A huge thanks for reading Rebuilding. It has been so awesome writing this. I receive each and every favorite, follow, and review through my e-mail so it's always very nice to get such great feedback. I know there are plenty of spelling mistakes and probably a few plot holes, but I am pleased with how it ended. I'm already starting to think about my next Naruto fic which will most likely involve SasuHina so if you follow me as an author, expect to see something within the next week or so. (I hope)
Here is the Epilogue, which is short and sweet. Enjoy!
The air was sweet as it blew all around Uchiha Sasuke. The sun was setting just over the hills and the grass around him was alive with the breeze and various grasshoppers that chased after each other. The large oak tree was a nice support to his back, and the tree branches seemed to sway peacefully above him. His dark eyes watched emotionlessly as a few birds flew in harmony in the sky and his fingers traveled down to grasp the Uchiha pendant that hung on his neck. It was a habit he had formed that whenever he felt lonely or emotional to hold onto it; he could feel his father's chakra swarming within it and it helped soothe anything that might creep up inside his heart.
It was springtime, and he could feel beads of sweat from the warm sun form under the heavy green Jounin vest he wore. His Konoha forehead protector gleamed from the light as he turned his head to watch a rabbit bound through the tall grass with endless energy. Everything was calm, peaceful and now he knew why his mother liked this place so much. He had found the secret place easily after asking around, and it was about four miles north of Konoha.
Now at age 25, Uchiha Sasuke was a well-respected name in the village of the hidden leaves. With a lot of hard work and dedication, he was able to climb the ranks, but Sasuke also wouldn't deny that his best friend, Uzumaki Naruto, had some influence. The former black sheep of the village was now right where he set out to be so many years ago; the Hokage. Sasuke would give him credit where it was due—the guy worked very hard with his internship with Tsunade and his spirit had calmed down quite considerably. Although sometimes when it was just him and Sasuke, the Naruto he knew so well would come out and they would head out to get a bowl (or three) of ramen.
Their friendship was strange, in the fact that they rarely got along. Their views on certain policies were often very different which would cause some heated discussions. Those were normally solved with harmless sparring, but at the end of the day on their way home, Sasuke would shove Naruto as if to say 'hey, you annoy me, but I still tolerate your existence'. Sasuke never had the time for formalities and even as Hokage Naruto never got treated any different. Some of the ninja would gasp at the way Sasuke would talk to the leader of the village, but the two both knew that it was just the way they were.
Sasuke even got offered the job to handle the Chuunin exams, which he turned down, and was ultimately given to Hyuuga Neji. With his smart and tactical ways, they were able to make it not only safer for ninja from around the country, but more specifically skill based. This idea was able to build stronger troops and smarter placement of teams by focusing on Nature Types as well as Kekkei Genkai.
As for Haruno Sakura, she became the head of the hospital and was only sent out on specific missions that would need an advanced healing ninja. She also had a hand in at the Academy teaching the basics of healing to the students. Tsunade always wanted to have at least one medical ninja on teams, so why not have each individual one know at least the basics? A part of this was her idea as well as Nara Shikamaru who had become one of the top teachers at the Academy. Sasuke actually thought that things had become almost better with Naruto as the Hokage. He never knew that there were so many organized ideas in that big head of his, and he had to smirk upon thinking about it.
Due to the limited free time that both had, Sakura and Naruto remained only as close friends with each other. The relationship between Sasuke and Sakura had also somewhat improved as Team Seven seemed to kind of fall back into their old routines: Sasuke acted annoyed (even if he wasn't), Naruto was the center of attention and Sakura scolded both of them on the occasion for over exerting themselves. Even Kakashi was still up and going, doing his missions as if he had never aged. Unlike Sasuke, Kakashi didn't have a problem with taking orders from Naruto.
It was strange how as children, each of the Rookie 9 were just trying to find their footing in life and now here they were with so much success under their belts. Life went by fast, and even with all the mistakes in the world, one could turn out just fine. That's at least what Sasuke told Taro the day he graduated from the Academy. He remembered the look on his face as he proudly strutted in front of his grandfather and Sasuke. With things safer and more organized in the Academy, Taro's mother finally gave in to him becoming a ninja. In fact, there was a lot of peace within the countries, which ultimately led to longer life spans. Still, there were plenty of thugs and rotten apples out there to keep the missions coming in left and right. Sasuke had little complaints though.
