Another new chapter about our future Ace of Aces! This will be a little more calm, but things will soon pick up! And you guys know who owns who!
The matches continued as normal with Shikamaru taking on Temari due to Sasuke being late. Since everyone wanted to cater to their precious Uchiha, they allowed his match to be postponed. As for Naruto and Tenten, the two waited outside the infirmary to get an update on Hinata. It was quite fast as the medic came out to address the duo.
"She's doing much better. The chakra burns weren't as serious as we thought, and she even gave us a phenomenal burn ointment that is accelerating her healing. Honestly the ointment she made is on par with something Lady Tsunade would have made." The medic said it was ok that Hinata could have her friends in. "But you can go in and talk with her now."
"Thanks." Tenten replied as she and Naruto walked in to see Hinata with some bandages on her arms and legs. "Feeling any better?"
"A little. It still burns though." Hinata tried to fake that she wasn't in pain, but she was a terrible faker and it wasn't working at all.
"Good thing you're ok. Just what was that jutsu you were trying to use anyway? If it had worked, I would have been out cold!" Naruto asked, causing her to go red in the face again.
"Jutsu…he thinks it's a jutsu? Tenten, what do I tell him?" Hinata quickly asked in panic.
"Leave that one to me." Tenten replied back. "Actually Naruto what she used was called the Starlight Breaker Jutsu. It's a really powerful, but highly risky jutsu to use. You kinda lucked out because that was actually Hinata's first time even attempting it."
"You know something that powerful? Oh man, what don't you know? I hope you can perfect it in our next match, because I wanna know if I can beat it." Naruto said proudly.
"I-I'll do my best." Hinata stuttered out. The three just sat there carrying idle conversation when Tenten felt the room get a little colder as Hinata's father Hiashi entered the room.
"Uh, hey Naruto, I think we should go for a bit." Tenten saw Hiashi and saw that he looked like he meant business.
"What for?" Naruto thought it was a little weird when Tenten started pulling his arm to get him out of the room. That's when he saw Hiashi for himself. "Who the heck are you?"
"That's Hinata's father and the head of the Hyuuga clan, you idiot!" Tenten hoped Naruto wasn't staring at his own death.
"You mean that stuck up bastard that doesn't even know how to give Hinata a single compliment? That's him?" Naruto shot an ugly stare towards the Hyuuga leader before walking over to try and give him a piece of his mind. "Hey buddy, just who do you think you are, huh? Don't you know how hard Hinata tries? If you didn't have your head stuck so far up your…" Before Naruto said anything else that could kill him, Tenten quickly ran up and muffled his mouth.
"Uh…don't mind him…please! We'll step outside. Talk to you soon Hinata!" Tenten struggled to get Naruto out of the room. "Naruto, shut up or you're gonna get us both killed!"
"I swear he's just as loud and obnoxious as Kushina was." Hiashi sighed to himself. However that was for another time. For now he had much to discuss with Hinata and preferred not to be disturbed. The two guards outside that were with Naruto and Tenten both ran through some seals, sealing the room for privacy. "Now that is done, you have much explaining to do Hinata."
"I'm s-s-sorry I failed again." Hinata's confidence dropped considerably. If there was one person she hated having to answer to, it was her father. She never saw anything but disappointment in his eyes at everything she did. "I really t-t-tried this time."
"Then if you tried everything you had, why did your final jutsu backfire and why is it that the Uzumaki boy is going to the next round?" Hiashi's eyes were focused on her, lifeless and cold.
"It was a desperation jutsu. I had nothing left." Hinata could feel every ounce of confidence she had when Naruto and Tenten were with her just leave her body.
Hiashi let her words go past him, not taking any heed. He walked next to her, eyes still locked on her in a cold glare when Hinata saw something she had not seen since her mother was alive. Hiashi placed his hand on her head and gently combed through her hair. "Why is it that you have to make it so hard for me Hinata? You had to be the one to truly take after your mother."
"F-father? What are you talking about?" Was Hinata hearing him correctly? Matter of fact, why did the coldness leave his eyes?
