So my last account was hacked and I can't login anymore. So, I'm moving all my other stories unto this account. Don't think I'm stealing! I am BlushyWriter! This is just my other account!
Chapter One: Not so Happy Bride and Groom
It wasn't a…completely foreign concept to him, per say, but Gaara had never really considered it as applicable to him. His reasoning was very, very simple: until three years ago, he'd been considered a monster, and even despite having led an army and fought in a war to protect his people, they were still wary of him.
The idea of living alone hadn't bothered him too much, though. At the best of times, he wasn't particularly social, and he still didn't really understand…people. Especially not women. But the councils insisted he find a wife, and one of the older women on the civilian council had mentioned Konoha.
There was talk of strengthening ties (as if the villages needed it) and then, of course, the conversation turned to which female would be most appropriate. The initial choice was a Hyuuga, but Gaara calmly pointed out that there was no way Konoha was giving up a female with an ocular doujutsu.
Ino was similarly ruled out, for her knowledge of special jutsu. Tenten was considered, but ultimately decided against when someone mentioned Haruno Sakura. Gaara stared at the councilman who'd said her name. "…Hokage-dono's apprentice?" he asked at last. His tone was mild, but it was clear he thought the man mad. "She is the most talented medical specialist after Tsunade-hime herself. I cannot imagine—"
"We won't know until we ask," interrupted Tsubaki-san, the oldest of his civilian councilors.
Frowning at the breach in conduct, the redheaded kage dipped his head. "…draft the request and have it on my desk by the close of the day," he said at last, getting to his feet. "I will revise it and have it sent to Hokage-hime as soon as time permits."
He…really didn't want to do this. Then again, Tsunade was unlikely to grant permission, so he supposed he needn't have worried anyway. It was with this thought in mind that Gaara went back to work, and with this thought in mind that he sent Takamaru, his fastest messenger hawk, with the missive at dawn's first light.
Shaking his head, he left the aviary.
"Hey, Sakura! Are you okay?"
Sakura wasn't sure if she was okay, honestly. She was currently standing in complete and utter shock, at a loss for words, not sure how to react to the news Tsunade just gave her. Suna wanted her to marry Gaara? As in Kazekage Gaara? As in, the most powerful shinobi in Suna? But why? Why her? Out of all the girls in Konoha, certainly there were much better girls for Gaara. And Tsunade actually agreed to it! She actually thought it was a good idea. Which shocked Sakura more than anything else.
"Bu- but, I- I don't love Gaara!" Sakura says once she snaps out of it and approaches her desk a bit more, leaning her hands on the cool surface, "A- and besides, why would they want me? Certainly they would prefer someone better, like Hinata?"
"No, there's no way we're handing over Hinata. The byakugan belongs in Konoha, nowhere else." Tsunade stated firmly, making the young medic-nin groan lightly and drop her head. She tried to think of anything, something that could get her out this marriage.
"But I don't love Gaara…. And if I'm going to get married I want it to be to someone I love," Sakura says, really not wanting to marry him. It wasn't against Gaara personally, and it was definitely not because she still had feelings for Sasuke. She just thought that arranged marriages were really old-fashioned, she barely knew him, and again, why couldn't he just marry a girl in Suna?
"Sakura, it's for the good of the village," Tsunade says calmly and patiently, looking up at the female, "If you were to marry Gaara, then it would tighten our bonds with Suna."
"Lady Hokage, with all due respect, I really don't want to," Sakura complains, much like a child but she didn't really care, "I don't have anything against Gaara, he's a great kazekage and a powerful shinobi, he's really changed since the chunin exams. But I don't have any romantic feelings towards him. He's… He's a friend! And I'm not one to hold grudges, but he tried to kill me, remember? And I love Konoha! I don't want to be in Suna! I'm still only seventeen…"
"Sakura, your parents already agreed to it, and I'm afraid that it's already been settled," Tsunade stated firmly and crossed her arms over her large chest, leaning back in her seat, "Try to stay positive about all of this. Gaara's a nice man; he'll respect you and treat you kindly as his wife. And he's not bad-looking either."
Sakura couldn't disagree with the last point, but sighed in a dejected manner anyways, "Hai hai," she muttered and rubbed the back of her head, "Alright… I'll marry him. Since it doesn't sound like I have a choice anyways."
