A/N (Update 8/25/2013): POSSIBLE SPOILERS AHEAD. After my first revision of this fic, I reread it recently and decided to flat-out rewrite it because the original story didn't build any kind of relationship between Sasuke and Sakura. I originally wrote this at 13 years old whenever I had first gotten into Naruto, so this was my first Naruto fanfic as well as my transcendence in writing more mature fics. Since it was written in 2005, the truth about the Uchiha massacre hadn't been revealed and the invasion of Pein hadn't happened. I've accounted for those in this rewrite so that it's a bit more up-to-date with canonverse, but it does not include the Kage Summit Arc or the Fourth Shinobi War, so Sasuke isn't quite psychotic here and Tobi's true identity is still disclosed as Madara. So without further ado, please read and enjoy :)
Warning(s): Possible OOCness. Diverges from manga after Itachi's death and Pein's invasion. Initially takes place seven years after Sasuke's departure. Contains lime.
Disclaimer: I don't own Naruto. Masashi Kishimoto does.
What the Rain Can Bring
The rain compelled Sakura to drift into her thoughts as she made her way to the kitchen to prepare some tea for herself before turning in for the night. Holding her tea kettle with steady hands, the pink-haired kunoichi poured the tea into a mug with an exasperated sigh. Rainy nights always reminded her of the times she and Naruto ventured forth in the search for their missing teammate, for the torrential downpours they had traveled through never deterred them. Setting the kettle down and taking a seat at her kitchen table, she allowed her mind to reflect upon the person she loved the most.
After Sasuke had left Konoha seven years ago, she had chosen to wait for him despite knowing the futility of the effort. But when she was honest with herself, she couldn't think of a reason for him to actually return. It wasn't as if he had cared about her; in fact, he had been rather detached from everyone in the village. Even though she had been a fangirl, she was his teammate and possibly a friend. However, her affiliation with him was just another obstacle in his path to attain power.
Still, she continued to love him even at the age of twenty. What might have started as a silly schoolgirl crush later developed into true love as she grew to know and understand him. Maybe he had thought it a joke, for the only acknowledgement he had ever given her feelings was a simple "thank you" before walking away. His brushing off her love for him had been so simple that she knew it was rejection, even though she'd denied it for the longest time. The heartrending truth cut her inside like a cold steel knife.
Sakura's free hand curled into a first on the table as she thought about the news of Itachi's death following Pein's invasion. She and Naruto had expected Sasuke to return to Konoha after finally attaining his goal, but he never made an appearance. During the initial reconstruction of Konoha, word came around that the Uchiha had been traveling with companions from Sound while pursuing Itachi, and so a follow-up search team had been sent out to track him down and bring him back to the village. However, their efforts proved fruitless despite the discovery of Itachi's mangled body at Mountain Graveyard. Itachi's autopsy had revealed the cause of his death to be terminal illness rather than Sasuke's Chidori, and what had perturbed the medics the most was his missing eyes.
Months passed as Sasuke's presence remained undetected. Although Naruto and Sakura held on to the hope that he would eventually come home, everyone else began to accept the possibility that Sasuke either did not wish to return or that he himself had been claimed by death. When Kakashi had been named Hokage during Tsunade's coma and subsequent death, he had retained Sasuke's status as a missing-nin, refusing to label him a dead man due to the biased fatherly affection he held for his former student.
Two years after Konoha's destruction and still no sign of Sasuke, Kakashi finally stopped sending his other two students on futile searches, citing his reason that he couldn't continue to put them at risk when they were needed for more important missions. While they understood his decision, it disappointed them to know that even their teacher had given up on Sasuke. Another two years passed, and Naruto became ANBU while Sakura became head of the hospital. Even though they had moved on to bigger things, they never gave up the hope that their team would be reunited one day.
Catching a glimpse of her reflection in her drink, she resisted the urge to hurl her mug in disgust at the heartbroken woman looking back at her. Although the long work hours of her job at the hospital had taken their toll on her well-being, the emptiness within her had also physically manifested. Long cotton candy locks framed her sickly pale face while dark circles underlined her usually bright emerald eyes that had faded to a dull, lightless green. As she took a sip of her hot beverage, she still felt cold inside. The coldness of her heart reminded her of Sasuke, and even though he was the last thing she wanted to think about, he never strayed far from her mind.
