"The Hunt" (探索, Tansaku) is episode 122 of the Naruto: Shippūden anime.
Kakashi splits the Eight Man Squad into smaller sub-teams, each of them paired with two ninja hounds with the exception of Kiba and Kakashi, who have Akamaru and Pakkun as their respective partners. Their task is to find the location of Sasuke or Itachi and report back. In the meantime, Sasuke assigns individual tasks to each member of Hebi in hopes of finding a way to Itachi.
Due to the fact that he is a jinchūriki and thus a target of the Akatsuki, Naruto is given additional protection in the form of Yamato and Hinata as well as being assigned Bull, the biggest hound in Kakashi's pack. Elsewhere, Deidara and Tobi begin their search for either Naruto, Kakashi or Sasuke. While riding on one of his clay birds, Deidara claims to have spotted one of them, although he keeps the identity of whom a secret from Tobi.
While Suigetsu locates Kyōya and Ginji, the accountant and banker of Akatsuki member Kakuzu, Karin is sent to a village to find a clue to the Akatsuki's whereabouts. Unbeknownst to her, Sakura is in the same village, with Bisuke and Shiba managing to locate Sasuke's scent, which is coming from Karin. However, Karin and Sakura pass each other and the scent is lost. Naruto, Yamato and Hinata are ambushed by Kabuto, who gives them Orochimaru's gathered intelligence on the Akatsuki. When asked why he would give up such a thing, Kabuto tells Naruto that he is grateful towards him; ever since Kabuto was a child, he was used as a spy and thus moved from village to village until he became Orochimaru's subordinate. After Orochimaru had died, he felt as though he had lost his purpose and identity until he realised that Naruto had forged his own identity when the villagers thought he was no more than a human variant of the Nine-Tailed Fox. Kabuto reveals the left side of his body to the trio, which resembles Orochimaru, and explains that he had grafted portions of Orochimaru's corpse onto himself as a way of clinging to his dead master and that he plans to avenge Orochimaru by eliminating Sasuke. With that said, Kabuto flees, evading capture.
In a clearing, Sasuke senses Tobi's presence and notices Deidara flying above him, the latter dropping two C1 bombs on him. Believing they have killed him, they realise that Sasuke summoned a snake to shield him from the damage. With his Sharingan activated, Sasuke glares at Deidara, who stares back.