Author's Note: Hmm… I think that I should change the genre. This is starting to be more of a drama then romance. .; ….
Disclaimer. I only own Ayume, Zaku, Natsu, Akuya and Ryu.
Edited by: Black Fox
It has been exactly two years since the incident with Naruto's kidnapping. Sasuke is now eight years old and Naruto's six. But even to this day, Naruto hasn't gone back to his old cheerful, happy self. No matter what they did, he still believes that they hate him for doing things that were not his fault. Oh, the villagers still hate him, maybe even more so. Everyone knows that it would take the turn of the century before they would ever stop hating Naruto.
Two years ago, when Naruto finally woke up everybody was so happy, especially Sasuke. He rushed right to him and gave him the biggest hug he ever gave; Naruto flinched and pushed Sasuke away. Saying he was shocked would be the understatement of the year. Sasuke was stunned to the point that all he could do was gap at him for one whole minute.
Sasuke stared and stared at the younger Uchiha brother, mentally forcing Naruto to look at him but Naruto didn't look at his eyes instead he stared at their heads. What was so interesting with them anyway?! Sasuke was puzzled at the sudden turned of Naruto's attitude. What Naruto said stunned him even more.
"Onegai… Onii-chan, don't touch me. I feel so dirty."
Rage consumed the black-haired boy like wild fire and he didn't mean to put his anger to Naruto, but he did it anyway. Sasuke glared at him and shouted.
That was his mistake, probably the largest mistake the loving brother could have done. Frightened, Naruto curled into a ball and cried.
Sasuke never made him cried before, heck! The boy would probably kill himself first before he would intentionally make his Naru-chan cry. Sasuke would never ever want to see him cry. When Naruto cried, Sasuke felt sadness and hurt knowing he was the one who hurt the young boy..
"Naru-" he tried to call him again, but a hand stopped Sasuke. It was the Fifth Hokage. He turned to look at her wondering why she is stopping him.
"Sasuke, remember what I told you. You have to be very gentle with him. He is in a very fragile state."
Sasuke slowly nodded his head, remembering what she told them before an ANBU informed the adult and child that Naruto had woken up. The Hokage told them that when Naruto woke up, he would most likely believe that he was the cause for their pain and suffering. Tsunade warned everybody that loud noises might make Naruto even more frightens and that they should also avoid getting mad at the boy. She might as well as that they should locked the boy up inside the house and never be seen.
Sasuke knew that that would do nothing but bring sadness to his little brother.
Sasuke walked softly towards the shivering boy on the bed. He tried his best not to frighten him more so.
"Naru-chan, I'm sorry. I didn't mean to shout at you. I'm not angry with you. I was just all worried." Sasuke reached out his hand and gently laid it on Naruto's shoulder. Naruto only whimpered softly as if afraid that Sasuke would stab him.
Sasuke's eyes grew sad, his hand fall to his side. He could feel tears ready to fall, but he refused to let them loose. Naruto needed him, he had to be strong and not cry now. Crying wouldn't help Naruto recover.
"Sasuke, I think it is best if we let Naruto calm down first. Everything must be so confusing for him," Tsunade told the boy softly, seeing that Naruto's reaction caused Sasuke pain. " I think that he'll be better in a little while."
Sasuke didn't argue and just obeyed, leaving the room quietly.
End of flashback.
Sasuke sighed out loud as he watched Naruto play outside in the garden. Sasuke would do anything, absolutely anything, to bring his Naru-chan back to his old happy self. And believe me; Sasuke did everything in his power to convince Naruto that he never once thought of killing him.
Sasuke's hold on his kunai tightened at the mere thought.
'How dare he!! He has no right to play with Naru-chan's mind! He has no right to put nonsense inside Naru-chan's head!"
"Sasuke, I need you to watch over your brother, okay? I have an important meeting with the Hokage," Itachi called out to Sasuke near the front door.
"Hai Otou-san," Sasuke answered, never once leaving his eyes from Naruto. Ever since the incident, Sasuke became paranoid and almost never letting Naruto escape his eyesight.