A sudden knocking on her door snapped her out of her thoughts. Curious about who would bother visiting her in this tumultuous rain, especially so late at night, she set her tea down and headed towards the entrance of her apartment. "Can I help... you...?" She trailed off and felt her heart beat faster as she struggled to process the sight before her.
Dressed in black pants and a black sleeveless gi, Sasuke stood before her looking worse for wear as water trickled from his clothing, the droplets glistening down his pectorals. His face had chiseled into that of a handsome young man, reminiscent of the boy from her adolescence. His bangs scattered across his forehead and framed the sides of his face, partially obscuring his obsidian eyes, although she felt his gaze locked on her. He towered a head above her, sculpted muscles replacing the lean body he had possessed in his youth.
"S-Sasuke-kun…?" she choked out, eyes wide as she took a tentative step forward, her hand hesitantly reaching out to touch his cheek as if to test the realness of his presence.
He smirked as soon as her fingertips made contact with his damp cheek. "…Sakura."
She retracted her hand to muffle a sob as tears rimmed her eyes. Unable to restrain herself, she wrapped her arms around his torso. She held on tight, afraid that he would leave again, that his back would be the last thing she saw of him. Burying her face in his chest, she shut her eyes as hot tears flowed onto his already soaked attire. He stiffened but made no effort to pull away. Although the moment held a semblance of discomfort, a pleasant sensation also permeated the atmosphere.
It felt right.
When the nostalgic ambiance had cleared between them, Sakura invited Sasuke into her abode to escape the stormy weather. After sitting him down at her kitchen table, she swiped a towel from the closet and offered it to him before preparing a second cup of tea. He watched her bustle around her apartment while patting himself dry, causing her to feel self-conscious, especially since tense silence filled the air.
As soon as he draped the towel over his shoulder, she set down the steaming mug in front of him and slid into the chair across from him as he murmured his thanks. Resting her arms on the table and placing her chin in the palm of her right hand, she racked her brain for a way to initiate conversation and stared at him in contemplation. But having not spoken to the man in four years, she blurted out the only intelligent thought she could conjure. "What brings you here?"
Having directed his focus to his tea, Sasuke raised his eyes at his companion's question. He leaned back in his seat to fully acknowledge her as a pensive expression crossed his features, as if he was actually trying to think of his answer, which surprised her. Letting go of his mug, he proceeded to fold his arms across his chest. "Madara is dead."
Sakura quirked a brow in confusion. "What?"
Sasuke closed his eyes as he inhaled, subsequently opening them with a deep exhale. His eyes seemed more intense than usual as they regarded Sakura with a startling clarity that unnerved her. "He told me the truth about the massacre."
The kunoichi remained confused, but apprehension overcame her at the word "truth." She folded her hands in her lap and swallowed thickly before nodding for him to continue, afraid to say anything that could possibly interrupt the man's train of thought. The anticipation of what the "truth" contained sent a chill up her spine as she listened to Sasuke's explanation.
He recounted how the Uchiha clan had been planning a coup d'état to take control of the village in retaliation for the unfair suspicion against them during the Kyuubi's attack. Itachi had acted as a double agent until he had been burdened with the council's order to exterminate the entire clan despite the Sandaime's attempts to devise an alternative solution. He explained how Itachi had accepted the mission on the condition that Sasuke was spared and that the Sandaime protected him while withholding the truth of the massacre. For the sake of the village, Itachi had tarnished his reputation and then had become a missing-nin as well as a spy in the Akatsuki.
Once Sasuke finished speaking, Sakura sat in a stunned stupor. The thought of the pacifistic Sandaime accepting such an order was unbelievable. However, she knew that Sasuke had yet to disclose everything that had happened since their last encounter during the mission to infiltrate Orochimaru's hideout. Knowing that she was about to approach a sensitive subject, she asked quietly, "What… happened to Itachi?" She paused and fidgeted uncomfortably in her seat, seeking his approval to continue. When the dark-haired shinobi said nothing, she continued in a more confident tone. "We found his body after we heard you had killed him, but when we did his autopsy, we discovered that he had died from a terminal illness. Not only that… but his eyes were missing."
Sasuke's entire countenance tensed as his Sharingan briefly flashed before fading back to black. He shifted his line of sight downwards to the side, his brows furrowing and a frown adorning his lips. Finally, after a moment of deliberation, he slackened his clenched jaw and glanced back at Sakura before completely pinning her with his stare. His eyes seemed more smoldering than ever as he said, "I have them."