"Hinata, I've seen a lot of changes in you in the past month. At first I didn't know what to think. Here I thought you were going to make me suffer through another one of your bra shopping ordeals! Seriously, next time make sure Kurenai isn't sick the day that happens, please?" Hinata went beet red after hearing that. Well what could she do? She was a blossoming young woman and it was her father that had to do some things with her if Kurenai couldn't. He let out a gentle chuckle at his daughter's embarrassment, "You know if your mother were here, she'd probably let me have it pretty good for that comment. But what I'm saying is that I've noticed you've become more confident in your actions. The day you stood up to me and told me that you truly weren't comfortable with the Main House techniques because they were too rigid for you, it shocked me."
"It did? Father, I'm sorry! I didn't mean to offend…" Hinata tried apologizing but Hiashi placed his finger upon her lips.
"No Hinata, you did nothing wrong. In fact, you did something right. You made me remember your mother's words. She said that our taijutsu was too rigid for females and that a female Hyuuga couldn't truly maximize the techniques like a male could. That's when I found these." He pulled some scrolls from his robe and gave them to Hinata. "These are the changes your mother made to the Juuken style. I want you to start studying them as soon as possible because even though she's gone, your mother knows more than I do when it comes to my daughters."
"So…does this mean…you're not disappointed in me?" Hinata timidly asked.
"My daughter, you have the strongest doujutsu in all the land, and even it can be blind sometimes. Our elders are still fixated on the old ways. If it wasn't due to the family branching, they would have made Neji the heir the very day he was born, even though Hizashi was in the Branch House." Hiashi explained. "The reason why things are hard on you is because the elders were afraid of one person…well three actually. It was your mother and her two annoying friends Kushina and Mikoto. Those three drove the elders insane, and what made it worse is that due to your mother's gentle nature, none of them ever saw things coming."
Hinata let out a small giggle, "Mother was like that?"
"Hinata, do you remember when you were 4 years old? Remember when your grandfather and the other elders suddenly showed up with rainbow colored hair after your mother said she learned a new relaxation jutsu that would help ease headaches? Blame that one on her friend Kushina. She learned that just before you were born and had been waiting for a chance to use it." Hiashi clearly remembered the carnage that ensued. "To make matters worse, you know how you were never allowed to go outside the walls of the compound? Well that changed when your mother put the ultimatum that you get some freedom, or the elders stay rainbow haired for the rest of their lives. Needless to say, you went to Konoha Park for the first time in your life that day."
Hinata was definitely changing moods. She always loved hearing about her mother, and the fact that her father was telling her this seemed to make things better. "Mother kind of reminds me of Naruto-kun."
"If you only knew that Kushina was Naruto's mother…then you'd really understand." Hiashi knew he couldn't reveal Naruto's heritage, as it was not his to say. "The fact is Hinata, the elders are worried that you may be like your mother and cause a lot of great changes to the clan that they just aren't ready for. The worst change is that you may want the Caged Bird Seal destroyed upon becoming clan head, and the elders don't want that to happen."
"So that's why you're so hard on me?" Hinata slowly started figuring things out. "It's because of the elders?"
"Yes, and for that I owe you a great apology. After your mother died, the elders wanted me to erase any traces of her in you. It only made things worse when they saw Hanabi took more after me than her." Hiashi said calmly. "I had hoped at first that it would work and you'd start taking after me in your training habits and fighting style, but it's just impossible. You are like a pre-teen version of your mother…without the two friends that would help her drive me crazy." Hiashi sighed and got another laugh out of Hinata. "The fact is, after seeing you become more confident from being with Tenten, and even standing up to Neji, it shows you are committed to forging your own destiny and your own path in life. Not only that, but you definitely shocked the elders when you stared Neji down and acted like you were going to use the seal on him. Did it surprise you when he fell to his knees?"
"It did. I really didn't activate his seal!" Hinata remembered how surprising that event was.
"You told Neji that he needed to look at you differently from now on, and I agree. He's still fixated on his hatred for the clan because of his fate as a Branch Member, and that he'll never get to reach his true potential. That's why I activated his seal for you. He needs to understand that people do change and can change, just like he can. In fact, he doesn't know this but I do have plans to start training him myself if he ever gets over his hatred." Hiashi commented. "But that's a conversation for another time. Hinata, my reason for coming here is because I wanted you to know that I'm proud of you for the changes you're making. You surprised me out there, and you did a good job. I'm just glad you weren't hurt more."
