stop Akatsuki. But I'm still telling!
"What a brat! Look at her, just because we pick at her, she wants to go and tell on us!" Mai said, brushing off the letter's comments.
"Uh, Mai-chan, you remember what happened last time she told on us?" Akane said with a hint of fear.
"So what! It's not like Otou-san…is…oh no!" Mai said, quickly grabbing her tails.
"It took 10 years for my fur to grow back and 12 for your feathers!! Do you know how embarrassing that would be if it happened now!" Akane cried out. "Look, we gotta either get the blame pinned on Shinja-chan or Mako-chan!"
"That won't work Akane! You know how Yugito is! The moment she tattles on us, there's no way to pass the blame!" Mai replied, just as frantically. "We are so screwed!"
"Screwed about what?" asked Arashi as he entered the living room.
"Well, the kids found another Bijuu…and Mai and I had to be a bunch of idiots and pick on her!" Akane sighed as she hugged Arashi. "Now when she comes to Konoha, we're in big trouble!"
"Oh come on, what's she going to do, tell on you?" Arashi laughed. His laugh soon stopped when he saw the look of seriousness on Akane and Mai's faces.
"YES! And what's worse is that we're gonna end up having our tails shaved again!" Mai cried. "If I don't have my feathers, then Iruka-kun won't like me anymore!!!"
"What's wrong with having no tail feathers or fur?" Arashi questioned.
"The problem is that if Kami does it, we won't grow anything back for over a decade!!!!! Do you know just how embarrassing that is!!!!" Akane whined. "We cannot let that little pipsqueak tell on us!"
"Ok, my wife and sister-in-law are now officially crazier than my kids." Arashi thought to himself while Akane and Mai were freaking out.Back in the Nekomata Village…
Tenten had taken some time to explore the village much more in depth. One of the things she found fascinating was the armory. She was amazed how the smiths there used metal and gravity chakra to craft weapons of untold precision. She even had a chance to craft some weapons herself and to her surprise, the smiths were quite amazed. She was even given an offer to study under them. Of course since she was still on a mission, Tenten couldn't give a final decision yet.
Tenten also took up Kyoji's offer to train with him as well. The best thing about training with him was that he was a fourth level blade master, so he could show her a few things as well.
"You know, I have to say, your skill with the blade is quite impressive. Who was your teacher?" Kyoji asked as he parried a slash from Tenten.
"I mostly learned from my dad. Our family is the one that handles the armory so I've been around weapons since I was little." Tenten replied, launching another strike. "I find wielding metal to be a graceful artform. It combines precision, beauty, and power all into one."
"I see. You know, I've heard that you're also good in the forge. Our blacksmiths were surprised at the weapons you made without using an ounce of metal chakra." Kyoji sidestepped and went in for another lunge, but Tenten quickly countered.
"That was just some stuff I knew back from a long time ago." After kicking Kyoji back, Tenten quickly took out a pair of sai from her scroll. "But of course I'd love to learn how to use metal chakra outside of my Illumina Form."
Sitting on the sidelines, Yugito, Riyu, Haku, and Sakura watched the spar. Yugito herself was extremely surprised at the sudden change in Kyoji. Just a few days ago he could care less about anything, but now that Tenten had shown up, it was like she lit a new fire in his soul.
"Unbelievable. A few days ago I was yelling at that tomcat for being completely lazy and carefree about his responsibilities, and look at him now!" Yugito said. "What is she doing to him?"
"I think they're getting to know each other better Yugito-sama." Sakura commented. "You know I'd have to say that this is the beginning of a future relationship."
"Kyoji…with a girlfriend?" Yugito laughed. "There have been girls all over the village that wanted to date him and he wouldn't give them the time of day! What makes Tenten-chan so different?"
"Well, from what I know, she's only had one boyfriend…and it was for a week too." Sakura said, trying to explain the bits and pieces she was told about the Ame mission two years ago. "Tenten's never been the girly-girl type. Probably because she's an only child, plus she grew up in a forge. I still remember back in the academy how she hated all the kunoichi classes."
"Oh really? Hmm, maybe, just maybe she is what he needs." Yugito said to herself. "Sakura, I'd like your opinion. What do you think she would say if I asked her to stay here in the village for a few months to improve her skills? I figure I could have her a fourth level blade master in about three months and even get her started on learning to use metal chakra."
"Seriously? She'd love that." Sakura replied to the news.
"Don't say anything yet. I'll tell her the day before you and Haku head back to Konoha." Yugito said as she kept watching the two spar.
And spar they did. Over the next week Kyoji and Tenten were sparring every single day. The two were having the time of their lives clashing swords and weapons. Even when Kyoji tapped into his nekomata chakra, Tenten was there to step it up with her Illumina Power as well.
The week finally came to an end and the three knew they needed to return home, though Tenten was having second thoughts about going back.
"Aw, do you have to go Haku-chan!" Riyu cried. After spending a week with her cousin, the young nekomata didn't want her to leave.
"Yeah, I gotta go back home. I'm sure my family misses me as well." Haku said, trying to get the little girl to stop crying.
"Yeah and a certain pale eyed Hyuuga does too." Sakura added for laughs.
"You know, I'm really gonna miss this place. Being here in all the metal feels so natural to me." Tenten sighed. "Guess I'll have to hope that Tsunade-sama can send me here more for missions."
"Speaking of that Tenten, I wanted to ask you something." Yugito said. "For the past week I've seen your skills in action and I am very impressed. I was wondering if you would like to take on a part time apprenticeship here."
"A what! Yugito-sama, what are you saying!" Tenten said as her spirits lifted.
"See, I had planned to go to Konoha with you, but right now I have too much work to do. Having you around would make my job easier since I can train you up to a fourth level blade master, plus start training you in the use of metal and gravity chakra outside of your Illumina Form. Not only that but Riyu needs someone to keep her company." Yugito said. "Plus Kyoji seems to like having you as a training partner."
"K-kyoji-kun...is that true?" Tenten said with a slight blush.
"Yeah, your skill is amazing. Just sparring with you makes me want to get even stronger than I am now!" Kyoji replied, placing a smile on the girl's face.
"Besides, it's not like you can't keep in touch. Not only that but I'll go to your house and pack some things for you, then have them sent through a sealing scroll." Haku added. "I say take the opportunity Ten-chan."
"Besides Ten-chan, it may give you time to get to know Kyoji-kun a lot more." Sakura whispered, causing the weapon's mistress to turn red again.
"You think so? I mean it's just so sudden!" Tenten took a good look at Kyoji, thought about it, and gave her answer. "Ok, I'll do it!"
"I knew you would Tenten-chan." Yugito said. "You'll stay with me during your training and I'll even induct you as a temporary Nekomata Shinobi."
"Yugito-sama, thank you so much for this opportunity! I promise I won't let you down!" Tenten bowed respectfully.
"Then when should we come back?" asked Sakura.
"Come back in about three months time. She should be done by then." Yugito replied.
"Well, have fun Ten-chan. We'll let Tsunade-sama and everyone else know what's going on." Haku said. "You be a good girl for Ten-chan ok, Riyu-chan?"
"I will Haku-chan. Promise you'll come back soon!" Riyu said, wiping some more tears from her eyes.
"I promise I'll be back in three months. You can bet on it!" Haku replied with a smile.
"And Haku, make sure to tell my sisters that they'll get what's coming to them in three months. That should have them on edge for a while." Yugito laughed.
"I will Aunt Yugito. See you guys later." Haku said as she and Sakura left through the village gates.A couple of hours later...
"Dammit if this day just doesn't keep getting worse!" Deidara said as he moved another branch out of his face. "We've been in Lightning Country for a week and still haven't found that blasted Nibi."
"Deidara-sempai is thinking too hard. He needs to relax." Tobi said nonchalantly.
"Oh I'll relax! I'll relax by blowing your ass back to Ame!" Deidara screamed. "I swear, this has to be Sasori's fault. He just had to get himself killed, didn't he?"
"Look Deidara-sempai, shinobi of the Leaf." Tobi said, staring out at a large clearing that Sakura and Haku were walking through.
