CHAPTER 4:

LET ME

Author: okay, well I decided to update "I will be there". Hms…don't really noe why I just had this urge to update it. x its been quite a while tho. O.o I hope you guys like this chapter.

He was a fool, Neji was.

For the first time in his life, Neji feared for someone else's life. And it was very frightening. It wasn't the same feeling that he felt when his father died. That time, he knew he couldn't have stopped it. This incident was different. He could've stopped it but he didn't. He was too selfish and ignorant at the time…

-

That day, Tenten and Lee both came to pick Neji up. The day was like any other day before Neji was given the job to protect Hinata. That day, Neji could smell the moisture in the air. It was going to rain.

As the three were walking, Tenten spun around so that she was facing the two. A large smile rested on her lips. "This is a great day to train."

"Hai. It is, Tenten." Lee agreed. "Don't you agree, Neji?"

Neji shrugged. "I suppose so." Something disturbing had caught Neji's mind. The feeling of two powerful chakras nearby. They were very familiar and Neji soon realized who's they were. Naruto's and Sasuke's.

"Neji, what's wrong? You seem troubled." Tenten asked worriedly.

"Iie. Its nothing." He looked away. The chakra was immense and the two's powers were almost of the same power except Neji could tell who's was stronger; Naruto's. Not too soon after, Neji heard a loud explosion where Naruto and Sasuke were. Tenten and Lee both turned their heads to the alarming sound.

"What was that?" Tenten asked.

"I don't know. Should we check it out?" Lee asked. He looked towards Neji.

"…No." he finally answered. Neji hoped it wasn't what he was thought it was. And if it was, it would be none of their business to look into it.

"What do you think it was, Neji?" Tenten asked.

"I'm not sure…but I believe it was a fight among companions."

"A fight among companions?" Lee said confusingly. That made no sense at all to him.

"Forget it. Let's just go." Neji said. His voice was cold as always. His comrades followed behind him.

"So, how's Hinata been since the last attack?" asked Lee curiously.

"She's been good."

"You know, you seem kinda cold with her. I thought that after your fight with Naruto in the chuunin exams you'd at least stop hating her." Lee remarked.

"I don't hate her." Neji lied. It was true that after his fight with Naruto, his hate for Hinata died down a little but to say he didn't hate her anymore was just a lie.

"You sure act like you do." Lee said in a low voice. Neji glared at Lee. Lee didn't know anything.

"Let's go deep into the forest to train." Tenten said happily. "That way we can get more room to train." Everyone agreed. When they arrived at their training spot, the three individually practiced on what they needed to train on. Tenten, as always, practiced her aim with her kunais and shurikens. Lee practiced his taijutsu and Neji perfected his unperfected moves as well as his byakugan.

Something again troubled Neji. His byakugan had tracked a person with an unusual chakra pattern. It was something that he had seen once but Neji couldn't quite figure out where. Perhaps it was just another shinobi training. Neji didn't think much of it until he noticed that three more people behind that person appeared.

One was a chubby one, he was quite fat and he lagged behind the others. The next one was smaller then the others and was a female. Another one had a bulge behind his head and the odd thing was that chakra also flowed within the bulge. There was nothing odd with the three for Neji was sure he saw some shinobis like that before. The only thing that made him worry was the shinobi in the middle. Perhaps Neji was imagining it but he saw the unbelievable. The shinobi had six arms. Neji was sure now that he never saw a person like that in Konohagakure.

"Tenten, Lee, I'll be back. I'm going to…explore the area for a while." Neji said, making the quick excuse. He soon left and quietly followed the four shinobis. They were headed straight for the village.

"Lee, isn't there something strange about Neji? We've trained in this area for a long time. What does he need to go exploring for?" Tenten asked.

"It's probably an excuse. Maybe he needs to go to the bathroom." Lee said, holding back a laugh.

Tenten was disgusted with Lee's "humor". "Lee, you're so idiotic." She said, irritated.

Neji kept his byakugan activated as he followed the four. Something was definitely odd with these shinobis.

"Kidoumaru…I think someone is following us." Said the fat one to the six armed one.

The spider-like shinobi turned his head around and his hitai-ate became visible to Neji. "I don't see anyone, you idiot." He said, his anger flourishing at his comrade. "You've been such a nuisance on this mission, Jirobo!" The fat one remained silent.

Neji stopped dead in his tracks, his back against a tree. He held his breath in for a moment incase the spider shinobi noticed that his teammate had been right and there was someone following them. When Neji realized that they had left already, his shock kept him silent. Those weren't Konohagakure shinobi. They were Sound-nins; the same one Orochimaru was. What if they were preparing another attack on the village? Neji hurried back to Tenten and Lee.

