Author's Note: This story is an alternative universe, one where the Hyuugas don't exist in Fire Country, but originated from Lightning Country… I can't really explain any other details… This story is just a random concept I came up with one night and I just started to write (and write and write)… I just wanted to see if I could take a gamble and write a drama…

Drama, unfortunately, is not something I specialize in, but please be kind and point out the areas where I need improvement, okay? It definitely is a big departure from the more humorous fics I like to pen...

Standard disclaimer: Characters belong to Masashi Kishimoto. I own a beautiful Dell Inspiron notebook.

Proportional Retribution

And if any mischief follow, then thou shalt give life for life,
Eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot,
Burning for burning, wound for wound, stripe for stripe.

-- Exodus 21: 23-25 (KJV)

It would later be known as one of the most violent rainstorms ever in the history of Konohagakure-no-Sato. Thousands of trees had been uprooted while several major landmarks and hundreds of homes were destroyed by flood and flame. The waters were steadily rising, and upon the Hokage's orders, the villagers evacuated the village as quickly as possible and headed for the many safe houses hidden in up the mountains. In the meantime, the faithful Leaf shinobi and kunoichi had been ordered to stay behind to make quick reparations of the large stone walls surrounding Konoha to prevent further water damage to the city and contain the fires.

Lives would be forever changed after one visit from Mother Nature.

It had come as a terrible surprise to 22-year old Hyuuga Hinata who had never seen a single drop of rain in the arid regions of Sunagakure-no-Sato, her home for the last 4 years. It had seemed like a perfect day to travel- the sun was shining brightly overhead with hardly a cloud in sight.

There had been a moment's hesitation on Hinata's part when she noticed the lack of birds chirping overhead. At that very instant, the sky suddenly turned pitch black once Hinata and her young companion reached the middle of Konoha Forest. Lightening crashed across the darkened horizon as she and the frightened little child were engulfed in 95mph winds and freezing sheets of rain.

"Okaa-san, I'm scawwed," the boy whimpered, clutching the hem of her flak jacket.

"I know, Shi-kun. Okaa-san is going to get us out of this, so you'll have to be a brave little boy. Can you do that for me?"

The little boy buried his face into his mother's neck, nodding slightly. Hinata hugged her son tightly to her body, desperate to keep his body warm. She needed to get them out of the storm as quickly as possible.

'Of all the days to start anew... why can't we ever get a break?' she thought, as she raced for safety with her son in her arms.

Hinata was no stranger to drama. Her father Hiashi had been assassinated in a coup d'etat before Hinata turned six, and Hinata's unstable mother Hitomi followed her husband in death, committing hara-kiri eight months into her pregnancy, thus killing herself and what would have been a second daughter born to into what was arguably one of the greatest families in Lightning Country. The Hyuugas were a noble clan in Kumogakure-no-Sato where Hiashi had served as their leader.

The Clan was faced with a problem in the aftermath of Hiashi's death. Since Hinata was the heiress, Hyuuga law stated that she would have to take over as quickly as possible. But they also saw Hitomi's suicide and the death of the infant Hyuuga as a bad omen for their kin. The death of an infant was considered a taboo in Hyuuga culture. Therefore, the Elders looked for a 'loophole' they could use for their benefit and found one that suited them perfectly. Having a young Clan head would only show rivaling clans from other countries that the Hyuuga were weak. Therefore, due to Hinata's age and her inexperience with important family affairs, her father's identical twin brother Hizashi would serve as temporary head until she was old enough to take over.

There were whispers that several members of the Main family who wanted more political power within the government that encompassed the Hyuuga had secretly plotted Hiashi's death. Hiashi had been vocal about his plans to unite the Main and Branch families within their Clan and incorporate Branch members into their Senate. With the threat of Hiashi finally behind them, those opposed to change the old ways were free to do as they saw fit. The Branch Family would remain in service to the Main Family and it would stay like that. Hiashi's dream would not be made into reality, not as long as they held the strings in place.

Hizashi, though he was a member of the Branch family, was the puppet the conspirators desired. Hizashi was their ultimate trump card. He was strong, had influence over the Branch family, and best of all, Hizashi was naive.