"Hmm, if they're here, then somehow they must have found the location of the Nibi." Deidara thought to himself. "We could capture them and force them to talk, but from what Itachi told us, that kitsune is the Ice Illumina Knight. Not only that but he said that she's been in contact with her matching Bijuu, and if that's the case then she's just as powerful as that Naruto kid I dealt with, and Itachi's brother Sasuke can do the same thing. Crap, I guess I should just wait a bit and let her go. Argh! I should just kill her right now and be done with it!"
"Deidara-sempai should wait until the time is right. Now is not the time to attack, but to spy." Tobi said. "Tobi is being a good boy for Deidara-sempai."
"As much as I hate you, you're right Tobi. For now we'll continue our search for the Nekomata Village and bide our time." Deidara said as he and Tobi vanished into the shadows.Time passed and Haku and Sakura arrived back in Konoha to report in and let them know of Tenten's situation.
"So she's taken an apprenticeship with the Nibi?" Tsunade said after reading the mission report.
"Yes. Aunt Yugito was really surprised at her sword skill, and she also wants to train her in using metal chakra as well." Haku explained. "She said it would only take three months."
"I see nothing wrong then. I'll write up a formal mission statement for Tenten to show she is still on official business of Konoha." Tsunade said, jotting down a note. "Now as for the Nibi, was the alliance talk successful?"
"It was. She will be allying herself and her village with us." Haku replied. "She also said that she will be coming to Konoha in three months when we return to the Nekomata Village."
"Excellent. For now head back to the Training Center for de-briefing, and then you're free to rest for the next few days."
"Thank you Tsunade-sensei." Sakura said in respect. As the two girls left, Tsunade started thinking about some things.
"Hmm, there's more to you staying in that village than you're letting on, isn't there Ten-chan. And I have a feeling it has something to do other than training." she said as she gazed out her window.The three months had come and gone. With Team Illumina, there had been no trace of finding any more Bijuu. Itachi did however report the news of Akatsuki capturing and sealing the Sanbi, placing their Bijuu count up to four. This didn't bode well with Akane either, since they now had a more powerful Bijuu in their control. The only ones left to find were her sister Makoto and her brother Inuyasha, so time was of the essence. As for the rest of the shinobi, their time was spent doing missions, training and learning to control the new Overdrive Forms. Naruto and Sasuke had a time trying to learn to use their Overdrive attacks more than one time, but there was still no progress. It seemed that no matter what happened, the attack would drain an enormous amount of energy from then, leaving them completely weakened.
As for Tenten, the past three months had definitely been a good learning experience. Yugito took it upon herself to help her improve on her blade skills, and sure enough Tenten was able to become a fourth level blade master. Even Kyoji's training improved as he was now in preparation for taking the test to become a fifth level master. Even Riyu had started practicing with shuriken and kunai, and Tenten was there to help her along the way. Over the past three months, the little nekomata had grown to love Tenten almost as if she was an older sister...which coincidentally may happen since Tenten and Kyoji had now started dating and had been together for two months! Yugito couldn't believe all the changed that happened all due to Tenten staying over a short period of time. Today however was a good day, as it was the day that the group had planned to depart for Konoha.
"Wow Haku, you're right, this place is like a huge factory." Ino said in awe. Since Sakura had to teach some extra classes, she stayed behind at the academy while Ino took her place. In addition Akemi also was allowed to go, since Hanabi had gotten sick on their last mission and Hoshiko was injured with a broken leg.
"Yeah, hard to believe that Auntie Yugito runs this place." Akemi said, taking note of the noise. "How can she stand all the noise as well?"
"It wasn't like this last time. There must be a lot of people in the forges today." Haku said. "Come on, let's get to her office."
Haku led the way to Yugito's office, getting another smile from her secretary at the front. The girls were told that Yugito was in so Haku led the way.
"Knock knock! Guess who's here!!" Haku said, opening the door to Yugito's office.
"Haku-chan! How are you!" Yugito said, rushing up to hug her niece. "How was your trip?"
"Long and boring! Oh yeah before I forget, I brought some new people for you to meet." Haku said as she began her introductions. "This here is Ino Yamanaka, she's the Wood Illumina Knight."
"Nice to meet you Yugito-sama." Ino said with a respectful bow.
"And this one right here is..." Haku said before Akemi suddenly glomped Yugito.
"Hi Auntie Yugito. I'm Akemi." Akemi said with a smile.
"And I take it from that insurmountable amount of cuteness...you must be the baby of the bunch." Yugito replied.
"How did you know?" Akemi questioned as she helped Yugito up off the ground.
"Because when you're the youngest of ten siblings, you know these things. This means I have a lot to teach you...especially how to manipulate Arashi and Naruto." Yugito replied as she dusted off her kimono. "Because the chakra enhanced puppy dog eyes don't always work you know."
"Teach me everything you know Auntie Yugito!!" Akemi said with haste.
"Oh I will. And I'll even show you a few secret tricks to use on that new boyfriend of yours." Yugito said with a wink.
"Deal!" Akemi agreed.
"Come on, Ten-chan, Riyu-chan, and Kyoji are all packed as well. I've already informed my village council of the situation and they will be running the village in my absence." Yugito said as the four left.
Heading across the village, the group arrived back at Yugito's home where Tenten, Kyoji, and Riyu had been waiting. Of course Riyu was hyped up because she got to see Haku again, especially since she could tell her scent was at the door.
"HAKU-CHAN!!!!!" Riyu cheered as she leapt into Haku's arms the moment the door was opened.
"Whoa! Hey cutie! Did you miss me!!?" Haku said, giving her cousin a strong hug.
"You bet! I can't wait to go stay at your house!" Riyu replied.
"Hey cousin, long time no see." Kyoji said as he came out of the kitchen.
"Yeah, it has been a long time. So you guys ready to head out?" Haku asked.
"Already? I figured you'd want to rest for a day since we have a three day trip?" Yugito asked.
"You know, you're right. We could use a break." Haku said. "Ok we'll leave in a day or so."
"Great. Now I'll go get dinner started. Akemi-chan, do you want to help me in the kitchen?" asked Yugito as she tied her hair back.
"Sure Auntie Yugito." Akemi said as she followed behind. Of course they didn't see that Tenten was in the kitchen.
"Kyoji-kun, is Yugito-sama home?" asked Tenten from the kitchen.
"Yeah, Haku's here too." Kyoji replied. "She brought some friends too."
"I'm your cousin too, ya big dork!" Akemi snapped. "Get it right!"
"Akemi-chan! I didn't know you were coming!" Tenten said when she met up with the rest of the group. "How's your team?"
"Not too good. Hanabi-chan got sick, and Hoshi-chan broke her leg in our last mission." Akemi replied. "So I'm pretty much a solo ninja for a while...since Momo-chan went back to the Kitsune Village for her vacation."
"That makes sense. So what's your excuse Ino? Got bored of not getting out?" asked Tenten.
"Well duh! Everyone else but me and Chouji have left Konoha since all of this started. Plus Sakura had extra classes to teach, so I took her spot. That and Chouji had to help his dad on a mission." Ino replied, pushing the hair out of her face. "So what about you? Obviously you had to be busy for the past three months."
"Well yeah. I've become a fourth level blade master, and I've even gotten stronger with my Illumina Power too. But most of my time was spent with Riyu-nee-chan." Tenten replied.
"Oh so I don't count?" Kyoji asked.
"Of course you count! I just didn't think they'd wanna hear about our make out sessions, meow!" Tenten purred as she kissed Kyoji, while slowly rubbing his two cat ears.
"Alright Neko-chan, calm down!" Kyoji said playfully. "Honestly, as playful as you are, I'd swear you were a nekomata too."
"And if I was, would you play with my ears and tail, meow!" Tenten said coyly.
"Ok who are you, and what did you do to Tenten!" asked Haku, wondering what the heck was going on.
"Nothing's wrong with me Haku-chan. I just took some really good advice from Kasumi-chan, and a month later, I get a boyfriend!!!" Tenten smiled. "So now no more picking at me because I'm single!"
