Title: Jealousy of Ice

Chapter: 1 – We begin with the End

Author: Rekino

Warnings: Angsty stuff here! I don't think it's anything major, seeing as I've never really written anything remotely cry-worthy. But yeah, just a lesson to be taught.

Pairings: Neji x Tenten, Sasuke x Sakura, Tenten-centric, there will be multiple pairings later on.

Disclaimer: Nope, not mine, doesn't prevent me from dreaming though. Belongs to some dude with a long name and great art.

Summary: "I never knew you were such a whore." False accusations lead to problems and wrongful betrayal. "That's all you are. You're his whore." Tenten realises that Neji is nothing but ice. She finds out that jealousy is only but a sin.


His voice is like his eyes, entrancing, knowing and startlingly stoic. He was like a vision of perfection, literally and the like. His talent rose above all others and could only be regarded as pure genius. Perhaps being born within that family of caged birds had caused him to grow up as he did; cold, hard, calculating and uncaring. Or truly it might have been his father's death, which had caused his loss of innocence. Yet nothing could deter from the fact that Hyuuga Neji was ice cold. His personality was anything but touchable. Rather the opposite. He had surpassed his limitations, rising above the rest of us common ninjas whom held nothing but worthless dreams that were now unreachable. He had shattered those same dreams, the same way he shattered my soul without so much as a backward glance. He truly was a demon of ice.
I looked up towards the dark sky, beads of crystalline dropping down in continuous succession to meet my deathly pale face. My body was numb, that much I could tell. I didn't care though. I didn't want to care. The cold liquid had crept into my skin and was sending my body into shocks, but I remained still. My form stood unmoving. Ebony shards of mine gazed towards the heavens. Inside, I think I was pitifully waiting – hoping – for an answer; a sign. At this point I believed that anything would have done me favor. That's why I would always remain sad and alone, for dreamers had no place on this earth.

"Tenten." He called my name out casually. I didn't bother to look at him, knowing well that my determined, hardened resolve would crack instantly if I chanced him a glance. Funny, he was the only one who could make me feel that way. This meant a lot, as I was never one to succumb to my emotions. They were death of reckless shinobi. They were the death of me.

"You disgust me."

Tendrils of chocolate colored hair limply wafted on and off my face when I snapped out of my reverie in surprise. My eyes widening in shock as I registered in my system the implications of his sentence. In a mixture of shock and rage, I whipped around to face him to reply with a snappy retort, only to have his lean back facing me. Pale white skin illuminated by the faint moonlight seemed to create an ethereal glow around him. Somehow I was stunned into silence, none of my usual flair about me at this moment. It appears as if God favored those who were blessed, and hates the damned.

I… disgust… him…?

I demanded, "What did I ever do to you!" My voice, that had meant to be harsh, resulted in failure when a soft sob welled up inside me that I had to reprimand with a choked breath. Hot tears were streaming down my face, cascading downwards to join its brethren. But like the mind-numbing cold, I didn't care. The rain pitter-pattered on.

Tonelessly he carried on, ignoring what I had said, "I never knew you were such a whore."

Those words hurt much more than any wound I had ever received. My heart wept, whilst my soul cried out in rage. My body didn't listen to either however, being too caught up with the over stimulation of emotions that kept piling itself mercilessly onto me. I just stood there somehow feeling so detached. It was as if I was watching the whole scene unravel like a drama, instead of actually playing a part in it. It only served to make me hurt more.

"I never knew you were his whore," he added insult to injury in contempt, his words carrying an unmistakable tone of malicious intent. Slowly, he turned around giving me a look of utmost loathing.

"That's all you are Tenten. You're Sasuke's whore," he said snidely. Each sentence punctuated by unneeded accusations. Liquid ivory eyes pierced into my soul and stole my spirit. Words couldn't be formed. I had suddenly lost my ability to speak. He looked at me in disgust as if I was nothing to him. Perhaps I was never anything at all.

I lost my resolve. His gaze itself was destroying me. He was killing me. I sagged to the ground. Clothes wet against my skin, skin chilled to the bone. I couldn't take any more of it. So I just wept and like a rag doll, became lost within myself.

