Naruto : Desert Flower

The whole floor gyrated with the subtle thumps of music being played by the side. It was, after all, the last get together for all the guests conjured up in the Sand village before they traveled back home. The rush of this year's annual chunin exams had all but died down and everyone honored with the pleasure of being invited to this party was more or less content with savoring these last few moments of luxurious cordial reception before they returned to their meager lives back home.

"You don't look too comfortable, if you don't mind me asking."

"...I'm comfortable."

"Is it the food, perhaps, not to your liking?"

"...No, it's nice."

Naruto sighed, for what seemed like the umpteenth time this evening. It was a given fact that since he was playing host during this gathering, he himself was accountable for making sure each of his guests were comfortable and properly taken care of. But this wasn't how he'd expected to play host, "Listen, you don't have to put up a front with me just for the sake of your grandfather. I won't rat you out, I promise."

His reassurance did seem to have an impact, shoulders slumping, Kurotsuchi heaved a sigh of relief. Flicking a drink from the waiter tumbling around, Naruto offered it to her courteously. Kurotsuchi, apparently not one for formalities when her host himself seemed to have no qualms with her, chugged it down in one gulp.

"I don't really like you all that much,"

Her honest confession made Naruto throat out a warm chuckle, "Yeah, I figured it out a while back you know." his comment earned him a sharp slap to the arm, courtesy of one flustered looking kunoichi.

"Why have you been hanging around me all evening then?"

His blunt question made her flinch, her eyes subtly darted to her back, too subtle for anyone but the keenest of eyes to have noticed. Naruto, did in fact notice it, and glanced back to see her grandfather's feverish eyes trained on her back in the midst of his own conversations, "He put you up to this?" she didn't so much as twitch, too afraid to answer honestly and get caught admitting the truth to a foreign diplomat.

Naruto had indeed been wondering why this girl, one who feverishly hated his guts had been limping by his arm all evening when she could have had better places to be; better people to associate with. Pondering over a solution, Naruto's caught the barest of visages in the corner of his eyes and smiled having come up with a suitable plan to ease up the poor girl's nerves. Offering her a hand, "May I have the pleasure to a dance?"

Looking as if struck by acid, "Never!" Kurotsuchi bit right back.

Maybe he should have offered her ramen instead.

Eyes twinkling with mischief, "Well, I'm glad you feel so pleasantly for me, I'm sure your grandfather will be too once he gets to know how pleasant you are to me." the way her pink eyes narrowed ferociously almost made her look, dare he say, cute. Kurotsuchi instantly looped an arm around his and tugged him along the crowd, straight to the dance floor, "You're the worst." she faux coughed out of everyone's earshot.

"I try, princess."

Reaching the middle of the floor, Naruto settled his palm on the small of her back and smiled when she coiled her arms around his neck. Linking their fingers together, both started moving to the quiet, harmonic beats of the music. Kurotsuchi, being ever the rival, pushed her toe forward and scowled accusingly when he pulled back his own toe from being crushed beneath her heels. Their little battle of feet went on for a minute or so before the girl finally conceded her defeat and let her head be laid down by his hand, her cheek nestled on his shoulder to compensate for the slow music the orchestra had just tuned to now.

"You're an okay-okay dancer."

Knowing this was the furthest extent of a compliment he'd be getting from her tonight, Naruto took it with a smile, "What can I say, I had an awesome teacher." Kurotsuchi laughed lightly, finally feeling relaxed.

"Thank you."

She hadn't expected him to go so far just to make her feel at home. When her grandfather had forced her to make friends with Naruto, she'd feared the worst. There was nothing more she hated than an enemy country's ninja, slap on the name Namikaze to the back and you had a winning combo that was hard to beat in her list of hate.

But he had held her by his arm throughout the evening, taking every curt and cold comment she threw at him with a grain of salt. To think he'd go so far as to force her into a lovely dance just to make her feel comfortable was beyond what she'd expected from him in the wildest of her dream; not like she was dreaming of him or anything dang it!

Why the hell was his chest so plushy for crying out loud?!