The Hyuugas were changing. Only time would tell if the change was for the better.

Hinata would be forgotten for now, just as her deceased father and mother had been.

Her care had then been entrusted in the hands of her grandparents. Her grandparents kept their suspicions of the staged coup to themselves. There had been several other "incidents" following their son's death. Those who openly suspected foul play were often found dead or seriously injured.

Her grandfather, a former Clan head, taught her how to master the coveted Hyuuga blood limit, the Byakugan, and how to handle diplomacy issues within the Hyuuga. Hinata would be the first female to lead the Hyuuga clan, and she would be faced with a challenging road ahead. She needed to be physically and mentally prepared for such a task. Her grandmother instilled within her granddaughter the mastery of the healing arts. Hinata was taught how to incorporate a vast array of herbs and grasses into medicinal creams and how to use her Byakugan to heal various chakra-related diseases.

Her grandparents prayed that Hinata would stop the corruption that was eating the family away. Hinata would be strong and strong-willed. She was her father's daughter, after all.

Hinata grew up to become a poised and polished woman, and one of the most skilled fighters in her village, earning her the rank of Jonin by the time she reached the age of 15. She had also inherited her parents' stunning looks, catching the eyes of many suitors from her country and beyond. The Heiress had no time to fall in love, and although nothing had been mentioned to her, she was most likely engaged to marry someone within her Clan.

However, her world crashed around her when she learned of a strange blood disease that had been inflicted upon her grandparents and some of the other members of the Hyuuga household. There was nothing she could do to save or help them, and she witnessed the suffering her loving grandparents endured before they succumbed to their illness less than a month before she was to take over as Clan head.

For days she grieved over their deaths, gripped with immense sadness, and one night, she disappeared under the noses of various family guards assigned to keep an eye on the Heiress. She found herself sitting at a bar in the outskirts of the village, nursing several cups of sake.

It was there that she caught the attention of a handsome bespectacled medic-nin by the name of Yakushi Kabuto who was in town for several days working on an assignment. He had approached her at the counter and there was something about his kind and trusting demeanor that made it easy for her to drop her guard and open up to him about the family she had just recently lost. He offered her his condolences and explained that he, too, had lost his family at a young age.

They conversed late into the night and somehow ended up at his room at the inn where he was staying. Hinata was drunk, Kabuto was willing, and Hinata was lonely.

When Hinata woke up in her own bedroom, she had been surprised in the very least. She scratched at her arm and frowned- there was a small puncture wound in the crook of her elbow. She'd have to check that out for herself soon. She tried to remember everything that had transpired between her and the strange man from the bar but her mind was too foggy. Had their encounter been a strange dream?

Then days prior to her 18th birthday, she had collapsed to the floor clutching her sides in pain. Snippets of her night with Kabuto kept replaying in her head. It had all made sense now. When she was unable to stomach the foods that were brought to her, a physician was immediately called in, confirming what Hinata had been suspecting all along. She was pregnant.

The Elders were in an uproar when news finally reached their ears 48 hours before Hinata's inauguration was about to take place. Hinata had shamed the family name by carrying an illegitimate child.

The punishment was severe for any member who threatened to taint the name of Hyuuga, regardless of title, thus Hinata was sentenced to exile and given only a few moments to gather her belongings.

When Hinata got to her room, there was a small wrapped bundle waiting for her in her closet. Unraveling the cloth, she placed her hand over her mouth and gasped.

Inside were the place markers from the graves of her father, mother, and grandparents' graves. Beneath that, there was a note from her grandparents as well as one penned by her uncle. She unfurled the scroll containing her grandparents' last words.

She immediately fell to her knees. They wanted her to live up to their dreams and become a woman of integrity, to lead the Clan honorably, honestly, and humbly. She broke down and sobbed. It was too late for that. She had already disappointed her grandparents. Her father. Those who had looked up to her with respect and had hopes for a better future. She had ruined everything. She bitterly wiped away the tears and read on.

Her breath hitched. She had a strong urge to vomit.

Her grandparents had known they were going to die. Illness had not claimed their lives.

Their murders had been pre-meditated. Her hands were shaking. Immediately she scanned the contents of the next note.

