This is going to be my first try at a longer story...wish me luck! And please review...criticism welcome.

A Girl Without Tears

Chapter 1.

Hanabi watched from behind the thin screen doors as her father sat lecturing her sister. She saw how her sister's head was bent, shoulders bowed, fingers digging painful red marks into her palms.

Hinata...

She felt like slapping her sister. Hard.

How can you do this to yourself?

Hanabi clenched her own hands angrily.

When her sister was dismissed, Hanabi watched as Hinata came out of the room, biting her lip, the tears brimming out and obscuring her vision. She grabbed her arm. Hinata looked up, startled.

'Ha-hanabi-'

Hanabi said nothing, pulling her sister away.

'Ha-hanabi, wh-where are we g-going?'

'To train.'

'To t-train?'

Hanabi swung around and Hinata cringed at the look on her face.

'You are a disgrace to our family.' she said coldly. 'I will not let you continue to shame us.'

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Hanabi glared at her older sister, infuriated.

I cant help you like this, you know?

Hinata was whimpering, fingers twisting together as she bowed her head.

'G-gomen...' she whispered brokenly. 'Hanabi...please forgive me. I'll try harder next time–'

'Don't tell me that.' Hanabi tossed her head, sneering at Hinata. 'You are nothing. Papa doesn't love you. He doesn't want you. You're weak, you're useless.'

And you're my sister and I love you, but you have to be stronger can't you see? Papa will cast you away soon -

Hinata said nothing.

Damnit, stand up to me, Hinata!

Hanabi frowned and turned around, ready to leave her sister on the training ground. She started slightly.

"What are you doing here?" she demanded, watching Hinata's teammates as they stood silently in front of her.

Kiba was staring at her, fury in his eyes. His whole body trembled. Shino was expressionless, but she could see that his hands were fisted inside his coat pockets. He strode past her and went to Hinata, wrapping an arm around her shoulders and leading her away.

Hanabi shrugged and moved to go past Kiba but an arm shot out, barring her way.

'Hanabi.'

She turned to look at him, white eyes narrowed. 'What do you want?'

Kiba looked down at her, and she found her breath hitching slightly in fear. She had met him many times before, of course, when Hinata invited her teammates to the Hyuuga compound to train. Hanabi had dismissed him from her mind as another average genin, not worth her time. Kiba had always been loud, rowdy, cheerful. Running around with that stupid dog of his, grinning like an idiot at her sister. Kiba was always grinning.

But not now. She couldn't help but be shocked at how cold his expression was as he stared down at her.

'Do not ever-' He broke off and swallowed as if trying to control his anger. 'Do not ever let me hear you saying those things to Hinata again.'

Hanabi scowled. 'She is my sister. Who are you to tell me what not to do –'

'Hanabi.' His voice was more forceful now. 'I am only going to say this one more time. Do not, under any circumstances, say -'

She slapped his arm away from her. 'And what if I do?' Her chin tilted up, challenging him.

Kiba was silent. Hanabi sneered. 'There is nothing you can do to me. You are weak, just like my sister.'

Hanabi stepped away from him.

'Hinata is not weak.'

She paused. 'Yes, she is.' she said, still facing away from him. "She is unable to defend herself, let alone attack. She gets hurt too easily-'

- and I am unable to protect her -

Kiba was surprised at how soft her voice had gone.

'- and people will see that, and take advantage of her –'

- forgive me, Hinata.

And then her voice was emotionless again, cold and sharp as a knife.

'-besides, she cries too much.'

Kiba growled. 'And you never cry?'

She turned back to face him, a small, bitter smile ghosting her lips.

'No, I never cry.'

There was a pause.

'Then you are the weak one.'

Hanabi frowned and opened her mouth to make a retort, but he continued, preventing her from speaking.

'What kind of girl are you?' he shook his head, face devoid of all the former rage. Only pity was left now. 'You'll only end up hurting yourself, you know?'

Then he turned and walked away, leaving her standing by herself.

Hanabi stared after him, wondering what his words meant.

I will end up...hurting myself?