Just as the music started annotating the last of it's notes, Naruto took her hand and spun the girl around, earning a squeal of delight from the stone-faced kunoichi before he pulled her back closer to him and lifted up her thigh in one swift movement. Finishing their dance by leaning her back while he pushed his weight on her, his fingers teasingly traced her thigh through the slit in her gown and smiled seeing her flushed scowl.

"Told you, I've got an awesome teacher."

Before she could retort with some sort of sissy reply, a round of applause broke the duo's reverie; only now did they notice that everyone's sole focus of attention was on just the two of them. Kurotsuchi made a show of fixing her gown and gave a bow, Naruto followed suit and both got down from the floor, looking very much worse and under the weather for the wear, "You're the worst!"

"Oh, hush. You enjoyed that dance just as much as I did."

"That's not the point!" she hissed, "We're not supposed to…"

Naruto cut her off, "We're not supposed to what?"

Sighing, "You know, act so kind and friendly…" she muttered.

Naruto rose an eyebrow and crossed his arms, unimpressed, "Why the hell not?!" he asked.

"You were born in the Leaf, Naruto." she explained,"…now you live in the Sand and I'm from the Hidden Stone that despises the both of 'em…"

Cutting her tirade midway, "It's nothing to be ashamed of," Naruto said, stopping beside her with an air of confidence. "Don't just keep thinking back to where the person was born, no one has control over it. Times are changing, Kurotsuchi; and to be honest I'm hoping Sand and Stone will be allies in the future." her breath hitched, clearly caught off guard.

"Allies!" she exclaimed, flushing when she saw all eyes turning to her with amusement, "I'm sorry, W-What?!" she stuttered.

Naruto took a step forward, making her take one back out of sheer instincts. His aura alone was one she had never encountered before - an aura of power, of pure confidence. He wasn't even oozing the slightest bits of chakra or killing intent, and yet, as ashamed as she was to admit it, Kurotsuchi already felt dominated by his presence. "You aren't ready, Kurotsuchi. Not yet, but even I can see you'll be the one who'll be named the Tsuchikage given some time to mature and grow." Naruto honestly confessed, "I want us to be neutral at least, if not more."

Suddenly, for some odd reason, Kurotsuchi found her heels to be an awful lot interesting, "…You really believe I'll be Tsuchikage?!" she whispered in such a small voice that Naruto had almost missed it.

"Believe?" Naruto picked her chin up and forced her gaze to his, "I know you'll be Tsuchikage, girl; a fine one at that!" flashed with one of his trademark fox-like grins, Kurotsuchi found the tips of her ear turning hot and her knees felt fuzzy. If she were to be honest, which wasn't common, she had been doubting her own worth as a candidate to that position ever since she'd seen that raw display of power back in the arenas.

To think, the old man she chewed off everyday, stood on equal terms with these behemoths had crushed her confidence in ways she absolutely did not desire. But here she was, being touted as a perfect candidate to that post by none other than Namikaze Naruto, the man who had the guts to go against the Raikage without an ounce of fear.

The man she hated, and dare she say, respected and idolized from the bottom of her heart.

"Friends," she whispered, pushing her hand onward, "…I'd like that."

Naruto took it and shook it firmly, "I'm glad." he said, actually glad to have made at least turned one adversary into a friendship he could rely on in the future. But this wasn't right, there wasn't anything solid to reaffirm the solidarity to this newly minted bond. Just then, an idea struck him and he rummaged through his back pocket for the item.

Taking her small hand in his own, with Kurotsuchi noting how rugged and assuring it felt against her own manicured ones, her hand instantly curled up into a tight fist from the unwarranted action from the blonde. Rubbing the inside of her palm in circles, Naruto eased her grip and opened her fist before closing it back down to place his kunai firmly in her hands, "Let's seal it with this." he suggested, and Kurotsuchi brushed the cold steel in her palms with a forlorn look. She knew it, of course.

It was a three pronged kunai, "...What's this?" she asked, feigning ignorance.