-

Hinata woke up that morning to an empty house. Her father wasn't home that day and neither was Hanabi; something that Hinata wasn't new to. It was normal to be alone in the house some days and oddly, sometimes she didn't mind. Being alone left Hinata to herself and it allowed her to do a lot of self-reflecting. It helped her find an inner self that was strong. But sometimes, Hinata learned that loneliness was not something that you could beat. It was always there and at times you could push it away but that was only temporary. It was something that couldn't be erased and it would always come back. It was undefeatable.

And then Hinata thought about Neji. She wondered what he was doing. Hinata sat on the edge of her bed as she put on her usual beige colored jacket. She wasn't really in the mood to train today and she felt unusually tired. Hinata got ready and went outside. Maybe she could just hang out with Shino and Kiba but who knew what they did on spare times. Hinata didn't really want to know what guys did and she wouldn't really be interested.

Hinata decided that she would just train, even though she didn't want to. It would kill time and it would help her improve. She went deep into the forest that day, something she usually never did unless she was with Kiba or Shino. It wasn't that she was scared or could easily get lost but because that area was more for team training, not individual. It didn't really matter though and she decided to just go.

"Byakugan!" Hinata activated her byakugan and searched through the forest for any other ninjas around. There was none near here and Hinata decided that it was a good place to train. No one would bother her here. It wasn't until a few minutes that Hinata got set up to train when she heard the footsteps. Two people…no four. She turned around. "Who-who's there?" she asked.

"Look. A Leaf nin. A young one too." Smirked a loud voice.

"Should we let her go?"

"No. It's too dangerous. It'll destroy our plan."

"Yes that's true. Let's get her."

Hinata shifted her feet into a fighting stance. If it was a battle they wanted, then they would get it.

"Look, she's already getting into a fighting stance. And she was the byakugan too." An ominous laugh remained in the forest and all was quiet. Hinata stood ready to attack her enemies. She looked for them with her byakugan, but by the time she found them, they already attack.

They threw four exploding kunais behind her. Hinata turned around and dodged them, countering with a few kunais herself. They revealed their position! She thought to herself. Hinata could feel more kunais being thrown to her but luckily she dodged them all. There's too many…

"Let's play with her a little more."

"No, Kidoumaru. We don't have much time. Just kill her already."

"Fine." A spider like shinobi stepped out from within the trees. "I'm honored to fight a Hyuuga member. Funny, really. I heard they were incredibly strong but you're nothing special."

Hinata narrowed her eyes. Six arms... "Let us fight."

"This will be quick, I suppose. Not much fun fighting a worthless pawn like you."

Hinata had heard that somewhere. A worthless pawn... she thought to herself. Neji-niisan…

"You don't have time to think to yourself, little girl!" he yelled. He ran quickly to Hinata, grabbing her arm.

He's quick! She thought to herself. Hinata slapped his arm around. "Juuken!" she yelled, attacking him in his chakra flow areas.

The shinobi backed up, coughing out blood. "That's all you've got?" he said pathetically, wiping the blood off the edge of his mouth with his hand. "Guess you're nothing special." He laughed.

Hinata bit her lip. He didn't react to the hit much. Again…I'll try again… "Juuken!" she ran to him again, hitting him in the stomach. Nothing. It had no effect.

"Hurry Kidoumaru!" yelled one of his comrades in the trees.

"I guess its time to end you're life, little girl." He said amusingly. "It wasn't any fun fighting you. Konohagakure must be weak. What a worthless pawn." He remarked, punching Hinata in the stomach.

Hinata coughed out an immense amount of blood. How could he be so strong?! She looked at his hitai-ate. A sound nin! He's with that man, Orochimaru! Hinata grabbed his arm and focused her chakra into him. The sound nin yelled in pain and threw Hinata a far distance a way from him. An amused chuckle startled the spider shinobi as he caught his balance.

"Kidoumaru, it seems you were hurt from that little girl."

"Shut up Sakon! I'll kill her now!" he yelled.

Hinata clutched her stomach as she coughed out more blood. Now! He's not paying attention to me! I must attack now!

"Then hurry it up, Kidoumaru!"

Kidoumaru turned to look at Hinata. She's not there. His eyes widened in surprise. How could she have gotten away!?

"Don't underestimate me…" she said as she punched him in the stomach with her juuken. Kidoumaru fell on his knees.

"You little-!" he couldn't finish his sentence as he clutched his stomach.

Hinata also fell to her knees. She had only damaged him partly. That would keep him down for now but she had three more to deal with. "Come…out…" she panted. "…you three…"

"I'm not done with you!" Kidoumaru yelled. He pushed himself up and kicked Hinata down. "I admit, you are strong but not strong enough to become something more then a pawn. Die." He yelled, punching Hinata once more. She coughed more blood.

