This article, The Last Konoha Ninja, is property of Raien.

A tale from Naruto Tachiagari....

 Ten years ago the Fourth Great Shinobi War was waged by former Uchiha Clan leader: Madara. The Five Great Shinobi Countries combated Madara and the six remaining Tailed Beast with all their might and they survived to the end. However like the past Great Ninja Wars, the economy was so devastated in each of the participating nations that the villages fell. The war had also taken its toll on the other shinobi nations who also helped fight causing them to be wiped off the face of the earth as well. All the ninja from the villages fled, those with a clan went back to being mercenaries while those who were not fought for survival, taking whatever small jobs they could find.    

It was early in the morning within the Fire Country…or at least that was what the land that Kawahiro Ryota walked on used to be. Ryota was a former Konoha ninja and was one of the few that managed to survive the destruction of the ninja villages. The white-haired shinobi was currently staying within a inn located in a small village, one of the last remaining civilizations in the once proud Fire Country.  

“Huh.” Ryota groaned, opening the palm of his hand. He made a small fireball in the palm of his hand and closed his hand on it. His mastery over the fire element had prevented him from feeling the pain of burns from so long…or maybe it was a bloodline? He never knew for sure. The white-haired ninja stood up and left the inn, checking out and went over to the mayor of the village’s home to see if he had any jobs for him to do.  

Ryota had found refuge in the village doing work for the citizens ever since the destruction of Konohagakure. Doing small jobs, simple Genin work didn’t fancy Ryota much at all. The former Konoha Jounin left the mayor’s house shortly after arrival, today he would end up tilting the fields outside the village…the fields that were left anywhere. The former Konoha shinobi went to work quickly; tilting the fields with the pitchfork he was given. As Ryota continued to work flashbacks of Konoha began to flow through his mind.     

In a ruined Konohagakure no sato a crowd of ninja and citizens alike headed out of the once proud village with all of their belongings.  Right after the village council announced the village would no longer stand all of the citizens had been advised to find new homes at once. There was no leader of Konohagakure, he had been killed during the Fourth Great Shinobi War and the economic situation left the village in shambles.     

Ryota stood outside the gates of Konoha knowing that he would not be able to bare with the fact that he would not have his family with him. His father and mother had been smashed trying to flee from Madara and his Tailed Beast when they engaged an attack on the village and his brother died in a fight with one of the chakra monsters. Ryota was the only one from his family to survive. The lone Phoenix of Konoha stripped himself of his headband and dropped it in a puddle of water, letting out a sigh as he walked away from the village.    

Ryota shook the thoughts out of his head and continued on with his work which lasted to sundown. After Ryota was done he returned to the mayor’s office and received his pay, a measly seventy-five ryo…unfortunately it was all the village could afford to pay him. Ryota then decided that that night he would pack up and flee the village as they were no longer able to pay him for his work.    

He left the village around midnight and fled into the treetops. As he found himself journeying across the torn up Fire Country he let out a sigh. It had been ten years now since the village fell and he still hadn’t gotten over it. As he continued on his journey, hoping to find another settlement in which he could work for he took a rest in the mountains. He stood at the peak of the mountains and looked out at the grasslands that once made up the Fire Country…they were no longer the grasslands that they were but nasty, filthy, barren wastelands with toxic pools of beast chakra strung across them. 

Ryota shut his eyes and began to cry once more. Ryota could not believe that everything he had worked for had gone to complete waste. As Ryota sat lonely in the cold night he heard a noise in draw near him. He quickly pulled a kunai out of his pouch and leaped to his feet, a shuriken blade had been thrown to the ground, missing his feet by inches.  

“Whose there!” Ryota shouted; from the tree tops a lone attacker came leaping out. Strangely the ninja had something that Ryota recognized: A Konoha headband tied around his right arm. The headband was different than a regular Konoha headband; there was a slash across the plate of the band which showed the Konoha symbol: a leaf. It wasn’t uncommon for shinobi with former village affiliation to slash the headbands they still wore to show that they were no longer affiliated with that village.   Ryota’s attacker leapt at him with full speed swiping at him with a kunai knife. Ryota dropped the knife he held and formed a fire ball and threw it at the enemy from Konoha. The fireball collided with the attacker, burning their right arm.   

“Ah!” The opposing shinobi yelled in pain, dropping their weapon and clenching their arm. Ryota approached his assailant preparing to attack again but suddenly ceased his attack.  

“Are you…are you from Konoha?” Ryota asked his attacker who without giving him a proper answer raised to his feet. Ryota now had a clear look at his assailant, he was a man who looked to be almost twice his age with a shaved head and a pointy brown beard…a strange appearance for someone from Konoha.     

“What it’s to you huh?” His assailant asked Ryota in response performing quick hand signs with his uninjured hand. Ryota responded recognizing the hand signs he was performing and knew he had to counter.     
He’s getting ready to perform an earth-style technique! Ryota thought and he quickly made his own fire-style technique. “Fire Style: Explosive Bombs!” Ryota shouted after performing some hand signs. He then spat three small fireballs from his mouth ride around his enemy and within a few seconds they exploded in flames. The body of his enemy appeared to be burned into the flames but Ryota had a feeling…it was too easy. He quickly turned around just as a kunai blade was about to strike him, he parried to the left dodging the attack.    

“Your very quick and your fire skills are very devastating…would you by any chance be the Phoenix of Konoha?” asked the enemy Konoha ninja as he continued to perform hand signs.   “Earth Release: Rock Pillars Rising!” The enemy Konoha ninja yelled. Instinct quickly told Ryota to jump up in the air as four rock pillars came sprouting up from under him.    

“That was a close one.” Ryota muttered to himself performing hand signs while he was airborne. “Fire Style: Grand Lion of Flames!” Ryota then yelled. After forming fire chakra within his jaws he then began to spew an enormous amount of flames from his mouth which then began to take the form of a large lion. The lion was then sent hurtling down towards the enemy Konoha ninja, practically burning him alive.   After the flames faded, Ryota finally landed on the ground, huffing and puffing hard. Around the other Konoha ninja was a dome of earth. However the earth dome caved in and the ninja was severely injured. Ryota, knowing he had won the battle walked over to his fallen foe. At one point they were comrades and they were both fighting to survive.   

“So…I have bested you in battle, now you have to give me the answer I desire.” Ryota said. The dying ninja looked at Ryota. Half of his face was covered with third degree burns, a terrible sight. 

“Ye-yes.” Ryota’s dying comrade replied, spurting out blood from his burnt mouth. 

“Do you know of the location of any other Konoha ninja?” Ryota questioned the dying shinobi. The ninja looked at Ryota and smiled right before he shut his eyes.  

“Silly…boy…you haven’t figured it out yet…I hunted…the rest of our remaining comrades a long time ago.” The Konoha ninja muttered…right before he died. Ryota’s eyes widened in shock, the ninja he had just killed had murdered all of the other surviving ninja from Konoha? Ryota left the dead body of his attacker lying in the dirt.     
Now Ryota knew he must rebuild Konoha back to its past splendor.

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