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Reading The Reluctant Hokage

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Uchiha Itachi, the Godaime Hokage, reluctantly opened his eyes one he had woke up, expecting to have, one again, fallen asleep next to a mountain of paperwork, but was surprised, and wary, when he saw himself in an unfamiliar room with his parents (ex-parents, a voice in his head taunted), beloved otouto and his best friend/cousin.

"Hello, my name is Hagoromo Ōtsutsuki," a voice said once everyone had woken, Itachi looked around warily for the owner, but could find none. "I am not physically here, so you will not see my physical form." He explained. "I have brought you here to read something that will help your understanding of certain events and hopefully better Konoha. With you, in this order, is , Uchiha Sasuke, Uchiha Mikoto, Uchiha Fugaku, Uchiha Shisui and finally Uchiha Itachi." Hagoromo explained. "The thing I want you to read should appear in Itachi's hands in 3,2,1..." Itachi could suddenly feel a piece of paper in his hands. "This will help, I hope you enjoy." The voice faded.

"I suggest we do what the creepy voice says," Fugaku suggested after a moment.

"He did say it may help," agreed Shisui, all of them agreeing.

"Read," ordered Fugaku coldly at his son- hokage. Itachi suppressed a flinch and read the paper in his hands.

He knows he is too old to be Hokage,

"This may be from the Sandaime's point of view," Shisui commented. 

but after losing Minato, there's no one else.

"Definitely," he confirmed.

He reclaims the office because Danzo is the alternative.

Both Itachi and Shisui shudder at the thought.

While he understands Danzo better than he'd like to admit, he can't trust his former rival with the future of the village.

"Imagine if that happened," Shisui shuddered. The others where curious about why he was against Danzo.

It all comes to a head when young Itachi reports upon his family's plans to revolt.

Itachi straighten at that line, the Uchiha couple stiffen, the Sasuke look confused, and Shusui looked at Itachi in concern.

"Revolt?" Asked Sasuke.

"A few years ago the Uchiha were planing a coup," Fugaku replied. "Then Itachi was named the Hokage's apprentice and we scrapped the idea." He explained, eyes on his ex-son. "You told the Hokage?" He demanded.

"Yes," Itachi responded emotionlessly. His ex-parents and otouto glared at him. Itachi continued reading.

The child – and Sandaime can only see him as a child, despite his accomplishments –

Itachi suppressed an eye roll.

delivers his reports to the council in a monotone voice, but Sandaime can see the boy's heart is breaking. He's made the decision to protect his village over his family, but it's costing him everything.

Itachi take a moment of silence, remembering all to well when he had delivered that report.

The council debates over what to do. Homura and Koharu side with Danzo, and go so far as to draft a plan for the extermination of the clan.

Most of the rooms eyes widened. 

"They were going to kill them?" Asked Sasuke, aghast.

"Yes," Itachi responded emotionlessly. Fugaku and Mikoto glared at their ex-son.

Sandaime stares in horror at the prepared scroll, which only needs his signature to become an order.

Shisui remembered how bad Itachi was back then.

He begs one night to think it over, and the other three reluctantly agree. He spends the night awake, staring at the pictures of the others who have held his office. He wonders how he failed so badly to come to this. The village is the most important thing in his life, more important than the life of any one man, but somehow he's lost an entire clan to ambition.

The Uchiha couple were surprised how much this was effecting the man.

He summons Itachi early the next morning, knowing that he must be decisive. The council watches with grim faces as Itachi kneels before them, his eyes glossy with unshed tears as he begs to be allowed to spare his brother.

Sasuke's eyes widened, staring at his aniki.

He will destroy his clan and the threat they pose, but he cannot raise his hand against the person he loves most in the world.

Sasuke smiled slightly, hatred of his aniki easing up a bit.

It breaks Sandaime's heart, who can only promise that Sasuke will be protected.

Both Itachi remembered the relief they felt.

Itachi thanks him softly, and Sandaime feels tears start to form in his own eyes. This mission will destroy not only a clan, but this promising child who loves Konoha as much as Sandaime does.

Itachi sighed, it would have broke him but he could deal with it, most likely.

As he holds out the scroll to the Itachi, he suddenly realizes there is another path. The council watches in horror as he throws it away, and announces that he will train Uchiha Itachi as his successor. The boy has proven himself loyal, and his family should be appeased that one of their own is to become the village's next leader.

Mikoto and Fugaku were both shocked that their ex-son had become Hokage to stop them from being killed. 

It's not a perfect solution, but it is the only compromise Sandaime can reach to keep Konoha from being torn apart from within. He will believe in Uchiha Itachi, in a thirteen-year-old boy who loves his village more than his own life. The boy has the heart of a Hokage, and Sandaime knows Itachi contains enough of the Will of Fire to stand against any threat to the village – even if the threat is his own family.

Itachi smiled slightly at the praise.

"You only became Hokage to not kill us?" Mikoto asked unsurely.

"Yes, I hate being Hokage," Itachi responded, not looking at his ex-mother.

Mikoto was shocked at how far from the truth she was, she knew Fugaku was too, but they would try and reconile with their son, they just hoped he would except their apologies.