Sasuke continued to watch as Itachi walked towards Naruto. The boy stiffened at first and Sasuke could see the hurt in their father's eyes, but it quickly vanished. Itachi kneeled down in front of Naruto and pulled his chin up to met his eyes.
"Naruto, I know what you are thinking. I will tell you again I love you. I always will. You are a gift from above to me and the same goes for Sasuke," Itachi said leaving no room for argument. He knew that Sasuke was listening.
"Hai, Otou-san," Naruto answered softly, Sasuke barely heard it. But Itachi caught the reply and smiled gently at the boy, giving him a hug and a kiss on his cheek before going away.
Naruto blinked for awhile seemingly in a daze and then he resumed playing with the flowers after a while as Sasuke continued to think.
Sasuke wanted to go out there and join his little brother, but knew Naruto would just be uncomfortable with him around, always thinking that he might do something wrong that would upset Sasuke. Naruto was always open to him and Itachi, now, he's so fragile. If they even raised their voice one octave higher, Naruto would think that they are angry at him. Sasuke never knew that being cautious could be so damn hard, until now.
Between jugging his school work and training, Sasuke has barely time to spend it with Naruto. Most often, he spends it from a distance and just watch over the boy.
Sasuke gave out another loud sighed. He has been doing that a lot nowadays, sighing.
'When I get my hands on those bastards, I'll tear them limb-by-limb. I'll make sure that they wished they never ever messed with the Uchiha family,' Sasuke angrily told himself, unconsciously activating his Sharingan.
Sasuke had been training very hard so that he could quickly become an ANBU and tracked those bastards down. His urge to become stronger grew as the thought of failing again to protect Naruto. You could almost say the he became obsessed in training to become stronger. He would always spar with Itachi and Kakashi, occasionally, with both, while Iruka take care of Naruto.
Iruka told him once that Naruto opened up a little to him. He said that he didn't like Sasuke to train all the time because then, Sasuke would become obsessed and would leave him alone. Of course, the initial reaction of the boy was to be jealous of Iruka. He was jealous because Naruto first confined in him rather then Sasuke. But later on, he realize that it was a sign that Naruto was slowly recovering and it wouldn't be soon when Naruto would finally start being comfortable with him. Later on, Sasuke trained less to have more time to play with Naruto, but he continued to progress and improve in his fighting skills while with Naruto, he has yet to make a progress.
Speaking of being comfortable, Sasuke wondered how Jiraiya was faring. Just a year ago, Naruto became his official apprentice. Everyone knows that Jiraiya wasn't exactly the calmest guy in the world. In fact, Jiraiya was pretty famous when it came to his temper.
Jiraiya's first two months weren't that great. Jiraiya came to Itachi ranting and shouting about doing something with Naruto and his timid attitude. It was really amusing to see actually. Sasuke never saw the Frog-sennin so steamed before and it really was entertaining.
Their father just sat there with his arms crossed over his chest and looking passively at Jiraiya, while Jiraiya just continued to ranted and nagged until finally all his angered cooled them.
In a way, Sasuke knew what Jiraiya was feeling. It was tiresome to always calm Naruto down when he becomes hysterical over nothing. Naruto thought that everything was his fault and would always apologize while crying. It had been taken in to be cautions and not lose their temper at Naruto. Sasuke found it hard to not lose his temper whenever Naruto would blame himself for practically something he never did.
It didn't help that Naruto is somehow very prone to accidence. It was as if the boy was trying hard to kill himself. Then again, Naruto did try two times a few weeks after they came back home. The first attempt was stopped even before Naruto had a chance to do it. But the second one…. pure anger through Sasuke's body just remembering what had happened.
"Otou-san, have you seen Naruto? He is not in his room," Sasuke asked Itachi panic evident in his voice. When Sasuke had checked Naruto's room to make sure that Naruto is there, all he found was an open room and an untouched bed. Sasuke panic immediately and run to Itachi.
