Disclaimer: I don't own.

The Obligatory Author's Rant: Reading anything FoR that comes my way has been a guilty pleasure for years, but this is the first time I've writte anything in this category, so please be merciful. Any kind of comments is welcome.

Also, I've only watched the anime, haven't read the manga, sadly. On with the fic.


by onescape

Of the two of them, my sister's mirror image is the girl; she is the woman.

And a dangerous one at that; one that hasn't tested even a minute part of her power yet...doesn't even know yet she has it. She is what the French would call a femme fatale in the making, something I could, would call her, if I didn't loath so much to use such a delicate language in relation to a creature as far from delicate as possible.

Although, despite the general opinion, I do not necessarily thrive on delicacy. It's far too often coupled with weakness, dangerous weakness. I have only ever truly enjoyed it in one person. She is dead now.

This one is different. The guise of giggling, heart-shaped, wide-eyed innocence schoolgirls are so prone to using in order to hide their breasts and hips and expanding minds is especially thin on her. Barely there, just for her to blend in, and mostly she doesn't even manage that. When she thinks there's no one else around, she ceases the frantic jumping and chattering, a natural confidence infusing her body. She is quiet, at ease with the world, so very different from the teenaged girl she usually appears to be. And nobody sees this unknown woman, not even her closest friends who claim to know her so well do notice she is there underneath the boy-shorts and tanktops. She's hers alone.

Watching her I often find myself wondering what – who is on the mind of this woman.

I'm afraid I know.

I keep an eye on her, at all times. She is the best litmus ever. The moment I saw her enter the ice-cream parlor with that damn stupid grin plastered on, I knew the Uruha were back in town. He always comes to see her first.

Oh joy.


She plays her surprise off, looking around for the rest of the Hokage inconspicuously. Funny how no enemy can catch her unprepared like that. Of course, she thought I'd already gone home.

"Oh... hey, Mi-chan."

I don't really despise that nickname as much as I make it seem. You know the line, a rose by any other name... Yes, I do have a sense of humor. Gods.

All traces of her unguarded grace have vanished by now. She stands there like an awkward little girl.

"This is a very stupid, very foolish thing you're doing," I intone very slowly for that little girl she's playing.

"What are you talking about?" At least she's not stuttering. Nice.

"You know what I'm talking about, Kirisawa. You want to do stupid and foolish? Fine, do it at will, when the results concern you only. But this is all of us at stake here."

She starts laughing."Hey, you using 'us' as a reference, that has to be a first ever, right?"

"Stop trying to divert my attention. It's not working." I feel my patience draining at an alarming rate. Dealing with her does that to you, usually.

She drops the pretense surprisingly fast.

"So? What are you gonna do? Drag me home kicking and screaming, pound your truth into me, or what?" she says, stepping up to me, all traces of mirth gone, her face set in stone. The streetlamp casts strange shadows across her face, making her look like a kabuki mask.

I'm silent. It's the silence before a storm, but she doesn't seem to care.

The corners of her mouth curl with impatience.

"Look, I've got no time for this. Gotta go." She snaps, turning on her heel.

The next moment, her back hits the wall hard, so hard that dust and drolling plaster fills the air. When it'settled, shewiggles her chin as if attempting to look at the hand around her neck.

"So," I say."Now listen, little girl." I'm lying in that aspect, because she'sanything but. She'll never know, though.

"You're in love and all that tripe. I know." Her eyes show mild surprise at this. What, did she think I was deaf and blind? She's paying attention now, though.

"You think he's your shining knight. But he's first and foremost a ninja."

"But when he finds out – "

"He knows who his master is," I interrupt the nonsense, "And his loyalty lies with him still. The list of his priorities goes exactly like this," and I lean closer at this, so close I can feel her ragged breath on my face. Her eyes are dark and furious, but she's listening.

"First, Kurei. Second, you." I watch every word hit her like a slap. Good. That was the purpose. "Now nod if you got my meaning."

"Let – let go. Hurts," she chokes out. She's bluffing, but she's good, so I humour her.

She raises a hand to rub at her neck, then strikes like lightning. I barely intercept the knee aimed for my groin. My fingers clench convulsively around her naked lower thigh, just beneath the hem of the skirt of her uniform. It must hurt enough to leave bruises, but she doesn't even flinch. Her skin is slick with perspiration. I slide my hand off slowly, giving her a way out.

She lashes out with her fist, and I pin her to the wall again. With or without madougu, I'm stronger than she is. She probably hates the feeling. She's breathing harshly, the gusts of hot air hitting my collarbone at irregular intervals.

"You,"she spits out hatefully, raising her head and looking me straight in the eye. "You. Jerk." Her upper lip is beaded with sweat, heat rolling off of her in waves and soaking through my shirt. She squirms against me, exhaling her impatience. Because she does, and yet doesn't know what she's doing, I let it be.

I school my features into neutrality and take a step away from her.

"That doesn't make me a liar." I realize she can hear the not-quite-a-smile in the way I speak, when the one eye unobscured by dark, dark hair blinks a few times in confusion.

There's a woman standing there at the brick wall, leaning on it heavily, but with her chin stuck out at a defiant angle; eyes gleaming; determined, and flushed and tousled in just the right way. She also looks a bit like she's holding back the tears to be shed as soon as I'm out of sight.

Seeing that my work is done here I push my hands into pockets and turn to go.

"What, you're really not gonna drag me home? Or stalk me?" She calls after me. If she only knew how much she sounds like a woman scorned.

My back towards her, thus grinning faintly, I raise a hand in way of greeting.

"You do have a brain. I trust you to use it for once."

Of course, I do turn to watch as she leaves in the opposite direction, head hung low in thought. Her focus on something else, she instinctively moves like a wild animal, fluidly, confidently; still cautious.

She doesn't even know. She doesn't know, the silly bint. No use giving her ideas, though. With a certain glee I anticipate the day she'll know all about herself.