|This is the article on the novel. For the anime adaptation, head to Sasuke Shinden: Book of Sunrise.|
|Sasuke Shinden: Book of Sunrise|
|(サスケ真伝 来光篇, Sasuke Shinden Raikō-hen)|
|Previous||Itachi Shinden: Book of Dark Night|
|Pages||224 (JP), 176 (EN)|
|Japanese||November 4, 2015 ISBN (978-4-08-703384-7)|
|English||March 7, 2017 ISBN (978-1-42-159129-2)|
Sasuke Shinden: Book of Sunrise (サスケ真伝 来光篇, Sasuke Shinden Raikō-hen, Viz: Naruto: Sasuke's Story: Sunrise, Literally meaning: Sasuke True Story: Book of Sunrise) is an original story written by Shin Towada and illustrated by Masashi Kishimoto. It is the third instalment of the Naruto Shinden series, which takes place after Akatsuki Hiden: Evil Flowers in Full Bloom.
Sasuke Uchiha reflects on the darkness that once drove him through life: the desire to avenge the demise of the Uchiha clan by killing his older brother, Itachi Uchiha; the desire to avenge the manipulation of Itachi by destroying Konohagakure; the desire to use all the power he'd acquired to usher in a new world of his own creation. But despite all Sasuke's misdeeds, Naruto Uzumaki refused to give up on him, constantly trying to assert their bond of friendship. In the end, Naruto succeeded. With his former darkness now replaced by Naruto's light, Sasuke wanders the world with an appreciation he never had before. Yet, wherever he goes, he still finds darkness in the world.
- Dark Clouds Appear Over a Changing World (変革の世に現れし暗雲, Henkaku no Yo ni Arawareshi An'un)
Several years after the end of the Fourth Shinobi World War, the ninja of the Five Great Shinobi Countries enjoy an unprecedented peace. In the most recent display of this increasing cooperation, one hundred of Kirigakure's most skilled shinobi set out for the Land of Lightning in order to take part in a joint training exercise with the ninja of Kumogakure. Kiri's Fifth Mizukage sees these ninja off as they set sail from the Land of Water, with Chōjūrō at her side. The Mizukage marvels at how different things have become since the days of the "Bloody Mist", when Kiri's ninja knew constant violence, competition, and deceit. She knows that some will reject the village's new peace, but she believes it is worth fighting for.
A day out from the Land of Water, the Kiri-ship crosses paths with an apparent fishing vessel bound on a collision course. Assuming the fishermen haven't noticed them, the ship's watch tries to catch their attention, but on making eye contact with them the watch falls unconscious. By the time the Kiri-nin realize they're under attack, a lone individual has already boarded their ship and proceeds to render them all unconscious with a single glance. When Kiri's ship fails to arrive in the Land of Lightning on time, the Kumo-nin sent to meet them consider reporting back to Kumo. They spot the ship just before they do and go to greet it, but immediately collapse upon seeing the scarlet dōjutsu of the person on board. The Kumo-nin are brought onto the ship and placed with the Kiri-nin.
In the Land of Hot Water, Sasuke is continuing to investigate Kaguya Ōtsutsuki, whose White Zetsu Army played a major role in the Fourth Shinobi World War. Sasuke has long wondered why someone like Kaguya, who was able to bring the entire world under her control using her awesome power, would need an army, and worries there may be some threat even greater than her that has yet to emerge. While he contemplates this, he receives a message from Kakashi Hatake, Konoha's Hokage. Kakashi informs Sasuke of the disappearance of Kiri's and Kumo's ninja and asks Sasuke to let him know if he finds out anything about it. Suspecting a dōjutsu-based genjutsu, Sasuke decides to investigate; since Kumo is closest, he heads there first.