"This is my treasure," Naruto never ceased to amaze her, "…a kunai with the shiki formula on it. It only works one way, of course," seeing her confused face, he elaborated, "…meaning it only works if someone on the other end pumps some chakra into it. You don't have to worry about me infiltrating your village or something, it is a fail safe of sorts. If you find yourself in trouble you can't escape, and have no one to rely on; just ring me up or give me a call through this." and there it was again, once more his eyes shone with that same aura of dominance she'd been enveloped in before. But the words he uttered next made her very heart shiver. "I'll be there in a flash," Naruto promised, only now noticing the fear and hesitation in her eyes. But this was something she had to decide for herself, even he knew that much; a decision that might very well shape her village's future.

How many times had she heard those cursed words? It was part of a popular saying in her village, after all. The Third Great Shinobi War had left a scar too great to be filled in the hearts of her people with time.

'If you saw the flash, your neck had a slash.'

This saying had been ingrained in her mind ever since the early days of her childhood. It was the saying that had taken a thousand lives in a minute - her mother included - after all. Everyone knew them in the Stone, these kunai knives were hated with a passion back home. But to think these very knives would become a tempting offer to friendship one day, Kurotsuchi had to admit that life had a sadistic sense of humor.

"My village can decipher this, you know." she admitted softly, "I can even call you into a trap and have you assassinated with this," her thumb lightly tracing the treasured formula perfected by the Fourth Hokage; her own heart and mind unsure on how to go about this or what exactly she was supposed to make of this unexpected offer.

Why was he placing such faith in her?

"Then you're very welcome to try, princess."

Naruto's tone was cocky, mocking almost. But this time, instead of scowling or outright biting his head off, Kurotsuchi smiled lightly. She flicked the slit of her gown to the right, exposing her naked thigh and the black belt holding a single kunai to him. Disposing off the prerequisite weapon it held in a trash can kept by her side, she tucked her new and trusted weapon safely in place. "I won't tell anyone of this, I promise, your secret's safe with me." she whispered, fixing her gown back in place. "But why go so far for me? Aren't we supposed to be enemies?!"

Naruto sheepishly rubbed the back of his head, "Why stay enemies when we can be friends?" he shrugged his shoulders, winking playfully. His words marked the end of their conversation as an ANBU came by his side and whispered something in his ear, forcing said blonde to excuse himself from her. Seeing him go, Kurotsuchi couldn't help but murmur.

"Friends huh," she grinned like a cat, "It's got a nice ring to it."

Seeing him stride through the crowd like a lion of sorts, Kurostsuchi let her gaze linger on his wide and firm back for a moment too long. "Were his shoulders always this broad…?!" she hummed, "Hm, I wonder…" Her head tilting aside in honest confusion, she wondered if she was sick or something. Her cheeks still felt hot as a volcano for some odd reason as if she'd just spit out some lava in the aftermath to one of her techniques.

Maybe, the Desert heat was finally getting to her.

Lifeless, wrinkled eyes watched the circling liquid rippling in his saucer, rather blankly. It had been this way ever since he'd come to the Sand, a decision he knew his heart would regret until the day he'd die. This was how it was supposed to be, wasn't it? The likes of a legendary ninja like him reduced to living his aging years as a failure, drinking his years away.

"Is this seat taken?"

Looking up at the annoying voice that had just broken his peaceful trance, Jiraiya squinted his eyes to make sure his eyes weren't deceiving him, "…I've got only one spot left, tell the other three to find someplace else." he grumbled, downing yet another saucer before pouring it full for another round, signaling the waiter for another bottle yet again.

"...How many bottles has it been, already?!"

"None of your damn business, that's how many!"

A small, soft hand met his cheek for an audible smack, one that left his eyes twinkling and mind spinning with the sheer grunt put behind it. "You never take that tone with me. Drunk or otherwise, understand?!"

"Just who do you think you are lecturing me…"

The annoying voice cut him off, "The last person who truly cares about your well being, Jiraiya. Your trusted teammate, that's who I think I am."

"Tsunade, is that you?!"

