Hebi no Tsubaki - The Serpent's Camellia
By The Ambitious Blank
Disclaimer- Naruto doesn't belong to me. If it did, disturbing crap like this might end up happening. Oo;
Comments- um, it's kinda disturbing. Lots of death involved here. Some kinda lime-ish stuff. Set in a sort of AU, where Kimimaro was not sent to help out the Sound Four.
Dedicated to Iruka-sensei.
Kimimaro was perfect. He was flawless. Bright-eyed, pale-skinned, graceful, deceptively slender, and powerful... just how Orochimaru liked his toys.
Kimimaro's clan had been a war-torn tribe, violent and merciless, and the young bone-manipulator was the last of his kind. He was rare, beautiful, a true find... Orochimaru felt he had stumbled upon the most perfect white cameilla in an entire field of flowers.
He wasted no time in manipulating the boy's mind. He was easy to mold, like a soft clay, slowly and carefully until he fitted the mold Orochimaru had set for him perfectly. He accepted his Gaia seal without question... and refused to ever refer to it as "cursed". To him, it was a gift from his master, something to treasure and leave in full view.
Once upon a time, a camellia grew alone in a field. There used to be flowers around it, but this one was a late bloomer, and the rest of the flowers had died by the time it had reached it's full beauty. Many stopped to admire the delicate flower, but no one stayed for long.
No one, until one day when the snake appeared.
I will care for you, the snake promised the lonely camellia. I will make sure your beauty is of use.
It showered the flower with sugared compliments. The snake's words were trickery, poisonous. But the camellia didn't know, having been alone for most of it's life. The snake quickly convinced the flower that it would keep it's word. The camellia was overjoyed, and promised to do everything it could for the snake.
Kimimaro was utterly devoted to the snake-master, and would do things without a second thought or hesitation. He was, in essence, the perfect prototype. Even those who came after him could not compare. None of them ever came close.
Kabuto, Sakon, Tayuya, Jiroubou, Kidoumaru, Dosu, Kin, Zaku... one after another, Orochimaru's new students failed to live up to the expectation that he had after his success with Kimimaro. Sakon, Tayuya, Jiroubou, and Kidoumaru always referred to their seals as "cursed". They referred to themselves as prisoners, having given up their lives for Orochimaru's cause.
Kimimaro hated that.
He scolded them constantly, telling them they should treasure their seals just as he did. They were a gift of power from their generous master, he said. They shouldn't be hidden behind hair or beneath clothes, but shown in plain sight, like his. They scoffed at him, calling him a "teacher's pet", making snide comments toward him, spreading rumors about how Kimimaro bedded Orochimaru every evening.
Well, they had for a while, at least.
Kimimaro tried his best to ignore the rumors at first. He did well for a while, until finally he reached his breaking point. Kidoumaru had passed him in the hall, going to meet Sakon, Tayuya, and Jiroubou on the other end of the passage... and as he passed Kimimaro, he said something about Kimimaro having been with Orochimaru the previous evening. Sakon and the others snickered from down the hall.
Kidoumaru had only seen Kimimaro's green eyes flash briefly before he suddenly found himself with a bone stabbed through his chest, having missed his heart by mere millimeters.
Kimimaro had stared at him with a cool gaze.
"Repeat that, will you?" He'd asked, softly. Kidoumaru had shaken his head weakly, and Kimimaro had withdrawn the bone sword from the six-armed man.
"Then get out of my sight," the silver-haired boy spat, "before I remember what you said."
Kidoumaru had stumbled toward the other end of the hall, was caught by the other three and carried off.
Orochimaru had seen the whole thing from the shadows. Good, he'd thought at the time. His student was showing violent tendencies when provoked. He liked that.
However, the rumors spread by the Sound Four weren't entirely false, either. Orochimaru did sometimes invite Kimimaro to his chambers, whenever he was bored or just in the mood.
To Kimimaro, what happened in that room was making love. It was a coupling. A sign of affection from his master to him. A sign that he was indeed perfect, beautiful, and worthy of his master.
To Orochimaru, it was a show of dominance, a constant reminder to Kimimaro that Orochimaru was indeed the master. Kimimaro never complained. He always went to Orochimaru ready and willing, obeyed every command and order he was given without the slightest hesitation.
Sometimes their meetings were brief and without significance (at least, not to Orochimaru), and sometimes they fell deeper, delving into the world of ribbons, chains, and blood. Kimimaro never complained. If Orochimaru hurt him, he struggled not to show it. If Orochimaru tied him up, he never tried to escape. If Orochimaru told him to scream, beg, cry out, and plead, Kimimaro would.
