|Cover his face
Author: SimplyUnmistakable PM
"Cover his face." The order was no more than a whisper, but even a simple nod of a head was law coming from the well-respected Hokage.Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Drama/Angst - Naruto U. - Words: 796 - Reviews: 5 - Favs: 13 - Published: 08-13-12 - Status: Complete - id: 8424611
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
"Cover his face."
The order was no more than a whisper, but even a simple nod of a head was law coming from the well-respected Hokage. The Rokudaime turned away, his face carrying sorrow, yet blankness, vulnerability, yet killing lust. The ninjas around knew better than to stay in his way as Uzumaki Naruto walked away, a clear path forming in front of him as his subordinates respectfully took steps back.
None of them had the guts to ask where Naruto was going, but as Rokudaime said nothing meant there was nothing to say. The Rokudaime didn't ask them to follow, so they were asked to stay there. The order was clear. The Rokudaime needed to do something on his own.
Nara Shikamaru glared in the direction of the squad he had been leading during this mission to stop staring - half of them at the departing Hokage, the others at the corpse lying a couple meters away. Cover his face, the Hokage had said.
Shikamaru walked towards their fallen comrade, understanding Naruto's requirement's purpose – that was the way it should have been. Taking off his jounin vest, Shikamaru ripped a wide, long cloth off his own shirt and tied it around the most of the dead man's face. He then backed away, putting his vest back on. He almost showed a smile, recalling something, but the realization of the present situation made it fade away before it even had the chance to form upon his lips.
With a last glance he said lowly, "The kind of man I'd call… troublesome - the right kind of troublesome." He signed to the surrounding ninjas to leave and take the body back to the village.
"Oi, Naruto!" he asked for the Hokage's attention afterwards. The Hokage was just twenty meters away as he took his time, pacing slowly, as he tried to think things over and over before making any stupid decision. As they were leaving, the younger ninjas heard that and found it quite odd. There was a little amount of people who could dare to call for the Rokudaime so impolitely. And anyways, not in public.
Naruto turned for a moment. His eyes caught a glance of the place the corpse had been just seconds before. He turned again as if the sight burned his eyes, no matter it was just an empty spot right now.
"I thought you aren't the type to seek for revenge," Shikamaru told Naruto calmly, putting his hands into his pockets, relaxed, but taking big, hurried steps in order to catch up. Indeed, Naruto's mentor had been killed many years ago, yet he had learnt to forgive, leave behind and walk towards peace – revenge was not the answer.
"I am not." He looked up. Only the blankness remained from before. "I was not. But this makes me start to doubt everything I've ever been taught and taught others myself." He moved his stare to Shikamaru. "But you've been through this."
A moment of silence followed. Once more, Naruto turned his eyes to the place a dead body had laid a while ago. It didn't burn his sight this time. His eyes watched through restfully, his face almost gleeful. "I remember that once, me and my team followed him all around trying to see what's hidden there. What was behind that mask?"
"Everyone did wonder." The Nara almost smiled himself. That had been the moment he recalled while putting Kakashi the improvised mask, too. The memory that had almost made him burst into laughter next to a dead fellow. The day he and his team had accidentally destroyed Team 7's attempt of taking a glance behind the mask.
Cover his face.
"I took care of that myself." Naruto nodded. It wasn't necessary saying what he took care of. They looked at each other once more.
"But now I know. Behind that mask… was my sensei." Shikamaru nodded and walked away. Maybe he understood fully what Naruto said. Maybe he didn't.
Behind that mask… there was a man who loved us, looked after us, protected us. He stood proudly in a corner, watching proudly every achievement of the three of us. He chose us to be his team, his only team ever. He said he'd never take another team unless they achieved his new standards. Team 7 was his new standard .He made us a team. He painfully watched us split. And then he helped make us a team again. He proudly watched from a distance Sasuke's return. He proudly watched from a distance the event of me becoming the Rokudaime. He proudly watched from a distance Sakura's advance to head of the Hospital and Sasuke receiving his place as Captain of ANBU.
The face never actually mattered. The man mattered.