"Yes, silly." she giggled, "It's me, who else? I don't think Orochimaru of all people would visit you in broad daylight on a whim." the effect of alcohol instantly flushed itself out of his system, and Jiraiya's vision sharpened to see the woman he could never get sitting there in all her glory, sipping on some tea, "Why'd you come here, Tsunade? Don't you have better places to be? Better people to meet in that party?" he scoffed haughtily, trying and failing miserably to put up a mighty front and save some face; at least in front of her.

"Jiraiya, it isn't even time for supper and you can't even count people with your eyes. What's gotten into you, huh?! You're ruining your life!"

"Oho!" Jiraiya exclaimed, faking a laugh, "…Is that concern I hear?!"

"Jiraiya…" Tsunade sighed.

"Well, I'll be damned." he laughed boisterously, "Never thought the day would come when you'd come see me in a time of peril, the legendary kunoichi Senju Tsunade! I must admit, I'm honored!" he stumbled a bow.

It was this moment that the waiter chose to make his presence known, "Sir, your bottle." before Jiraiya's fingers or the timber of their table could so much as touch the porcelain of this bottle, Tsunade snatched the annoying thing away and slammed Jiraiya's saucer right back on the waiter's tray, "Take it away," she snapped, "He'll have a coffee, black!"

Before he could so much as utter a word of protest, Tsunade raised her hand chidingly and shut Jiraiya up like a mother would do to her child. "We'll have a decent conversation like two responsible adults, it's about damn time you came down from your high and back to your senses." even if she was at odds with him, he was still her teammate and friend. How many times had he come through for her in her times of need?

"That's the point, Tsunade," Jiraiya growled, "I don't want to come to my senses."

Tsunade's eyes softened, "Why not, Jiraiya?" she asked tenderly.

"Don't take that tone with me," Jiraiya thundered, and out went the tenderness from her eyes, " I don't want your pity!" he roared loudly.

"Alright," she whispered.

He scoffed, "Fine."

There was a moment of silence as Jiraiya's eyes clouded up in nostalgia, "You know something, Tsunade. I idolized sensei more than anyone in the village," he confessed in a drunken stupor, clearly beyond his senses.

Tsunade hummed, intrigued, "I know."

"That time, when I returned to the village a month before the finals of the chunin exams were about to happen, you wanna know what he told me?!" Jiraiya sniffled, forcing Tsunade to give his hand an assuring squeeze and urged him to go on. It was high time he let this out and finally told her the truth he'd been running from all this time.

"He told me, Naruto had even more potential than he'd seen in either Orochimaru, Minato and even Itachi. Then, sensei even went on to tell me he'd have taken Naruto in as his apprentice had he not been Hokage. You should have seen how he looked at the boy, Tsunade. It was like he was a blood relative of his own." it wasn't his words that surprised her, it was the tone laced with pure venom that did Tsunade's composure in.

"Yeah, he really loved the kid." Tsunade agreed, smiling fondly.

"No, hear me out," Jiraiya intervened, "He said it would be nice to leave behind at least one student who wasn't a complete failure in his eyes!" Jiraiya laughed out loud, and Tsunade was forced to duck her head in shame. How many times had Hiruzen called her back in times of need?

Every time, she'd answered his calls with curses and swears to the village. She knew they ached his heart, stabbed him with pain every time she let her hostility for the Leaf bare boned right in front of him.

But the man had always smiled, even helped her with money related matters whenever she'd needed his assistance in hopes that maybe, just maybe someday she'd come around and see the light at the end of the metaphorical tunnel. Unfortunately, by the time she'd come to her senses, his corpse had already been cold in the grave while the village was left in tatters.

"He told me the kid had learnt a forbidden Jonin technique in a couple of hours," this was the first Tsunade was hearing of it, so sh leaned forward in interest, "I'd chugged it down as an over-exaggerated praise, of course. But he wouldn't hear any of it. You should have seen him, the man looked possessed." before Tsunade could get a word off her lips, "Then, I took Naruto on that trip to find you. It was then that I saw what sensei had seen all those years ago."

"The raw potential, a legend in the making. Kid nearly mastered the Rasengan, a technique that took Minato three years to complete and six months for me to learn in a mere month. He was a diamond in the rough, with the correct assistance I knew he was destined to take sensei's and Minato's place some day then and there."