As he travels, Sasuke comes across Bamboo Village, whose villagers he notices are waiting to ambush him. He triggers their ambush and is attacked by an old man, Iō, and two ninja, Chino and Nowaki, who accuse him of being a member of the Dark Thunder Group. Chino and Nowaki quickly realize this is a mistake and halt their attacks, but Iō persists until Sasuke disarms him. Iō refuses to apologize for attacking Sasuke, but does explain that the Dark Thunder Group killed his daughter and everyone else in the village where she was living. Now he wants revenge. Iō hired Chino and Nowaki to help him stop the Dark Thunder Group, and asks Sasuke to join as well. Sasuke is reluctant to get involved, causing Nowaki to reveal that the Dark Thunder Group's leader is a professed admirer of Sasuke. Although he wants to resume the investigation into the missing Kiri and Kumo-nin, Sasuke decides to help, not wishing for a violent group to use his name.
In Konoha, Kakashi is looking over the most recent intel about the missing ninja when he is visited by Sai, who reports that Sasuke received the message that was sent to him. Naruto has accompanied Sai to the meeting and has had the sense to also bring Sakura Haruno. Sakura informs Kakashi that there are Konoha-nin missing as well; none of the disappearances have been individually concerning or as noticeable as the Kumo and Kiri-nin, but taken together they are suspicious. As Kakashi processes this information, they receive a report from the Konoha Barrier Team that the village has been invaded just as explosions can be heard near the village's perimeter. Sai transports Naruto and Sakura to the scene and they are joined en route by Ino–Shika–Chō.
On arrival, they are surprised to find that Konoha's first responders are retreating. What's more, Ino Yamanaka recognizes one of the invaders as Tadaichi, a patron of Yamanaka Flowers who recently went missing. Sakura identifies all the attackers as missing Konoha ninja and, from the blank look on their faces, guesses that they are being controlled by genjutsu. The first responders have surmised the same thing and are retreating so as not to harm their comrades. Nevertheless, Tadaichi has received minor injuries from the Konoha-nin's attempts to defend themselves and his body starts to swell. Naruto senses what is about to happen and uses his shadow clones to evacuate the area before Tadaichi's body detonates. The explosion injures the other controlled Konoha-nin, causing their bodies to begin to swell as well. Shikamaru Nara instructs Chōji Akimichi to enter Butterfly Chōji Mode and use the mode's wings to direct the explosions away from the village.
Although the village's outer wall is damaged, the rest of the village's infrastructure and residents are safe. Naruto and the others regret that they couldn't help the controlled Konoha-nin, but believe the attack is at least over. Aoba Yamashiro arrives to inform them that additional invaders are approaching the village, all of them wearing either Kiri or Kumo uniforms. Having determined that the attackers explode upon receiving flesh wounds, thus making direct engagement unwise, Shikamaru calls on Hinata Uzumaki to assist. She uses her Byakugan to search the area for someone controlling the attackers, but can find none. She does at least discover foreign chakra signatures in each of the attackers' bodies. Using this information, they devise a strategy: Naruto uses his shadow clones to separate and distract the attackers so that Shikamaru can restrain them one-by-one while Hinata seals their tenketsu.
The strategy works and all the Kiri and Kumo-nin are captured safely. Conventional methods of dispelling genjutsu don't work, confirming their suspicions that the foreign chakra is responsible for their actions. It will be a long process to remove the chakra from their bodies, but in the meantime Aoba offers to read their minds to see if he can learn anything. Immediately upon doing so, he is caught in a genjutsu trap that has been placed on the ninja, forcing Ino to save him with her Mind Body Switch Technique. Though she succeeds, the strain causes her and Aoba to pass out; Sai takes them both to the Konoha Hospital while Sakura provides aid.
- A Former Shadow Resuscitated In Lightning (雷光に蘇るかつての影, Raikō ni Yomigaeru Katsute no Kage)
After resting for the night in Iō's home, Sasuke sets out in the morning for the village where Iō's daughter lived. Against his wishes, Chino and Nowaki accompany him. Sasuke is put off by how Chino is so much older than she appears, causing him to reflect that appearances can be deceiving: once, he thought that his older brother, Itachi, aspired to join their family's Konoha Military Police Force. In truth, that was only Sasuke projecting his own aspirations on to Itachi, having been unaware of the task Konoha was pushing Itachi to perform. Although Itachi has since been largely forgiven for his actions - in no small part because of Naruto's public insistence that Itachi was a hero - Sasuke is still troubled by Itachi's actions and the role Konoha played. Chino questions Sasuke on his relationship with Konoha and his plans for the future, and Sasuke acknowledges that he will soon need to determine those answers for himself.