Sakura inadvertently released a soft gasp. Her stomach churned as she processed what he said. "You… have them?"
"After Madara told me the truth, I had Itachi's eyes transplanted… because I was going blind." He almost seemed ashamed of his admission, and it pained her to see the turmoil running rampant within him. "It's an Uchiha clan secret… that to prevent further blindness… one must transplant the eyes of a kinsman."
"You're still not telling me everything. Where did you go after Itachi died? Who is Madara?" Sakura pressed on until she finally asked the question that had been nagging her since his unexpected arrival. "Where have you been all these years?"
And so Sasuke told her.
Sakura lay on her side across her cream, plush couch as she contemplated the information he had revealed to her. The tapping of the rain outside combined with the running water of the shower almost brought her to a state of slumber, but she resisted the urge to slip into unconsciousness. She had received the answers to her questions, yet the conversation that had taken place still baffled her.
Sasuke had wanted to destroy Konoha after learning the truth about Itachi and had willingly teamed up with his ancestor to carry out the heinous act. But before the actual operation could begin, Madara had decided to test Sasuke's will to induce hatred through the deaths of the other members of Taka. However, his connection with the three Oto nin reminded him of the bonds he held with Team 7. In a fit of rage that only a true avenger possessed, Sasuke had killed his ancestor.
The only one who survived Madara's attack was Karin due to her exceptional vitality. During the course of the redhead's healing process, Sasuke realized that he could never truly sever ties with those he considered precious people and subsequently lost motivation to pursue the decimation of his former village. The duo traveled together from village to village, never staying in one place for too long. Despite their shinobi status and prowess, they had been reduced to wanderers with no actual home. After two years of pointless meandering, they eventually returned to Otokagure, which Kabuto had come to rule following Orochimaru's demise.
Neither one particularly cared about the state of the village, so far as feigning indifference towards the human experiments taking place by allowing Kabuto to continue his corrupt reign. However, they finally stepped in when they discovered the silver-haired medic-nin experimenting on the bodies of Suigetsu and Juugo that had obviously been stolen from their graves at Mountains' Graveyard. Disgusted by the disrespect shown towards their dead teammates, Sasuke and Karin had engaged the depraved shinobi in battle. When Kabuto incapacitated the redhead with a specific poison to shut down her chakra system, Sasuke used Amaterasu on him in retaliation. Despite defeating Kabuto, Sasuke could not save the kunoichi, for no antidote was available within the confines of Oto, nor did he know any capable medical ninjas. In the end, he had to watch her die slowly in pain.
After being left alone in the wake of Karin's death, Sasuke finally returned to Konoha.
"Why did you come back?" Sakura had asked after Sasuke ended his account of the events that he'd experienced over the past four years. In a childish bout of jealousy, she really wanted to know about the relationship between him and his female teammate since he had stayed with her after Madara's death, but she inwardly reminded herself that it was none of her business since she and Sasuke had never traversed past a platonic relationship.
All she had received was an unreadable look before he asked to use her shower in order to nonchalantly change the subject. After she gave him a set of clothes Naruto had left at her apartment a while ago along with a spare toothbrush, he stepped into the bathroom and left her to her thoughts.
Confusion continued to churn in her mind as she heard the bathroom door open. She listened to Sasuke go into the guest room for a moment before he came back to the living room. When he glanced at her sprawled form and shot her a look, she smiled and moved her legs to allow him room to sit. She observed him as he took a seat.
A sense of relaxation settled over him as he tipped his head back and closed his eyes, his arms over the ledge of the couch.
Sakura was completely taken aback at seeing Sasuke in such a tranquil state. He seemed different from the angry boy she had known in her youth. It had been rare to see him so open during their genin years—the most vulnerable she had ever seen the raven-haired shinobi was during their first Chuunin Exam in the Forest of Death when Orochimaru had marked him with the curse seal. After scrutinizing him for a few moments, she repeated her question from earlier. "Why did you come back?"
His eyes fluttering open, he spared her a side glance. A light blush dusted his cheeks as he admitted quietly, "All my precious people are here."
Her lips parted in astonishment at his confession. While she was aware that Sasuke had cared about their team in his own subtle way, she had never expected an open admission from him. Encouraged by his answer, she asked another question that had been bothering her for a while now. "Why me instead of Naruto?"