Her mouth opened and closed a couple of times, and she narrowed her eyes in deep contemplation. This was finally the time he was letting the cat out of the bag, finally admitting the truths, "Then what happened?"

"Then," Jiraiya chugged down the remainder of sake from his old bottle and swiped the drops with the back of his palm, "…Sasuke went AWOL."

Tsunade quieted down completely, letting him push everything out and tell her why the hell he'd gone on and betrayed the boy who he had such high hopes for; the boy who he spoke for with such pride and admiration, "I honestly believed he'd fail, Sasuke would go to Orochimaru in search of power and I'd take him out on a trip to train and keep Akatsuki off his tracks. That was the plan, back then at least."

"Why'd you do it, Jiraiya?" Tsunade whispered, "Why'd you betray him?" she couldn't help but ask the question eating away at her soul.

"Because he succeeded!" Jiraiya thundered as if the devil himself was upon him, "He even succeed where I failed! How the hell could he bring Sasuke back?!" Tsunade's eyes widened, all blocks in her mind clicking.

"You were jealous of him?!" she asked him as if he were ridiculous.

"Of course I was jealous!" he huffed, and she didn't know if he was just drunk or plain old stupid right now, "When he was in the hospital, that Hyuga chick would come daily to leave some flowers. A princess adored him, Tsunade. He had the genes and lineage of his parents; an untapped potential no one could hope to achieve given the proper guidance. You see where I'm going with this, he was a carbon copy of me, just a bit more and perfect and completely in reverse!"

"He succeeded at everything I'd failed. Naruto brought back Sasuke where I failed to bring back Orochimaru. He had the love of a princess, when I failed to so much as get a glance from the woman I loved," Tsunade looked away at that, "…Even the toads liked him more than me and Minato combined. Bunta said he was too stupid and gutsy but they loved him. Plus, he had the makings of a perfect sage!" Jiraiya crushed the bottle in his palms with a distinct shatter of glass and porcelain.

"So, when the villagers turned on him for bruising up the Uchiha, I let them be." a lone tear slipped past his cheek and Jiraiya hid his face in the palms of his hands, "God knows I wanted to help him, but something dark bubbled up in my chest and I just wanted him to take it." he spat bitterly, "I wanted him to feel the burden of my failures, the loneliness of a friend's betrayal and the path of solitude that I've endured on my travels." he made a motion of his neck being sliced and spoke and smiled evilly, "So, I sided with the villagers instead of him and cut off his contact with the toads. Told them that he was a traitor to the village and got his contract completely annulled." he nearly cried towards the end.

"I took away everything from him and left him with nothing!"

Tsunade herself was openly crying now, to think she herself had a part in making Jiraiya fall so far was utterly painful and agonizing at the same time. "Jiraiya," she honestly didn't have any words to explain her predicament right now, "I'm the true demon, aren't I, Tsunade?!"

".…Jiraiya," Tsunade didn't even have enough words left to console him right now. Whether the reason be hatred, pity or remorse she'd never know. "Minato and Kushina left me in charge of their legacy, their baby. Sarutobi-sensei entrusted me with the care of nurturing one of his soldiers and training the village's jinchuriki. He was my godson, my responsibility for god's sake and I pushed him out of his home and kicked him to the wolves!" Jiraiya slammed his fist on the table and webbed a link of cracks in it in despair.

"Why didn't you say something sooner, Jiraiya?"

"What was I to say?" he chuckled lifelessly, "…And who was I to tell?"

Tsunade had absolutely no answer to that.

"You could have told me."

Tsunade blinked, realizing it definitely wasn't Jiraiya's voice she was hearing since it was so feminine. Jiraiya blinked, realizing it definitely wasn't Tsunade's voice he was hearing even in this drunken stupor.

Both turned around as one, seeing a girl with hip length blonde hair straightened out on her back standing there with a white free flowing gown hugging her curves, "Temari," Tsunade whispered in distress.

Of all the people, it had to be have been her.

"How much did you hear?" Jiraiya asked with a wince, realizing the true extent of his actions for the night as the alcohol in his system was all but gone right now. "Enough," she answered curtly, her stance firm and cool. "I came to escort you back to the party, Lady Tsunade." she said calmly.