When they reach the village where Iō's daughter lived, they find most of the buildings destroyed and the few remaining buildings are stained with blood. Sasuke is disturbed by the violence and suspects that the Dark Thunder Group had some personal reason for attacking the village. As he reaches this conclusion, Chino senses the Dark Thunder Group approaching Bamboo Village. They hurry back, but an attack is already underway when they arrive. Sasuke starts by neutralizing the attackers nearest him, allowing the villagers to flee. Chino and Nowaki instruct him to leave the villagers' safety to them and to go after the Dark Thunder Group's leader, Karyū. Sasuke proceeds to the center of the village and finds Karyū about to kill Iō. Sasuke saves Iō and attacks Karyū with his Chidori Katana, which Karyū counters with his rubberized Lava Release.
Karyū bombards Sasuke with his Lava Release: Rubber Balls, putting Sasuke on the defensive; his admiration for Sasuke has made him familiar with Sasuke's combat style, and thus knowledgeable of how to fight him. As Sasuke falls back, Iō criticizes Karyū for his actions, and Karyū in turn criticizes Iō for his selfishness. Sasuke returns with several skewers made from the local bamboo, which he flows his chakra into before throwing them at Karyū's balls and other defenses. All are destroyed, creating an opening for Sasuke to defeat Karyū with Chidori. Sasuke captures the remaining Dark Thunder Group members and Chino and Nowaki bring back the villagers; though several were injured in the attack, none were killed. Iō instructs Sasuke to kill Karyū and the others, but Sasuke refuses, instead asking for Karyū to explain his apparent vendetta against Iō.
Karyū explains that he used to be a member of the Lightning Group, which was composed of kekkei genkai users who, due to their abilities, were cast out from normal society. Because all their members had been persecuted in the past, they wanted to use their powers to protect the weak from those doing evil. As such, their group would attack thieves and murderers and give what they plundered to the less fortunate, such as the residents of Bamboo Village. The Lightning Group became popular among the downtrodden and occasionally was hired to work for the hidden villages. On one such mission from Kirigakure, they were sent to deal with some embezzling politicians. As soon as they confronted the politicians, they were attacked by Kiri-nin; Kirigakure had set up the Lightning Group in order to curry favor with the politicians.
Many of the Lightning Group died fighting the Kiri-nin, and those who escaped were badly injured. The survivors fled to Bamboo Village to ask for temporary shelter, but Iō and the other villagers refused, fearful of becoming implicated. Unable to find help anywhere, one of Karyū's friends died from his injuries and the Lightning Group disbanded. Karyū spent years living in squalor trying to avoid the notice of Kiri's pursuers until one day he heard about Sasuke's attack on the Five Kage Summit. That Sasuke, with a kekkei genkai of his own, could do something so brazen convinced Karyū that he too could live as he pleased. He formed the Dark Thunder Group in order to follow Sasuke's example and do what he wanted, intent on taking revenge on those who'd wronged them. Karyū's story reminds Sasuke too much of himself and he cannot decide how best to proceed. After locking the Dark Thunder Group in a shed, he sends a hawk to Kakashi with a report on what's happened, hoping for advice.
In Konoha, Shikamaru and Chōji visit Ino in the hospital and find that Sai is already visiting her, sketching a flower that Ino's mother brought her. They discuss the attack from a few days earlier and the heightened security measures that have since been out into place; because of warnings from Konoha, Kumo and Kiri were able to repel identical attacks. They begin discussing possible motives, but then realize they shouldn't be doing this while Ino is recovering. Shikamaru and Chōji get up to leave, but Sai remains, claiming that he likes to stay for as long as it takes to complete a single sketch; Shikamaru notices several nearly-completed sketches in the trash as he exits. Meanwhile, Naruto is meeting with Kakashi when Sasuke's hawk arrives. As Kakashi reads the report to Naruto, Naruto looks at the files on Kakashi's desk: pictures from Kiri and Kumo of all their missing ninja. Naruto quickly realizes that one of the attackers they captured is not among those pictured.