Her uncle's letter contained a startling revelation that her ousting had been planned as well through an attempt at her own life. Her pregnancy had been a setback on the part of her conspirators, but essentially it was what had kept her alive. It was also the first time she learned the lurid details of her father's passing. Hizashi had discovered this and had confronted his parents about what they had known about his brother's death. Two days later his parents' lives had been taken. Her uncle was risking his own to tell Hinata everything. She deserved to know.

Without another moment's hesitation, she quickly got her essentials packed and left her room.

There were a string of guards ordered to escort her to the outside gates. She gave her uncle one last look. She felt a sense of foreboding. Her uncle would not be alive for much longer. She had finally understood. The Byakugan saw many things.

Though the other Hyuugas were ordered to treat Hinata as a traitor, there were still those who vowed to pledge their allegiances to her, the same people who had supported her father during what had been known as the Hyuuga glory days, surreptitiously providing her with enough money and dried goods to sustain her for the next couple of months. They met her at the country's borders, not caring what would happen to them once they got back to the compound.

With a heavy heart, she gave her supporters a private and tearful farewell and prayed for their safety. She swore an oath to them she would come back someday. The Main House faction would pay dearly for their treachery. She would start over, but she wouldn't forget. Forgiveness was a luxury she couldn't afford.

Hinata trekked for weeks across several countries before settling in a humble apartment in Suna. The people were kind to her, teaching her how to adapt to their ways of living. It was a stark contrast to the life she had in Lightning Country but she was determined to make it here. She quickly found a job as a library assistant and used the available resources in her spare time to study about her pregnancy. The life she carried in her belly was the only family she had left.

And then finally, when that joyous moment came, the proud mother held her tiny baby boy in her arms for the first time and she couldn't believe that there was anything more beautiful in the world. He had her eyes- two bright, shimmering pearl orbs that took her breath away, and beautiful pitch-black hair. Her son, who she named Shisome, was her everything when she had been left with nothing.

Life wasn't easy for a single mother, but Hinata was raised to tackle adversity head on. Her son was growing and she wanted to be available for every single moment of it.

In order to spend as much time with her son as possible, she gave up her job at the library in the hopes that she would make a better living selling her medicinal salves. Fortunately, they became widely popular in the village, especially amongst the male shinobi who purchased the creams so they could make frequent visits with the beautiful foreigner. However, news had rapidly spread to some of the seedier merchants in Sand Country about the miracle pastes. They wanted to know the components of the salves so they could sell it for their own profits. They demanded a list of the ingredients, but Hinata swore that it was a secret that was kept closely guarded.

Enraged, these men did everything they could to make her lose her customers, often damaging her stand or questioning her character. Throughout this time, Hinata kept a level head, not wanting to have to resort to fighting back. She was saving her fight for the day she would avenge her family's deaths. Though she could easily defend herself against any threats, Shisome was another matter.

There weren't many people who knew of the Byakugan, and Hinata wanted to keep it that way in order to keep her son safe. Ever since she came to Suna, she kept close guard to the things she said. Her identity was also a mystery to her neighbors and friends. Nonetheless, many villagers rallied in favor of the kind woman and helped her out wherever they could, offering to rebuild her stand or keeping a watchful eye for any threats.

That all soon changed when missing nin were hired to kidnap Shisome. With help from her good friends Temari and Kankurou, who were siblings and aides to the current Kazekage, Gaara, the three had little difficulty finding the kidnappers. Hinata ordered Temari and Kankurou to find her son.

She would deal with the kidnappers alone.

Hinata showed no mercy to those who dared to come between her and her son. The years of frustration over the lives that had been cruelly taken from her, having to raise a son without a father... the hardships she faced these last few years had finally taken its toll on the young woman as she finally showed her true colors.

She killed the men viciously, and stunned her companions who were watching from a distance. They had heard of her fighting style and were entrusted with some of her secrets but the Sand siblings had yet to see a Byakugan wielder with their own eyes. It was a bloodbath, and the only person standing in the midst of it all was an emotionally wounded former heiress.

Hinata looked at her bloodstained hands disbelievingly. It had been so long since she had taken a life. Not since the days when her grandparents were still alive.

