Prologue

I remember when I met him. It was six years ago. I was a fourteen year old girl still finding herself among various coming-of-age obstacles including youth rebellion, puberty, and the weight of the future. Struggling under the recession, the Elders had me transferred to a public school. I entered an unfamiliar, scary territory with both fear and hope. Entering high school, I told myself that I would be different: a confident, easygoing, friendly, and cool Hinata. And maybe then, I'll find friends. Maybe then, I'll find someone to love me.

During lunch on the second week of school, I met him: a brown hair boy with a goofy, beastly smile and geometric, red facial tattoos. He sat next to a silent, aloof, and peculiar boy in the most suspicious attire who spoke in riddles. They were childish and ridiculous. I found them annoying yet delightful. I ate lunch with them for the rest of that school year.

That year was a year of newfound friendships and heartbreak. My hopes for a boyfriend were crushed; hard as I try, I was constantly met with a sympathetic rejection. I grew tired of this game of courtship, if I could have called it that, and directed my energy into my studies and responsibilities as a Hyuuga.

I excelled in both. My diligence was fruitful in my studies; earning me the rank of being an honor roll student. Training my kekkei genkai not only improved my reputation in the household, but also helped me find myself as a person. I started to realize my fighting performance reflected my low self esteem, and as a result, I worked to improve myself both mentally and physically.

As I immersed myself more and more into these rewarding activities, the existence of those two boys I ate lunch with last year diminished. I even forgot about them. It was not until a few years later that I noticed him, really notice him.

And I will always regret not seeing him sooner.