That was the day I realized that I was like a fragment of china glass. Breakable, whilst he remained of pure ice.


Flashback … 1 hour, 5 minutes and 26 seconds ago …

I dreamt of a world without pain, without hurt, without happiness, without love. Just a simple world of indifference, solitude and closed doors. I woke up in a pool of cold sweat when it struck me. I had dreamt about being Neji.

It took a shattered moment for me to realize where I was. My location being within the confines of an immaculately clean hospital room; its whiteness not escaping me. But the opposing colors of decorated assortments of brightly colored flowers and cards were littered almost everywhere, detracting the colors or lack thereof. The dim pale of moonlight was creeping through the open window, where the curtains billowed in answer to the gales' calling. It took me a second to notice that another was inside the same room as I. My eyes narrowed. I was in a foul mood. I had beaten and been beaten by several chuunins at once who had tried to trespass within Konoha's territory. They died as expected and I now have added scars for my efforts. Apparently someone had taken me here after my battle for wounds were wrapped, bruises still scattered across my body. Who knows how long I have been asleep. Hours, days, weeks, months. My hand was automatically tracing down to my holster, but to my chagrin, I had been stripped off my clothes and my weapons were removed. Dressed in a simple hospital gown with nothing to protect myself, I was at their mercy. How did one expect a girl to be protected when they take all she has?

"Tenten…" I heard a voice whisper. Mistakenly familiar. Alluring and seductive, were just a few words to describe the silky voice.

My posture relaxed. "Sasuke." I acknowledged as I waited for him to emerge from the depths of the shadows, which he did. He looked at me with a wistful sigh; an unreadable expression crossing his face before he stood in front of me taking a mere three strides. Midnight hair falling to his face in graceful strands he reached within his pocket and handed me a small wrapped box of questionable content.

I peered curiously at the neatly done present. Pure black silk wrapping topped off with its own silk lilac ribbon. It was small, probably capable of fitting just within my palm. I gave him a look of query. "What is this?" I voiced out as well.

Shrugging he answered, "A thank you for your help the other day with her." Blinking in wonder, I looked back at the box to have it staring back at me. His silence urged me to open it. Giving the ribbon a gentle tug and unwrapping the present, I opened the box and was greeted with a spectacle that would have caused most girls squeal in both alarm and excitement.

It was a sapphire.

Not just any I might add. Unlike weaponry, my knowledge in jewellery was limited. I was never one who was interested in things that were not practical. Jewellery, clothes and makeup being counted within the impractical category. But even I had to pay tribute to the wonderfully crafted piece in my palm. Cut in a shape of a tiny square encased in pure white gold and hung on a fine chain, it was simple yet alluringly attractive. In the soft shades of moonlight the sapphire winked at me. Its deep blue mystifying.

"I can't take this…" I murmured in reply, orbs of mine darting to Sasuke searching for some recognition, some reason why.

Shaking his head to rid of my line he gave a wry smile.

"Take it. I never would have had the guts if it weren't for you," he stated soundly reminding me of the events, which took place three nights before.

I nodded mutely, my eyes still on the gem. Glancing up at Sasuke I noticed he was giving me a smile of radiant happiness. I never knew he could smile, I never knew he could look that good smiling. Sakura had helped him smile. That was good.

Leaning closer, his face mere inches from my own, hot breath caressing my skin that had suddenly gone cold. The chidori-user gave me a tiny grin and kissed me on the cheek. It was nothing special, just a little peck. Yet my heart began to race and my blood heated up. I blushed and shifted awkwardly still trapped within the sheets of the bed. "Thank you." He whispered softly before disappearing into the darkness of the night. I turned my attention to where he stood before, then back to the stone. Placing it back within the box carefully. I sighed and shook my head.

"I see," a voice hissed suddenly. I shot up from my position in alarm, the movement causing my unhealed wounds to cry out in protest. Neji appeared casually jumping off the windowsill. I visibly relaxed once more.