But Orochimaru never kissed Kimimaro. Kissing him would have meant feelings. It would mean he returned those feelings of devotion that Kimimaro held for him. Devotion was only something to tie Orochimaru down, something he didn't want. Ties were for weaklings, and Orochimaru was free.
Kimimaro never complained.
The camellia grew bigger, stronger, attracting bugs and small creatures for the snake to eat. In return, the snake never left the camellia's side, and the flower couldn't have been happier.
One day, the snake asked the camellia something peculiar.
If the time ever came, it asked, would you be willing to sacrifice yourself for me?
The camellia hesitated for once in its life.
Why? It questioned, uneasily.
Well, I have devoted this part of my life to keeping you happy, have I not? The snake said. Its words had already poisoned the camellia, and there was only a smaller period of hesitation before the flower replied.
"What do you wish of me?"
"You will be my next body."
Kimimaro's eyes widened, but not in fear. The green orbs were bright, curious... like a child. Kimimaro was always very childlike outside of battle, something that made him strangely attractive.
"Your next body, Orochimaru-sama?" He queried in a small voice. Orochimaru nodded.
"My soul might be immortal, but my body is not. Every few years I must find myself a new one, so that I may survive. You are the ideal, Kimimaro, powerful and worthy of me."
Kimimaro nodded, understanding.
"You know you may have of me what you will, Orochimaru-sama." He said, softly.
I would like to pick you and show you to the world.
The camellia was slightly fearful, but didn't let it show.
You want to... pick me? It asked, shakily. The snake nodded.
You will be mine and mine alone. I want to show your beauty to everyone. They will admire and respect you.
The camellia hesitated again.
But... won't I die, if that happens?
It wasn't to last.
Kimimaro fell gravely ill. Kabuto did all he could to prevent the onslaught of the disease, but it seemed hopeless. Kimimaro was forced to be bedridden, barely able to move. Kabuto was sent off to try and find a cure, but his search came up empty-handed.
Sakon and Ukon cared for Kimimaro in the meantime, donating cells and other vital substances. Still, the disease rampaged through Kimimaro's body, and Kimimaro could only hoarsely apologize for his uselessness to Orochimaru. He insisted that Orochimaru allow him to die, since the disease appeared to be permanent. But Orochimaru refused, on the slight off-chance that there would be a cure found someday.
Kimimaro was his prototype. Perfected in every way. He couldn't give up on him now. If there was a way to fix him, he'd find it. Although it seemed like sentiment on Orochimaru's part, he denied it furiously, both to himself and to his underlings whenever they commented about how much trouble it was to keep Kimimaro alive.
Kabuto was sent to find a new body, in case Kimimaro was not healed by the time Orochimaru needed another. He returned with a boy, a child that Orochimaru had his eye on ever since he'd visited Konoha for the Chuunin exams in search of future bodies.
His name was Uchiha Sasuke. Everything about him was cold, icy... his eyes, his attitude, the air around him. With the exception of his dark eyes and dark hair, he was like Kimimaro in his physical appearance... pale, slender, beautiful. But unlike Kimimaro, he was defiant and fiesty, fighting Orochimaru every step of the way.
Kimimaro's condition improved with some new medicines that Kabuto had developed, and he was able to get up and move about for extended periods of time.
As soon as he set eyes upon Uchiha Sasuke, he didn't like him.
I will try to keep you alive as long as I can, the snake said.
The camellia finally agreed, and the snake plucked it from the spot it had been rooted in all its life, and the snake carried it off, far from the place it knew so well.
The snake's promises began to come true. Many stopped to admire the beautiful camellia, and the snake challenged them to find a more rare and stunning flower anywhere in the world.
The camellia enjoyed this very much. It was loved and cared for by the snake, but it wasn't long before it realized that the water it was given every so often wasn't enough to sustain it. The camellia began to feel sick. It's petals began to dry out, and started to brown at the edges. The snake would often leave it for long periods of time without an explanation, and it brought water less and less often.
The camellia despaired.
"He's a prodigy."
Orochimaru said those words again and again, and each time Kimimaro flinched. Orochimaru praised the Uchiha as though the child were some demi-god, and Kimimaro couldn't stand it. Sasuke wasn't anything special, as far as he could see. Aside from his eyes, he was nothing. He was defiant and rebellious, never subservient and obedient like Kimimaro always was.
It made Kimimaro jealous.
Orochimaru came to visit him less and less often, and was spending more and more time with the Uchiha, training him, teaching him. Kimimaro hated it. Why should Orochimaru pay more attention to someone who didn't worship him?
It made no sense, and Kimimaro disliked the feeling of not understanding what was going on.
Something had to be done.
A black rose.
The camellia saw what was drawing the snake away from it, finally. It was a black rose, a rare and dark flower, beautiful in its own way, but dangerous. Each time the snake attempted to pick it, it pricked the serpent with its thorns, and the snake was forced to back away.