Naruto hurries to where the captured ninja are being held and, on locating the man, explains his discovery to Sakura and Hinata. Sakura was already suspicious of the man since there was less foreign chakra in his body than all the others; combined with Naruto's information, they theorize that he alone wasn't being controlled and that the foreign chakra is only present to make him into a bomb. Sakura and Hinata extract the foreign chakra from his body and have Aoba try once more to read the man's mind. Aoba sees a conversation that the man, Amuda, had with his boss, wherein Amuda volunteered to be turned into a bomb in order to take revenge against the shinobi world. The genjutsu trap returns before he can see the boss's face, but Aoba breaks free in time and repeats what he heard to Naruto and the others: that Amuda and his boss belonged to the Lightning Group and that they knew Karyū of the Dark Thunder Group. Naruto recognizes these names from Sasuke's report.
Sasuke remains in Bamboo Village as the villagers start to rebuild, reflecting that all the death and destruction caused by the Dark Thunder Group was inspired by his own actions. His wanderings through the world in recent years have been meant as a sort of atonement, but if the mistakes of his past are going to keep being mimicked like this, atonement may never be possible. His thoughts are interrupted by the return of his hawk with a report from Kakashi on all that has happened in recent days. Sasuke guesses that there was someone like Amuda in the attacks on Kiri and Kumo as well, but they had blown up before they could be discovered. He heads for the shed where Karyū and his men are being held to question them about this, but finds the shed ablaze, too late to put out. Chino explains that she had told Iō that the Dark Thunder Group likely wouldn't be executed by Konoha once Sasuke turned them in. Iō apparently took it upon himself to avenge his daughter, perishing in the fire alongside Karyū.
- Cheers of Affectation, Wails of Grief (虚飾の歓声、嘆きの轟音, Kyoshoku no Kansei, Nageki no Gōon)
Kakashi requests that the nearby Yugakure send help to Bamboo Village, allowing Sasuke, Chino, and Nowaki to go their separate ways. Sasuke heads to one of Orochimaru's hideouts; although he couldn't be sure which hideout Orochimaru was using, the one he travels to has Yamato lurking outside, confirming that's where Orochimaru is. Sasuke locates Orochimaru within the hideout and asks if he knows anything about the Lightning Group, believing that the group's former leader is also behind the attack on Konoha. Orochimaru shares the rumor that the Lightning Group's leader once worked for En Oyashiro, an arms dealer. Sasuke asks for help meeting with him and Orochimaru complies, leaving the members of Taka in charge while he's gone. Afterwards, Jūgo and Suigetsu discuss why, if Sasuke is working for Konoha again, he spends so much time away from the village, eventually concluding that it's probably safer for Konoha if Sasuke stays away. Hearing this, Karin returns to her room and finds a picture that Taka once took together so that she could have a picture of Sasuke. She decides to give a copy of the picture to Sakura the next time she sees her.
Sasuke and Orochimaru take a series of boats to a remote island where wealthy individuals such as En Oyashiro like to congregate. As they travel, Sasuke shares his surprise that Orochimaru is allowed to travel freely considering all the crimes he committed in the past. Orochimaru replies he could say the same of Sasuke, or even Kabuto Yakushi. All three of them have been reformed in one way or another - Kabuto being especially unlikely to err again - and so incarceration isn't strictly necessary. But Orochimaru believes that, more than that, they're allowed their freedom because there may someday be an individual who isn't swayed by the justice and understanding that people like Naruto tout, at which time people like Sasuke and Orochimaru will be needed as a last resort.