"Yeah now we get to pick on Hanabi-chan!" Akemi said with a laugh.
"What do you mean by that Akemi-chan?" Tenten asked, while still playing with Kyoji's ears.
"What she means is that she has her man as well! Kid's got Konohamaru all to herself!" Ino replied, causing a shock on Tenten's face.
"No way! That is too rich!" Tenten laughed. All was going well until a large explosion was heard outside.
"What in the world!" Yugito said, rushing out with everyone else. Apparently one of the forges had an explosion, causing some panic.
"It looks like one of the weapons forges blew up! We better get over there and see if everyone is ok." Tenten said. "Hopefully no one will be hurt."
The group made their way over to the explosion site. There were already nekomata shinobi using water jutsu to quell the flames, but what was really strange is that the forge that blew up...wasn't even open today.
"Something's not right. Why would this forge blow up when it wasn't even running?" asked Yugito as she examined the rubble.
"Crud, it's times like this when I wish Neji or Hinata were here. A Byakugan user would really help right now." Haku said in frustration. "I can't even pick up any strange sounds or scents either."
"You don't think someone is trying to attack, do you?" Kyoji said while scanning the area.
"I hope not. The worst possible thing would be if..." Ino said, right as a blur swooped in and grabbed Riyu. "What in the..."
"Hey just who are you...oh CRAP!!" Haku said, taking notice of the mysterious figure. The orange spiral mask was weird enough, but what really set it off was the black cloak with red clouds. "He's with Akatsuki!"
"How in the world did they find this place?" Ino asked. "I kept in constant contact with the plants and they couldn't detect a thing!"
"I wouldn't worry about that. Tobi here has his usefulness." said Deidara, rising up from a column of rock. "Now, let me see. I think that there's a lost kitty cat that needs to come home to its master."
"Not likely Deidara! If you want to get Aunt Yugito, you're going to have to get through us!" Haku demanded as she flicked her wrist to reveal her transformer.
"Hmm, so you're wanting to get serious. Well, I think you need to stay out of this. We don't need you going to that new level of power since you've been in contact with Rokubi. As for that blonde over there that is trying to look like me, we have her Bijuu, so she'll be fine." Deidara said. "Also I don't think you realize that we have a hostage. I would hate for her pretty little face to go boom." He pulled out a very small piece of clay and shaped it into a small rose. He then went over to the trembling girl being restrained by Tobi and gently placed the clay bomb in her hair. "Simply beautiful. You, my darling are a wonderful piece of art."
"Contact with Rokubi…I haven't..." Haku thought to herself before she realized it could have been misinformation given by Itachi. "I have to let Aunt Yugito know so she'll go along with it." With that Haku dropped her voice so low that it could only be picked up with advanced hearing. "Aunt Yugito, we haven't come in contact with Aunt Makoto yet, so I don't have access to my Overdrive form. However Itachi Uchiha, our spy in Akatsuki lied to Deidara to make him think that. Just go along with it. But I promise, we're gonna get Riyu-chan out of there."
Yugito got the message and nodded in acknowledgement. "Deidara is it. Just what do you plan on doing to my daughter?"
"Simple. You come with us, and she doesn't go to pieces all over this village." Deidara replied as he and Tobi started walking to the village exit. "Meet us outside the village in one hour with your decision. Any later and I'll start creating more art, especially with Yonbi's help." With that, Deidara, Tobi, and the captive Riyu left the village.Back at Yugito's house, the group took the time to regroup and come up with some kind of plan for Riyu's rescue. However things kept looking very grim with every possible outcome.
"We are not in a good position here. Not only could he detonate that bomb on Riyu at a moment's notice, but the fact that he also has the Yonbi's Hoshi no Tama is complicating things even more." Haku said, slamming her fist against the wall. "There's no way we can surrender Aunt Yugito, but what can we do?"
"What if there was a way I could access my Overdrive Form. From what we learned back in Konoha, any one of us in Overdrive should be able to stop a Bijuu." Tenten said, hoping to boost spirits.
"No go Ten-chan. If he summons Yonbi, you may defeat him, but we have no idea about that other guy. Especially since they have Sanbi now. If Sanbi is summoned, then you wouldn't stand a chance, even in Overdrive!" Haku said.
"What do you mean? Wasn't Naruto able to stop Yonbi?" asked Tenten in confusion.
"Yeah, but here's what we learned while you were gone. Remember how Oka-san explained to us the order in which the Bijuu were created? Well that also affected their power." Haku began to explain. "We had Aunt Mai take on Naruto and Sasuke in Overdrive…and the results were not what we expected."
"Haku-chan, what happened? They did win, didn't they?" Tenten asked.
"Nope. Aunt Mai laid both of them out! When she went full demon, she took Naruto's Omega Cyclone and Sasuke's Phoenix Magma Bazooka like it was nothing! From what Dr. Sakurano told us, the number of Illumina Knights it takes to defeat a Bijuu is exponential. In the case of taking on Yonbi, Hachibi, Gobi, or even Aunt Yugito, only one Knight in Overdrive would be needed." Haku explained. "Now with Ichibi and Aunt Makoto, it would take two Overdrive Knights to win."
"She's right. All the older Bijuu are much more powerful than I am. When we were created, Kami put most of the power into the first Bijuu, and then divided the power as more of us were created. Since I'm the youngest, I ended up with the least amount of power, but I got more with extra special abilities, like the contract with the shinigami." Yugito said. "Tenten, that may also be why your powers are so unique as well."
"Makes sense. So if we were to try and stop Sanbi, we'd need four Knights in Overdrive form." Tenten said, understanding what was going on.
"Yeah and to take out Oka-san, it would take eight of us. And let's not even think of what would happen if we were to face Ryukotsusei. As it stands right now, even if Kasumi-chan used Illumina Fusion with all of us in Overdrive Form, we still wouldn't have enough power to win. The only possible way of surviving that battle is for each of us to have all 10 Hoshi no Tama. But something like that could destroy not only us Knights, but the Bijuu as well." Haku replied.
"Well I for one am not going to sit here and let some freak keep my sister hostage." Kyoji said. "I say we get out there and rip into those freaks."
"I'm with you Kyoji-kun, but we have to be careful. They won't hesitate to kill Riyu-chan in an instant." Tenten explained. "Right now there has to be something we can do."
"I'll have to surrender. There's no other choice." Yugito said in disgust. "I can't risk her life like that."
"Aunt Yugito, I'm sorry, but you have no say in whether or not you will surrender. I for one will not have my family going to their doom." Haku shot her a sharp gaze and got a quick reaction out of her aunt. "But I do think we have a few options."
"Then I'd like to hear them, dear niece." Yugito said, feeling a little better.
"Let me go you big meanies! I want my Oka-san!!" Riyu cried as she was restrained to a large rock. "Why are you being so mean to me?"
"Now now little kitty. You are a very important piece of art in my grand scheme. I have to make sure you look your best now." Deidara said sadistically. He took the clay rose that he placed in her hair out and reshaped it into a clay tiara, setting it on top of her head. "This will just make sure that everything will go according to plan."
"Deidara-sempai is very smart. His plan will work wonders and we will get cat bijuu!" Tobi said in excitement.
"Tobi, shut up!" Deidara snapped, throwing a clay bomb at the masked shinobi.
"A gift from Deidara-sempai! Tobi is not worthy of such…" Tobi said before Deidara detonated the bomb, blowing Tobi back into a large stone. "Thank…you Deidara-s-s-s-sempai!"
"I really hate that guy!" Deidara said, setting his gaze back on Riyu. "Now where was I?"
"You were about to let her go, and then we were about to kill you Deidara!" Haku said, as the group approached the clearing. "So what do you say? Do we end this quickly, or take our time and make you suffer!"
"Why is it you insist on resisting?" Deidara said with a smug smile. "Whatever. All I want is that mangy cat and I intend to get it."
"Oh this time, that won't happen. And one more thing Deidara, I don't like wannabe freaks that try to impersonate me." Ino said with a hint of rage.
