Sai uses his Super Beast Imitating Drawing technique to create small mice that scout out the Tenchi Bridge. After discovering that there are no traps or individuals on the bridge, thus ruling out the possibility of an Akatsuki ambush, Yamato uses his Wood Release: Transformation technique to turn into Sasori's puppet Hiruko, based on an image provided to him by Sunagakure. After managing to get Hiruko's voice, Yamato sets off towards Tenchi Bridge. Sai, Naruto and Sakura wait behind a rock, observing the bridge. The spy eventually arrives at the bridge around the same time that Yamato does. The spy reveals himself to be none other than Kabuto Yakushi, a Medical-nin formerly of Konohagakure. Kabuto explains that he had just recently experienced Sasori's sleeper spy ninjutsu, and that he had risked his life getting away from Orochimaru long enough to sneak to the bridge. Naruto contemplates on joining Yamato on the bridge as he cannot hear their conversation, but Sakura explains that it is the very wind that hides Kabuto's conversation from their ears that also hides their presence from Kabuto. Unbeknowst to them, Orochimaru himself is observing "Sasori" and Kabuto on the bridge.
Yamato inquires as to where Orochimaru and Sasuke are, and Yamato replies that Orochimaru has a secret hideout not too far from the bridge. Asking "Sasori" for the object he requested, Yamato believes that he cannot keep the charade up for too long, and pulls out a kunai to apprehend Kabuto. Just at that moment, Orochimaru arrives in an instant, attempting to use his snakes to bind Kabuto, who leaps out of the way and joins his "Lord Sasori". Yamato realises that he is in a pickle - Orochimaru is too powerful for him to take on one-on-one; he could try to fight him alongside Kabuto, but Kabuto would realise that he is not the real Sasori due to the fact that Yamato is not a puppet master; Yamato could signal for his three comrades to help, but Kabuto would most likely flee. Kabuto prepares a chakra scalpel to strike Orochimaru, but instead turns out and slices "Hiruko". The jab breaks the wooden puppet and Yamato jumps into mid-air, having been cut on his right arm. Orochimaru attempts to kill him using his Many Hidden Shadow Snake Hands technique, but Yamato uses a variant of the Body Replacement Technique that uses Wood Release to escape. Orochimaru is surprised at his usage of Wood Release and seems to recognise him. Kabuto, who is actually working with Orochimaru, asks him whether Yamato is Sasori, as Kabuto never saw Sasori's real face. Orochimaru states that it is not, and that he will tell Kabuto about Yamato later; he then asks Yamato to signal his three teammates who are in hiding. Naruto, Sai and Sakura appear, and Kabuto and Orochimaru are amused to see Naruto and Sakura once more. Orochimaru is interested that the Nine-Tails' jinchūriki has tagged along, and muses whether he or Sasuke is the strongest. Naruto's eyes, upon facing Orochimaru and Kabuto, turn red due to the Nine-Tails' influence.