Sasuke lifted his head and turned towards her, his gaze so piercing that she felt as if he was looking straight into her soul. The volume of his voice didn't change when he finally responded. "Closure."
With that simple answer, Sakura blinked back tears at his acknowledgement of their past and merely gave him a smile that spoke volumes between them.
Sasuke's return became the talk of Konohagakure, and reactions to the news ranged from excitement to suspicion. During his trial, the details of Uchiha Itachi's final mission were revealed to the shock of the few people who were present. Although Sasuke's original desire to inflict destruction upon Konoha warranted treason worse than his defection did, the corruption of the council for assigning such a mission overrode the Uchiha's actions. Sasuke was declared a free man after the council was deemed guilty for allowing the Uchiha massacre to happen, therefore causing Sasuke to seek revenge and any means to gain power to achieve his goal. He was also pardoned for taking out potential threats to the village in the forms of Orochimaru, Madara, and Kabuto.
However, Sasuke did not escape execution without repercussions. A point was made that even though all of his negative actions were taken as a result of the council's order to exterminate his clan, he still chose a dangerous path by leaving Konoha and joining the criminal Orochimaru instead of seeking appropriate help and guidance present within the village. He did not deny his wrongdoings and accepted a one-year probation that included chakra seals, ANBU monitors, temporary house arrest, confinement within the village, and exclusions from any promotion exams. The only stipulations he made to guarantee his obedience were the dismissal of the elders' positions on the council and their deaths as atonement for those of his family.
Danzou, Koharu, and Homura were immediately stripped of their power, but the decision to execute them was postponed until the end of Sasuke's probation, much to his chagrin. They were imprisoned during that year, which somewhat alleviated the Uchiha's anger. When his probation ended, he was asked to reevaluate his request for the elders to be put to death and even given the choice to carry out the execution himself if it would truly bring him peace. But during his time of inactivity, he had mended his broken bonds with Team 7 and transitioned from a vengeful mentality to one of redemption.
Sasuke realized that even with the deaths of the elders, his family would never come back. Not only that, but they had made the decision in what they believed was the best interest of the village. With Sasuke's declination and after circumstantial consideration, Kakashi had the elders sentenced to seventeen years in prison, the combined number of years both Itachi and Sasuke had to suffer from injustice.
Two more years passed. Sasuke gradually earned back the trust and respect of the village as he demonstrated loyalty through his successfully completed missions. Since he had not taken any promotion exams during his time in Otogakure, he flew through the ranks by displaying his talents and the prowess expected of one from the Uchiha clan. While Sasuke retained his aloof attitude and volatile temper, he became more open to his teammates, slowly letting go of the pain of his past to welcome the hope of the future.
Returning to Konoha meant the acceptance of stability. Sasuke had spent most of his life wandering and surviving instead of living. And the first step to living was making changes, the most prominent of which was his relationship with Sakura. While atonement for the past might have initially motivated him, he could admit that what they had now was purely caused by his desire to be a true friend to her. It was so easy for him to fit her into the life he had now. They had established the routine of eating at Ichiraku's with their team after training, walking her home from the hospital, sharing secret smiles while passing each other on the street, and sleeping over at each other's homes after tiring missions.
In Oto with Karin, Sasuke merely survived; here in Konoha with Sakura, he really lived.
When Sakura opened her door in the middle of the night to see a rain drenched Sasuke, a sense of déjà vu struck her. With a timid smile, she let him in before shutting the door behind her. This situation wasn't new to her as she headed to the kitchen to prepare tea while he entered her room to grab a change of clothes and a towel to take a shower. After two years of being on active duty, Sasuke had stopped by her apartment so many times after missions in bouts of exhaustion that he had begun leaving spare clothes and toiletries at her place.
Now sitting next to Sasuke on the couch, Sakura noted that conversing with him was much easier and more comfortable than it had been back when they were genin. Talking to the Uchiha used to be so difficult that she always mentally prepared herself for his rejection to her attempts, but now she could easily initiate conversation without fear of one-sidedness. The physical distance between them had lessened over time to the point where she could sit with him rather than simply by him. Since he made no move to regain personal space, she found herself pressed into his side since his arm was draped over the back of the couch. And maybe because the current circumstances bore such a strong resemblance to the night Sasuke returned despite the obvious differences, Sakura finally summoned the courage to ask the question that had plagued her for the past three years.