But it always went back. No matter how many times the vicious rose bit the snake, the snake always went back to it, trying to convince the rose to allow itself to be picked. It tried to poison it with smooth words, telling it that it was the most beautiful flower it had ever seen, that all other flowers paled in comparison.
The camellia was angry and jealous, starting to see the snake's trickery. But its illness prevented it from doing anything to retaliate, and it could only watch as the snake slowly forgot about it.
Kimimaro saved his strength, collecting it and saving it. He wouldn't allow this to happen. He wouldn't allow his Orochimaru-sama to forget him.
"I am the ideal... I am the perfect one..." Kimimaro whispered to himself as he rested his body. It had become his mantra. He was the one Orochimaru had praised so much, he was perfect, he was the one and only... he was Orochimaru-sama's and no one else's, and no one else would belong to Orochimaru-sama. He would see to that.
The day finally came when he decided he would make his move. He rose from his bed, destroying the machinery in the dark hospital room. Kabuto immediately burst in to see what the disturbance was.
Kimimaro laughed softly when Kabuto demanded an explanation.
"Silence... brat." He said, coldly.
It was time for him to show off just how beautiful his five-step dance was.
A swift slice of a bone blade, and Kabuto jerked backward, caught completely off-guard. Blood splattered the pale walls of the dimly-lit room, looking black in the sickly green light. The Yakushi boy collapsed in a heap before him, and Kimimaro stepped delicately around him, moving silently into the hallway.
Jiroubou happened to be there.
The corpse fell heavily, the ground trembling and cracking beneath the weight. Kidoumaru burst out of a room to see what had caused the noise, and only managed a choked cry as Kimimaro advanced upon him.
The six-armed body fell atop the Jiroubou's, and Kimimaro continued down the hallway, blood dripping from the blade extending from his palm.
It wasn't long before quick footsteps sounded behind him. Tayuya had followed the trail of blood and was raising her hands to form seals, just as Kimimaro's blade sliced through her.
Sakon stepped from the shadows, with Ukon behind him, both with their seals at level two. Kimimaro stepped lightly, his seal starting to release and spread along his chest as he twirled, his feet seeming to barely touch the ground as he cut them both in half. The bodies made a sickening noise as they hit the ground, but Kimimaro never flinched.
Kimimaro kept moving without so much as a glance behind him, the seal receeding back into it's proper place on his chest.
He paused in front of a door. This was the entry to Sasuke's chambers.
The rice paper door fell easily to the steel-like bone sword, and Sasuke leapt upward, surprised. Kimimaro advanced upon him without a word, grasping his collar and yanking him close. The sword slowly retracted back into his hand, as his green eyes scrutinized the Uchiha's face. They were met with the blood red of the Sharingan, which Sasuke had activated out of pure instinct. They were filled with fear.
Kimimaro licked his lips.
"I don't see what's so special about you," he said, softly, "but I'd like to find out."
His voice was low and dangerous, and Sasuke couldn't fight back the fear that was slowly overtaking him. Kimimaro forced him against the wall, pressing the young body there with his own. Sasuke grunted softly as Kimimaro rocked their hips together roughly, his cheeks coloring.
"S... stop..." he said, struggling to push Kimimaro away. Kimimaro laughed softly.
"Stop?" He asked, laughing, "but why should I stop when you're enjoying this so much?" He traced a finger along Sasuke's flushed cheek. The Uchiha flinched away...
...and suddenly jerked, his eyes going wide.
Kimimaro's sword was stabbed through him, having gone straight through his heart. Sasuke choked, a trickle of blood escaping from the corner of his lip. He slumped then, becoming still.
Kimimaro withdrew the sword with a smirk, allowing the corpse to fall to the floor. He raised the blade, lapping away the blood as the sword retracted into his hand. He turned, giving only one glance back to Sasuke's limp body as he left the room.
"Orochimaru-sama belongs to me, no one else... I am the ideal, I am the only perfect one... and now you see that, Uchiha Sasuke..."
Laughter echoed down the hall as Kimimaro began his way toward Orochimaru's chambers.
The camellia was determined to make the snake pay for its trickery.
The flower sucked as much water from the morning dew around it as it could, and gained some strength over time. It managed to force some roots into the dirt, and pushed toward the black rose. The camellia's roots entangled with those of the rose, starting to slowly strangle it. The rose struggled and tried to break free, but the camellia was unrelenting.
The rose soon suffocated, it's roots unable to draw any nutrients from the soil because of the camellia's interference. It wilted, slowly, and the camellia was filled with a sick sense of satisfaction, and turned now toward the treacherous snake.
The door opened a few seconds after Kimimaro had knocked.