Weak… Hinata managed to kick him, making him lose his balance. I am weak, it's true… Kidoumaru furrowed his eyes as his teammates laughed amusingly at his fall.

But…I told Neji-niisan… Hinata stood up once more. That I would be able to protect myself! "Come and fight." She said. I won't go back on my words.

Kidoumaru smirked. "Fine."

"You're taking too long, Kidoumaru! I'll deal with her." Several exploding kunais flew in Hinata's direction. Hinata was too late to dodge them, as her eyesight was kept on Kidoumaru. She managed to block herself from some of them but most of them directly hit her, causing huge cuts from the explosion. Hinata laid on the ground, too tired and injured to move. Her enemies had gone and she was left alone. I couldn't defeat them…but I tried my best…

"Hinata! Are you okay!?"

Hinata slightly opened her eyes. Long black hair. Could it be him? "Niisan…" she closed her eyes once more.

"Is she in critical condition, Tsunade-sama?" asked a woman with curly black hair. Her eyes were crimson red.

"No. Don't worry, Kurenai-san. I cleaned up her wounds, she'll be okay. But, what could have happened? Why was she all beaten up?" the middle aged blonde woman asked.

"I'm not sure. I heard some fighting nearby so I rushed to see who was fighting. There were four shinobi that ran away but one that fought Hinata. The one who fought seemed to be pretty tired. When I reached Hinata, she was wounded everywhere and oddly, she called out Neji-kun's name."

"Neji?" Tsunade repeated to herself dumbfounded. "Wasn't he the one who had beaten her critically during the preliminary rounds for the chuunin exams? Or that's what I've heard."

"Yes. He's quite a genius though. I believe he's changed…but I'm not sure if his hate for her has completely diminished. When you've hated one for so long, it takes time to forget that feeling towards them."

"True. Hm, check up on Hinata please and if she's awake, gather information from her and report back to me."

"Yes, Hokage-sama." Kurenai made her way towards the hospital. When she reached their, to her surprise, Hinata was sitting up, pressing her forehead against the palm of her hand. "Hinata…! You're up!"

"K-Kurenai-sensei. What…what am I doing here?"

"Rest, Hinata." Kurenai gently pushed Hinata down back onto the bed. She sat on the bed and put a blanket over her. "I found you injured on the ground in the forest."

"O-Oh…"

Kurenai giggled a bit. "You seemed to be calling someone's name."

"W-What…!?" Hinata turned bright red and sat back up. "W-Was I-I really?"

"Yes." Kurenai smiled. "Oddly to say though, it wasn't Naruto-san. It was Neji."

Hinata widened her eyes and pressed her hands against her cheeks. "N-Ne-N-Neji-niisan?" she stuttered.

"Hai. Interestingly, it seems you've developed a new c-"

"Iie…!" Hinata denied. "I-It's just that, I-I remember thinking about h-his fight and mine b-before I collapsed. P-Please don't get any ideas, K-Kurenai-sensei."

"Ha ha, I see. Well, I have to ask you something, Hinata. Do you remember who you were fighting?" Kurenai asked, her voice now in a serious tone.

"Ah, yes that's right." Hinata looked up at her teacher. "T-They were Sound nins."

Kurenai flinched. Sound nins? In Konohagakure? Perhaps an ambush?! "Hinata! I must report back to the Hokage. Stay here, you understand?"

"Hai, Kurenai-sensei."

Kurenai rushed back to Tsunade. I must hurry! "Tsunade-sama!" she yelled as she arrived at her office.

"Kurenai-san?! I didn't expect you to be back so quick. So what did you find?"

"This is threatening. The people Hinata was fighting were Sound ninjas."

Tsunade slapped her hands against her desk, almost cracking it in two. "What! Sound nins!? Damn that Orochimaru! Kurenai! Go alert other jounins of this matter! I will contact the ANBU to seek out them and track them down! Go!"

"Hai!" Kurenai yelled just before dispersing outside.

"Orochimaru…!" Tsunade clenched her fists.

-

"Ah…! Tsunade-hime!" a man with bushy white hair came into the Hokage's office throught the window.

"Neh, Jiraiya, what do you want? I'm busy!"

"Ha, busy? You looked like you were sleeping to me!" he laughed. The woman pressed her index finger against her lips and motioned the man to keep down.

"Shh! Quiet down will you! If the advisors catch me sleeping again, I'll have to prepare myself for a long lecture!"

Jiraiya smirked. "Well, I have to tell you something important."

"What? You just finished your newest perverted book? Well I don't care!" Tsunade yelled, flipping through some papers.