"Listen, about what you just heard…" Jiraiya started to try and explain his side of the story. But, when he saw her cross her arms beneath her bosoms as her teal greens narrowed in on him, words left his throat.

"Jiraiya," Temari sighed and ignored the formality of honorifics, "I honestly cannot care less about what you said right now. I don't even know what to think about you right now. So, for now, let's just forget this ever happened and return to our lives." Jiraiya stayed silent and let her say whatever she wished for. Temari honestly could have cursed him to her heart's desire and he wouldn't have retorted to even a single word of it. But he knew she wouldn't stoop to do something so low and disgusting. She was above all this, after all, she wasn't like him. She was the girl who held Naruto's heart in the palm of her hands, after all.

"That will be for the better. I suppose," Jiraiya agreed and stumbled by her side. Just as he was about to pass her, he stopped and looked at her. Temari didn't even bat an eyelash when he tried to touch her cheek with his finger, only for her to take a step back and stare at him quietly to see what it was that he wanted. "You're a great girl, Temari." he acknowledged, "You've got the same sass coupled with the soft side Kushina once did. Take care of him for me, will you?"

Temari stayed quiet for a moment, but after thinking about it, "I'll always be there for him," she said quietly, "…But not for you, for myself."

"R-Regardless, thank you."

Temari watched him trudge out of the bar with a firm gaze, but her heart went out for the man whose walk held none of the composure a legendary ninja like him should have held. Just as he was about to leave, "Jiraiya," she called out to him. Said man stopped, and looked at her in surprise.

Temari turned her gaze to Tsunade and motioned for them to come a bit closer, "There's a tradition in the Sand," she started quietly, honestly confused if she should be doing this with them or not. "…Elders are supposed to gift their children with something, anything, to impart their young ones with blessings and keep away evil eyes from the shadows of their children." Temari opened up one of her palm and kept the other one on her stomach, "I've got neither a mother nor a father; neither does Naruto. So, it's only right I get something for this young one to impart him with an elder's blessings." she whispered, looking down.

"W-What?!" Jiraiya stammered, "Child, what child? Where is he?"

Tsunade tugged his sleeve, wide eyed, "Temari, a-are you?!"

"Yes," she affirmed, "I'm pregnant."

"Lord, have mercy on me!" Tsunade squealed in delight, "How long?"

"One week."

Tsunade went forward to inspect her stomach and diagnose her but Temari stepped back, palm still outstretched impatiently, "Don't get me wrong, Lady Tsunade. Naruto may trust you, but you're still a medical ninja from an allied village. You get the gist, right?" she asked icily.

Tsunade smiled tightly, knowing full well what she meant. Being a medical ninja of her caliber, it wasn't out of Tsunade's skill to perform an abortion with the slightest of touches; and she had even seen the girl try and keep her distance in the house without making Naruto realize it. She hadn't hoped Temari to outright trust her, but Tsunade had hoped she at least had a little faith in her. "My gift," Temari asked for the final time.

Tsunade hurried through her blouse and took out her wallet, instantly emptying everything above the denomination of a hundred in her palms. "Thank you," Temari nodded, and turned to Jiraiya with an impatient tap of her foot. "Are you going to hand me something, or not?!" she asked.

As if someone had pricked him with a pin, Jiraiya shivered, "O-Of course," he nearly cried in joy. The news still hadn't seeped in enough, Naruto was going to become a father! Minato and Kushina were going to be grandparents, and Temari was willing to at least let him impart his blessings onto their unborn infant! He slid his hands all over his torso, his fingers tracing the black thread hung around his neck like a feather.

Jiraiya plucked the necklace off, brushing the crimson ruby shaped into a spiral with a forlorn smile. "T-This was Kushina's" he admitted softly, tracing the jewel as if it were the most precious thing in the world. "It's all I have for now, Temari. Please accept it." the girl graciously took it with both her palms and clutched it to her chest with a warm smile.