"Hinata!" Kankurou's distant voice had shaken her out of her trance.

Hinata ran to find that Shisome was in Temari's arms. Temari had an unsure look on her face. Hinata's son had been left unharmed, though there was a brief appearance of an odd comma shape in each of Shisome's eyes that vanished once he discovered his mother was nearby. Hinata took her son and looked at Temari and didn't know what to make of the strange mark.

A feeling of dread washed over the pit of her stomach. Sometimes there were nights when she was left to wonder why Shisome hadn't attributed any of his father's characteristics. In fact, the only trait Shisome and she shared were their mysterious eyes... everything else...

That was a riddle Hinata wasn't ready to solve. At least not at this very moment.

As much as she had come to love Suna and the life they had made here, Hinata felt her son's life was in danger. Something was definitely wrong.

Have you ever had the nagging feeling you were being watched?

Hinata felt a strange presence in the distance. At first she had suspected a member of the family, but she knew the Byakugan chakra signature.

Whatever was out there... it wasn't a match.

There were no signs to show that the rain would ever stop. She activated her kekkai genkai that allowed her to see objects at a 360 degree of range within a 50-foot diameter, even in the blinding rain. She held Shisome tightly as she raced through the forest and her chakra reserve was running low from fatigue. She had taken her jacket off a while back, bundling it around her son for added warmth and protection. There were several large cuts and bruises on her arms and legs from running through branches, and the blood loss was beginning to make Hinata dizzy.

She rested against a tree trunk momentarily to catch her breath and attempt to seal the larger cuts. She checked on Shisome, whose vitals were looking good, despite the situation they were in. Looking below, she could see the water level was climbing higher and higher. She willed herself to get up, but she was unable to move her legs. She felt that strange feeling again as she scanned the area. 'NO!' she thought to herself. 'I need to protect Shisome!'

"Please, someone help!" she wailed desperately, hoping someone would hear her. It couldn't end like this… not when she had a son to protect and a Main 'family' to retaliate against. The cold was seeping into her body, coaxing her to slip into a deep sleep.

She fought it as long as she could before seeing a pair of red comma-rimmed eyes and slipped into unconsciousness.

Whoa! Questions already? Thanks, Rook!

1. Hinata has a child, but whose child is it?
A. she speculates it was kabuto because she's the only man she's shared a bed with. but then again she doesn't exactly know what went on that night. on top of things, kabuto IS a skilled medic-nin... anything is possible. paternity test, anyone?

2. What is it with comma shaped in Shisome's eyes?
A. wait and find out... the sharingan IS derived from the byakugan, we know this, but that too will be discussed in later chapters.

3. Pairings?
A. we'll see later. hinata is new to konoha so she can't exactly jump into anything yet. as for gaara... that may be explained in later chapters... just another note to add to this- hinata has a lot of emotional baggage, a son to take care of, and a vendetta to carry out. love may not be in the air so early on...

4. What kind of Kage is he (Gaara) if he can't protect his one of villagers of kidnapping and revenge threats?
A. gaara, temari and kankurou know about hinata (mentioned after hinata's fight with the kidnappers). the threats were nothing for hinata to really worry about. as far as the kidnapping goes, there was no warning, obviously. it's not that gaara is a bad kage at all. hinata just wants to handle everything on her own accord, having earned the title of jonin at a young age, she may have been aware that sometimes having more people involved can lead to more serious consequences. she didn't need (or want, for that matter) gaara to send out a team of nin to find her son. also, there may be another reason why hinata seems to not want gaara's help personally...

Well, what do you think so far? Let me know if this story is worth continuing. PLEASE. Be as brutally honest as possible, too. If this is not interesting at all, I'd like to know so I can spend my time writing other things. I know you readers are out there and you don't like to leave reviews, but seriously, if you absolutely hate this, I think I ought to know so I can prevent future pieces like this from happening ever again.

Also, let me know if I should have another title for this fic. "Proportional Retribution" was the best I could come up with. Thanks!

Ahh, I should explain that the timelines will be constantly flipping back from the past to the present. I guess the easiest thing to do would be to italicize past events and keep the present in regular font? If someone would let me know if this is helpful, please let me know so I can use this method for future chapters. Thanks!