"Good. Now, go home and get ready. You head for Suna by dawn. I'll send word to Suna that you accept the marriage request."
Sakura nodded and left the Hokage's office, her heart heavy as she shuffled on home.
"THIS IS BULLSHIT!"
"Ino-chan, calm down," Sakura tried to soothe her angered friend, but to no avail. Sakura was in her room, packing her stuff, and Ino randomly appeared on her windowsill. Apparently the word that Sakura was marrying Gaara travelled around fast. It seemed that almost all of her classmates knew.
"I'm not going to calm down! Th- they can't make you do this! They can't force you into a marriage like this!" Ino said and crossed her arms over her chest, glaring at the suitcase like it was the suitcase's fault.
Sakura sighed as she folded up a pair of her favorite pajamas and tucked them into her pink suitcase, trying to think of what to say next, "Yes they can," she started carefully and took a seat on her bed, her hands resting in her lap, "Because they're my parents. And it's for the good of the village."
Ino pouted and sat down next to her, "…" she was silent for a long moment before speaking up again, "But it's not right. To be in a marriage when there's no love involved."
Sakura patted Ino's shoulder, "I's not like I'm marrying a complete stranger. This is Gaara-san we're talking about-"
"He tried to kill you."
"That was a long time ago," Sakura immediately jumped to his defense, her eyes on the ground now and her hands clasped tightly in her lap, "He's a different person now. He's a great Kazekage, he's very kind and gentle. I know that he will treat me nicely as his wife. And it's not as if he's the one forcing me to marry him, it's all my parents, Tsunade-sama, and the council in his village."
Ino was silent again, staring forlornly at the ground, "B- but what about Sasuke-kun?"
Sakura froze for a moment before letting out a sigh, "It's time for me to face the facts, Ino-chan. Sasuke-kun will never return my feelings. He's with… Karin now. And I know he loves her. I can tell by the way he looks at her."
"But what about Naruto?"
Sakura sighed and shrugged once again, "It's time for him to move on and find someone else to love."
"How could your parents force you into a marriage?"
Sakura sighed, "I guess they just want what's best for me. I guess being married to the Kage is what's best for me, in their opinion."
Ino scrambled to find something else to argue about. But she had nothing. She sighed, admitting defeat and allowing her slender shoulders to slump forward, "But I'll miss you…"
Sakura smiled gently and wrapped an arm around her best friend's shoulders, "Don't worry Ino-chan! I'll be sure to visit as often as I could, I'll send messenger birds, I'll do everything I can to keep in contact with you and the rest of my friends. Besides, you'll be so busy with your boyfriend that you probably won't notice my absence."
Ino sighed, puffing out her cheeks in a pout and crossing her arms over her chest in a stubborn manner, "Yeah right, I can barely drag Shikamaru's lazy ass out of bed on some mornings," she mumbled.
Sakura giggled softly, "Yeah, but you two are very good for each other," she hummed with a smile, "Now come on, and help me finish packing the rest of my stuff."
Gaara's eyes widened upon hearing the news. So Sakura actually agreed to the marriage? There was a shocker. He was certain that she would've refused him and turned down the marriage proposal. Sakura Haruno was one of the most skilled kunoichi in the village, and Tsunade-hime was just handing her over to them? He regained his composure and leaned his elbows on his desk, his hands entwining together in front of his face.
"So… What happens now?" Gaara asked calmly. Well, he guessed he was really getting married. The thought of marriage really began to sink in now, and it made his heart beat faster just thinking about it. He really expected Tsunade to turn down the marriage proposal, if not Tsunade than Sakura's parents.
"Haruno-san is going to be arriving here in two days," Tsubaki-san says, she be leaving at dawn tonight, which means she's likely to arrive here by dawn, during the day after tomorrow. Be sure to greet her at the gates so she knows where she's going, then both of you meet with me and the rest of the elders to discuss wedding details and such. We will give you a few days free time before the wedding to get to know each other better."
'Oh how generous of you,' Gaara thought to himself, almost bitterly but held his tongue. Even he knew better than to disrespect an elder. He rubbed his forehead and replied, "Alright, I will try to make Sakura-san feel at home."
"Good, see you in two days," Tsubaki-san then turned and left his office, leaving him alone to his thoughts.