"Thank you,"

Tsunade cupped the girl's head in her palms and pulled her blushing face down to plant a kiss on her forehead, "Life is a flame that is always burning itself out, but it catches fire again every time a child is born - My Grandmother used to preach me this when I was little, maybe they'll re-vigor a new flame for this child too. It's truly a new era, Temari."

Jiraiya took it as his queue to leave and try as he might to stop his face into wrinkling up while he balled his eyes out in front of two ladies. "Master Jiraiya," Temari called before he left, again, "I'll see you at the baby shower, right?" her eyes turned to Tsunade, "…the both of you?"

"Of course," Tsunade chirped up almost instantly, and looked behind to see Jiraiya leaning by the door with an arm as if he'd just been through war. He started leaving without a word, but both women heard a choked sob, "Jiraiya, will you accompany me?" Tsunade asked again. This was the only chance at redemption he might ever receive, but it was his call.

Tsunade knew it.

Even Jiraiya knew it.

Jiraiya raised up his free hand with a chuckle, "I won't miss it for the world!" with that said, Jiraiya walked out to find himself a bathhouse before he went to a shrine and finally made a trip to the cemetery back in the Leaf. Someone had to give news to Minato and Kushina, after all.

Maybe, just maybe he could redeem his fallen self after all?

Otherwise, hell was what awaited him.

(Lemon ahead, but I urge you read it. It is relevant, but you've been warned.)

White mist covered the room like a thin veil. Most would be hesitant to say that the visibility was favorable, but the man and woman inside were accustomed to this atmosphere and could see without any obstructions.

"Sasuke-kun," a soft voice purred, "…yesss!"

Sasuke licked the valley of her breasts enticingly, slowly but surely grazing his teeth on her skin. The girl winced a little, but continued to moan when her took her breasts and roughly massage them.

He proceeded to take a pert nipple in between his lips, she whimpered when his teeth circled around the appendage while he started biting away over it savagely.

She continued to scream as he kept sucking and biting away at her nipple like a beast while his hand traveled down south, right in between her thighs. Sasuke slowly moved his mouth up from her chest and kissed her mouth, dipping his tongue into her hot mouth as a battle of tongues ensued, all the while three of his fingers tried to work his way inside her.

Clenching her nose in a pinch, Sasuke kissed her so roughly the girl nearly lost her breath. "S-Sasuke…" her whimper made him groan. Clenching the flesh of her neck in his teeth, "Say it." Sasuke grunted.

"S-Sasuke-kun, I-I want you."

Slapping her hard, "What did I tell you to say?" he growled.

Tears of fright rolled down her cheeks, "S-Sasuke-kun, I love you. I-I love you with all my heart, but I can't take it anymore…" she was almost afraid to say the next part but went on anyways, "I n-need you now."

"Your wish is my command."

Sasuke rose up from her slender form, and positioned his member in front of her entrance with one swift movement. She cried out in shock and pain, nearly unbelieving that making love could ever be this harsh. Slowly he started to thrust in and out, in and out. Before, without any warning, Sasuke started picking up the pace and continued groaning.

The girl tried to keep up with the pace, but failed miserably. He was going too fast, "S-Sasuke-kun, slow down please…" she whimpered.

His rock hard shaft hilted with each thrust, hitting her walls repeatedly with an audible smack. It wasn't long before her walls tightened up and she started to bleed. "Ow, Sasuke!" she cried, "Please, stop. You're hurting me!" her wails fell on deaf ears, as he continued to pound into her while she held onto the sheets for dear life and waited for this nightmare to just end. Without even removing himself, Sasuke flipped her into a puppy position and continued his assault with the same ferocity. The force itself was so great that his partner kept hitting her head on the headboard of the bed repeatedly, "I'm near the end."

With one last thrust, he came inside her while the girl collapsed on the bed with a sniffle. Her heartbeat calmed down and she curled up into a little ball as he pulled out of her. Sasuke sat with her, tangled in the sheets for about five minutes before cleaning himself off and started putting on his clothes. Walking out to the living room, Sasuke looked back, annoyed that she was still following him around like a puppy.

"Where are you going, Sasuke-kun?"