Sighing, I couldn't help but notice something didn't feel right at all. "Neji." I said with a small smile. The man I had confessed to and who had returned my feelings was here with me. It was like a dream.

He glared at me and I wondered what had made him so mad. Seconds passed as he laid his back to rest onto the wall with a frown. Clucking his tongue in impatience, he crossed his arms over his chest and stared at me. "I didn't know you and Sasuke were," he paused as if searching for the right word to describe what he wanted to say, "intimate." I tilted my head in confusion.

Me and Sasuke... intimate...?

In suspicion I arched an eyebrow at my fellow teammate. "Neji are you drunk?" I asked in a condescending tone. He remained glaring back, seemingly undaunted by my inquiry.

"I saw," he said in an all-knowing way. My brows furrowed in total confusion.

Deciding to play along, as nothing was better to do, I pierced Neji's gaze with my own and with a low guttural sound from my throat asked, "Saw what?"

That was my mistake you see. To probe him. To probe further. Maybe he thought I was stringing him along, which in a way I was doing, not however in the way he thought. Definitely not.

With a curl of lips and a sneer that would sent most ninjas running, he was at my side in an instant. Grabbing my wrists in a tight hold behind my back. He practically snarled. "I saw him kiss you." My eyes widened in understanding. That was when it struck me. Neji whom had arrived from the windowsill that was opposite the door. Sasuke whom was near the door, so when he leaned in closer to kiss my cheek, Neji must have thought he was kissing me on the lips…

Oh god.

My mouth sputtered excuses. "Neji! It's not what you think!" That was when he laughed. A low hollow laugh with absolutely no humour whatsoever. I shivered with fear. So empty, so hollow, so Neji.

"Is that what you say to all men, Tenten?" I remained silent. Those pale orbs of his striking some cord within me to not answer. "All the men whom you confess to and you kiss?" I shut my eyes as if to block out the daggers that were piercing me.

I whimpered like a wounded animal. "Neji…" It was pitiful of me to act like that. But I couldn't think, I couldn't breathe. But like Sasuke, he too disappeared, but not before seizing me by the back of my neck, his hold tightening and with those eyes of his, he leaned forward to give me a brutal kiss. Searing, sweet, sin.

So throughout the night, I laid there, staring up towards the ceiling in utter fascination. Dimly through my ears I could hear the beginnings of a slow rain outside. I could feel him. He was still there, waiting, watching. So I got up and dressed into my normal clothes, not bothering with my hair.

I had been ripped off my dignity and my spirit by one I had once acknowledged as my most trusted companion, my love and my best friend, now no more. Nothing could be worse.

I held my head up high as I jumped lithely out of the window. Landing gracefully on the ground. I looked up to meet shards of ice cold white. The rain continued to fall harshly.

Is this what I get for helping out Sasuke with Sakura? For realizing from my experience with the two that I should tell Neji how I felt? All of which I unwittingly did. That was my mistake.

Jealousy is truly a sin. Neji is nothing but ice.

/ TBC …


Fic notes;

The point of this chapter is that Sakura and Sasuke have an established relationship. They got together after Tenten helped convinced Sasuke to ask her out, or something like that. That was three days ago. The next day, Tenten realizes – after seeing the new couple – that she should confess to Neji, who she always liked. So she does, and he says he likes her back. The day after that however, she kills a couple of ninjas who are trying to infiltrate Konoha but not without getting hurt. She is later taken to the hospital by someone.

Basically this is a story about misunderstandings, broken love and jealousy. Will there be a happy ending? I don't know.

Acknowledgements;

Thanks so much to Aventri, who gave great advice on certain aspects of the story. He was really sweet about the whole thing. You flatter me way too much! But thanks! I appreciate the effort you put into going through the whole thing!

Note;

God. This was such angsty stuff. I almost cried while I wrote this. I can't EVEN believe I wrote this! ARGH! -beats head on a windowsill-. Should I continue this? I like it as a one-shot, but it's hard to pick up after… Oh well, we'll see. If you like it I'll continue.

Take care. Reviews, criticisms are greatly appreciated.

Rekino