1174: Sasuke’s Shadow – One Shot

Title: Sasuke’s Shadow
Author: XellGadis
Media: Anime/Manga
Topic: Naruto
Genre: None Listed
URL:  Sasuke’s Shadow
Critiqued by Lyle

Hello, everyone!  I’m sorry about having been gone last week.  TacoDad and Lyle Sr were in town to help me work on important stuffs.  Between that and a 60-hour work week, it was all I could do to get my lovely guests’ riffs scheduled, let alone find a new fic of my own to riff.  Many thanks to SC for covering for me.  *tosses him cookies*

Today I have a one-shot for you guys from the Naruto section of fanfiction.net.  It’s not terribly long so gather ’round and let’s get started!  With me again is Koori, our resident Naruto expert and shark-handler.

Koori: *waves*

Let’s start off with the summary that grabbed my attention and set off the alarm bells of sucktitude:

A look through the eyes of Kaori, a ninja whose talents were great, and her test to become a gennin

Koori: While I am not pleased that her name is so similar to mine, it is a valid Japanese name that, essentially, means “perfume.”

I had a self-defense student in college named “Kaori.”  She was the sweetest young lady.  She gave me a really neat Geisha postcard when the term ended as a thank-you for having her in my class.

Anyway, that aside, let’s talk about the summary.  Right off the bat we have an OC with “great” talent.

Koori: A sure-fire sign of a Mary Sue if I’ve ever seen one.

Indeed.  We also have a misspelling of genin.

Koori: This bodes well.

*glances at the text and pales*  Oh my.  I don’t know if maybe this fic is so old that the formatting has changed, or the author didn’t realize that ff.net doesn’t allow indentation in fics.  It’s one giant block of left aligned sentences with no double-carriage between each paragraph.  Let’s break this up.

*hefts the sledgehammer*

“YOU IDIOTS!” Kaori screamed out in disgust. She looked at her other two team members. Mutsumi, one of the lower members in the class, and Kuraku, an intelligent, but lazy person.

Right off the bat and I already dislike this OC.

Koori: I love how this author has really set this scene up so we know the context for which this character is upset at her squad-mates.

I love what this author has done with [location] as well.

“You heard what Akito-sensei said. Only the top three teams actually become gennin!  Everybody else has to be sent back to the academy.” She glared at her two companions. Tired from a day of training, she went to her room. Resting on her bed, she looked at the callendar. There was less than two days to pass the test. Kaori knew that if she wanted to succeed, Mutsumi and Kuraku had to succeed as well. That was the hard part.

Whoa there, Kookaburra.

Koori: That’s a lot of fail in a single paragraph.  *takes the sledgehammer from Lyle and smacks at it*

“You heard what Akito-sensei said. Only the top three teams actually become gennin!  Everybody else has to be sent back to the academy.” She glared at her two companions.

Correct me if I’m wrong, Koori, but that’s not how that works.  Right?

Koori: Yeah.  The author has missed the mark.  Oooh!  Can I make a list?

*smiles and hands her the chalk*

Koori:  This is a pretty clear-cut case of “Author watched the first few episodes/read the first couple manga and decided to write a fic.”  Either that, or she had a complete lack of understanding on how things actually worked in the canon.

1.) Having the top nine students deemed worthy to be genin is not a standard practice.  At. All.   It just so happened that Naruto’s graduating class was an exceptionally talented group of pre-genin, spawning the incredibly versatile “Rookie Nine.”  Sometimes more may graduate from the academy.  Sometimes less.  It depends.

2.) Once you graduate from the academy you are a genin.  You have your hatai-ate at that point; you are.a.ninja.  However, your jonin instructor can deem you unworthy and demote you back to academy level.  Father was notorious for failing new genin until Naruto, Sasuke, and Sakura came along and passed his test.

3.)  You’re still spelling genin wrong, you twat.

Tired from a day of training, she went to her room. Resting on her bed, she looked at the callendar. There was less than two days to pass the test. Kaori knew that if she wanted to succeed, Mutsumi and Kuraku had to succeed as well. That was the hard part.

Okay, so they were training when she got mad at her teammates.  Why?  What did they do to cause such an explosion from Kaori?  She has no faith in her fellow genin, which shows me only that her ego is the biggest part of her personality.

Koori: I can’t actually fault her if this is her personality.  Even though she might be twelve years old, she could very well just be an asshole.

True, but that doesn’t make me actually like her or want to read about her.

*smacks the next paragraph in half*

“Well at least I didn’t get teamed up with Naruto. Sasuke got to deal with him” she thought. Straightening Kuraku should be easy enough, but Mutsumi was a complete idiot. Well more of an incomplete one.

You know, I’m getting a very distinct impression that this Kaori girl is a female version of Sasuke.  They’re both arrogant as fuck and believe their biggest downfall is not their own lack of humility but the failings of those around them.

Koori: Would an incomplete idiot mean he’s not actually an idiot?  Or, at least, he’s not as stupid as she thinks he is?  Or she doesn’t think he’s as stupid as she thinks he is?