"Time to get into our formalwear girls." Haku said, flicking her wrist. Tenten and Ino followed suit, but what was really interesting was that Akemi did the same thing. "Akemi-chan, what are you doing?"
"Before we left, Dr. Sakurano gave me this just in case we did run into Akatsuki." Akemi said. "Unlike the support team, my armor is a little different. Mine happens to be reinforced with Kasumi-chan's power and Oka-san's Light Chakra. So I get more defense and Kasumi-chan was able to give me a little gift as well."
"Whatever floats your boat kiddo." Haku said. "Let's do it girls! ICE PRISM ACTIVATION!"
"GRAVITY PRISM ACTIVATION!" Tenten said, transforming to her knight form.
"WOOD PRISM ACTIVATION!" said Ino, changing forms.
"LIGHT ARMOR ACTIVATION!" Akemi said, undergoing a different transformation. When she finished, she was now in the Knights old uniform, except she now wore pants instead of shorts. She also had body armor, but it wasn't as much as the others had.
"Wow, they really did a good job on your armor Akemi-chan. I like the look." Ino commented. "Definitely suits you as a Junior Illumina Knight."
"Thanks Haku-chan. He's also working on armor for the rest of my team and for Konohamaru-kun's team, since we'll now be helping you when we can." Akemi replied. "But right now we gotta save Riyu-chan!"
"Save her! You can't even save yourselves!" Deidara laughed as a swarm of clay spiders marched to the group. "Now prepare to go boom!"
"Everyone take cover now!" Haku ordered, but Akemi was on the ball. "Akemi-chan, move it!"
"Not this time! I'm a shinobi and a junior knight! This time I'm gonna help!" Akemi said, thrusting her hands forward. Her armor began to glow a bright white as she channeled the Light energy from Kasumi and Akane. "STARBURST SHIELD!" With that, a large rainbow colored shield appeared around the group, protecting them from the explosion.
"Unbelievable! Dr. Sakurano was able to do this for you?" Ino said, surprised at Akemi's new power.
"Yup. The new plan is to have my team, Konohamaru's team, and the Support team outfitted with one element each. Unlike your powers, ours are designed for defense and support. However we can only have our powers if both the Knight and Bijuu are together to donate the energy needed. So until we have all 10 Bijuu, we won't be able to fully support you guys." Akemi said, as her shield died down. "That's why we have to get Auntie Yugito to Konoha."
"Then Akemi-chan, you stay back and protect her. As our support member, we're counting on you." Haku said, putting a smile on Akemi's face. "And trust me on this, I'll make sure to request you as our support on the next mission too."
"You got it Haku's chan!" Akemi said, falling back to cover Yugito.
"Kyoji-kun, do you think you can keep up? It might be a lot different when I go Bankai." Tenten asked, as she drew her Masamune.
"Heh, why not make it a challenge. If you get him first, I'll take you out to the finest restaurant in Konoha." Kyoji replied as he drew his own blade.
"You know, Neji and Chouji could learn a lot from you Kyoji." Haku said. "Ok, Ino and I will take Deidara. Tenten and Kyoji, the mask freak is all yours!"
"I won't have you ruining my art! Say goodbye to your little kitty cat over there!" Deidara screamed, as he formed a sign to detonate the tiara bomb on Riyu's head.
"Riyu-chan!" Yugito screamed as her daughter was about to be blown up.
"Gotta move fast!" Haku said, flashing some hand signs. "HYOTON! TOUKETSU HASAI! (Ice Release: Cryogenic Crushing)" Using her jutsu learned from the alternate dimension Haku, she quickly tried to freeze the tiara before it blew up. Haku was able to freeze nearly all of it, but a very small piece of clay detonated, causing it to burn Riyu's left ear. "Oh man, that was close! Ok, I'm not going to play around with this freak anymore! If there's one thing I can't stand, it's to see an innocent little girl hurt like that!"
"Haku, I say we end this quickly. We need to get Riyu-chan some medical attention." Ino said, feeling just as angry.
"Oh he's going to pay for this! I swear I will…" Kyoji said enraged. He was about to lunge an attack when Tenten stopped him.
"No one…and I mean no one…hurts Riyu-chan!" Tenten said, her voice becoming slightly demonic. "Girls, full force Bankai right now!"
"BANKAI!" yelled Haku, Tenten, and Ino as the three exploded in rage.
"Akemi-chan, anything you can do to help Riyu-chan?" Haku asked.
"I don't know any healing jutsu, but I do know a little first aid. Plus I have some healing cream that Hina-chan was able to make from one of Auntie Mai's tears." Akemi said. "But before I do that…why don't I get you three set up to kick that dude's butt."
"What do you mean by…" Ino asked when she suddenly got her answer.
"STARBURST RAY!" Akemi screamed, firing a solid rainbow laser directly at Deidara. "This is the OTHER special ability Kasumi-chan gave me! He's just lucky it's not her Starburst Cannon!"
"Not this annoyance again!" Deidara said, pulling up a pillar of rock to block the laser. "That's it! I'm sick of dealing with this! I'm taking the Nibi now!" He took hold of the Hoshi no Tama around his neck and began to channel its chakra. "Alright Yonbi, time to serve your master! KUCHYOSE NO JUTSU!" After slamming his hand on the ground, Team Illumina expected to come face to face with a giant chicken, but instead they got something much different. What now stood beside Deidara was a tall man of about 6 ½ feet. His garb was similar to that of Gaara's and he also wore heavy stone armor. What set off his appearance was the dark brown hair spiked in a Mohawk shape on his head, and there were four rocky tails flowing behind.
"Tsukune…that can't be! What are you doing here!" Yugito said, shocked to see her brother after so long.
"That's Uncle Tsukune! No way!" Haku said in surprise.
"It has been a long time, Yugito-nee-chan. I see you're well." Tsukune replied with a cold stare. "It is a shame that we are on opposite sides. It would have been nice to talk after so long."
"Yonbi, destroy them! They have ruined my art for too long!" Deidara commanded. "Make their deaths slow and painful."
"Forgive me Yugito-chan, but I must follow orders. Prepare yourselves." Tsukune said, as he reached down and pulled a large stone war hammer from the earth.
"Tsukune, no! Why are you doing this!" Yugito cried in pain. To have her own daughter hurt and to now stand face to face with her own brother that was about to attack…even for a Bijuu, that was too much.
"We can't win unless we hit him hard and fast! Unleash everything you have!" Haku said, drawing Sode no Shiraiyuki. "Sorry Uncle Tsukune, I wish we could have met on different terms! WHITE RIPPLE DANCE!"
"This is really gonna suck! NATURE'S WRATH!" Ino said, unleashing a massive burst of solar energy.
"Forgive me Yugito-sama!" Tenten said, putting her Gravity Blade back in its sheath. "Hope this works! MAGNETIC SHOCKWAVE: FULL POWER!!"
Tsukune stood there unfazed. With one swing he deflected the combined Bankai attack and instantly crushed any hope of the girls trying to pull off a win. "You will need to do better than that."
"Oh crap, we're in trouble now! Girls, use anything you have to stop him!" Haku said, slashing her sword again.
"Maybe this will help! KANETON: KANAKUZU KASUI! (Metal Release: Scrap Metal Spike)" Kyoji screamed, instantly causing a wave of metal spikes to shoot out of the ground around the Yonbi and into the air. "Now impale him!" With another hand sign, Kyoji commanded the spikes to bombard Tsukune. With as many spikes as he had, there was no way that anyone could survive without becoming Swiss cheese!
"Kyoji-kun, that was awesome." Tenten said in amazement. "If we keep this up, we'll win! Alright, here's some more to build on! GETSUGA TENSHOU!"
"I'm gonna do you one better Neko-chan!" Kyoji said, focusing a black chakra through his sword. "You're not the only one that can use your sword like that! GRAVITY SLASH!"
"Hey, I might as well add to the mix! WHITE RIPPLE DANCE: SECOND STEP!" Haku said, slashing her sword once again to add an extra shot of ice. "Ok Ino, finish it!"