Sasuke remembered when his father had many ideas before the Uchiha Clan was wiped out. His mind would always hover over the thoughts of 'what would have happened if they were still alive', and it was sort of a strange bittersweet thing. He missed his family dearly and there wasn't a day that went by where he didn't hold the pendant tight in his hand. Although, each event in his life led up to this exact moment and even though he would never say it aloud, Uchiha Sasuke was happy. He used to think that getting revenge or becoming a strong ninja would create that feeling in the pit of his stomach that he referred to as 'happiness'. Those things never did much expect make him want more and more. At the end of the day, he knew what the good was versus the bad. The pros had never outweighed the cons, so he supposed it should be something he should enjoy.
"Heyyy!" A familiar voice called out to him as he looked ahead. A smile crept on his lips as he got to his feet.
"About time you got here." Sasuke said amusingly as he leaned down to pick up a little boy who was about five years old. His hair was dark blue with the same messy style in the back with long bangs in the front that Sasuke had. His lavender pupils seemed to gleam at Sasuke as he then turned looked behind his shoulder.
"S-Sorry, he kept stopping to pick flowers for me." Sasuke watched Hinata trudge up the hill with an apologetic smile on her lips. She wore a gray dress that came down to her knees with a dark blue cardigan that she pulled closer to her as the wind blew. In her small hand was a homemade bouquet of wild flowers that Sasuke recognized from the pathways that led to their 'secret spot'.
"He must get that from you." Sasuke said as her cheeks went pink. The boy in Sasuke's arms began to squirm.
"Hey, Father, let me wear your pendant!" He said as his small hand grasped it tightly as he leaned up against Sasuke's chest. His childish smile was contagious, but it wasn't enough to win his father over so instead Sasuke frowned and shook his head.
"No, not until you're older, Fugaku." He said and his son began to pout. Of course their child was named after Sasuke's late father and he often wondered if his parents were still watching him. Sometimes at night, he could feel strange presences when they fell asleep. Other times, he'd feel it at the memorial in his district. Even though his dreams had gone away a long time ago, he still felt very connected to his clan. Hinata smiled, and pulled a leaf from Fugaku's hair. Sasuke looked over at her and watched lazily at the way her long hair seemed to dance in the breeze. He liked it, and that vanilla scent he also liked so much crawled up into his nose. Happiness…
"How was the walk?" He asked dully, even though he was in a perfectly good mood. Hinata smiled, knowing the way he was.
"Fine. I always enjoy it." She said quietly. Sasuke shrugged before setting down the child. Everyone in the village had been very curious to know which Kekkei Genkai that he had inherited whether it was the legendary Sharingan or the powerful Byakugan. Some records indicate that the Sharingan was thought to of originated from the Byakugan, but there was not much concrete evidence to support that. In the end, Fugaku had his own unique Kekkei Genkai which meshed the Sharingan and Byakugan together.
Since it was the first of its kind, there was no official name for it yet. In fact, Tsunade was very curious about it often asking questions and she even told Hinata that it could be the strongest Kekkei Gankai out there now. Ultimately it came down to an advanced version of the Sharingan that could not only copy and predict, but it had the capability to seek out chakra presences from long distances just like the Byakugan. Instead of the redness of the Sharingan, it was a light purple color just like Hinata's eyes. Sasuke often worried that their son would have troubles with nosy scientists who were eager to uncover more. Time would only tell as he got older and began attending the Academy next year. As for now, he was at the age where he didn't have much to worry about.
"Mother, why did you drag me here?" Fugaku whined gently as he tugged on the hem of her dress. Hinata smiled down at him and ruffled his hair. The ring on her finger sparkled as she knelt down to his level. She smoothed down his shirt and smiled gently.
"It's kind of a tradition, now, I suppose. It's where your father asked me to marry him. Isn't it peaceful here?"
"Mmm, yeah it's okay. Have I ever been here before?" He asked as he looked around. Hinata looked over at Sasuke who looked just as confused.
"I don't think so…" She said, but Fugaku was already at Sasuke's heels tugging on his fingers.
"Hey, Father, Grandpa Hiashi was throwing shurikens during his training today. I wanna try! Please?" He suddenly exclaimed and began to fumble in Sasuke's pack that was attached to his leg. Sasuke frowned at the sudden invasion, but before he could protest, the boy already had one in his hand. So much for asking, you little shit.
"Ch, be careful with that." He warned, but was curious to see what he could do. Sasuke was all for his son to become a great ninja, but he didn't push it much. His father was always so eager to get Sasuke trained and into the Academy just like his brother. Hinata had experienced the same thing, so they decided there was no rush for Fugaku.
