Hello everyone. Yes, Curlybear is back in track, proving to you that she is actually still alive. :) First, I want to apologize to everyone who has been waiting for an update. I am sorry that it took so long. I hope you can forgive me. I have my reasons, if you want to know: I had writers block. I did not know how to continue this story. I had exams, assignments, family issues and a trip to England. But, here is the chapter; the last one too. This story has been an amazing oppurtunity to expand and develop my writing, and your constant encouragement, suggestions and support has helped me reach this. It has kept my motivation high, and keep me smiling. All happy and gooey inside. Really.
I want to thank ALL my reviewers, and all the readers. Thank you for helping me through this, and I hope you have enjoyed this story, and that you will like this last chapter. This one is set more in the future, where things are better and constant between them. Again, thank you, SO MUCH! Have a great summer. I will probably write a new story soon, so hang around. Lots of love.
Chapter 15 - I See You
Hinata slowly opened her eyes against the world. She turned over a bit, and met a hand. She grasped it and felt the safety that came with it. It was his hand, Naruto's... They melted together.
It was different this time. There was no uncertainty between them. They had been falling, but they had finally managed to land on secure ground.
They had always been serious, but now, the pieces were finally complete. No more cracks or holes.
Hinata smiled at the thought. She absorbed Naruto's presence as she snuggled closer to him. He was right beside her, breathing steadily and easily. She felt a hand caress her head gently, before a kiss was planted solidly on it.
No more tears.
She was happy.
Naruto walked slowly through the streets. Others passed him faster than a cannonball. That is how it sometimes felt to him. As usual, he was not entirely orientated. There were so many people, filling up the streets entirely.
But, no matter how many people blocked his view, he could always spot her. She stood out from the crowd. He could not explain exactly why he would automatically see her. His eyes found her. She stood by a corner, hair blowing entrancingly in the wind. It felt like time stopped, as their different eyes met.
Slow motion, flying by in seconds...
And then, reality came back as she smiled sweetly, with a small blush on her face.
People continued to pass them, uncaringly, but their eyes were only fixed on each other. Even if a random person blocked her view for a second, she was still visible to him. They approached each other, and he smiled his signature smile at her; real and bright.
He gently grasped her hand, before pulling her into a strong, yet gentle embrace. The moment she was in his arms, everything felt right. And he knew...
They would always find each other.
That was their personal law of physics. She was like metal, and he was a magnet. He laughed at the thought, but also appreciated it immensely.
He had never felt that way with Sakura. He always had to look for her. Strive for her. With Hinata, she was just always there, even if they were apart.
That was the sharp difference between Sakura and Hinata. It was very strange the way he found out, he suddenly recalled...
Hinata faced Naruto with worried eyes.
"What's the matter, Hinata?" He asked, his tone framed with concern.
There were tears welling up in her eyes, which surprised him, because she had not cried since forever. For the first time in ages, they were caught in a cage of greyness. It was not even raining.
"Naruto... I..." She began, but her little voice lost its strength. He took a step forward and carefully placed his hands on her arms, so that their eyes directly intertwined with each other. She looked down, insecurely, breaking their lock.
"When you were vulnerable... I took advantage of you... I'm sorry...!" She whispered. It was all too fast for Naruto to register in his mind. Seeing his reaction, she abruptly broke away from his firm hold.
"What do you mean?" He asked, gently, but she somehow managed to interpret it differently. The only reply he received was a low noise of regret. She shook her head.
"I don't deserve you." She said.
So that was what she meant.
It all fell down, and she ran. He was penetrated, and could not move. It was such an unfamiliar feeling, that it took time to sink in.
She's feeling insecure.
When he finally felt something click within him, he managed to turn around. The door was wide open. He ran over and searched into the mild darkness of the night. He didn't see her. Man, she was fast.
"Hinata!" He called, distressed. The circumstances were twisted, misunderstood and wrong.
As he ran down the lightless road, at first, he sensed nothing, could not feel her. He stopped, lowered his head, and firmly closed his eyes.
'Calm down, Naruto... Find her...'
Opening them, he felt their souls colliding. She was all around her. He could feel her.
He ran as fast as he could, drawing in her aura.
As he presumed, he found her. Somehow, probably due to fatigue, she was lying on the ground. She was looking at him, lavender eyes wide. They were filled with surprise.
He simply walked over to her and rested on his knees, looking down at her with no anger, just a softness that surfaced through the strong blueness.
"What are you doing Hinata?" He asked, seriously, yet his tone was surprisingly light. She looked away, partially regretting her previous behaviour.
Naruto could see that something, or rather, someone had triggered her words. It was weighing her down.
"Was it Sasuke or Ino this time?" He asked, knowingly. Hinata finally met his soft gaze.
"She spoke the truth..." She said, barely audible.
"You know that is wrong." He countered, strongly.
"I just sometimes feel like... L-like I'm dreaming, because it is too good to be true... What we have. That I have you." She said, softly. Naruto felt a strange warmth flow through him. It was gratitude. But it was fused with understanding.
"That's how I feel too, sometimes." He said, grabbing Hinata's attention with a small gasp. He came closer where she was lying and gently took her in his arms. His embrace was strong. It was filled with certainty.
