Naruto and Sai first met when the latter attacked Naruto, Shikamaru and Chouji, in order measure his skills. They were then placed on a team together for a mission to retrieve Sasuke. Naruto was not happy to be on a team with Sai and the two continued to exchange insults. The situation only became worse when it turned out that Sai was double crossing the team to make a deal with Orochimaru. This turned out to be a double cross for Orichimaru and he was on team Kakashi's side the whole time.
There was a second double cross. His Sai's actual orders were to kill Sasuke, which Naruto would not allow. However, after being touched by Naruto's determination to bring Sasuke back, Sai decided to side with Team Kakashi and Naruto finally began to except him. Sai also was hoping to learn about the bond that Naruto and Sasuke have, since he forgot how such a way feels.
Sai had been raised to be an emotionless tool so he decided to try and make bonds with others and decided to start with Naruto. He also noted that Naruto was similar to his adoptive brother Shin. Sai began to become somewhat protective of Naruto's hurt feelings over Sasuke. He also noticed his feelings for Sakura and told her that she was causing him pain by wanting Sasuke back so badly. Sai finally gained a full understanding of friendship during the Fourth Shinobi World War while fighting aside Naruto against the ten-tails.
NaruSai has a decent amount of popularity in the Naruto fandom. It is not as popular as other slash ships involving Naruto yet it still has a decent amount of fans. Many are amused by the fact that Naruto was the first person whom Sai decided to try and bond with. He was also the replacement for Sasuke so some found NaruSai to be the newer version of SasuNaru since some believed that Sasuke was beyond redemption. NaruSai tends to rival SasuNaru and SasuSai as well as other pairings involving Naruto or Sai.
|SHIPS||slash||GaaNaru • HashiMada • KakaIru • KakaNaru • KakaSasu • KoteIzu • NaruKiba • NaruLee • NaruSai • NejiNaru • OroSasu • SasuNaru • ShikaNaru • ShikaSasu|
|het||GaaSaku • KakaHana • KakaRin • KakaSaku • KawaSara • LeeSaku • MenSaku • MinaKushi • NaruFuu • NaruHina • NaruSaku • NaruShion • NaruTsuna • SaiIno • SaiSaku • SasuIno • SasuKarin • SasuSaku • ToneHina|
|femslash||SakuHina • SakuIno • SakuKarin|
|CHARACTERS||m/f||Kakashi Hatake • Sakura Haruno • Sasuke Uchiha • Naruto Uzumaki|