The girl is from the future. The future of a different dimension, she is quick to clarify, before going into a somewhat rambling and convoluted explanation of paradoxes and time travel.
Kushina, for all that she graduated from the Academy dead last, seems to pick it up immediately nodding along and asking questions about fuinjutsu techniques and something called causal stability conditions and relativistic spacetime. Hizashi doesn’t understand anymore than Mikoto, thankfully, but he appears to be content to just accept it as fact.
“She isn’t ROOT,” he dismisses with an affable shrug–a statement they had already confirmed by seeing the pile of corpses the girl had left behind, “And she looks… familiar enough that I’m certain she is also telling the truth.”
Mikoto frowns, “Just because she’s telling the truth doesn’t mean we can automatically trust her. ROOT soldiers is one thing, killing Danzo is another.”
Hizashi raises an eyebrow at her, “We don’t exactly have the luxury to turn away allies, even if she might not be as skilled as she claims.”
Mikoto bites back a surly response, surely no one could be as skilled as the girl claims, settling instead for a suspicious stare. Precaution as much as indulging her paranoia–the stare from an Uchiha is equivalent to an unsheathed blade from anyone else.
But she ends up not needing it, at least for the following days they travel with the girl, headed toward Land of Rain. The girl–Shikabane, she introduces herself with a resigned sigh–tells them what she knows of the organization called Akatsuki the current ruling force of the Land of Rain and how they, too, had a grudge against Danzo. How they, at least in the dimension she came from, welcomed missing nin–especially those formerly from Konoha. How they were led by an Uzumaki.
But she cautions them about their awful deeds. Their worrying ambition. “They went after the jinchuuriki,” she says, mindfully not looking at any of them. Still, Mikoto and her teammates exchange glances, “But they can’t go out of order, so you should be safe for a while… and hopefully the common goal of killing Danzo will be enough to divert their attentions.
“And plus,” Shikabane continues, as if she weren’t giving back and forth warning and reassurances, “Danzo did more to cause war and suffering than any other single person in history so that, at least, is in line with their original dream.”
“Have you worked with them before?” Hizashi asks.
Shikabane hesitates, “Not… this particular iteration, no.”
Mikoto asks, “Have you fought against them?”
“Yes,” Shikabane answers without pause. “My teammate was the jinchuuriki of the Kyuubi,” she says, again, very deliberately not looking in Kushina’s direction. Just as well, a conflicted expression blooming on her face.
In contrast to Mikoto or Hizashi–jaded by the clan systems as they were–Kushina had always wanted family. But the only reason for the Kyuubi to be transferred between vessels would be if the previous jinchuuriki were unable to contain it…
Still, Kushina was never one for shying away from something and so rather than continuing the somewhat worrying description of their new possible allies, Shikabane dutifully answers questions about Kushina’s successor–her son, Naruto–with as sparse details as she can get away with.
But not sparse enough.
“Who is Sasuke?” Mikoto interrupts as Shikabane is in the middle of an anecdote about her genin team.
Shikabane blinks, “He’s… your son.”
Mikoto can’t help the grimace that invokes, the idea that she had capitulated to the clan elders’ demands in some other life. Another thought crosses her mind and, with trepidation, she asks, “He’s not–was he the Uchiha clan heir?”
Bemused, Shikabane shakes her head slowly, “… No. Sasuke was never clan heir.”
Good, Mikoto thinks, at least that other version of her hadn’t fallen so far. Much easier to think she might have found someone she actually wanted to be with rather than end up brood mare for Fugaku Uchiha.
A/N: WELL. This certainly jumped around in places. I don’t think I had a real concrete idea about what exactly I wanted the things Shikako doesn’t say out loud to be, so I kind of just sprinkled a lot of different options in there.