You’re making my head hurt.

She thought hard and she eventually worried herself to sleep. The next morning, Kaori met at training ground 9 with her Mutsumi and Kuraku. Right on time, Akito-sensei appeared with his first task.

With her Mutsumi and Kuraku?

Koori: So not only is she an asshole, but she’s a possessive asshole.  Good combination.

I’d like to take a moment to point out that none of these characters are canon, in case anyone was wondering.  Which makes it even more difficult to picture what they look like since we’ve been given absolutely nothing to go by.

“If you wish to become gennin, you have 3 hours to obtain this scroll. Whomever does that will become a gennin.” Akito-sensei said.

Wait, what?

Koori: Did this author just clone Father and his testing method?

It would appear so.

Koori: Does this author not realize that this testing is specific to Father?  He got it from Naruto’s father, who got it from Jiraiya, who got it from the Sandaime.  The other jonin instructors don’t do this.

“But there’s only one scroll” Kaori said. “Does that mean only one person can pass?”

Replace the scroll with two bells and we have Kakashi’s testing method.  How unoriginal.

*glances at the next section*

Holy mother of buffaloes.

Koori: Incoming wall-o-text!  *grabs the sledgehammer*

“Well I guess that’s so” Akito smiled. “One scroll means one passer.” As soon as Kaori heard that, she knew it had to be her. Mutsumi and Kuraku weren’t good enough to obtain the scroll.

You would think that Iruka would have mentioned to his students, at some point, that they would be trained as genin in a 3-man cell.  It always surprised me that so few of the genin seemed to realize that it’s a sort of “all for one and one for all” system.

Koori: Don’t forget, though, that when a genin is lost from the cell, either through death, reassignment, defection, or some other means, another genin lacking a cell is moved into that group.  Sai, remember?

Oooooh, that’s right.  I guess having a genin demoted separately from the group makes sense in certain circumstances.

As soon as Akito started the clock, Kaori made a dash to hide herself in the trees. Mutsumi and Kuraku did the same. Akito had the scroll attached to his belt. As Kaori eyed her victim, she quietly slid out her kunai from her bag and stealthy made her way towards the Jounin.

Koori: Why is it so hard for people to spell these things correctly?!  I spent less than three minutes figuring out how to “Google” when I first came here.  It isn’t that hard!  JONIN.  It isn’t rocket surgery!  Yes, there’s actually a flat-line mark above the “o” to indicate a long “ou” sound, but spelling it “jounin” is less correct than omitting the accent mark!

Do we need tea?

Koori:  *pulls a scroll from a front, breast pocket of her flak jacket and rolls it across the desk.*  Release!  *plants her hands on the scroll and a teapot with two cups appears in a poof of smoke*

Ah, ninja are so handy!  *pours them tea*

While she was creeping through the forest, Kuraku had decided to make a swift attack at Akito.

Is Kuraku female?

Koori: *shrugs*  All we’ve been told is that Kuraku is a lazy person.  Mutsumi has been given less description than that.  Nothing has been described.

We don’t even know what our protagonist looks like, come to think of it.

Koori: Might I suggest this?


I like it.

Kaori watched his attempt, and with some quick thinking, she decided it would be best to attack Akito from the back while Kuraku was doing a more direct assualt.

Oh, so Kuraku is a boy.

Kuraku sprung out of the trees and the Jounin had quickly sidestepped to avoid the attack.

Koori: Jonin.is.not.capitalized.

Drink your tea, dear.

Koori:  *sips*

With his back turned to her, Kaori made a quick dash to cut the string which held the scroll to his belt. Unfortunately, Kuraku hadn’t noticed his partner’s movement and attacked Akito from the side which had him dodging both attacks. Kaori glared at her ‘unworthy’ partner. “You idiot! I was about to get the scroll if you hadn’t made that last attack!”

What a little douchenozzle.

Koori:  Why is unworthy in quotations marks?  Is she second guessing if her partner is unworthy?  Does she really think he’s not unworthy?  This is so contradictory.

I think the author has no idea how quotation marks work.  This makes “unworthy” look sarcastic.  That’s one odd backhanded compliment.

Hey, we’re halfway through the paragraph!  Let’s continue.

“And how were you to know that Akito-sensei didn’t know you were there? He could have made that move to dodge YOUR attack!” And so the two began quarreling for several minutes while the Jounin Akito had sat in the treetops watching them argue. Well after they vented their anger at eachother, they decided to restart and make their own attempts at the scroll and not interfering with eachother.

Wasn’t that the idea they had in the first place?  If they actually wanted to work together, which was the goal of this exercise, they would have done so in the first place.

Koori:  These guys are so stupid, but that’s to be expected.  This author is blatantly ripping off the test Naruto, Sasuke, and Sakura endured with my father.  They were pretty stupid until about lunch-time when Father lectured them about the point of the exercise.

The first had to find Mutsumi and inform him of their plans. Mutsumi was hiding in one of the trees, and when he heard his companions calling for him, he jumped down from it. After being informed of the plan, he agreed not to interfere with Kaori’s or Kuraku’s plans. He knew they were smarter and swifter than he was, and he didn’t want to interfere with their actions.