Itachi couldn't really blame the boy since it was only three weeks had passed since Naruto's first suicide attempt. Lately, Itachi just didn't understand what went through the boy's head.
"It's okay Sasuke. Naruto said that he'd just take a bath before sleeping. You shouldn't worry too much." But in the back of Itachi's mind, he knew Sasuke and he had every right to worry.
Naruto was so unstable, Itachi and Sasuke worried every time Naruto disappeared from their view. Tsunade instructed them to watch over the blond without actually suffocating the boy. It was really hard for the two Sharingan users to pull off, but they managed.
Sasuke nodded at his father's answer but the queasy feeling in the pit of his stomach refused to go away. One thing that Sasuke learned as a child was to always trust his gut and instinct feeling. Besides the fact that he has this unusual bond with Naruto that even Tsunade couldn't explain. Right now, his instinct is going haywire. Something was wrong, really wrong.
"Auhhh!!!" Sasuke cried out, falling to his knees, his hand clutching at his heart.
'This feeling… it's the same as before…" Sasuke thought to himself and then his eyes widen. ' He hasn't abducted again, was he?'
"Sasuke! What's wrong?" Itachi exclaimed, kneeling down in front of the boy. At the rate things were going, Itachi would grey before he reached his thirties.
Sasuke didn't answer him; he bolted out of the living room and running toward the bathroom, Itachi trailing behind him. Sasuke slammed the door open hearing in smash into the wall. He surveyed the room, until his eyes rested on the body in the bath-tub.
Sasuke's heart stopped.
It looked like the boy had fallen asleep, well would have if the two things are out of place. One, there was blood on the floor. As for the second?
Blood swirled in the now murky water, small rivulets pouring from Naruto's slashed wrist.
Sasuke finally got out of his shocked state and cried, "Otou-san!!!"
"Oh my… Sasuke, you stay with Naruto. Try to stop his bleeding. I'll go call Hokage-sama to come here. Do you understand me?"
Sasuke nodded his answers, tears already falling down from his eyes. Itachi was reluctant to leave the two boys alone. He's not sure that Sasuke could take care of things in his state. 'I just have to trust him,' Itachi told himself and fled from the house in a fast pace, his heartbeat loudly pounding in his ears.
The minute Itachi left the house; Sasuke took off his shirt and went to Naruto, wrapping his slashed wrist with it. The blue shirt quickly turned into an even darker color as it absorbed the blood. Sasuke was panicking so much, he couldn't think straight.
"Ne, Onii-chan. I'm sorry for causing you so much trouble," Naruto whispered. Sasuke was startled by the sudden voice and turned to look into Naruto's deep blue eyes. But before Sasuke could say a word, Naruto closed his eyes, falling limply to Sasuke.
"NO! Naruto wake up! You have to wake up!" Sasuke shouted, violently shaking the unconscious boy. By now, Sasuke's tears are freely falling from his eyes, blurring his vision. Sasuke felt so helpless; he couldn't even stop Naruto from taking his life. Sasuke hugged Naruto's body, crying even harder.
"Please, Naruto. Wake up. I almost lost you twice; I don't think I could survive if I truly lose you. Naruto…you're my precious person. Please, wake up. Naruto!"
End of Flashback.
Naruto was saved in the nick of time by Tsunade. She arrived looking disheveled and tired, but nonetheless alert and alarm. They never left Naruto with anything sharp or harmful. After a year, Naruto promised them that he wouldn't commit suicide. He said that he would live. Sasuke guessed that Kakashi slapped some sense into the boy. He almost laughed out loud at the irony of it all. Of all the people that could knocked some sense into Naruto' head, it had to be Kakashi.
Sasuke was expecting Iruka because he seems to be in touch with his emotional side more so then most.. Sasuke wasn't really sure on what Kakashi told Naruto, but he heard bits and pieces of it and just put them together.
Kakashi told Naruto that instead of running away from the problem, he should face the problem. The ninja told the boy that he should prove all the villagers wrong. That Naruto was not a demon, but just Naruto. Jiraiya added in the end that he could become Hokage. And well, things just feel into place.
