Kakashi held the book limply in his hands, even the semblance of reading forgotten. His visible eye was full of concern as he looked at the boy resting on the bed beside him. Breath slightly short, blood soaked bandages doing their best to hide the damage, Naruto lay in the hospital bed. Kakashi had brought him back, but the blonde had yet to wake. The silver haired shinobi sighed as his mind looped back around to everything that had happened.

When Kakashi had found Naruto, he was barely alive. Covered in wounds, clutching a Konoha headband with a scratch through it, it was clear that the boy had lost. Sasuke was gone. This concerned Kakashi in several ways, including the fact that Sasuke had attacked Naruto with all his strength despite knowing that the blonde was carrying. He was also worried that the young Uchiha was now in the clutches of Orochimaru, and he was not sure how long it would take for the snake-like man to attempt to claim Sasuke's body for his own.

A knock came, but when Tsunade appeared Kakashi simply shook his head and glanced at the boy beside him. He had been asleep for some time now, and the concern Kakashi and the others felt was growing almost unbearable. The blondes' condition was unstable, mentally and physically. His wounds were deep and many, and not even Tsunade could be sure of the condition of the baby, dead or alive. They also feared, what would his mind be like when he woke? He had clearly been attacked by Sasuke, despite how close they had seemed to become recently.

It was with a fearful anticipation that they waited.

-o-0-o-

It was two days before blue eyes finally opened, dull and weak. There was Kakashi beside his bed, but the closed eye and deep breathing told Naruto that his teacher was asleep. Slowly, tenderly, he sat up in the hospital bed, mentally noting each wound, each aching muscle, each tightly wrapped bandage as he did so. Slowly becoming more aware of the world around him, the young blonde felt memories trickle through his mind, slowly and in detail, he remembered what had happened.

Ignoring the state of his body, he had raced after Sasuke, catching him by those falls. Standing on the great statues he had tried to reason with the older genin, but he had not listened. He remembered how Sasuke's eyes were glazed over, how the curse mark had seemed to throb.

Then Sasuke had attacked. Naruto had truly been shocked. He had tried to fight back, Sasuke had been trying to kill him, but he did not want to kill Sasuke. Dimly, Naruto remembered Kyuubi rising up to defend them when the fighting got harder, saving him when he felt his weakened body losing to the attacking Uchiha.

Naruto remembered great pain blossoming in his stomach, and he fell, and Sasuke had attacked. Did Sasuke think he had killed Naruto? Was he only alive because Sasuke thought he was dead, or had the young Uchiha come to his senses long enough to leave his former companion alive and had fled?

The mind of the blonde quickly fixated on the fact that he had felt pain in his stomach, and moved to rest a hand over the blood-soaked bandages, suddenly fearful. Kyuubi had stirred, and using the senses of the great demon fox he felt for the life of his baby, and his eyes went wide.

There was no heartbeat.

The Nine-Tails truly woke now, and Naruto sent out all his senses, trying to find the kit the great fox had made possible to conceive. Then for a moment, all was silent, and Naruto allowed Kyuubi to take over for a moment, hoping the fox might be able to do something if it had control.

It was a great cry that woke Kakashi, that had Tsunade hurry towards the hospital. It made the townspeople stop in their tracks and listen, and brought tears to the eyes of those who understood the meaning behind that sound better than others.

Kyuubi had opened its mouth and cried, and it was a cry of pain unmeasurable, of loss so achingly deep. It was the cry of a parent that had lost its child.

For once, the people did not fear a demon had come, they held no hate for the one who had cried out such a sorrowful sound. They forgot the fear of the nine tailed fox, and they grieved for the one who suffered.

-o-0-o-

By the time Tsunade reached the room Naruto was in, Kyuubi had retreated, silent in its grief, back behind the bars that made up the seal within the blonde. Instead, Naruto sat there, eyes unseeing, silent tears threatening to break him. Tsunade said nothing, just walked over to the young ninja and pulled him to her, feeling the tears finally spill, sliding silently down his cheeks. When she finally spoke, she simply whispered "I'm sorry" in his ear. Apologizing for everything, for placing him on the mission that had him attacked that caused the reaction in the nine-tails. For not noticing something was wrong. For not being allowed to prevent the pregnancy. For not protecting him from the hate of the villagers. For not stopping Sasuke. For not stopping him when he went after Sasuke. And for not saving any of them, not Sasuke, who was now in the clutches of Orochimaru, for not saving the baby, who had not yet known the world, and for not saving Naruto from all the pain.

-o-0-o-

Far away, Orochimaru grinned for Sasuke was in his clutches, and the snake-like man made sure to erase all memories Sasuke had of the baby Naruto had been carrying or its conception, so that the young Uchiha would not feel any desire to return to the village and the boy who had been his friend.

-o-0-o-

When he could walk again, a far more sombre Naruto left Konoha at the side of his mentor, Jiraiya. His trauma was deep, and the blonde spared not a single backwards glance towards his home, simply walking forwards, his dead eyes gazing far, far away.


Disclaimer: I don't think it really needs saying at this point…..

I'm sorry this chapter took so long to write. I kept trying to write it again and again and it just never seemed to work. Then, completely at random, I sat down and wrote this in under an hour o.0

I'm also sorry for the sad ending, but to be honest this story started with an idea focused on the whole 'Kyuubi crying out with loss' thing (I'm a horrible person, I know) and this was how it ended up. This is my first proper multi chapter story, and I hope you enjoyed it in some way!