"Iie. This is even more serious. Its about the traitor, Orochimaru." His voice changed to become serious. "I've learned from my sources that Orochimaru is planning to act already."

"Act?" Tsunade questioned stupefied.

"He's already planning to take Uchiha Sasuke's body. But I do not know when. I came to tell you to be alarmed to any of Orochimaru's attacks. This may be the final one to capture the kid."

"Hai. I got it. I'll be on watch more…"

-

Tsunade cursed at herself for not following her words. Jiraiya was right!

-

"Asuma!" Kurenai yelled.

A tall man with his hands in his pockets turned his head. "Oh, Kurenai."

"Sound nin!" she yelled as she caught her breath. "In the village! I must alert every jounin available!"

"Sound nins!?" Asuma gasped. "What should we do?"

"Tsunade-sama says she will alert ANBU members about this. Where's Kakashi-san?"

"He was with his students I believe. Let's go."

"Hai!" Kurenai followed Asuma as they ran throughout the village, looking for the famous copycat nin.

-

The thirteen year old prodigious Hyuuga member knocked against the door of the Godaime's office. "Tsunade-sama."

"Not now, Neji. I'm sorry but I'm a bit busy." She muttered as she scattered papers around.

"Wait, I have important news. I saw some sound nins come through-"

"You saw them?!" the Hokage suddenly raised her voice as she looked at him straight in the eye.

"H-Hai…has it already been reported?" Neji asked a bit confused.

"Yes…in fact…" Tsunade averted her eyes. "Hinata-chan fought them. She is currently in the hospital right now."

Neji widened his eyes in shock as he choked. "H-Hinata-sama…? Shit…" he cursed as he ran to the hospital. Dammit, what the hell was she thinking, fighting those nins?! He thought to himself angrily. She could've died! Is she that dull in her mind?!

It wasn't long until he reached the hospital and Hinata's room. Slowly, he turned the door knob. There was Hinata, sitting up with a blank expression painted on her face.

"Hinata-sama…"

Hinata turned her head. She was bandaged everywhere. "O-Oh…niisan, its you…"

"What the hell were you thinking?" he asked sharply as he sat himself on the bed. "You wanted to get yourself killed!?"

"N-No…t-that's not it…" She answered, a bit surprised at the sudden rage in her cousin's voice.

"Then what were you doing!? Hinata-sama…you are so dull. Why would you fight those shinobis!? Did you think you could actually beat them!"

"…no…it's…"

"Why didn't you…!" Neji paused. He took a small breath and looked at Hinata with his pure white eyes. "…why didn't you call me…?"

Hinata curled her knees up and rested her forehead on them. "I didn't want to. I've never wanted to do this. I never wanted to depend on you for this. It makes me feel so insignificant. I am not simply a weak person…" her voice quivered a bit as well as her lip. She could feel her eyes burn as she fought back tears. "I don't want to be labeled as a dropout anymore. I-I don't. I want to take care of myself. This is my body, why can't I take care of it myself…? W-Why do you have to take your time to protect me? I don't want you to…"

Neji sat silently as he stared shockingly at her.

"I don't want you to hate me anymore, Neji-niisan…!" she raised her head as tears rolled down her reddened cheeks.

Neji furrowed his eyes and bit his lip. He pushed Hinata against his chest and wrapped an arm around her. "Don't act on your own too much. And…and I don't hate you." He squinted his eyes as he rested his chin on the top of her head. "Hinata-sama…let me protect you from now on…" he whispered.

Hinata clutched onto Neji's shirt as she stained them from her tears. "N-Neji-kun…!"

Neji held Hinata a little closer. Protecting her with my own wishes…protecting her because I want to. That might not be so bad.

After all, Neji always had hated hating her.

"Hinata-sama…let's start over…"

Author: Okay! I finally finished I Will Be There chapter 4:D. haha. yeahs. I had been procrastinating on this for quite a LONG time. lol. Well, I hope you enjoyed this chapter and I'm very sorry if you found it boring. Eeks I hope it wasn't. well, please review and tell me what you thought of it! much appreciation! And I'm very sorry if you were like "wtf" cuz all those times Neji was like "I hate you hinata:O" and all. Lol. Yeah, I'm sorry again if I make Neji all swingy on his moods. O.o;; Oh and in case you somehow don't know who kidoumaru and them are…which is kinda weird, lol, anyways, they're those ninjas that end up escorting Sasuke-kun to orochimaru. Yeahs. Oh and in case you don't get the hint, what neji was hearing in the beginning was that time when Naruto and Sasuke were fighting. And so, that means this deals with that time Sasuke leaves Konohagakure. If you still don't understand, just message me and I'll explain. XD anyways… Laterz: