Naruto Chapter 399
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#399: Where It All Began
[insert text: Senju and Uchiha... that fateful meeting...]
Tobi: The first man ever to call himself Hokage... // Hashirama, leader of the Senju Clan... // A clan acknowledged by all others as superior, / and feared above all else.]
Tobi: Where the Senju moved, so too did the Uchiha. // Mine was the only clan with the power to go up against them. // If one state hired the Senju, their enemy would hire the Uchiha to combat them... we were like true rivals. // As I found myself going up against Hashirama, / my name gained fame and reputation.
Flashback!Itachi: ...To climb ever closer to the top... // ...To measure my own "capacity".
Sasuke: To increase your own fame... for a reason like that... // ...you stole your own brother's eyes?!
Tobi: ...I did... // But I did so because I needed the power to protect the Uchiha clan.
Sasuke: To protect...?
Tobi: The more famous the name of Uchiha became, the more enemies we would make. // In the midst of that furious struggle... / He was a necessary sacrifice, to protect the clan from those outside enemies, the Senju foremost among them. // I did not do it for fame.
Tobi: My brother accepted the plan gladly. // He offered his eyes of his own accord.
Tobi: But one day... // The Senju clan came to the Uchiha proposing a truce. // ...And the Uchiha agreed to that truce.
Tobi: Everybody on both sides was sick and tired of the long, endless days of fighting one another. // We had reached our limits. // But I alone was in opposition to the truce.
Tobi: ...What had happened to the hatred we had shared for so long?! // For what purpose, then, had my brother been sacrificed?! // After all, the Uchiha and the Senju were like oil and water.
Tobi: "Someday, the Uchiha clan would surely meet with ruin at the hands of the Senju." // ...I could not rid myself of that suspicion. // And yet... everyone else in the Uchiha clan were adamant in their desire for a truce. // As their leader, there was nothing for me to do but submit to their wishes. // And it was not long afterwards that our shinobi alliance... / ...entered into an agreement with the Country of Fire, who wanted better control over their territories. // And thus, a firm organisation was formed - one country, one village. // The Country of Fire and the Hidden Village of Konoha.
Tobi: Soon enough, other countries began to copy our one-country-one-village system. // And slowly but surely, the fighting began to die down. // It was a temporary period of peace. // But it was not long before, through a certain incident, / Konoha was once more thrown into chaos.
Sasuke: ...A "certain incident"?
Tobi: A dispute over the position of village leader... over the position of the First Hokage.
Tobi: As I'm sure you well know, the one who obtained that position was Senju Hashirama. / Both the Country of Fire and the residents of the village chose him as leader. // ...It became clear that the Uchiha would slowly but surely slip away from any position of true power over the village. // In order to protect the Uchiha, I decided I would make the Uchiha rule supreme... // I chose to go up against Hashirama... // But even amongst the Uchiha, there were none remaining who would follow me in this. // My own subordinates turned against me for my desire to once more fan the dying flames of conflict. // They betrayed me.
Tobi: They accused me of being spurred on by my own selfish ambitions... // I was spurned as the greedy man who stole his own younger brother's eye in order to protect himself. // As if any elder brother would ever injure his younger brother by choice. // I had only ever wanted to protect the Uchiha... that was my sole desire...! // I left the village... // ...completely and utterly betrayed.
Tobi: .........I chose the path of revenge, and challenged the village of Konoha itself.
Tobi: And then, I was defeated... // At that place, which came to be known as the Valley of the End. // It was there that I died. / ...Or so the story goes. // Even Hashirama himself believed that to be the case. // I was forgotten by them all... forgotten by history. // Hashirama's younger brother, the Second Hokage, wanted to ensure that no rebel would ever again emerge as I had... // ...and so as an act of faith, he granted the Uchiha a special position within the village.
Tobi: It was the formation of the Konoha Military Police. // But in truth, this simply pushed the Uchiha further still from the higher politics of the village... // Besides which, it served as a convenient structure to keep the clan together, as a single entity, under close observation. // There were those among the Uchiha who came to realise this. // And even a rebellion emerged, a group of men who had inherited my will. // But the hour was too late. // Time flowed ever onwards... and the Senju held dominion over the village. // The once-proud Uchiha Clan were reduced to mere dogs of the Senju.
Tobi: And then, it happened, just as I had expected. // In the course of a certain incident, the Uchiha were utterly ruined. // Yes...
Tobi: The Kyuubi attack upon the village, sixteen years ago.
Sasuke: What do you mean by that?
Tobi: The only way to tame the Kyuubi, to control it, was using the Uchiha's doujutsu... // The higher-ups in Konoha... // ...had their suspicions that the incident was the doing of one of the Uchiha, one way or another. // It was nothing of the sort. It was a natural disaster, nothing more or less. / The Uchiha were in no way involved. // But the Uchiha fell under suspicion nonetheless. // The higher-ups worried that the Uchiha were once more rising up, trying to take the position of power for themselves.
Tobi: After that, the ANBU never once took their eyes off the Uchiha. // The Uchiha residence was shifted off into a distant corner of the village... // It was as though the Uchiha were segregated from the rest of Konoha. // Only one man, the Third Hokage, raised objections to this treatment of the Uchiha... / But Danzou of the ANBU, and the elder advisors, would not accept his objections. // After all, they had never once actually trusted the Uchiha clan. // And so the discrimination began. // Their mistrust bred ill feeling... // And their suspicions finally became self-fulfilling...
Tobi: The Uchiha clan plotted to stage a coup d'état. // They planned to take the village for themselves...
Tobi: And the higher-ups in Konoha sent a spy into the midst of the Uchiha. // That spy was your brother... Uchiha Itachi. // And it was there that Itachi's living hell began.
[side text: The events that drew the village into turmoil. Itachi found himself drawn into a deep, dark, terrifying battle...]
[bottom text: A battle between village and clan. What was Itachi's decision?! Next issue, "The Two Hearts"!!]