"I was confused when you found me. I thought I was going to... But you took what was left of me, and made me whole again." He admitted. Before she could say anything he leaned in and his lips were one with hers. At first, he could feel a slight shock and hesitation. But then, it converted into an acceptance, an appreciation, warm and true. Strong and floating emotions streamed through her kiss. When she placed a hand on his arm, he felt her enter him, crawling underneath his skin.
He carried her back, and when they arrived at his home, she had already fallen asleep. He looked down at her, admiringly, appreciatively. He placed her on the bed, kissing her forehead.
...So delicate, yet so strong.
And she saved his life.
That is how he found her. After that episode, he could always feel her, find her. No matter what...
The memory lingered in his mind as they walked back to his place. He smiled down at her, holding hands. Not only had she healed him, but she had helped him readopt his old ways. Naruto was happy, positive, and smiling boyishly again... And he had a reason to.
He had been dying inside, but she had given him life again. He had been running, but she had given him a reason to stand still.
It took some time for her to grasp that, to realize the genuine feelings he had for her, but once she did, she had nothing to be afraid of.
She was so modest. So modest, that she failed to believe in the strength she possessed. Her confidence was never sky high. At times, it brought her down. However, Naruto could always see that hidden strength, in her smile, in everything. It was never an issue for him to see her sadness shine through sometimes. After all, she had done so much for him, that it was only natural for him to help her. Help her realize that he did deserve her, and that she deserved him; not that he was anything special, really. She had loved him, even when he could not see into his own heart.
He thanked her everyday, almost, for her presence and that little strength that made him smile all over inside.
That is why it was natural for him to watch over her. When they got back home, she literally through herself in bed, drained from a hard night. She had overexerted her body after a enduring mission. He had to watch over her on a night like this, like many other nights, and make sure she would be alright. He wanted to. He smiled again, brushing away her ebony bangs and kissing her forehead tenderly.
"Goodnight, Hinata..." He whispered into her ear, as he lay down next to her.
"I'll look after you." He said, before closing his own eyes and letting sleep grasp him.
As expected, morning came. The weather was fairly warmer, finally acting like spring. The blossoms were blooming, outdoing the blue sky dominantly.
Hinata slowly opened her eyes, feeling the sun bath her face through the window.
"Naruto?" She whispered, before turning around, unable to feel any hand or elbow.
She was quite surprised when she turned over and met familiar face staring happily at her. It was a pleasant surprise though.
"Good morning, Hinata-sama!" He said, cheerfully. She blinked several times in surprise, before blushing madly.
"Good morning, Naruto." She whispered back, with a small, yet warm smile displayed on her face. He was kneeling down by the bedside, looking at her, watching over her. She was questioning that in her mind.
Naruto gave her an admirable smile. With her messy morning hair and her sweet eyes, she looked so beautiful.
"How are you feeling?" He asked, with a happy tone. Hinata sat up a bit, the covers curled around her like a cocoon. Although he was acting fairly normal, something was not right. He was either very nervous, or had done something wrong, and was trying to avoid being caught. She recognized that attitude from her youth.
"What are you up to?" She asked, finding the situation amusing. She noticed how he shifted determinedly. Suddenly, his face softened, and his expression grew more serious.
'What the hell, why are you so nervous?'
"Hinata..." He whispered, leaning closer towards her. He had to raise his head towards her, since he was sitting on the floor, her on the bed, leaning over the edge looking down at him. She stared at him deeply, faces inches from each other, before their lips naturally met, becoming one and caressing each other. They just disappeared into each other for a brief moment, relishing the happiness portrayed there.
He slowly let go, his eyes still glued to hers.
"I see you." He said. She felt his breath on her face, and the words sunk in slowly.
"What do you mean?" She asked, giggling slightly, but she regained her seriousness as she saw the expression on Naruto's face harden.
"I see you in my future." He whispered. He gently pulled away and dug into his pocket, calmly. He brought his hand up and presented her a little box, adorned with black silk. Like her hair. Her eyes widened considerably as she realized what he was doing. She was stunned. There was no other word to describe her still and unresponsive emotions. He shifted into a kneeling position, staring into her lavender eyes with determination and reassurance this time. The nervousness was gone.
"I love you. Will you marry me?" He asked, softly. Apart from his hard face, his eyes were soft, shining with excitement. She remained still, as he opened the box and revealed a silver ring, with a diamond that matched her eyes protruding dominantly. It was so beautiful, that it made her heart skip a beat.
No words came from her mouth, as she let the moment sink in, slowly.
Her dream was coming true.
"Hinata?" He asked, carefully, after not receiving any reply.
"Yes..." She whispered, almost inaudibly. A smile finally blossomed on his face, and he leaned in a little closer.
"Yes?" He repeated, with a tone woven with relief. Suddenly, her whole face lit up, tears dancing slowly down her cheeks. They were for once tears of happiness. Her smile was firm and warm.
"Yes!" She said, nodding her head more times than necessary and jumping frivolously into his arms. They fell onto the floor, her on top of him, and she wrapped her arms around him and hugged him so tightly. She felt him stroke her back. They both laughed together. They shared so much; at that moment: a kiss, a smile to each other, another kiss, an exchange of deep stares, all wrapped in thick layers of sheer happiness and adoration. The sun broke through the clouds again and poured light into the room, over them, as they continued to hold each other tightly...
She whispered: "I see you too..."
They really were in the sun.
Tusen takk. (Thank you very much!) Hope you liked it. :)