"Alley oop!" Ino said, jumping out of Haku's hands into the air. Since she was higher up, she was exposed to more sunlight and drew in as much as possible for the final strike. "Time to finally one up Naruto! SOLAR BLAST: MAXIMUM IMPACT!" Ino discharged every ounce of solar energy in her body into a giant ball of energy that crashed into Tsukune as all the other attacks hit once more.
"Did they get him?" Akemi asked as she had brought a crying Riyu over to Yugito.
"I don't know. With that much power, it had to have done something!" Yugito said, trying to see through the smoke. "But how's my little kitten? Come here, mommy's here now."
"Oka-san, my ear hurts really badly!!" Riyu cried. Yugito could see the damage caused from the burn. It was a 3rd Degree burn and would take a long time to heal.
"Hey, don't cry Riyu-chan, I have something here that will help make it all better, ok." Akemi said, trying to comfort her cousin. She took the healing cream Hinata gave her out of her pouch and gently applied some to Riyu's burned ear. She then quickly wrapped the ear in a bandage to let the cream begin to work. "How does that feel?"
"It...feels better." said Riyu as Akemi dried some of her tears. "Thank you Akemi-chan."
"Hey, it was Hinata-chan's cream that did it. She used some of Auntie Mai's tears to make it." Akemi said. "From what I was told, because Auntie Mai is a Phoenix, her tears are the best thing for healing. So that burn should heal really fast!"
"Akemi-chan, thank you." Yugito said, getting to her feet. "Now it's time that I deal with Deidara myself. It's bad enough he's using my brother to do his dirty work, but attacking and hurting my family...that I will NOT tolerate. I want you to use your shield and keep Riyu-chan safe, ok."
"Alright Auntie Yugito. I'll make sure she says safe. Come on Riyu-chan, I brought some candy for you as well."
"Mkay. Is Haku-chan and Ten-chan gonna be ok too?" asked Riyu as she ran beside Akemi.
"Hey, they've even saved me a time or two. In a few hours we're all gonna be on our way to go see your Auntie Akane and Auntie Mai. Plus you get to meet my best friends Hanabi-chan and Hoshi-chan. We'll get to spend a lot of time together." Akemi said, doing her best to keep the little nekomata calm."This is a good spot to hide. Stay close to me and I'll put up a shield so that nothing can hurt us."
As for Yugito, her focus was set. Since Deidara was the mastermind behind everything, if she could take him out, then chances are her brother would be freed as well. The girls and Kyoji were having enough trouble keeping Tsukune at bay, but with one well placed shot, Yugito could end all of this.
"Alright you pathetic excuse of a human. You dare come to my village, damage the work my people have done, attack my family, injure my daughter, and even use my own brother for your own evil?" Yugito said as her demonic aura grew. "Deidara, I swear this will be your grave!" Yugito exploded in a rage of anger as a bluish black flame engulfed her entire body. The flame continued to grow until it formed a cat with two raging tails of flame. "You pathetic worm, get ready to burn in the fires of hell itself!"
"Oh ho, so the cat decided to let herself out of the bag?" Deidara chuckled. "As if you can do anything. Yonbi, finish off those kids so we can take our prize."
"Of course Deidara-sama." Tsukune said, turning his gaze back to the tiring Knights and Kyoji. Unfortunately the combined attack still had no effect and the group was in serious trouble. "Nephew, niece, you fight well. But I am afraid I must end this battle. Forgive me." He rushed forward with hammer in hand, ready to deal more damage, however Yugito jumped in his way and pounced on him, pinning him to the ground.
"Brother, I wish for us not to fight like this, but this is something I must do." Yugito said, focusing her sight on Deidara. "As for you, prepare to feel the flames of hell as your soul burns!" She opened her mouth wide as the blue flame began to increase in size. "You'll enjoy having your soul incinerated!" The flame shot out in a blaze, ready to consume Deidara, however today would not be a day that he would suffer.
"Tobi make sure Deidara-sempai is ok." Tobi said, forming a quick hand seal. In a flash of smoke Deidara had disappeared, but the flame kept going to its target...which happened to be Tenten!!!
"NEKO-CHAN!!!" Kyoji screamed as he saw the flame running nonstop. He ran as fast as he could to his girlfriend, but there was no way to reach her. Even Yugito had tried to stop the flame, but it was too late. All that could be heard was a scream of pure terror as Tenten was engulfed in the blue flame.
"Oh no!!! Ten-chan!" Haku screamed in fear. She turned to see Deidara and Tobi dash off into the forest, while Tsukune had vanished from the summoning. Yugito herself returned to her human form and rushed over as the flames died down. Tenten was there, her clothes slightly burned. There were some burns on her body as well, but the real damage was much worse.
"Neko-chan, hang on!" Kyoji said in worry. He had rushed to her side immediately as she struggled breathing.
"Aunt Yugito, what happened! What kind of flame was that!" Haku asked, deathly worried.
"That was Hellfire. It's known only to the Nekomata. That flame is so dangerous that it doesn't burn the body as much, but the real damage is that it burns the soul. And what's worse is that kind of damage can't be repaired by anyone other than a nekomata!!" Yugito said, checking out Tenten. "Listen, I want you to go after Deidara. Find him and eliminate him! I'll send some of my finest shinobi to back you up."
"What about Ten-chan, we can't leave her!" Akemi cried out. "Isn't there anything we can do?"
"Not right now. Listen I'll get her back to the medical facility. As it stands, I may be the only one that can save her life." Yugito said, taking out a small vial. "Kyoji, come here."
"What is it Oka-san?" Kyoji said as Yugito took his hand and sliced it open with a kunai. "Hey what in the..."
"You love this girl with everything in your being right?" Yugito asked, getting a shocked look from her son. "Right!!!"
"I...I do. I'd do anything to help Tenten. I mean she's too precious to me." Kyoji replied as Yugito filled the vial with his own blood.
"Good, that's one half of the binding contract down." Yugito said, sealing the vial. She then picked up Tenten while Kyoji wrapped his hand up. "For now help Haku and keep Deidara from escaping. Akemi-chan, you come with me to look after Riyu-chan. Right now we're racing against the clock people!" She immediately took off full speed back to the village in the hopes of keeping Tenten from the grip of certain death.
"Come on Riyu-chan, I'll get you back home." Akemi said, leading the small nekomata back.As for the others...
"Kyoji, let's go. Deidara hasn't gotten far. I can still track his scent in the air." Haku said, snapping her cousin back to reality.
"Alright. I'm ok. Lead the way." Kyoji said, as the three took off into the forest.
With Yugito, she ran full speed to the medical center of the Nekomata Village. The moment she entered, she immediately called for a secluded chamber to perform a medical sealing ritual. The main thing she ordered was that she was not to be disturbed at all. Once inside the room, she placed Tenten down on the floor in the middle of the room. She quickly undressed the girl down to her underwear and took out the vial of blood from Kyoji.
"Yugito-sama...what's...going on?" she asked weakly. She could see Yugito rushing quickly to perform some ritual, but she was unsure as to what it was.
"Don't worry kitten, you're going to be ok. I promise I'm not going to let you die." Yugito said, taking out a brush and a scroll. "Now Tenten, I have to ask you something. In order for me to save your life, you're going to undergo a change. The only way to stop the effect of Hellfire from destroying your soul is to turn you into a nekomata."
"A...nekomata?" asked Tenten. "Like...Kyoji-kun?"
"Yes. However I can only perform this ritual with your permission." Yugito said, as she filled a second vial with her own demonic blood. "What I have to do is have you is sign a binding contract with the shinigami. When that happens, it will restore the damaged parts of your soul. You'll never be a human ever again, but I have a feeling that's not going to be a problem for you kitten."
"But...what's going...to happen...to me?" Tenten was starting to get scared. She was at the gates of death itself and the only way for her to live was to give up her humanity.
"Well, you will have the cutest tail and ears ever. I think you might wanna wear your hair down too, so that Kyoji can see them." Yugito said, opening the scroll. "Now for this to work, I need you to sign this scroll in your own blood. Don't worry, I'll help you all the way."
