itle: An Introduction to Intoxication

Summary: "...You can't love me, can you?" His lips brush against hers, his voice husky and there's something like longing in his dark eyes. She pulls back a little, her hands pressing into his warm chest as she looks at him with those haunting green eyes. And she smiles this sad, broken smile. "...No, I don't think I can,"

Type: Multi-chapter, smut

Pairing (s) : SakuraxSasori, SasukexSakura, Others

Warning (s): Sexual themes, dark themes, abusive language and disturbing images.

Note: This is a sequel to Existence written for my most devoted and most beloved fan which will be mentioned later. However, this stands as an independent story and so the one-shot doesn't have to be read in order for this to be read and understood. I hope to God that you enjoy it.

X: The Ghosts Have Faces

"In one aspect, yes. I do believe in ghosts, but we create them. We haunt ourselves…"

- Laurie Halse Anderson

"Monsters are real, ghosts are real too.

They live inside us, and sometimes, they win,"

- Stephen King


"…And what was it inside you that love never satisfied?

The thing thread that held you…how did it come untied?"

- Jason Walker

The cold rushes in around her, embracing her like an old lover and sending shivers running down the length of her back.

Her dark hair flutter in the evening wind and her bare arms are goose-pimpled. The robes flutter around her legs, a comforting feeling and she looks out to the vast expanse of sand before her. Suna isn't home but it's close to it. Close enough. The days are colder now- the nights blacker and she can feel the onset of winter plunging through the days and starving the evenings of their warmth. Soon, there will be snow and there will little to no sand to see. The wind reaches up into her black hair and tugs them undone, letting them fly in the cold air. She turns around and looks back at the house- at her home and feels that same stab of sadness.

Red hair. Red hair. Red hair. Those eyes. Haunting her mind. Ghosting over her very breath.

Aguri looks so much like him. Speaks so much like him. Hell, he even walks like his father. She can never go back to how things were. To who she was. To where she belonged. This is her place now. This is her home. And she hates it so much. She steps off of the edge, her robes long and dark around her and she walks down the paved path slowly towards their little house. The lights are all on, and she can see them playing on the carpet. Aguri with his crimson hair and green eyes, putting one block upon the other as the other man- the one with his black hair and secrets, puts a block onto his tower, laughing at the little boy.

Why, they almost look like family. Almost as if he...he..she stops herself from thinking that and pushes open the back door to step into the warmth of the house. Her house. Her place. She to keep reminding herself of that. Has to keep pestering her mind into believe that yes, this is her place and her home and that she...she belongs here. The dark-haired man looks up at the click of door and smiles unsurely. He's been doing that for the past three years continuously, as in hopes of hearing her voice.

But she hasn't got a voice. Not anymore.

He stirs the stew. And glances over at her pale face- wonders if she's in there, inside, somewhere. His eyes trail over the familiar features of her beautiful face and he sucks ina shaky breath, his gaze shifting to the little boy. Aguir's running around the fireplace, his hair a red fire and Sakura walks over to the stove and peeks over into the pot. Sasuke holds his breath, hoping-hoping, for anything; a sign, or a symbolic gesture...anything at all, but there's just the slight rattle of her breath as it ghosts over his hands and she shifts back.

Her eyes move up to his face and he finds himself staring into the depths of those haunting green. She licks her lips and he feels himself stiffen. "..We need to talk," is all she says, before turning and walking out of the room on her sure feet.

He turns the stove off, glances at Aguri who is too busy with his toys to notice anything and follows after Sakura, his mind churning over various ideas. The sound of her voice after maybe, four years of silence is terrifying. It's lulling and kind and yet, some part of him prefers the silence to this change in everything. His hand trembles when he reaches for the door handle and he hesitates, he falters and he hears Aguri crying out joyfully and he recognises that sound as one of triumph. He's probably completed one of his several puzzles. He pushes open the door and Sakura's sitting on the bed, dressed only in a towel.

She's about to go for her bath- he can smell the light, musky scent of shampoo in the air and see the steam billowing out of the bathroom. His eyes, despite everything, travel to where the towel's knotted, her skin both so soft and tenuous to look at that his stomach flips. Her black (dyed) hair rest on her shoulders, the strands cleared off of her face and her lips look more red than usual. She's chewing on her bottom lip and he feels his chest tighten, a jolt of lust curdling his blood before he relaxes his body. His face is impassive- he's learned that showing emotion around her will only cause harm. Harm to himself.