Their destination turns out to be a coliseum where the wealthy like to pit the ninja they have "acquired" against each other; the owner of the winning ninja gets to keep the losing ninja. Sasuke dislikes that this sort of spectacle exists and is surprised to learn that Orochimaru has entered Sasuke in the coliseum. Orochimaru assures him that the only way to lure out En Oyashiro - a collector of people with kekkei genkai - would be with the chance to win Sasuke's Sharingan. Sasuke agrees and is entered in a match against En's Futsu, who uses Boil Release. Sasuke quickly defeats him, allowing him to meet with En during the formal prize awarding. Sasuke declines Futsu's service, instead asking what En knows about the Lightning Group's leader. En explains that the leader's name was Fūshin, who he'd won at the coliseum when Fūshin was a boy. After taking care of Fūshin for several years, Fūshin escaped with all of the other kekkei genkai users in En's "collection".
En's habit of referring to those with kekkei genkai as objects instead of people disgusts Sasuke, which he states openly. En doesn't feel the criticism is justified considering that Sasuke is making no attempts to help any of the ninja being traded at the coliseum today. Sasuke admits he has a point and enters himself in the fights again, willing to face anyone whose master wishes to win his Sharingan. Such an opportunity is highly tempting to those assembled and Sasuke takes part in numerous battles, each of which he wins. Afterwards, he seeks out Yamato, knowing he's still following Orochimaru, so that he can ask him take the ninja he's won to Konoha. He runs into En along the way, who is so amused by Sasuke's actions that he shares a bit more about Fūshin: Fūshin was born on a small island in the Land of Water and sold into slavery by the islanders because of his kekkei genkai. After Fūshin left En's service, everyone on the island was mysteriously killed. The island was never resettled, and En muses that such a place would be a perfect hideout.
After entrusting the freed ninja to Yamato, Sasuke sails to Fūshin's island using a map that En gives him. He finds the missing Kirigakure vessel docked in the harbor, confirming that this is the right location. He sneaks onto the island and heads inland, finding a group of guards composed of some of the missing Kiri and Kumo-nin. Because they're under the influence of genjutsu, they attack him when they spot him, but he quickly knocks them out. Unlike the ninja that attacked Konoha, these ninja don't have any foreign chakra in their bodies, allowing Sasuke to easily free them from the genjutsu. Sasuke wakes one up and enlists his help in waking the others, but the ninja is killed before they have a chance to start. Sasuke locates the attacker, Fūshin, who he knows better as Nowaki. With him is Chino.
Sasuke states his surprise that Nowaki would be behind everything, prompting Nowaki to slit his wrists, causing a foreign chakra signature to bleed out and make his body shorter and slimmer, closer to En's description. Sasuke demands an explanation, but Nowaki instead activates his kekkei genkai, Typhoon Release, causing a hurricane to descend on the island. Sasuke is able to remain grounded, but once Nowaki begins directing the winds to attack him he is forced to activate Susanoo. Nowaki's wind blades aren't able to penetrate Susanoo, but neither is Susanoo able to escape the gale. Noticing that the eye of the storm is centered around Nowaki, Sasuke leaves his Susanoo behind as a distraction while he summons Aoda. Aoda lifts Sasuke above the powerful winds, allowing Sasuke to leap down into the eye and attack Nowaki with Chidori.
With Nowaki unable to move, Sasuke uses his Sharingan to examine his memories: his lonely early life; his mistreatment by his former master; his constant victories in the coliseum; his first ever loss to an opponent who, despite their victory, offered their helpful hand to him. Before Sasuke can see that victor's face, he is caught in a genjutsu trap. Sasuke escapes the genjutsu and finds Chino lifting Nowaki onto her back. She curses the Uchiha's Sharingan, noting that it was the Uchiha who ruined the Chinoike clan, and starts ensnaring him in another genjutsu. As Sasuke tries fighting off the genjutsu, Chino corrects one of his earlier points: Nowaki was not behind the attacks on Konoha, Kumo, and Kiri, she was. By the time he releases himself, Chino and Nowaki are gone.