"Ok...Yugito-sama." Tenten tried to sit up, but her body was nearly incapacitated. Yugito came over and helped her up. She cut open Tenten's thumb and helped her sign the shinigami binding contract.
"Alright Tenten-chan, I'm going to place some seals all over you. Here's the final thing…the blood I'm using for one layer of the seals belongs to Kyoji. Because you are a normal human, in order for me to perform this ritual, you must be willing to accept a binding contract with him." Yugito explained.
"What…kind of…contract?" asked Tenten.
"Basically…you and Kyoji will be betrothed under nekomata law. I already know he loves you with everything he has, and I need to know…do you feel the same?" Yugito asked once more.
"I…I…do, Yugito-sama." Tenten gave a small smile as she saw the same appear on Yugito.
"That's all I needed. Now let's get you all better." Yugito said as she began to use the blood to draw seals all over Tenten. Once she finished with the seals, it was time to start the ritual. "Ok Tenten, I have to warn you, this is going to be very painful. Because your soul was damaged so badly, I have to regenerate it from your own life energy. As that happens the seals on your body will absorb into your own bloodstream, transforming you into a nekomata."
"I'll…endure…for Kyoji-kun." Tenten replied as she was ready for the change of her life.
"I know you will kitten. Now let us begin." Yugito said, releasing her chakra into the room. As her hands were now glowing with chakra, she placed them on Tenten's chest, sending in the demonic chakra. Of course it was not without pain. Tenten released a blood curdling scream as the ritual began. Yugito could see she was in pain, but she knew it was needed. "Only one hour left to go." She thought to herself."I still don't get it. What did Oka-san mean by contract?" Kyoji thought to himself. His mind was clouded, as he not only tried to focus on Deidara and Tobi's capture, but he was also worried about his love Tenten. Ever since he had been born, he had never heard of a human surviving a blast of Hellfire. But it was the fact that Yugito told him that she was the only one with a chance of saving Tenten.
"Kyoji-kun, I know how you feel. I'm just as worried as you are. But you can't let that cloud your mind." Haku said, trying to calm her cousin. "We have to find Deidara and that masked freak Tobi…or whatever his name is."
"Haku-chan's right. They're the reason Ten-chan is in this situation. Use that to fuel your fire to beat them in battle." Ino added, hoping a little bit of Gai-sensei pep talk would work.
"You know, you're right. Before Ten-chan ever showed up, nothing mattered to me. I didn't care about my lineage, my birthright, none of that. I just wanted to be a carefree shinobi and travel the world." Kyoji said. "But when I met her…she changed me. I feel as if I could take on Oka-san in her full demon form and win."
"Whoa, getting a little bold there, are we?" asked Haku. "Figures you boys are always like that. Neji-kun is the same way."
"So is Chouji-kun. But that is expected." Ino said. "Something about you guys being so noble. I guess it's a hidden bloodline that they all have."
"You're probably right Ino." Haku laughed. "But in all seriousness, you need to know something about Ten-chan, Kyoji-kun. Do you know why she fell in love with you?"
"My roguish charm? That or she has a thing for cat ears?" Kyoji chuckled. "I dunno, why don't you enlighten me."
"Well, the reason is because you remind her of the splitting image of the first boy she ever fell in love with." Haku explained. "See about two years ago, she went on a mission in Ame with Naruto, Sasuke, Kasumi, and Hinata. Apparently they ran into a boy named Kazuki who had the ability to control time. He was the one that gave Tenten her first kiss, and from what I learned, she loved him with everything in her being."
"So, what's this got to do with me?" Kyoji asked. "And why has she never told me about this?"
"I'm not done yet! See here's where it gets crazy. Apparently Kazuki's uncle was planning to summon some demon from the void of time to destroy the world. Of course he succeeded and summoned the demon, but the team couldn't stop it. That's when Kazuki sacrificed himself by sealing the demon into the void of time once again. The whole thing left Tenten absolutely devastated." Haku continued her story. "After that we tried to get her to start dating again, but she just wouldn't do it. She said that she kept seeing Kazuki in her dreams and always thought he'd come back to her."
"But that still doesn't explain what it has to do with me?" Kyoji said, still not getting the point.
"Geez, you are dense! What is it with this family, are all the boys idiots!" Haku replied. "Look the point is, when she saw you, she said you looked exactly like Kazuki. The face, hair, eyes, voice, all of it! Kyoji, just seeing you for the first time gave her hope that she could fall in love again."
"So she fell in love with me because she thinks I'm the reincarnation of her first boyfriend?" Kyoji said, feeling a little upset.
"That's what we thought. But she would talk to us over the past three months and we found out…that's not why she fell in love with you. She fell in love with you because you bring out the best in her when you two were sparring. She could tell how skilled you were, and she wanted to be the same. Kyoji, you brought out a side of Tenten that no one has seen." Ino said. "To be honest, all of us couldn't be happier for her. That's why you have to stay focused and help us stop Deidara."
"Hard to believe Neko-chan was like that. Well, when she makes it out of this alive, I'll make sure she's taken care of." Kyoji said, getting a few eyes from Haku and Ino.
"Kyoji, seriously, have you even met Naruto yet? You are just as insane as he is!" Haku replied. "I swear Konoha is gonna blow up with all you crazy guys there."
"Heh, I can't wait." Kyoji laughed as the trio continued their pursuit. Over the next hour Haku managed to keep the scent trail, and it led them back into the village where Deidara had already started to create more destruction."So you finally came back. I was getting bored with all of this art creation." Deidara said as he blew up another building. "You know, good art is so hard to create these days."
"Now you're terrorizing my people and my home! Just who the hell do you think you are!" Kyoji screamed. "These people have done nothing to you!"
"Oh really? They've done nothing to me? I'll tell you something, these people are guilty of a heinous crime!" Deidara said. "To live in a village with no art, it is a crime I say!"
"Ok, you are seriously messed up. You know, I'm going to take pride in ripping you to shreds!" Kyoji said as his chakra flared. His body became more feral as his fingernails sharpened into claws. His eyes changed from the normal black to a dark blue that peered into the soul of Deidara. "It's time I show you just what the future Nibi can do."
"Spare me the lesson. I don't have time for you to…" Deidara said before he soon noticed Kyoji on the attack. The nekomata unleashed slash after slash with his claws in the hopes of ripping the Akatsuki to shreds.
"Stand still so I can turn you into cat food!" Kyoji said, slashing again but narrowly missing.
"Oh, so this cat wants to play now? Fine then. I'll put you down and make sure you never get back up!" Deidara said, throwing a spray of bombs. "Not only that but I'm going to take this very village with me!"
"That's where you're wrong!" Kyoji said, drawing his sword. "Now feel the wrath of my blade! GRAVITY MOON SLICE!" Time seemed to slow down as Kyoji moved at an amazing speed. Ino had lost track of him, but Haku was able to barely see him move in and slash Deidara multiple times. It was like he was using the Hiraishin, but for some reason Kyoji's movements were more fluid.
"Pathetic. You really think that could stop…" Deidara said, before Kyoji did a single handsign.
"SLASH!" Kyoji said, instantly surrounding Deidara in a flurry of blade slashes. "To underestimate the power of Gravity. You disgust me."
"And you underestimate the power of Akatsuki. Now drop your blade." Deidara said, standing atop his large floating clay bird. "I don't think you want to attack."
"Why should I stop? I plan to kill you for what you did to Neko-chan." Kyoji growled in rage.
"Try to harm me and this time I won't miss in blowing up your sister!" Deidara said, as he stepped to the side to reveal a tied up Akemi and Riyu. "Surprising that his pipsqueak genin thought she could stop an S-class shinobi like me."
"Akemi-chan! Riyu-chan!" Haku screamed as she saw the two captive.
"This is perfect! Now back away slowly." Deidara commanded. Kyoji couldn't risk his sister's life, so he had to do as he was told. "Wonderful. Now take me to where the Nibi is so I can claim her as my price and leave this wretched place."
"I don't think you'll be going anywhere Deidara." The group turned to see Tenten standing again, only this time, she was pissed!