"Sasuke-kun, I told you I needed to talk to you an hour-"
The snake-master's words stopped short when he saw who was really standing in his doorway. His golden eyes narrowed in irritation.
"Kimimaro-kun, I didn't need to see you right now..." He said, his voice tinged with anger. It was the first time Orochimaru had ever looked or spoken to Kimimaro like that. Kimimaro's fist clenched, but he smiled as sweetly as he could.
"Orochimaru-sama, I wanted to see you."
"Then make it quick," Orochimaru said, stepping aside to allow Kimimaro into the room, "I have other things I need to attend to."
Kimimaro stepped inside, looking around briefly. There was a long moment of silence, until Orochimaru sighed impatiently.
"Kimimaro, I don't have time for"
"You didn't used to have other things 'to attend to'," Kimimaro interrupted, his voice soft, "before that brat Uchiha arrived, all you had to attend to was me."
Orochimaru gave him an icy glare.
"Sasuke is my priority at the moment. You know that. Your body isn't good enough anymore."
Kimimaro's eyes flashed.
"Not... good enough?" He asked, his voice cracking slightly. Orochimaru had never spoken to him so coldly. The snake-master was still glaring at him, as though Kimimaro were the scum of the earth.
"Not good enough anymore, he says..." Kimimaro said, softly, his shoulders shaking with laughter.
"Get out, Kimimaro. I have no more use for you right now." Orochimaru pointed toward the door. Kimimaro didn't move, only kept laughing.
"Perfect... perfect, he told me... the ideal body... I was willing to do anything... perfect..."
The laughter continued, and Orochimaru stepped forward, reaching out to grasp Kimimaro's shoulder and force him out. Kimimaro whirled about, his green eyes flashing again. His hand shot out, grasping Orochimaru's neck in an iron grip. He lifted his master off his feet, his eyes wide, crazed.
"...you told me I was the ideal. You told me I was perfect. You told me I was beautiful. You told me I was your prototype, your one and only. You are MY Orochimaru-sama, and now that the Uchiha brat is dead, he won't come between us anymore."
Orochimaru's serpentine eyes widened.
"What... what did you do, Kimimaro?"
"I killed them!" Kimimaro declared with a cruel laugh, "I killed them all! Tayuya, Sakon, Ukon, Sasuke... all of them! I made sure they won't ever disturb us again, Orochimaru-sama..."
The laughter filled the room, echoing off the empty walls.
For the first time in what seemed like an eternity, Orochimaru felt fear overtake him.
The camellia's roots exploded from the ground. Some wrapped tightly around the snake's snout, keeping it from biting. Others wrapped around the base of the snake's head, cutting off its air supply.
The snake's eyes bulged as it surveyed the area around them. The camellia's roots had killed off all the other flowers nearby, along with the black rose it'd treasured so much.
You promised me, the camellia said, its voice full of venom.
You promised me you would stay with me forever.
The snake struggled and thrashed, trying to escape, but the camellia only tightened its hold, until the snake fell still.
The roots slowly lowered the snake to the ground, and the camellia, drained by its efforts, slowly wilted. One by one, the beautiful camellia's petals dropped, its stem slowly drooped, and it fell upon the snake it had once loved and trusted so much.
You promised me forever.
Orochimaru struggled, but Kimimaro's grip was tight and steadily cutting off his air supply. He couldn't form any katas with his hands, his arms refused to respond.
Kimimaro's green eyes never left the golden ones of his master as he watched the life drain from them. They slowly lost their luster that Kimimaro had once loved so much and dulled, taking on a greyish hue. Orochimaru's body went limp, hanging in Kimimaro's grip.
The silver-haired servant lowered his dead master to the ground, feeling exhaustion starting to overtake him... his strength was draining, and there would be no recovering this time.
He sank to the floor, reaching out and grasping Orochimaru's corpse in his arms, drawing it toward him, holding it close.
"Now we can always be together, Orochimaru-sama, and nothing will ever come between us again."
Kimimaro closed his eyes peacefully, resting his head against the soft black hair of his master, running his shaking fingers through it with a gentle smile. He slowly felt his muscles giving out, and laid Orochimaru down on the floor, resting his head against his master's chest. Death slowly took him, and the air in the room became cold and calm.
Once upon a time, a snake had promised a camellia forever.
End Comments- ...eeeh. Alright, so, maybe not as disturbing as I would have liked, but there it is. I'm kinda proud of this one...
My deepest apologies, but I think Kaerizaki is going to go on hiatus for a while. I really have no inspiration on that fic at the moment, can't really be helped.
However, you can keep up with any random little ficlets and whatnot I do by following the link to my fanfiction livejournal in my profile. Go! Join! You know you wanna. O.o