- Red Eyes Gazing Into the Future (赤き目が見つめる先に, Akaki Me ga Mitsumeru Saki ni)
Sasuke goes around the island gathering the Kiri and Kumo-nin caught up in Nowaki's hurricane. They thank him for rescuing them and he returns them to their villages, first the Kiri-nin, then the Kumo-nin. In Kumogakure, the Fourth Raikage glares at Sasuke because of their past interactions, forcing Darui to thank Sasuke on his behalf. C reports that Konoha is in the process of curing those still under the influence of the foreign chakra, which Sasuke guesses to be Sakura's doing. Sasuke prepares to depart to go after Chino, declining the Raikage's offer to help since only his Sharingan can combat Chino's dōjutsu. Hearing this, the Raikage asks if it's the Chinoike clan's Ketsuryūgan.
Sasuke is surprised that the Raikage knows about the ability, and the Raikage is surprised that Sasuke doesn't. He explains that, during the Warring States Period, a woman from the Chinoike clan married the Land of Lightning's daimyō. The daimyō's first wife became jealous of her, and when the daimyō died soon after their marriage the first wife blamed the woman and her clan for the daimyō's death. Many believed the first wife's lies, causing the entire Chinoike clan to be banished to the Valley of Hell in the Land of Hot Water; the Uchiha clan were hired to enforce the relocation. The Chinoike vanished from history once they entered the Valley of Hell and were thought to have died out. Since that's apparently not the case, the Raikage recommends that Sasuke go there.
Sasuke arrives in Yugakure a few days later to try and find out where the Valley of Hell is located. He is met by one of the village's ninja, who has been tasked with guiding Sasuke at the Raikage's request. As they travel there, the ninja explains that the Valley of Hell is not an easy place to live, having no natural vegetation and being constantly consumed in volcanic gas. A few months after the Chinoike clan were moved there some of the local population visited to check up on them and found them drinking from pools of blood. The valley was declared off limits from that point onwards and its location was eventually forgotten. After many decades it was rediscovered by a young Hidan, who reported the valley to be strewn with bodies recently killed. Yugakure investigated, confirmed Hidan's story, and once again declared the area off limits.
The Yugakure ninja notes his village has had an unfortunate habit of ignoring inconveniences in the interest of any easy peace, Hidan's membership in Akatsuki being a more recent example. Sasuke remembers Orochimaru's claim that individuals such as themselves exist to be insurance for those times when willful ignorance backfires, and wonders if that should be his role in life. When they reach the Valley of Hell, the Yugakure ninja leaves Sasuke at the entrance and returns to his village. Sasuke finds the apparent pools of blood when he ventures in, but on closer inspection discovers that it is merely water colored red by the minerals in the earth. One of the pools has several ninja submerged in it, with a foreign chakra in the water slowly seeping into their bodies to convert them into mindless bombs. Sasuke finds the process unsettlingly similar to how White Zetsu are created, but he's unable to help the ninja.
In the center of the valley, Sasuke finds a vast red pool similar to what he saw in Chino's genjutsu. At the same moment, Chino confronts him. He asks her if the history of the Chinoike clan that he's been told is true, and she confirms most of it. Contrary to popular belief, the Valley of Hell was not a death sentence, as the clan was able to survive off the local flora and fauna and enjoy a long period without the rest of the world's conflicts. Then one day, when Chino was very young - too young to have any actual memories of her life in the valley - they were rediscovered by En Oyashiro, who wiped out the clan so that the one he spared and kept for himself, Chino, would become all the more valuable. She served under En for a time until being liberated by Nowaki. She didn't join his Lightning Group, choosing to instead return to the Valley of Hell to live out a quiet life alone.
When the Lightning Group was betrayed by Kirigakure and many of their numbers were killed, Chino took in Nowaki and tended to him during the year it took his body to heal. She was upset by how the world treated people with kekkei genkai like themselves, and became convinced that world has no right to exist. Sasuke can't help but notice similarities between Chino's life and his own, but with one significant difference: she has no memories of a family to look back fondly on, nor has she had friends able to lift her from the darkness that consumed her in the way that Naruto did for Sasuke. Chino is well aware of this difference, and it is that fact that makes her saddest. Her Ketsuryūgan activates and she sheds red tears. She cuts her wrists and spills her blood into the red pools, allowing her to manipulate the iron in the water for her Blood Dragon Ascension.