"Neko-chan, you're alive!" Kyoji was happy to see she was safe. "But what happened to you?"
"Don't worry about that." Tenten said, instantly assuming her Knight form. "For now, get Riyu-nee-chan and Akemi-chan to safety."
"They're not going anywhere! I thought I…" Deidara said, before he saw a glow from Tenten's hand.
"Why don't you zip it!" Tenten said, using her gravity power to take hold of Akemi and Riyu and move them over to the group. She also ripped away the clay bombs and tossed them aside to make sure they wouldn't hurt the two."
"Nii-san!" Riyu cried as she ran into Kyoji's arms.
"Hey short stack. You ok?" Kyoji asked.
"I'll be fine. It Tenten-chan ok?" Riyu asked, hoping that her friend was fine.
"I'm better than ok, Riyu-nee-chan. I have a job to finish, but when I'm done, I'll take you out to the Cat Café before we go to Konoha." Tenten replied with a smile. "As for you Deidara, ever thought about how you want to die?"
"Do you seriously think you can kill me? Besides I saw you burned alive. How are you even standing?" Deidara questioned. He was right, how could Tenten be alive after that dose of Hellfire.
"I have a little cat to thank for keeping me alive." Tenten said. "But now I plan to be the last person you ever see."
"Whoa, when did she become sadistic like that?" Ino asked.
"New rule…never piss off a weapons mistress!" Haku replied.
"Haku-chan, you and Ino-chan get Kyoji, Riyu-nee-chan, and Akemi-chan out of here. What I plan to do is going to make things very heavy." Tenten said, as the group could see a dark energy leaking from her Illumina Gem.
"No way! You got it didn't you! Oh man, this is gonna be good!" Haku said in excitement. She knew what was going on and she knew Deidara was good as dead! "You heard her! We gotta go get good seats for this!"
"Good seats for what?" Kyoji asked when he saw Tenten flash him a quick smile.
"Seats for this! GRAVITY OVERDRIVE!" Tenten screamed as she exploded in a wave of power.
"Holy cow! This is what an Overdrive Release is like! I can't wait till I get mine!" Haku screamed.
"Yeah, this is gonna be awesome! Ten-chan is gonna obliterate that Deidara freak!" Ino added. As the energy died down, Tenten now stood before the group, glowing in an onyx aura. The ribbons in her hair were blown away as well, causing her hair to flow in the wind, revealing a brand new side of her.
"What in the world!" Haku said, amazed at the new Tenten.
"That's what Oka-san meant by binding contract!" Kyoji said, remembering his mother's words. "I know how she saved Tenten's life from the effects of Hellfire!"
"Binding contract, what do you mean binding contract!" Ino asked. "And what did it do to Ten-chan!"
"To save a human from the effects of Hellfire, the blood of a nekomata that loves the human is required to form a special contract. That allows the human to sign the shinigami contract and undergo the nekomata transformation! And from what Oka-san told me, the contract is an engagement by nekomata law!" Kyoji said.
"What! Just what in the world are you saying!" Haku asked, even more confused than before.
"What I'm saying is that under nekomata law, my fiancée is up there about to let the cat out of the bag!" Kyoji said proudly. "Thanks to the contract, Ten-chan's now a nekomata hanyou!"
That she was. Tenten now had a pair of black cat ears with white tips on the top of her head, as well as a long black tail. To top it off, even though she was in Overdrive, she looked even more feral as her newly acquired nekomata chakra was merging with her Overdrive energy.
"So you really think you can attack me with your transformation or whatever? You can't even get up to me. As far as I know, only that Naruto kid could even come close by being able to fly with his Wind Element." Deidara scoffed. Unfortunately, underestimating Tenten would prove to be very dangerous.
"That is true Deidara. But you see…I command Metal and Gravity. And guess what happens when you reverse Gravity!" Tenten said, rising into the air. "So wanna summon the Yonbi? You know I'll do the same thing that Naruto did."
"You arrogant little bitch! What makes you think you can stop me!" Deidara said. "I don't need Yonbi! I'll use his chakra as my own and kill you myself!"
"Deidara, Deidara, you weak fool." Tenten replied. As she was talking, bits and pieces of metal began to form around her into numerous kunai. Each one began to glow a different color as well. "You may have the Earth Element to enhance you, but see there's something about Metal…I happen to remember I got a nifty little skill called Element Conversion. Thanks to it, I have control over all 10 elements! Just see if you can stop this! KUNAI STORM!" She sent the kunai flying at full speed, but that wasn't it. The stream of kunai was endless as Tenten continued to draw metal from all around. Deidara was lucky to try and avoid the kunai, but not even he was skilled enough. "Oh, I'm sorry, did I hurt you?"
Deidara was in serious trouble. Tenten's attack did more to him than he could think. "So you think you can throw some kunai at me and hurt me?"
"No, I thought I would play around with my prey before I ripped it to shreds, said the cat to the mouse!" Tenten said with a sinister smile. "How about I take you for a little lift!" Using her enhanced Gravity power, she grabbed hold of Deidara and started slamming him into building after building. The impact of hitting cold steel consistently was enough to kill a normal man, but Tenten was just getting started.
"Absolutely pathetic. And here you boast that you're the great Deidara!" Tenten said as she threw Deidara crashing into the ground. "You sicken me!"
Meanwhile in the background…
"Wow, since when has Tenten ever been like this?" Ino asked. "I've never seen her so brutal before!"
"It's like she's toying with him to make him suffer! But Ten-chan has never been that sadistic!" Haku said with a hint of concern.
"She's adjusting to the nekomata chakra. You see, when nekomata are highly enraged, they can become extremely sadistic and cruel to prey. Considering Tenten was nearly killed, and had to overhear Deidara say that he would kill Riyu-nee-chan twice? I'm not surprised she's that pissed off." Kyoji said. "I say we let her blow off a LOT of steam."
"Don't have to tell me twice!" Haku replied.
Back to Tenten…
"Alright Deidara, I'm feeling just a tiny bit generous. If you can give me one reason why I should not kill you right now, state it. If I deem it worthy you are free to escape the village." Tenten said, looking down at the Akatsuki shinobi.
"Very well, I'll give you a reason!" Deidara said, throwing off his cloak to reveal a giant mouth on his chest. "See this mouth? With it I can create the greatest work of art ever!" He started feeding every ounce of clay he had left into the giant mouth as he laughed. "I'll blow this entire village to hell and take all of you with me!" He then started to grow in mass as the clay expanded.
"Oh you'll be going to hell…but you're the only one going!" Tenten said, taking hold of him with her energy once again. She used it to start constricting Deidara's body, placing him in immense pain. "Such musical screams…they bring joy to my ears!"
"What the hell do you…think…" Deidara spat out. "Let me go!"
"After what you did to me, my friends, my nee-chan, the love of my life, and my future mother-in-law! I don't think so!" She lifted him high above the village and created a large black dome of energy. "Deidara…I bid you farewell. Make sure you enjoy your trip to hell!'
"I'll…kill you!!!" Deidara screamed as the dome closed.
"In your dreams freak!" Tenten screamed in rage. Focusing all her energy, she unleashed the newest attack in her arsenal, "GRAVITY CRUSH!" The black dome instantly closed in on itself, crushing everything, namely Deidara, to a pulp! The effect was so intense that it created a pillar of condensed gravity nearly 50 times that of regular gravity, and it was in a near 500 foot radius. Needless to say…Deidara was dead.
"Farewell freak." Tenten said before she collapsed to the ground.
"Neko-chan!" Kyoji said, rushing to catch her before she hit. "Hey, you ok?"
"Kyoji-kun…do you think I'd look cute with one of those chokers that has a bell on it? And maybe even a bell tied to my tail?" asked the neo-nekomata.
"You'd look absolutely fabulous Neko-chan. I'm so glad you're safe." Kyoji replied as he began to rub her new cat ears.
"Tenten-nee-chan, you look cute! Can I put ribbons in your ears sometime?" Riyu asked.