Sasuke's thoughts went back to the stern Hiashi. Ever since Hinata had run out on her ceremony, things had been tense between all three of them. But Hanabi ended up becoming the leader just a few short years later. Of course Sasuke and Hinata's wedding was the first one to be outside of their clan in a very long time so it didn't help the situation with Hiashi who was raised on traditional values. Everything seemed to fit back into place once Fugaku was born and Hiashi had seemingly fallen in love with the boy.
Fugaku stood a few feet away from the oak tree with the shuriken in his hand. Hinata watched amusingly as her hand slid into Sasuke's. He leaned into her a bit as if it was his way of showing affection for the time being. The boy opened his eyes and threw the shuriken which just bounced off the hard bark of the tree. His face fell with disappointment and glanced over at his parents for sympathy. Hinata frowned gently, and walked over to pick up the shuriken.
"Can I show you something?" She asked as she knelt down next to him. He nodded curiously as she held the weapon in her hand for him to see.
"Remember when we were throwing Frisbees with Naruto-sama the other day?" Hinata asked gently and he nodded. "It's the same thing, especially when you have such small hands. Where ever you release it from with this finger, it will aim at." She held up her pointer finger for reference, and then demonstrated with the motions. Fugaku's eyes began to light up with excitement.
"Ohh, okay. Show me!" Hinata's gaze went over to Sasuke, who was watching with a small smirk on his lips. She nodded and stood up. With even more precision than her earlier years, Hinata threw the shuriken at the tree and it lodged itself tightly into the wood. Fugaku looked at his mother with amazement, then back to his father.
"I-I wanna try." He stuttered, something he had gotten from his mother. Sasuke reached into his pack and approached him with another one. Hinata smiled and stood up, giving him some space. Fugaku took a deep breath and did it again, this time taking into account the new advice he'd received. Just like throwing a Frisbee, he released it from his hand. The metal shuriken just barely wedged itself into the wood of the tree underneath Hinata's, but it had at least stuck. He jumped triumphantly.
"I did it!" Fugaku exclaimed and Hinata hid a smile behind her curled fingers. Sasuke smirked and crossed his arms. He remembered the time he taught Hinata how to correct her aim and add more force behind it. She had blossomed into quite the ninja these days, becoming an incredible scout for missions.
"Alright, alright… that's enough for today." Sasuke said which prompted a pout from the little boy. He would never know where Fugaku got so much energy and sass from, but the resemblance between his son and himself as a little boy was striking.
"When do I get to be a ninja like you and Mother?!" He asked tugging on Sasuke's fingers.
"When you start eating all your rice and vegetables." Sasuke scolded lightly and Hinata folded her hands in front of here as their son began to whine about not liking peas or carrots.
"Awww, but Masaru-san doesn't make Taro eat all of his!" He quickly tried to excuse himself, which made Sasuke lift up his son onto his shoulders.
"Yeah, well I'm not the old man so unless you want to become a great ninja and wear my pendant, you'd better start now." He said jokingly. They were all silent for a while, just enjoying the sunset, when Hinata suddenly turned around as if someone had run up at her from behind. Sasuke looked over at her quickly as the breeze whipped around them.
"Hinata." Sasuke said urgently and she closed her eyes for a second. Her veins popped out around her eyes as the Byakugan began searching for anything suspicious. After a few seconds, she turned to look back at them.
"I felt…something strange." Hinata said but she couldn't quite put her finger on what it was. Sasuke frowned and Fugaku tapped on his father's head.
"You didn't see the pretty lady?" He asked all-knowingly. Sasuke's eyes moved upwards at his son in confusion.
"Hmmm, oh! I have been here before." He went on to say. Sasuke and Hinata were entirely too confused by the ramblings for their five year old. "And that lady is always there. Her hair is long and dark, just like Mother's." Sasuke shot a glance over at Hinata who had a surprised expression. She turned around to look back at where the direction the sudden gust of wind came from and the strange presence she felt. It was her… I remember that same feeling I got from her.
Sasuke's eyes narrowed as they looked around, and a peaceful feeling settled onto him. Without even thinking, he smiled and closed his eyes. Mother… Perhaps the genjutsu wasn't completely closed after all. He looked over at his wife, who reached out to squeeze his hand. Sasuke know knew for a fact that his family still watched over him, but he almost felt like he didn't need them to anymore. He was happy. Hinata had single handedly helped him rebuild his entire life—not just his district. She brought out the best in him, if that was a possibility. And now he had Fugaku to pass down the pendant and keep the Uchiha name alive forever. Yes, Uchiha Sasuke was able to find happiness in the end and much to Orochimaru's disappointment, he got his happy ending.