"Sakura, it was a good session but you know I have to go. We've been over this a thousand times already, if anyone catches us together it won't look good on me. I've got a reputation to uphold, unlike you."

"O-Of course." she whispered.

"Tomorrow, before leaving try and steer Naruto away from you know who. Make up with him and keep up public appearances, and I swear you'll have proven your love and loyalty to me. Next time he goes off on his own, my mission will finally have come to fruition." with that said, Sasuke left a naked Sakura whimpering in the living room. Little did he know that the couple had an audience waiting in the hiding for them.

Sakura was so engrossed in the pain she felt that she didn't feel any presence behind her until it was too late. She turned around, only to see the hilt of a sword making it's way to connect to the side her temple.

Gaara's time at the party had been uninteresting so far. Apart from making small talk with more of the fellow Kages, there hadn't been anything eventful for him in this gathering thus far. Just as he was about to make his way and talk to Naruto about how the talks with Kurotsuchi had proceeded, a man cloaked in a dark black shroud was in front of him. Gaara didn't need to ask to know that this was the official to his ANBU.

"Lord Kazekage," he bowed dutifully, "Lord Naruto wishes your presence in the back of the Administrative Tower."

Eyebrow quirking up in surprise, "What's that idiot up to this time?" he sighed seeing Naruto walk out with an ANBU just at the same time. Two more ANBU flanked his back while their leader motioned for him to follow him outside, "I don't need so many escorts, you know."

"Lord Naruto's orders, we cannot disobey Lord Fifth."

Gaara walked with the silent trio out in the village before they took to the roof and made their way back to the Kazekage Tower. The ANBU jumped down in the barren lawns of the building while Gaara looked around, unimpressed, "Where's Naruto? Is this some sort of a joke?"

"Not at all," the ANBU leader said, "We just wanted to have a private time with you, is all." his partner chuckled before taking his mask off.

Gaara's eyes narrowed when his eyes were greeted with blue flesh instead of a normal human skin while the man grinned with his shark like teeth as if he'd made some sort of a joke. His own eyes turned to the second flanking ANBU who took his mask of only for Gaara to gaze into the accursed crimson eyes of the ancient shinobi clan.

"Hoshgaki Kisame, Uchiha Itachi," he muttered, annoyed, "…the Akatsuki."

"Oho," Kisame laughed, "You know us already, I must say I'm honored."

"Lord Kazekage," Itachi spoke, ignoring his partner's useless bumbles, "We wish for you to come with us, peacefully."

"You've got some nerve to order me around, in a desert no less." Gaara said, calm as a cucumber. He turned around to look at the final one, "…And you, the third musketeer. Who the hell are you? Identify yourself!"

"Me?" the last one took off his mask and said a name that made Gaara's blood run cold. "I'm Uzumaki,"

"Uzumaki Nagato."

~~~End of Act I~~~

A/N : There is the official end to the first part of this story. It was originally planned to have no more than 12 chapters, but as you've seen I do tend to overdo myself quite a bit. I've tied some loose threads in this chapter, while the rest will be tied in the future arcs so rest assured. I'm sure this will be controversial chapter, but for all those wondering for the drastic plot twists, it was supposed to be this way ever since the beginning.

I won't say anything else and spoil the future chapters, wanted to cover a bit less in this chapter but ended up putting up way too many plot points in it anyways. Forgive me for anyone offended by the rough lemon, but it was, as I said pretty relevant to the plot. I'm a pretty soft writer usually, but if the plot demands it I am one to pull out the stops.

Hope, the chapter was up to everyone's expectations and as for the delay; I was having a writer's block and didn't want to half ass this chapter in the slightest. Ended up deleting six drafts before this one made the cut, so hope you all like it. Leave your flames and reviews in the comments and I'll see you all next time with Act II of the story.

Until next time, keep reading and reviewing.

Ja Ne ;)

PS : Please post your comments in reviews as to how many of you aren't offended by Act II taking a small harem route, since the plot ahead may demand it, not for the lemons or anything but for the plot itself. If it doesn't meet your requirements, then I'll cook something up otherwise; so don't be worried. It is all for a perspective from readers, final decision still rests with me so no worries there as well.