Part 11


Embrace: to embrace something is to contain it within.


Voices, angry and load, and very familiar to her conscious was the first thing she heard as soon as she came to. That an argument was going on very close to her was not a strange thing but it was usually in polite words and not more than a mildly elevated volume, which was she was shaken back to reality by what was happening.

"SHUT your traps up, and NOBODY leave this room, or some pretty silver eyes will roll up heavenwards."

She opened her eyes, only to find herself staring at a dark space, which she quickly recognized as the underside of her dresser. She pushed herself up and away from it. Coughing up the rusty tasting liquid that was regurgitating up her throat, she wiped her mouth with the sleeve of her shirt.

Looking down her neckline, she found brownish colored spots of dried blood, just how long has she been out.

"Oh," Sakura said from the door way. "You're up fast; I was just about to try moving you to the bed."

"How bad?" she managed.

Smiling reassuringly, the other girl crouched beside the other girl. "You'll be fine. I stabilized your system and your bleeding was minor but you gave Hanabi a scare. She thought it was Neji's doing. Well, she still thinks it's his doing."

Her eyes widening at the memory, Hinata clasped and tugged at Sakura's skirt. "She activated his seal, didn't she?"

"Yea, nothing serious" Sakura winced, "but he'll definitely be grumpier all next week at least."

"Sakura, do something for him." She pushed her friend towards the door.

"No, no. let's get you settled first." Sakura stood up slowly, grasping her arm. "How about a shower and a change of clothes, can you stand up?"


"He's fine. A headache won't kill him and his vision will fix itself spontaneously."

She stood up with little help, but accepted it anyways for both their peace of minds. Walking into the bathroom, she coughed again, turning her head away as not to offend her friend. After she sat down on the covered toilet seat that Sakura pulled it down, and watched her friend start to fill the bathtub, she sighed tired.


"Eh?! What is?"

"This birthday."

Her friend just laughed, as if she was trying to make light of this, as if she was telling her she should be hurt, or at least she shouldn't hurt this much over something so trivial.

"Why are you here anyways?"

"I wasn't very far away when I was called back."


She smiled and dipped her fingers into the hot steaming water that was improving her breathing just a bit but something was still pressing dully over her chest.

"Leave," she said as she splashed her friend. "And take my sister with you, I can do this myself."

"Don't worry, Hinata. It's your birthday, I'm sure you'll get a good gift from god."


The Echo was mystic, like a prayer. The sound of being underwater was comforting as if the world beyond the surface of her bath water doesn't exist. Her troubles seemed illusory. No awkward explanations and no fear of things getting out of control.

But she knows that she won't be able to stay under for long.

She knew that it was her fault not ending things properly with Naruto before, not that they ever had any emotional or physical relationship going. But she should have found closure before she was married. Naruto had considered her no more than a friend, a good one, but still just a friend. And in her worst moment of disappointment, when she confessed to him her weakness and love, he had smiled and he given her his necklace as if to proof that he's going to be her support until she was stronger or had found someone else.


Every time she remembers this, she wants to disappear.

She came up for air than submerged again. She felt a bit of pain in her chest for a moment before it disappeared.

That was yet another thing to worry about. Should she tell him? About her how unhealthy she could get? No, she won't how will he react to that? Anger? Worry? Guilt?

Whatever will it be, she doesn't want to face it. He might get angry that the way she is now, She won't get stronger with all the training he was pushing into her and if she told Neji…

She was suddenly yanked by arm. Surprised, she gasped which caused her to inhaled water. She coughed twice, and tried to brush her wet hair out of her eyes.

"Eh?! …*cough* …What?"

She looked about her, for the intruder, although she already knew who it was. She started to pull her arm away from his tight grip, but stopped when she became aware of the look on his face. She stared back, hesitating to say something that might rub him the wrong way. He let her arm go and stepped back once, as if he was retreating from her person space.

He looked…

"What's this?" He said, mention in her general direction but before she can say anything. "Are you trying to drown yourself?"

"What?! " she exclaimed in a squeaky voice. "No!"


He clinched his teeth, grunted in annoyance then left the bathroom, leaving the door open. She stood in a hurry to chase after, causing her to splash some water on the floor. She pulled her blue bath robe on with swiftness and followed him into the room but stopped. He barely glanced at her before he gave her his back and sat down on the bed. He leaned forward with his elbows on his knees. He was looking at his feet, thinking.

About killing her, no doubt, or at least beating her mercilessly.

She debated with herself about talking to him. Even if she opened her mouth, she was sure nothing that made sense would ever come out right away. She wanted to pacify him, to ask him to forget this dreadful day and to apologize but she can't really hope to make a sound argument with her being naked beneath her what she was wearing.

She walked towards him, or actually towards the dresser, slowly, to appear almost casual. Her back was facing him; she was leaning down on the floor digging through the open dresser. She almost let out a curse when she noticed that she was searching through his clothes. She pulled a big shirt out, unfastened the belt and raised the shirt over her head before taking the robe off.

He enclosed her arm again.

She dropped the shirt and turned slowly, giving him her attention. She saw the tiredness on his expression and the forced smile. She was aware of him pulling her towards him and she let him. She stood up, standing between his legs. He studied her face for awhile, no longer smiling, before he slipped her arms around her and placing his bandaged forehead on her bare chest.

Unsure of how to react, she stood still then embraced his head and kissed his hair. He flinched, and then tightened his arms around her.

"Please," he whispered against her stomach, "Please, forgive me."


He was feeling guilty…

"Of course…Neji."




Three years…

Three freaking years …I just hope u like it and not spit on my face instead.


I know I'm suppose to let my Beta review it first…but I couldn't contain my self…

I'll also be fixed the crap that was butchering the previous chapters…(I have a 2 weeks vacation so I'll be tackling the keyboard)

I really hope you for taking so long…some of u got a bit pissed and I know I shouldn't be making excuses but a couple of deaths in the family have put me under the weather and I just couldn't do it…u won't believe how many drafts were there …before this 1…
again thank u