Koori:  *glances at the DRD alarm*  Uhm…

I have a cease-fire with them right now.

Koori:  How did you manage that?

Cupcakes.  Lots and lots of cupcakes.

Koori:  So why is Mutsumi just giving up so easily?  It seems like he’s having a little pity-party in the tree.  Self-doubt is a horrible trait for a ninja.  How did he graduate from the academy?

If he did, he would get an earful as he did from Iruka-sensei at the academy. For the next 2 hours, each had made their own individual attacks at him each of which had failed. Defeated, the three returned at the starting point of the test. Akito-sensei was already there waiting, with his watch.

That’s the end of the wall-o-text!

Koori: How anti-climatic.  “We ran around for two hours and failed.  Boo.”

Not even the action is being described.  I think we might have a contender for next year’s Sucktastic Award for Least Amount of Description.

“Well time’s up. Guess you all fail.”

You guess?  You’re the instructor!  Commit to your decision, assface!

Koori:  Drink your tea, dear.


“Well even if we HAD obtained the scroll, only one of us would be able to pass.” Kaori protested.

“Actually, no. If you had obtained the scroll on your own, I would be quite impressed. If all three of you had worked together, you would have been able to get it.

Koori:  This plot-regurgitate-y stolen scene is really getting on my nerves-

♪♫Everybody was KUNG-FU FIGHTING!♫♪

The hell is that?

Koori:  *pulls her cellphone out*  That would be Father.  *presses a button on the front*  Hello?  Yes.  Yes it is.  Yeah.  No.  No, I don’t think this is a real ninja-  Yes.  Okay.  Akito.  No, I don’t know his last name.  No, I don’t know what he looks like, either.  Ask Papa; he knows everyone in town.  Uh-huh.  Yeah.  Love you, too.  Bye.  *presses a button to end the call*

*raises an eyebrow*

Koori:  Father is upset that someone is stealing his training methods.  He’s going to track down Akito and have some strong words with him.

I see.

“But still, it would be hard with THEM working with me.” Kaori complained as she glared at her two partners. “Its like they’re holding me back!”

Whine, whine, pout, bitch, whine.  God, I hate this character.

“We aren’t!” Kuraku declared. “I work at my own pace. Just because I’m not you doesn’t mean you’re better than I am!” Mutsumi nodded in agreement.

Koori:  Someone with sense!  Kuraku is my favorite character.


“Thats part of the test. You’re going to have to put aside your differences or use them to your advantages. You also have to trust eachother enough with your lives incase problems arose. You weren’t able to do any of that so I think you need some extra training. You’re techniques were pretty good, but you need more agility. You move too slow.”
“So the test?” all three asked in unision.

“Failed” Akito-sensei said. Defeated, Kaori went to her room.

Koori:  Is it bad that I feel we should high-five over Kaori’s failure?

Not at all.

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“I wonder how Sasuke did on his test.” she thought to herself. After eating dinner, she went over to the academy where the results were posted.

Koori:  That is not a thing.

“I’ve always been in his shadow. Everybody acknowledged his talent, but they would always compare him to me. I was always the lesser one.”

Koori:  I’ve never heard of you.

She’s pretty self-centered, isn’t she?

Looking at the list, she was shocked. Sasuke, Sakura, and Naruto had passed their test. “I guess I’ll forever be in is shadow” she thought to herself.

Oh, the wangst.

Kuraku and Mutsumi were there too. Kuraku put his hand on her shoulder and assured her. “Next year we WILL pass.” he said with a smile. “At least we know what we need to improve. I also don’t like the idea of Naruto advancing faster than I do. We’ll catch up eventually.”

Koori:  I wouldn’t be so nice to her after the way she’s treated you, Kuraku.  You are no longer my favorite character.

“I hope so…” Kaori said with a faint smile. With a small light of hope within herself, she went to her room and silently went to sleep, awating the day when she can achieve a greater status within the clan.

Koori:  *snorts in disgust*  This is not how it works.  This author has no concept of this canon at all.

At least it’s over now.  *pours more tea*

Koori:  I feel like I’ve lost an hour of my life I will never get back.

Have some more tea then go train Bartolomé.  That always makes you feel better.

See you all next week!


26 Comments on “1174: Sasuke’s Shadow – One Shot”

  1. agigabyte says:

    I had a self-defense student

    Goddess: You taught self-defense?

    • "Lyle" says:

      Yes. Back in college I ran the PE-Department’s karate and self-defense classes. University students could take a 2 day a week 1-credit course and learn karate and self defense through my karate system. I’m actually starting up a club where I live now, with the support of my superiors.

  2. Delta XIII says:


    *Delta crawls out of pile, looking bloodied, battered, and bruised*
    …seriously, who the hell was in charge of my room assignment?

  3. SC says:

    Many thanks to SC for covering for me. *tosses him cookies*

    Whoo! Cookies!



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