Hinata was dumbstruck. She hadn't heard her father tell her that he was proud of her since she was 5! "F-father, you're serious?"
"Hinata, when was the last time I did this?" He kneeled down and wrapped his arms around her, pulling her into a close embrace while being careful not to agitate her burns. "You've missed this hug, haven't you my lavender princess."
"You haven't called me that since I was little." Hinata tried her hardest not to cry. Why did all of this happen now? Why was her father telling her all of this?
"Look, until you become stronger to show you're a true threat to the elders and the old ways, these times will have to be our secret. Not even Hanabi can know. But if you keep training hard and keep getting stronger, the elders will have no choice but to see you are worthy of being heiress." Hiashi said as he released Hinata. "Speaking of which, just where did you learn those new jutsu? I haven't seen anything like that at all in all my years."
Hinata knew she couldn't reveal Mach Caliber just yet. It just wasn't time. "I…I made a promise to the person that taught me that I would keep them secret for now. Please trust me. I promise I'll tell you when she's ready for me to say something."
Hiashi knew that was Hinata's mother talking in her. "Your mother was the same way. Well, just take time and recover. We'll talk again later. But even though you lost, you did a good job out there Hinata. Be proud of that." Hiashi turned and headed back to the door. "And one more thing. If you ever manage to get that Uzumaki kid out of that Kami-awful orange outfit and get him to act a little more normal, I'll triple your allowance and pay for you to go to the Moon Country resort for a week. I know you like the kid, just see what you can do."
"Oh, ok. I'll do that. And…thank you daddy." Hinata said before Hiashi left.
"She hasn't called me that since she was 5. I miss that." Hiashi took one last look as Hinata lay back to try and rest. All he did was smile at her and he was glad that he took the time to talk to her. His suspicions were correct. The more positive influence and reinforcement she had, the better she would be not only as a person, but also as a kunoichi and as a clan heiress. He resumed his cold demeanor and left the infirmary room, sending a glare back at Naruto just to scare the kid a little. "You may speak with Hinata again if you would like." He motioned to his guards and left, leaving the two Genin on their own. Naruto and Tenten ran back in to check and see if Hinata was ok.
"You ok Hinata? He didn't say anything bad right?" Naruto was the first to show his concern.
"N-n-no it wasn't like that Naruto-kun!" Hinata tried to keep things quiet and not have them escalate. Tenten however had other means of getting information.
"Hinata, that conversation you had with your father…it didn't go the way you thought it did, did it?" asked Tenten.
"You're right. It wasn't what I was expecting. I'll tell you when we have some time alone ok?" Hinata replied back. Tenten knew that Hinata would tell her when she was ready and it wasn't worth probing.
"No problem. Well, I should get Naruto out of here before he drives both of us crazy. At least that way you can rest." Tenten said as she motioned to Naruto, "Hey Naruto, let's go watch the other matches. That way Hinata can at least have some time to heal up ok?"
"Oh yeah. Might as well. Hey you rest up ok Hinata? And we'll still go out and celebrate tonight with ramen on me." Naruto gave her another smile.
"Th-thank you Naruto-kun. That will be fun." Hinata calmly replied and smiled back. "And I hope we can t-train together in the future."
"You bet. Later!" Naruto gave her a wave and left the infirmary.
"See ya girl. I'll come back after the first round is over." Tenten said. "And I'll give you a play by play too." She tapped her head, signaling what she meant. Both Tenten and Naruto left, heading back to the stadium to the stadium to see how the matches were going on. The two didn't see that Hanabi was waiting for them to leave. She went over to the door and before she went in, she heard Hinata…talking to herself? As for Hinata, she was going to have to deal with another explanation.
"Now I understand what it means to be knocked for a loop." Mach Caliber came back online and began diagnostics and recovery. "Are you ok Hinata?"
"I'm fine. A little rest and I should be good to go. Are any of your systems damaged? " Asked Hinata as she looked at the blue charm for any damage.
