Clearly, the time travel jutsu had gone wrong, was the first thing Sakura thought when she woke up with paws.
“Oh, by the shodaime’s balls, where is the damn Tora!” her ears picks up a young boy’s voice moaning. She peers over her branch, her tail swishing side to side as she takes in the orange goggles on the black haired boy.
There’s a prickle of chakra just behind her and her body instinctively jumps off, onto the boy and across the field. Oh, Sakura knows that chakra signature. She knows that chakra signature far too well.
She looks back, seeing the bob of silver hair streaking after her, the black mask over his young face.
Those few seconds buys the silver-haired boy time to scoop her up and into the wrap.
Oh kami, it is Kakashi.
And she’s a cat. Why is she a cat?
“Kakashi, why is Tora following you around?” Obito asks Kakashi when his team appears on his doorstep the next day.
Sakura had curled around Kakashi’s neck and refused to move since he woke up with her. Short of killing her, or using some complicated jutsu that would injure the daimiyo’s wife’s cat, nothing else Kakashi did would remove her from his neck.
“I don’t know. Aren’t you Uchihas supposed to be able to speak cat?”
Sakura watches Obito give Kakashi a look of disbelief. “Maybe the clan head… but certainly not me.”
“Hey! What did you just call me!?”
The brown haired girl slides between them with an awkward smile. “Mah, mah. You know Kakashi didn’t mean it that way…”
“Pakkun- tell the cat to get off me,” Kakashi, finally giving up on prying her from him, tells his summon.
The little pug, smaller than she ever remembered Pakkun to be, eyes her and Sakura gives her cat smile. “I have to be with him if I’m to finish the mission Kakashi had given me.”
“… Boss, she says you gave her a mission and she has to be with you to finish it before she can go.”
“… … … what?”
Sakura learns that being Tora is ridiculously fun. She trolls several genin teams after learning how to use her chakra with her impeccable chakra control by walking on the water.
No one believes Kakashi for one shodaime damned minute that Sakura (or Tora in this case) isn’t his summon, but even when the rest of the genin graduates believe that (and their jounin sensei’s) the daimiyo’s wife still thinks Sakura is her fluffy, putty, honey poo poo cat.
Sakura lets herself be dragged back ‘home’ once in a while, eating some fancy salmon then making it off in time to knead her claws into Kakashi’s stomach and waking him up at three in the morning.
This is for all the hours you made me wait! She thinks as she digs her itty-bitty claws into his skin.
“Damnit! Tora!” Kakashi groans. By now, he’s used to her and he just pulls her in and wraps her in his blanket so that she wouldn’t be able to use his claws on her.
But of course, Sakura doesn’t forget her mission. How could she? She might almost a decade earlier than her planned landing and she might be in a cat form, except she doesn’t actually forget her skills. She’s probably still the second best medic-nin (and only cat-nin?) in the world.
“Kakashi-kun, I don’t think you should be bringing Tora to the frontlines…” Rin says when he appears at their meeting point six minutes later than usual.
“Yea yea! Minato-sensei said that if Tora dies we are DOOMED!” Obito chirps.
“… She won’t come off,” Kakashi says in defeat.
She digs into Kakashi’s shoulders as Rin tries to pry her off and Minato looks at them amused.
“It appears that Tora is a ninken,” Minato says as he covers his mouth, chuckling.
“I didn’t sign any contract with her!”
“Maybe you forgot,” Obito snickers and Kakashi shoots him a glare.
“Not ninken like Pakkun but ninken like Inuzukas. Isn’t that right Tora?” Minato runs a hand down her back and it feels so good.
“Sakura,” Sakura tells him, her words casting a silence in the clearing.
“She spoke!” The three kids gasp.
Their missions go as well as her Team Seven’s missions did. In other words, fantastically horrible. A C-rank supply run ends up them being stranded in the middle of some no-man land. A C-rank missive run ends up somehow teleporting them into the middle of an Iwa bathing house. Sakura would very much like to return those memories of wrinkly old men sitting in a sauna.
Then Kakashi becomes jounin, they go the Kanabi bridge mission which goes as well as all their others do, and Obito gets caught under the rocks.
Kakashi tries pushing the rocks off first then digging in to scoop him out. It doesn’t work. The rocks require superhuman strength and the ground is too wet for them to dig him out without collapsing the rest of the rocks.
Sakura takes a moment to calculate which rocks to move first but before she can even begin to move them, Rin has transplanted Obito’s eye and Kakashi has whisked her away, leaving the cave to collapse on itself.
She shakes herself out of Kakashi’s grip, landing on her paws, tail flicking in the air.
“Well that was unnecessary,” Sakura says.
“What? What are you talking about?”
She sighs and bumps her head against his leg. “Guard Rin. I’ll fetch Obito.”
Before Kakashi can say anything further, she leaps, paw outstretched and filled with chakra. The rock disintegrates with a single paw strike.
“What is WITH THAT CAT?” she hears one of the enemy-nins exclaiming.
It takes her twenty minutes before she manages to drag one limp Obito out of that rockslide. By that time, Kakashi has dealt with the enemies and Minato has arrived.
“Well, at least we can bring his body back,” Minato says gently to his two students.
“Don’t be silly,” Sakura levels him a look. Yes Obito is pretty mangled but she fought in the fourth shinobi war healing far worse injuries than this. She raises a green lit paw and begins mending his injuries.
“And you didn’t do this earlier during that sauna mission because…”
“I was trying to bleach my memories of wrinkly old men.”
And of course, no one else is more surprised to be still living (with all his limbs!) than Obito himself.