Sasuke matches his Susanoo against Chino's Blood Dragon, cutting off its heads as soon as they form. While this goes on, they both trade genjutsu. Chino has too many layers of genjutsu traps for him to penetrate, which cannot be said of Sasuke. While trying to trap Sasuke, Chino is able to see flashes of his memories and asks why he continues to serve Konoha despite the self-interest it has always had, the same self-interest that caused the Uchiha clan's demise. Sasuke responds that it is because he is alive: he is alive because Naruto saved him and refused to let him bear his pain by himself. Sasuke wants the whole world to be like that, interconnected so that nobody will need to be alone as he once believed himself to be. He activates his Mangekyō Sharingan, allowing him to break through the defenses in Chino's mind and ensnare her in his genjutsu.
Sasuke swings a Susanoo sword at Chino for a decisive blow. Before it connects, Nowaki emerges from hiding and uses a typhoon to alter the trajectory of Sasuke's attack. Though it misses Chino, the shockwave from Sasuke's strike is enough to send both her and Nowaki flying and dissipate the chakra maintaining her Blood Dragon. Though he's badly injured from his previous fight with Sasuke and the injuries he just recieved, Nowaki keeps himself between Sasuke and Chino so that she won't be hurt. Remembering Sasuke's words, Chino realizes that she too has friends like Sasuke does. She calls Nowaki off and admits defeat, wishing to live on to see this world that Sasuke wants to make. Chino has Sasuke follow her to the pool where the ninja are submerged and withdraws her chakra from them. She explains that the White Zetsu Army passed underneath the Valley of Hell during the Fourth Shinobi World War, causing certain aspects of their minds and composition to be absorbed into the earth. By studying these absorptions, she came up with the idea of using others to do her bidding, as put into effect for her attacks on Konoha, Kumo, and Kiri.
Chino shares a curiosity with Sasuke: one of the White Zetsu, as it marched to war against the ninja world, couldn't shake the feeling it was meant to fight something else, a force greater than that mustered by the Allied Shinobi Forces. Sasuke is reminded of his theory that a threat greater than Kaguya Ōtsutsuki exists somewhere, which Chino's information seems to confirm. As Sasuke begins preparing himself for stopping that threat on his own, Chino interjects that he has friends to help him. He agrees that that's true.
Chino, Nowaki, and Amuda are brought before Kakashi. Although they assume that they're going to be punished, he instead makes an offer to them on behalf of the Mizukage: repent for their actions by helping Kirigakure purge evil from the world, so that nobody will need to live through the kinds of hardships that they have. They agree, and as their first mission they lay siege to the coliseum, apprehending all of the wealthy spectators and freeing their slaves. En Oyashiro, having been the only one to escape, later tells Orochimaru about this with his Ketsuryūgan gleaming. He regrets what happened to the rest of the Chinoike clan, but feels that it was inevitable that they would destroy each other after being cooped up together for so long. Still, he's proud of how his daughter, Chino, turned out, being a much better person than her father ever was. En muses that maybe he'll turn the Valley of Hell into a hot spring resort as his next business venture.
After the cured Kiri and Kumo-nin are returned to their villages, Sakura listens happily to what he heard from Chino: how Sasuke saved her from darkness. Sakura regrets that she wasn't with him during all of this and secretly resolves to accompany him the next time he comes back to the village. Naruto observes that Sasuke, though he's away from Konoha, is always protecting it in ways that nobody else can. Sakura remarks that Sasuke is like a one-man police force. Elsewhere, as Sasuke begins his investigations in Kaguya in earnest, he receives one of the usual updates from Kakashi. Attached to this is a note from Naruto, in which he shares Sakura's likening of him to the police. Sasuke remembers his childhood dreams of wanting to join the police force and decides that maybe Naruto and Sakura are right; maybe that's what Itachi was doing too. It occurs to Sasuke that he hasn't been to Konoha in a while, so he changes course and heads for the village.