"No. This was minor damage to me. It just shook me up." Mach Caliber replied. "I'm sorry that I failed to warn you in time. I should have told you not to use Starlight Breaker yet."
"It's ok. It just means I have a lot more to learn about spells and handling chakra." Hinata started polishing Mach Caliber with a clean cloth beside her bed.
"Do you think you did a good job, even though you lost?"
Hinata paused for a second to really think about that. She may have lost, but after hearing Naruto and her father both congratulate her, she had to have done something right. "You know what…I did do a good job. I went out there, gave it everything I had, and even though I lost, Naruto-kun was still proud that I gave him a good match."
"Then that is all that matters. We'll work together and get stronger."
"We sure will Mach Caliber." Hinata replied with a smile.
As for Hanabi, she kept the door slightly open and saw Hinata talking to herself. "Who is she talking to? There's no one else there?"
"Maybe you should go find out. It's kind of pointless to stay out here, don't you think?" Hanabi turned around and started wondering just what the heck was talking to her.
"Who…what was that?" She immediately activated her Byakugan and started scanning the area. The only person she saw was Hinata. "Look I can see you if you're hiding, so just come out now!"
"Who's hiding? Come on, just go in there! I wanna say hi to my big sister!" The voice whined.
Hanabi started looking around again and was still clueless. "Ok this is really freaky. Who or whatever you are, show yourself now!"
"Ugh, ok you're boring. I'll do this myself!" The voice decided that talking to Hanabi wasn't really working, so it took matters into its own hands. "Big sister! I'm awake!"
Back with Hinata and Mach Caliber…
"Did you say something Mach Caliber?" Hinata thought she heard her Device talking.
"No, I didn't. But it was strange. I thought I heard someone call out for their big sister."
"That's strange, I heard the same thing." Hinata shook off the confusion but then heard the voice again, this time louder. "There it is again. It sounds…like a kid."
"It…is a kid." Mach Caliber sounded like she sighed in grief. "I know who it is."
"Who is…" Hinata barely had time to finish her question when Hanabi ran in the room looking like she saw a ghost. "Hanabi-chan?"
"Hina-chan, something is seriously wrong. I keep hearing this weird voice and no one's there!" Hanabi was seriously shaking in nervousness. "I just came to check on you and this happens."
"Uh ok." Hinata slightly giggled when she saw the purple crystal stone in her sister's hands. She noticed the shape immediately and knew something wasn't right. "Hanabi, where did you get that stone?"
"Oh this? Uh…I found it somewhere digging through mother's old things. I found it and it looked nice, but I didn't tell anyone because they would think I was weak for having it." Hanabi said. Even though she and Hinata had to spar and were strictly trained to be cold and stoic, she had a very good relationship with Hinata. "I wanted to find some time to ask you about it because you have one just like it."
"Ok is this weirdo gonna keep acting like this all day?" Hinata saw the crystal light up. "I've been sleep for who knows how long and I finally find my big sister and now I gotta listen to you act like you're scared?"
"There it is again! Who are you!" Hanabi was starting to become nervous again.
"Hanabi, there's something you need to know…well a lot you need to know." Hinata couldn't believe it. Her sister…had a Device. "And you have to promise me that whatever is said here is only spoken between certain people."
"Uh…ok." Hanabi felt a little sense of calm as she sat beside Hinata.
"Well, it goes like this." Hinata took a deep breath and started the long explanation about everything, except for the conversation with her father. Of course her reaction was NOT what she expected.
"This thing is a WHAT?" Hanabi was seriously doubtful of the fact that she now had in her possession an ancient magical artifact.
"I have a name ya know! It's Blitz Caliber, get it right!" Hanabi's Device, now known as Blitz Caliber replied. "You could at least be nice and call me by my name!"
"Now Blitz, no need to get upset." Mach Caliber tried to calm the other device…which was actually her sister device. "Lady Hanabi meant no harm."
"Lady my processor! I'm trying to be nice and get her to take me to see you and she wants to freak out like she seen a ghost or something." Blitz Caliber complained. "Ginga-chan was never like this."