Sasuke returned his gazed back at Naruto, who feel asleep in the middle of their garden. Sasuke just shook his head, and went out to pick his brother up.
'Baka… he could catch a cold.'
Sasuke couldn't stop himself from smiling as he saw the image his brother portrayed. He looked so adorable with all the flowers surrounding him, petals draped all over his body. Naruto's cheeks were flushed, probably from playing around and his hair in disarray.
'He looks like some prince. Or maybe a princess,' Sasuke smirked at the thought. Sasuke would always teased Naruto about his cuteness and Naruto would only blush some more making him even more charming to look at.
Four years ago, Itachi told Sasuke that he would understand the feelings of the villagers when he found his precious person. Somehow, Sasuke could understand them now. He found his precious person and whoever tried to take him away, had to deal with him first.
" Oni-onii-chan, why are we going to the market?" Naruto nervously asked, wanting more than nothing to hide behind his brother to make the staring stop. If Sasuke noticed Naruto's uneasiness, he didn't show it. He has this determined look in his face that promised pure torture to anyone that stopped him from his destination.
"Onii-chan?" Naruto called out more nervous than he was a minute ago. Naruto pulled at the hand that is tightly holding his hand in an attempted to get his brother to answer his question. "Onii-chan?" Naruto tried again.
" Otou-san just told me to get some groceries for our picnic tomorrow," Sasuke finally answer, smiling down on the boy who is about three inch shorter than the older Uchiha. Unconsciously, Naruto frown at that action. Naruto knew that he is short for his age and Sasuke never fails to tease him about it.
Loud murmuring brought Naruto back to the real world. He walked closer to his brother, practically wrapping his arms around the dark-haired boy, but caught himself in time. He started to hum inside his head just to not hear the voices of the villagers, but his mind came up blank. What a stupid time to have a black out. So, Naruto just decided to talk with Sasuke. They haven't done that for a while now because of Naruto's tendency to timid.
"Ne, onii-chan, what's a picnic?" Naruto asked almost an almost desperate tone. Sasuke smiled softly at Naruto to comfort him. " Well, it's hard to explain really. We have it with family and close friends in a meadow or open field of sort. There will be lots of food and we all eat and enjoy each other's company."
" Why don't we just do it at home? Won't it be more comfortable?" Naruto continued to ask, this time genuinely curious about his activity called "picnic". Sasuke laughed at Naruto's perspective, " Well, we go out to enjoy the nature and fell the sun's ray. Besides, don't you want something new to look at instead of always having to spend the time on the same place all your life?"
" Demo, onii-chan, I like it at home. It's comfortable, quiet….and nice." Naruto's voice grew softer, his gaze on the floor to avoid looking at Sasuke or the Villagers. Sasuke's smile faltered, as he sighed inwardly, thinking, 'He has a point there.'
" Have you ever been to a picnic before?" Naruto questioned, his mood changing from melancholic into inquisitiveness in an instant. At times, Sasuke wonders how the boy does that, but Sasuke's not complaining since it is a sign that Naruto is healing from the deep wound.
"Yeah, I have. You were one and I was three, I think. Kakashi-san, Iruka-san and Jiraiya-sennin came with us. It was my first picnic."
" How was it? Did you enjoy?" Naruto bombarded Sasuke with questioned. Sasuke looked thoughtful for awhile. " I guess I did. It was messy at first because you were crying a storm from Jiraiya-sennin's loud voice."
"Ohayo, Itachi-kun, Sasuke-chan," Iruka greeted them as he entered the room holding a picnic basket in one hand. Kakashi entered after him and said his customary "Yo" to Itachi and affectionately ruffled Sasuke's hair. Itachi noticed Kakashi is also carrying a picnic basket.