"Who was Karin?" To you.
Sasuke lowered his head to look at her, his dark eyes boring straight into hers and his lips curling into his trademark smirk. In a teasing tone, he asked, "Jealous, Sakura?"
Red stained her cheeks as she pouted at him and lightly smacked him in the arm. "I'm just curious, Sasuke-kun," she muttered, turning her head away. "Naruto, Kakashi-sensei, and I weren't enough to make you stay in Konoha, but she was enough to make you stay in Oto after Itachi died."
He showed no hint of sensitivity towards the mention of his brother's death as he brought his arm down to gently grasp her chin and direct her face back to his. "Karin helped track down Itachi when I wanted to kill him, and after I killed Madara, she was the only person I could trust who had seen me at my worst."
"We would have saved you."
"You, Naruto, Kakashi… you didn't deserve to be burdened by my choices." He absentmindedly stroked her cheek with his thumb as if emphasizing his point.
Sakura felt her heart beat faster as warmth flooded her chest. These instances of nonchalant touches had become more frequent and subsequently harder to ignore. "But we would have gladly taken the weight of the world off your shoulders."
Sasuke smiled faintly before halting his ministrations to cup the back of her head and rest her cheek against his shoulder. The underlying meaning of her question pushed him to further clarify his relationship with the dead kunoichi. "Karin and I were nothing more than friends and comrades."
Her voice was muffled when she asked, "Did you love her?"
"She was the annoying sister I never had," he chuckled with a tone of fond reminiscence.
To Sakura, the role of a sister-figure was more important than the role of a good friend. Naruto was the closest thing to a brother since Itachi, and Kakashi was the mentor who basically fathered Sasuke during their younger years. Where did that leave her in the equation?
"At least she meant something to you," she mumbled under her breath carelessly, the bitterness clearly detectable.
Sasuke stilled underneath her, catching her insinuation. His neutral demeanor quickly morphed into one of anger as he clutched her hair none-too-gently and yanked her head back so that he could glare at her face, which held an expression of surprise and alarm. "You think I don't care about you?" he hissed. "I came back here for you and the idiot."
"That's not what I said," she snapped, reaching back to loosen his iron grip on her pink locks. When his fist still didn't budge, she used chakra to forcefully uncurl his fingers, though his hand continued to hover behind her head.
"Then enlighten me," he sneered.
"What role do I play in your life?" she demanded, her green eyes bright with fury. "Naruto, Kakashi, Karin… your best friend, your teacher, your sister. What does that make me? Just the good friend? I tried just as hard as Naruto to understand you and bring you home–"
The pink-haired kunoichi's rant was abruptly halted when fingers threaded themselves into her hair and a pair of lips descended upon hers. Her anger quickly dissipating, she closed her eyes and brought her hands to the sides his face, darting out her tongue to brush against his bottom lip. Sasuke's reaction was instantaneous—he allowed her entrance to deepen the kiss, his hands settling on her hips and pulling her into his lap.
Now straddling him, Sakura ran her hands down his chest until they reached the hem of his shirt and slipped underneath. When her fingertips trailed against his washboard abs, Sasuke growled before abruptly breaking away to hastily remove his shirt and toss it to the floor. He then continued to plunder her mouth as she explored the hard planes of his torso with teasing caresses. His blood ran south in response to her touches.
The moment Sakura felt Sasuke throbbing beneath her, she ended their fervent lip-lock. She stared at him with wide eyes as she fathomed the fact that he had kissed her first and that she was currently sitting on the physical manifestation of his desire. Averting her gaze with a hot blush, she tried to shift off his lap only for him to tighten his hold on her.
"Did that answer your question?" he asked huskily, the lust evident in his voice.
They had been so caught up in the throes of passion that she couldn't even remember her own question.
"You're more than just a good friend, Sakura." An impish smirk on his face, he exerted enough pressure on her hips to grind her against his arousal, earning a soft moan from her. He proceeded to press a brief kiss to her lips and another on her forehead.
Sakura understood the significance of his contrasting gentleness. This relationship between them had been teetering on the line between platonic and romantic for three years now. Sasuke had implied her role in his life and confirmed that he wasn't pursuing her to only meet his physical needs—that she gave him a sense of comfort and love, both of which he had lacked for a majority of his life. The protective walls around her heart shattered as she kissed him sweetly, her arms wrapping around his neck.