"Only if I get to do the same to you," replied Tenten. Riyu just smiled and quickly hugged Tenten, glad she was alive.
"Well, there's another Akatsuki down." Ino said. "We don't have to worry about him anymore."
"Yeah, and we're probably safe from the Yonbi…the Hoshi no Tama! We have to get it back!" Haku said. As they went over to check the location of the now dead Deidara, they found Tobi holding the Hoshi no Tama, and Deidara's ring.
"Aw, you killed Deidara-sempai. But Tobi is still a good boy. He will return the shiny stone to Pein-sama." Tobi said as he sunk into the ground, vanishing on sight.
"Crap! We were so close!" Haku cursed. "Well, at least we have our Ten-chan back."
"Yeah, and she's better than ever too." Ino added.
"Hey look at that! She's asleep!" Akemi said. Ino and Haku knew full well of the effect. Using the Overdrive Attack drained every ounce of energy from a Knight and left them extremely weakened.
"Boy are the girls back home going to have a field day with her!" Haku said. "Hey wait…is she purring!"
"You are kidding me! She actually is! Now where is Kasumi with her camera when you need her?" Ino just laughed at the scene.
"So Kyoji, you do plan to take good care of Tenten, right? A crazy cat like you needs a good kitten to keep you in line." Yugito said, showing up at the scene.
"Oka-san, of course. And…thank you, for saving her." Kyoji said as he slowly ran his fingers through Tenten's hair.
"I'm just glad you're all ok." Yugito said as she picked up Riyu. "Let's all get home and rest so we can prepare for our trip to Konoha."
After the battle, the group stayed in the village for three days, to help with the reconstruction. Once most of the damage was taken care of, Yugito left the village in the care of her council. Now with three Bijuu under their protection, Team Illumina felt that they were making good progress. It still couldn't match up to Akatsuki's four captured Bijuu, but with two left unharmed, there was still a chance to get the jump on Akatsuki.Now came the big challenge…
"You know, I never knew how much better it felt to have my hair down." Tenten said as she walked into Konoha hand in hand with Kyoji. Since becoming a nekomata, she now wore her hair down and had it tied with a simple ribbon. She did however now wear a black choker with a yellow bell on it, and even had a tail ribbon as well.
"I said it suits you! Besides, those meatballs on your head covered up your ears!" Kyoji replied.
"Meatballs! That's it! Just wait till I team up with my girls! I'll show you what this former meatball head is capable of."
"To be young and in love." Yugito said with a smile. "Ok enough about that. Haku-chan, where would by two lovable older sisters happen to be?"
"If I'm right, they're at the house." Haku said, pointing to the direction of the residential area. "I'll go ahead and contact them to see what they're up to."
"Uh…if it's ok with you guys, I'm gonna…go to Hanabi-chan's house. Yeah, that's it. I'll see you guys later!" Akemi tried to sneak away, but she didn't quite make it.
"Oh no you don't!" Haku said, grabbing the back of Akemi's collar. "I happen to know that Hanabi's house is on the east side of Konoha where our house is, and you were heading west toward Konohamaru's house."
"But…I really miss him! Can't I go see him without anyone else knowing just yet! I never get a moments peace with Naruto-nii-san trying to keep an eye on me, and Otou-san somehow has ANBU spying on me too!" Akemi cried. "I promise I won't be long! We're just going to go to the ice cream shop, and then I'll come right home!"
"Haku-chan, let her go. She'll be fine." Yugito said, releasing Haku's grip on Akemi. "Now you go have fun with Konohamaru-kun."
"Thanks Auntie Yugito! I'll see you guys at home!" Akemi said, dashing towards the west.
"Now time to go make an appearance to my sisters. I bet they're scared to death too!" Yugito let out an evil chuckle as she started plotting.
"Yugito-sama, does this have anything to do with the two of them saying something about having their tails shaved?" asked Ino. "I remember seeing them pacing in Tsunade-sensei's office once and they were talking about it."
"Perfect! Now you're about to see what happens when they mess with the baby of the family!" Yugito said.
Haku just rolled her eyes as they made it to the Uzumaki Mansion. Ino went on home so Haku was given the lovely task of introducing everyone.
"Hey everyone, I'm home!" Haku said entering the house. "Anyone here?"
"Hey Haku-chan. Glad to see you're back. Where's Akemi-chan?" asked Kasumi, who was sitting on the sofa watching TV.
"Where do you think? She tried to say she was going to Hanabi's house, but I knew where she was headed." Haku said, taking off her shoes.
"Right…well hopefully she'll get a little bit of peace. When Otou-san heard you were set to arrive today, he had the ANBU on high alert for Akemi." Kasumi replied. "Now if I'm correct I smell something quite different."
"You know I said the same thing about a week ago." Tenten said, causing Kasumi to jump when she saw her.
"Ten-chan, what in the world! Wait…are those cat ears!" Kasumi said, taking a good look at Tenten.
"Yep, and it's a tail too. I gotta say I never knew just what you were able to sense as a hanyou. I do like it though." Tenten said.
"I'd say so. And I take it this crazy cat is Kyoji?" Kasumi said.
"Nice to meet you too cousin." Kyoji replied. "So where's this Naruto I keep hearing about."
"Oh he's out on a date with Hina-chan." Kasumi said, before she stopped in her tracks. The moment she laid eyes on Riyu, she couldn't help but squeal.
"KAWAII!!!!!!!" Kasumi squealed as she picked Riyu up in a big hug. "Haku-chan was right, you are absolutely adorable!!!!" She just looked at Riyu and started playing with the little girl's ears.
"That tickles Kasumi-chan!" Riyu laughed as Kasumi kept up the tickle assault.
"Oh I'm gonna keep this up all day! That's it, you're staying with me! You are just too cute to let go!" Kasumi said with another squeal.
"Kasumi, what's going on out…oh hi Haku-chan, welcome home," said Mai as she came from the kitchen. "Akane, Haku's home." However when she walked out…she froze in her tracks.
"Oh she is? Good, because I need her to…" Akane said as she walked out. As Mai just did, she also froze solid.
"So Moonie and Birdybird…who wants to be the first one to get their tails shaven when I go tell daddy!" Yugito said with an evil smile on her face.
"Mai…how fast you think we can find one of those Akatsuki!" Akane said in fear.
"I don't know but it has to be better than this!" Mai said, hiding behind Akane.
"Oh my dear sisters, I haven't even gotten warmed up yet." Yugito said while she cracked her knuckles. "I hope you're ready to suffer!"
"She's your sister, you deal with her!" Akane said, shoving Mai into the front.
"Hey you're the oldest! You're supposed to be the one that keeps her happy!" Mai complained as she tried to push Akane in front.
"Now let me see, what was that jutsu again? Oh yeah…I remember now…" Yugito said, forming some hand seals that only Akane and Mai would know…and never wanted to see.
"OK, we're sorry Mew-Mew-Chan!!!" Akane and Mai cried as Yugito stopped her seals.
"Look, we didn't mean to pick at you! It's just been so long and you know…" Mai said, trying to cover her shame.
"Listen, you just got here. Why don't we all get some tea? It will give the kids time to rest and we can catch up." Akane said nervously.
"I'd like that Akane-nee-chan." Yugito said as Akane led her into the kitchen.
"Good, she's happy. That means she's not gonna tell on us!" Mai and Akane thought to themselves.
Yugito on the other hand was thinking something else, "Just like when we were kids. I have those two right in the palm of my hand!"
Three Bijuu rescued, two left to find before Akatsuki has an advantage. But with Tenten now having her Overdrive and being a nekomata, plus Deidara's elimination, Team Illumina has pulled off a serious win in The Bijuu Wars.
Now on to other things. Since the story still has a long way to go, I thought about doing a few filler chapters that the readers might have ideas about. Something to do with their everyday lives instead of dealing with Akatsuki. Do you want to see what happens on Akemi and Konohamaru's first big date? Or maybe see what happens when one of Team Illumina gets sick and it completely screws up their powers? Or maybe a flashback in the lives of Akane, Mai, and Yugito when they were kids. Let me know what you think.