"Isn't that too much food for only three adults, one child and a baby?" Itachi asked them as he closed the door. " (sigh) Someone invited himself. You just slammed the door in his face," Kakashi answered, simultaneously with an "Oaf" sound was heard. The door was quickly opened as a large white-hair guy rubbed his bruise nose and looked angrily at Itachi growling, "TEME! Itachi! Is that how you treat the legendary Frog-sennin?!?"
"Shhhh! Jiraiya-san! You'll wake up Naruto!" Itachi scolded the man, stifling the yearning to punch him. The proclaimed Frog-sennin blushed and grinned cheekily at Itachi silently saying that he is sorry.
Itachi continued to glare at the man. "I should have expected you to come," Itachi mumbled to himself. " Well, you know me, always wanting to spend time with my three favorite shinobis," Jiraiya answered with a smirk. "And the fact that the place where we are going to is just beside the hot springs has nothing to do with it?" Itachi added with an inquiring look.
" That to. BWAHAHAHAH!" Jiraiya confessed, laughing loudly. The three adult sweat dropped, thinking, "Pervert."
As if by cue, Naruto's loud cries rang throughout the house. "Shimatta! You woke hi up!" Itachi cried. He gave a death glare at the old man, instructed the quiet Sasuke to entertain the guest before rushing towards Naruto's nursery.
"Sa, Sasuke-chan, are you excited?" Iruka asked the silent boy. Sasuke smiled a little and nodded his head. "Too bad Jiraiya-san is coming with us," Kakashi whispered to Sasuke, the boy just looked at Kakashi, not really understanding what's wrong if Jiraiya came. The more the merrier, right?
Unfortunately of the copycat ninja, Jiraiya heard him and punched Kakashi, unable to evade it, hard on the head. After all, the man is one of the legendary sennin.
Iruka laughed at his Koibito's wounded puppy looked. The adults made small talk as they waited for Itachi to come out of the Nursery. Sasuke was just idly sitting there, half-listening, half staring in no particular object or direction. Finally, Itachi came out carrying the baby in his arms and glaring at Jiraiya.
Itachi's glare turned murderous as Naruto continued to hiccup. "Mou! Look what you did. You scared him into hiccupping."
Jiraiya laughed despite the angry look he is receiving from Itachi. "No matter how many times I see it, I still can't get used to you being all fatherly like that Itachi." The said man smiled as well, agreeing in a way. He rubbed Naruto's back to sooth the baby. Naruto's cheeks are a tab bit red from crying and his eyes have a glazy look but cleared once his eyesight fell on the people around him especially Jiraiya because of his striking white hair. Jiraiya in turn looked questionably at Naruto being the first time to see him.
"Ma, ma, we should get going or else will be there in time for dinner," Kakashi commented.
"Hmph! That's coming from somebody who is always late," Iruka tossed back. Kakashi gave him another wounded look, asking silently how Iruka can be so cruel.
End of Flashback.
" Come to think of it, you were a cry baby as a child," Sasuke teased at Naruto, poking at his cheeks that burned red. "Onii-chan! Why do you like to tease me so much? Mou!" Naruto whined, feeling his face burn more at Sasuke's teasing grin. 'Because you look so cute and adorable. Besides, it makes you forget those dumb people's stares and mumbles,' Sasuke thought to himself. Of course, he will never tell Naruto that outwardly.
True to his words, Naruto seems to forget the people who are still staring/glaring at them. Man, they don't get tired to them. " I also remembered that you like to pull on my bangs," Sasuke continued to say to distract the boy as they near the market place. "I do? I wonder why? Your hair isn't that glossy or beautiful," Naruto told him, puffing his cheeks out. It's obvious that the boy is still sore over the crybaby comment.
" And yours is?" Sasuke retorted, smiling because Naruto is finally warming up to him.
Needless to say, the two returned quite late. Not that Sasuke was one to complain.
End of chapter six.
Author's Note: Sorry if it is a little short minna-san. It would be very boring if I try to lengthen it more. Anyway, there will be also a part like this for Neji and Gaara. I want to let you guys know how Naruto became their precious person. By this chapter, I guess I gave justice to the title. Anyhow, review everyone.