"Ok Blitz, that was a little harsh. Lady Hanabi is just getting used to all of this. Would you want Lady Ginga to know you were being mean to your new partner?" Mach Caliber questioned just like an older sister would to a little sister.
"No. Sorry Hanabi." It was obvious Blitz Caliber was sulking.
"So tell me again why she's like this?" Hanabi was still trying to process everything but was having a hard time.
"See, after the disbandment of Riot 6, all of the Devices were given upgrades to our AI to make us more humanlike. We were given the emotion program that some Unison Devices have. Mine was set to sync with Subaru's personality. Since she was around 19 at the time, it would make me act like a 19 year old." Mach Caliber explained. "The same would have happened for Blitz as well. Even thought she is younger than me in production, she would have a littler bit older personality because Ginga was older than Subaru. Unfortunately the day the AI programs were updated, hers was updated with the AI of an 11 year old instead of a 21 year old due to a glitch in the system."
"Ok so let me make sure I can get all of this. That blue stone around your neck Hina-chan is actually some ancient magical artifact called a Device. It was used by people known as mages over 10,000 years ago." Hanabi began her explanation. "This device somehow helped you beat Neji-nii-san in the Chuunin Prelims."
"Um…yeah." Hinata said coyly.
"Then you come to find out later that Tenten happens to have one of these things too and you two have been training with them to get better." Hanabi continued. "Then when you faced Naruto, you somehow made things look like you were casting jutsu so no one would question these things. However in your match, you used a…spell, which is like a jutsu I guess, to try and beat Naruto, but it backfired."
"That is correct Lady Hanabi." Mach Caliber this time replied.
"And NOW I come to find out that just like you and Tenten, I can talk to these Devices, and this one who's my partner happens to be the little sister Device to yours? And since I can now use this Device, I'll be able to use the crazy stuff you can use?" Hanabi finished, hoping she got everything right.
"Pretty much Hanabi-chan. You're not worried or unsure of things are you?" asked Hinata, hoping it wouldn't be too much of a shock on Hanabi.
"Are you nuts! This is the coolest thing EVER! And sorry Hina-chan, but my Blitz Caliber is probably way more awesome than your Mach Caliber." Hanabi was definitely excited to hear about what she now had in her hands.
"Ok forget what I said earlier! Hanabi, you and I are gonna kick some serious butt!" Blitz Caliber was just as excited as her new partner was.
"Ok ok, I get that you're excited Hanabi-chan, but you have to be extremely cautious now. You don't know just what Blitz Caliber can do. You'll need to practice and train with her, and you'll have to do it in secrecy. Plus you can only train with Tenten and me. No one else can know about this. You have to promise me Hanabi-chan!" Hinata was dead serious about this. She hated keeping Mach Caliber secret from her father, but now things became more serious.
"No problem! I'll keep this…" Hanabi was being nonchalant before Hinata cut her off. Normally Hinata only did that when things were dead serious.
"I'm dead serious Hanabi-chan. You can't tell anyone the truth! I feel bad enough for lying to father about Mach Caliber. That's why you have to promise." Hinata did something only she and Hanabi had together. She held out hand and drew what looked to be an invisible circle in her palm.
Hanabi saw her do this and it meant just how serious things were. It was a sister-to-sister promise chant that the two did whenever something had to stay between them alone. There were times Hinata had gotten in trouble because she had protected Hanabi due to the promises the two made, and not once did she regret it. Hanabi knew Hinata would die for her, and she would do the same. Hanabi took her palm and drew the same invisible circle and locked her hand with Hinata's ,"This sacred circle has now been opened…
Hinata: Our minds are together, our hearts as one…
Hanabi: The bond of sisters is for all time…
Hinata: A true friend you are in the darkest of hours
Hanabi: Our love for each other is the strongest of powers
Hinata: You're there for me and I'm there for you
Hanabi: This bond we share will see us through
Hinata and Hanabi: We make this promise, to each other be true!
Hinata released Hanabi's hand, knowing the secret was safe. Hanabi would take this secret to the grave if she had to. "Hina-chan, will things be ok? To use the promise chant on that…then something's not right."
