Maan remained in a coma for a whole night, with White Zetsu guarding him to make sure that no wild animals would approach him.
The next day, after getting news of what had happened, Obito arrived to Maan’s spot.
“Wake him up, White!”
Using a small Water Release Jutsu, White woke Maan up.
The first thing that came to the Uchiha’s mind was the battle between Kakuzu as him. But then, he returned to reality at the sight of White Zetsu, who was now in disguise as an ordinary person, and Obito.
Maan activated his Sharingan and watched the two carefully.
“Maan, you don’t have to give me such a look. I hold no ill will towards you. Otherwise, wouldn’t I have just killed you as you slept?”
Maan thought of Obito’s words, and while he was at it, he asked: “Who are you? Why are you here?”
“I can’t tell you who I am right now. As for what I am here for, I was hired to kill you!”
Immediately, Maan activated his Sharingan again and crawled back. As for Obito, he opened his arms wide and said: “Haha! Did you forget what I just said? If I wanted to kill you, I would have done it in your sleep!”
“A friend of mine often said that always being on guard in indispensable. It’s never wrong to be careful.” Maan said faintly.
“And that friend of yours should be Ryo Yamanaka; right? Well, you might see him as a friend, but you’re just another disposable pawn to him. Otherwise, why wouldn’t he be here to save you from those sent after you? He’s a space-time Ninjutsu user after all!”
“Ryo would not know about this! Impossible! I was assigned to perform this mission by the Uchiha clan. How would he know?” Maan quickly retorted.
“You were assigned to do this mission by the Uchiha indeed, but any mission would have to go through the Hokage. You know how close Ryo and Sakumo are; don’t you?”
Maan was far from convinced: “That doesn’t mean anything! Even if he knew of my mission, how in the world would he know I’m being chased?”
“It’s very simple: the ones to assign us to kill you are the higher-ups of Konoha. While our instructions weren’t exactly clear on who wanted you dead, I’m willing to bet that the one to want you, the traitor of Root, dead, is Danzo himself!”
As he said those last words, Obito’s tone went deliberately low, and it sounded filled with deep hatred.
These fake emotions went through, and Maan asked: “You seem to hate Danzo… Do you?”
Obito pretended to be flustered: “No, no! I just can’t understand the guy, that’s all!”
This reaction made Maan more and more certain: The one before him hated Danzo for some reason, but he was somehow pushed to work with him.
When fighting against Kakuzu, Maan felt that he had grown stronger, much stronger. He even felt that he had a chance at killing Danzo if he wanted. Thinking of this, he now felt completely at ease.
“Hey, tell me more detail, and maybe I’ll give you the satisfaction of revenge on Danzo!”
Obito heard Maan and pretended to shiver, saying excitedly: “Are you serious?”
“Is that so? Then I’ll tell you what I know.” Obito then went on telling Maan a fabrication of his own mind, about him being threatened by Danzo, and being forced to work for him to preserve the life of those he loved…
“I’m not interested in your story: Just tell me why Danzo wants to get rid of me!” Maan frowned.
“Well, Maan san, the one who chased you yesterday actually works with me. We’re both working for Danzo. We don’t know the reason why we were sent, but we were told of your level, and we thought he could take you down on his own. However, when seeing you in battle, we were both surprised, and I asked him to retreat and leave the matter to me after he was injured.
What happened in fact was that my friend here and I guarded you all night. I honestly… I honestly thought that you could help us take revenge on Danzo, and give us back our freedom!”
“Besides you three, are there any others?”
“No! Danzo is now restricted by the 3rd and Ryo Yamanaka. Any action he could take would have to go through us, outsiders. Otherwise, this wouldn’t be up to us.”
Maan nodded, as Obito’s story was sounding more and more believable. The more he spoke, the more things he said coincided with what Maan knew was the truth.
“One last question: Are you sure that Ryo knows I am in danger?”
“I am sure. Ryo had visited Danzo, talking to him and Homura about something that I don’t know. After that, Homura sent for us, and the one to deliver the message told us about this visit, and also said that we don’t have to worry about someone coming to rescue you!”
Hearing this, Maan’s face turned blue, and hatred towards Danzo, Ryo, and the entirety of Konoha, filled his heart once more.
The hatred this time was so intense, his Mangekyo was activated on its own, and rotating frantically as his second Mangekyo ability was also awakened.
“Maan san, I’ve told you of what I know, and you’ve promised…”
“Don’t worry. I’ll kill Danzo!” As he finished those words, Maan turned around and left.
After confirming that Maan was gone, White Zetsu left his transformation and said to Obito: “Well played Obito! With just a few words, you’ve turned Maan against Ryo, and even activated his second Mangekyo ability.”
Obito was rather surprised: “Oh, just by those words, he’s that much stronger now?”
Zetsu nodded: “Yes! I could clearly perceive it!”
“Haha! This is really good news. This time, Konoha is truly in deep trouble!” Obito laughed out loud.
“Do you mean that Maan would now and try to find Danzo to kill him?”
“He’s a fool, but not that stupid. He wouldn’t be so impulsive. This booby trap of mine will only explode when I detonate it myself!”
On the other side, in the Hokage’s office, Ryo was having a different headache.
Facing him was Yamato, who was looking at him very carefully. Too many years had passed, but in his memories, Ryo’s and Orochimaru’s faces were still clear.
“Sakumo san, why call me here? I’m no wood release user; I cannot teach him anything of value!”
“Oh you can’t? You could teach Lain! As far as I know, she even mastered the Wood Human Jutsu by now!”
Ryo could not argue here. He knew from the Manga that Yamato’s Wood Release shouldn’t get as good, as after all, what he produced is just that, dead wood, with no signs of vitality. And on top of that, his stamina didn’t compare to that of Lain, let alone Hashirama.
However, he couldn’t say that to Sakumo. And in any case, Yamato’s situation is the result of his and Orochimaru’s experiment, and he was indeed morally obligated to teach the kid.
‘Well, I guess it’s something I could do to kill time!’ Ryo nodded, and agreed to Sakumo’s request.
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