"What did you want to talk about?" He says slowly, crossing his arms over his chest and her eyes meet his. His breath seems to hitch at the palpable emotion in her gaze- a swirling mixture of love and loss and just, this strange kind of pity. As if- no, she can't.

"About this," She murmurs softly. "About all of this," She gestures to the room and the steam rises higher up towards the ceiling.

"..I don't understand," He doesn't move from the door, resting his back against it and she gets to her feet, swaying a little and he's hit by a flurry of sadness.

"Thank you for looking after my son," She begins slowly, making her way over to him. His fingers clench tightly when she reaches him, inches away from his body. Barely there- barely just, and there's this mix of electricity and heat between them that makes him grind his teeth together. His head hurts. She tilts her head upwards, looking at him clearly- more clearly than ever before. "..Thank you for looking after me," She swallows, balking and he shifts back, but she's so close- so close, in his touch and yet, not there. "..Thank you for saving us," Her eyes drop to his lips.

He understands. He doesn't want to- not really, but he does and it kills him. This sense of understanding has a terrible price. Without realizing it, his head shifts down so that their noses brush against one another's. Their breaths mingle and her eyes are wide, afraid and his are dark, fathomless. Could even be empty. "...You can't love me, can you?" His lips brush against hers, his voice husky and there's something like longing in his dark eyes. She pulls back a little, her hands pressing into his warm chest as she looks at him with those haunting green eyes. And she smiles this sad, broken smile. "...No, I don't think I can,"

His lips kiss the side of her mouth and her breath is shaky, her touch feeble and strong all at once. She's intoxicating. So, when she does kiss him hard on the mouth, he doesn't stop her.

Naruto places the flowers on the graves and reads the names to reassure himself that he has the right gravestones.

Ino's standing at the gate, waiting patiently and wearing black. Fourth year of their passing and somehow, nobody can move on. The hole that Sakura's left in his heart, or the pain of meeting Sasuke and letting him go is still there in his head, making him squirm with the need to be rid of it. He bows his head and tries to remember the way Sakura smiled at him when he made a Ramen joke or when he tripped over his own feet to land into a lovely swarm of mud. He tries to remember how Sasuke would call him dobe and hit him around the head when he made a mistake. He tries to remember how Kakashi's visible eye would crinkle in amusement at his antics, or how he'd push Team Seven on towards excellence. He tries to remember the exact colour of Sakura's hair- or the dark tint of Sasuke's eyes, or even the faint outline of a smile on Kakashi's face.

But there's nothing but a void that swallows him whole.

At some point, he starts crying.

"Aguri!" She shouts, waving at her child and he laughs this little laugh that makes her chest constrict with emotion. He toddles further towards the sand, his little legs carrying him onwards and a familiar hand slips into hers.

Sasuke's touch is cold- colder than yesterday and she nearly flinches, but she forces herself to tighten her hold on his hand. Her eyes remain on her child as he runs into the sand, falling over with a loud shriek of annoyance and amusement. She nearly pulls away her hand but Sasuke holds onto her hand, stopping her.

"Let him learn," He mutters slowly and his hand slips out of hers, as if he's realized something. That this isn't right, no matter how much it hurts to let go of her. But he knows that he can't lose himself over her and when glances at her sad, drawn face, her eyes are hurt and bewildered.

You had no problem fucking her. And now, holding hands is an issue? His mind seems to echo with that thought and he forces himself to breathe. Because she doesn't care the right way for him- because she's in love with a dead man- because she can't look at her son without remembering everything- because they've made choices they cannot undo...because he's tired of breaking and he won't let it happen again. He looks away from her and to Aguri, instead, trying to ignore the pain that flares in his chest.

Aguri turns back at him, and smiles a big, crazed grin, mouthing something.

It takes a while for Sasuke to understand that the little boy is saying otosan.

His eyes burn with the threat of tears and he looks down. She's walked up to him so softly, so silently that he hasn't noticed and she puts a small hand on his arm. He remembers her touch from last night and it hurts to know that he can never have her like that. He simply can't. She squeezes his arm slowly, her eyes dark and he lets his tears fall, lets himself loose.

"..I'm sorry," She mutters softly and it's an answer to everything.

He chokes up for a moment. Blinks and sucks in a calm breath. "..Me too, Sakura." Another shaky breath. "Me too,"


With that, we come to an end of a story that was only possible of one person and that one person knows who they are. It's not too great a story but I've tried to give it my best. Thanks to all those who've stuck around for this. Much love. /3