With Sakura secured in his arms, Sasuke stood up and made his way to her bedroom, kicking his shirt out of the way in the process. As soon as they arrived at their destination, he drew his head back and laid her down on her bed, taking in her disheveled state. Her chest heaved from her breathlessness, attracting his attention.
The nighttime rain resounded as they stared at each other in contemplative silence, Sasuke still hovering over Sakura. Each knew what the other was thinking—their bond had changed when Sasuke had returned on an eerily similar night years ago and only evolved further over time into what they had now. Everything came full circle to this moment as the pattering of raindrops synced with their heartbeats and labored breaths.
Settling himself onto the bed and placing his hands on either side of her head, Sasuke leaned down to kiss her jaw, Sakura turning her head to the side to allow him further access. He trailed soft kisses down her exposed neck, lingering to nibble at her pulse point before licking long strokes, receiving a low moan from her. Encouraged by her response, he took her skin between his teeth and began to suck on it with the intention of claiming her. She gasped at his boldness and writhed under him, grabbing his biceps to anchor herself as she enjoyed the pleasure of his ministrations.
After Sasuke separated from her, Sakura grasped the hem of her tank-top and tugged it over her head. Their eyes met briefly with mirrored expressions of longing before their lips reconnected with heated fervor. Sasuke's hands wandered to the band of her shorts, sliding them down her ivory legs. The exposure of her body caused a shudder of excitement to run through his spine, and he stripped off his own sweatpants as Sakura raised her head to take his earlobe into her mouth and run her tongue along it.
With a groan, Sasuke hooked his left arm behind her back, urging her to wound her arms around his neck and her legs around his waist. He indulged in the feeling of her fingers entangling in his raven locks and her wet tongue on his earlobe while he used his other hand to caress her exposed ribcage. Dragging his fingertips upwards, he reveled in her breathy moans until he reached her chest. When he cautiously palmed her breast, Sakura released a delighted moan and arched her back to push herself further into his touch. Her breath in his ear sent blood rushing to his groin.
Sakura opened her eyes when Sasuke pressed his forehead against hers, the hand supporting her back playing with the clasp of her bra. Her gaze locked with Sasuke's as his dark eyes silently conveyed his need for her permission. No words were needed to comprehend his underlying worry that Sakura might regret what was to come next, and he didn't want to risk losing her if he pressured her too much.
When Sakura nodded her assent and raised one hand to stroke his cheek with loving reassurance, a shadow of a smile crossed Sasuke's face as he unhooked her bra and lowered it from her bosom. He recaptured her lips with enough force to show her how he felt, determined to become one with her that night as he allowed himself to accept her love.
His arms encircled her protectively, her head nestled into the hollow of his neck with her bare body pressed against his.
Sweat ran down the side of his face, ragged breaths emanating from him as well as her as they relaxed after the climax that had claimed them both a few moments before.
With one arm cushioning her head, he stroked her pink tresses and caressed her cheek before his hand slid along the slope of her shoulder and then the curve of her body. She was curled asleep facing him, her arm draped around his waist as her breath slowed to a steady rhythm. Here lay an innocent angel within the embrace of a formerly vengeful demon, but as time healed all wounds, she was now his and his alone.
"Sakura…" he murmured with such tenderness that she awoke from her light slumber.
She opened bleary eyes and raised her head slightly against the hollow of his neck. A tired smile graced her lips as she cupped his cheek and directed his face to hers so that she could kiss him. Her voice hoarse, she said softly, "I'm glad you came home."
Sasuke placed a hand over hers, rubbing his thumb across it. His lips tilted upwards as he leaned forward to kiss her again. "Aa."
As the hum of the rain outside faded and the sun began to rise in the early hours of the morning, Sasuke realized that this was where he belonged—in Konoha with Sakura. Under no circumstances would he ever leave again now that he had her by his side. And so he never did.
A/N: It took me two months to write this entire thing, mostly because I kept getting distracted by other life activities. The vague premise made it extremely difficult for me to keep it close to the original version, so I know this is very different. If you'd like to compare it to the original, I will eventually have it posted on my fanfiction blog, which is currently under construction, along with a further discussion about the rewrite. Although reviews are much appreciated, please don't complain or give concrit since I will no longer be an active writer. Thank you for reading and for any feedback :)
Posted: October 2005
Revised: April 2010
Rewritten: August 2013