Hinata was just as unsure, "Honestly Hanabi-chan, I really don't know. All we can do now is protect our partners because they would do the same for us. Maybe someday we can tell everyone about them, but now isn't the time." She gave Hanabi a quick hug to reassure her. "But there is one good thing about all of this now."
"What is it?" Hanabi wasn't sure of what her sister had planned.
"Now we can really be a sneaky pair of sisters together. It's a lot easier when you can use telepathy." Hinata said in her mind.
"Tele…oh yeah! This is gonna be fun!." Hanabi simply smiled.
"Since were on this topic, Tenten, are you there?" Hinata focused her thought to Tenten who had gotten back to the matches with Naruto.
"Sure thing girl. Something up?" Tenten replied as she watched the match between Shikamaru and Temari.
"Hi Tenten!" Hanabi jumped right in before Hinata could say anything.
"Hanabi? How can you be talking to us like this?" Tenten was definitely confused since Hinata's little sister now could use telepathy. "Wait, she doesn't have a Device does she?"
"She does. It happens to be Mach Caliber's sister Device, Blitz Caliber. She woke up just as you and Naruto left. I told Hanabi everything." Hinata replied.
"Oh well then I know thing's are cool. Hey Hanabi, wait 'till you get to try out your Barrier Jacket. That's when things will get really cool." Tenten said, getting Hanabi more hyped up.
"Hina-chan told me about it! I can't wait to start training!" Hanabi was highly excited about getting to use her Device.
"So how are the matches going?" Hinata figured she should get an idea of what's going on since she was stuck in the infirmary.
"Shikamaru's fighting that Temari girl from the Sand Village. She's really pushing him to the edge. But right now Shikamaru looks like he's gonna win it. He managed to trick her and got her with his Shadow jutsu." Tenten commentated. "Ok he's going in…he's…WHAT!"
"What happened?" Hinata asked.
"That lazy idiot just surrendered! He had the match won, and he quit!" Tenten sighed in disappointment. "What a let down."
"Why'd he quit?" asked Hanabi.
"Um…apparently he said he had the next 200 moves planned in his head…but he just ran out of chakra?" Tenten was surely confused at this. "Temari's just as confused as I am."
"Oh well. Hey, I think I might be able to make it for Shino's match. The pain in my burns isn't as bad. I'm gonna have Hanabi-chan help me to you so I can watch." Hinata said as she slowly got out of bed.
"You sure? Just stay there and rest a bit. No need to push yourself." Tenten hoped Hinata would rest more since she still wasn't fully recovered.
"Yeah, I'll go back up and watch with father. Since I can talk to you this way, I'll also make sure they're not talking about you Hina-chan." Hanabi added. Since she was on the elders good side, she would overhear them talk badly about Hinata, and she hated hearing all the negativity directed at her sister. "But if you need me, just let me know ok?"
"Oh ok. Thank you, both of you." Hinata sighed in defeat and resigned herself to staying in bed to rest. "However I want to know when Naruto-kun is fighting again, because I want to see his match."
"I'll keep you posted Hinata."Tenten said as the three cut off their telepathy. Hanabi took her leave and went back to the stands with the rest of the clan. Her father questioned her, but she simply said she went to check on Hinata. Even he knew that she cared for her sister, but didn't keep it open around the others to preserve the clan image. As for Hinata, she laid back and decided that rest was her new best friend for the time being.
So the 3rd device goes online and it turns out that sisters were reunited after 10,000 years. It also turns out that Hinata's training and performance revealed more secrets about her own clan as well and her own father as well. Looks like her next stop is to get better and train harder! And how will training work now that Hanabi will be learning to use Blitz Caliber?
And now time to introduce another new Device!
Device: Blitz Caliber
Device type: Intelligent Device
Magic Style: Belkan style
Blitz Caliber is the sister device to Mach Caliber and thus is equipped with all of Mach Caliber's basic modes and abilities, and forms. The difference with Blitz Caliber is that her Revolver Knuckle is purple and white instead of blue and black. The Revolver Knuckle is also placed on the left hand instead of the right hand. Her partner is Subaru's older sister, Ginga Nakajima. It's a strange bit of irony as Subaru is younger than Ginga, but Mach Caliber was created before Blitz Caliber.