Inspiration came to me last night and here's what resulted of it.

Don't cry

She held a sharpened knife into one hand while she stood into offensive mode. A slight breezing lifted her dark indigo bangs while she concentrated intensely on the target. A thought of relief passed through her mind, grateful because she sweated a lot from her non-stop training but she tossed it aside. She had to get it right this time in order to be stronger. She was the eldest of the family and therefore the heiress, so she had to represent their strength and preserve the clan's dignity.

The kunai began to shake out of the effort she made to keep it in the right position. She tightened her grip on it, increasing her concentration but her thoughts once again drifted.

She was a burden to her team most of the time. Except for her particular jutsu allowing her to see in a 360 degrees view, her team wouldn't need her. No, that's not true. Only, Kiba and Shino could easily go off without her, but they seem to not mind me at all, she thought bitterly.

Naruto works so hard to become stronger. He never despairs, how much difficulties there are ahead. He's been through so much and still, he lives every day to the fullest, always beaming… like a ray of sunshine, she blushed but became serious again. What about me? I always fall behind. I'm always stuttering in front of him, always blushing and keeping my head down. Always unable to face him…What would he think if he saw me like this?"

The young teenager flinched and the kunai was thrown towards the barely marked tree. However, it flied a few inches away from the target and disappeared in the bushes. A few birds chirped in fright and left in the sky covered of thick orange clouds.

The Hyūga heiress watched them go, and then broke away from gazing at the nightfall. Her shoulders shook slightly. ''I have to be s-stronger, a-and yet I can't'' she whispered to herself. Hinata fell on the ground, defeated. She had trained the whole day, from dawn to dusk, for several days to please Hiashi but in vain. Her techniques weren't getting any better and her mood only darkened along. Although she didn't being alone, at this moment she missed greatly somebody's company. In this hardship, suddenly no one seemed to support her, not in the way she wished they would. Her little sister Hanabi acknowledged her pain, having witnessed the behaviour of their father but did nothing of it, not touched as much as her older sister. There was also Team 8 always behind her to encourage her, always being careful about her wellbeing but-but… inside her, a void kept growing and all the affection that her friends showered her with wasn't sufficient to fill it.

"S-somebody help me!" she cried out. Her voice chocked in her throat and she hugged herself, losing herself into a silent pain.

The red haired teenager glanced from the tree he was currently crouched in at his older sister Temari, presently arguing with the Shikamaru kid over a cup of ramen, apparently the town's specialty from the looks of it. Next to her, an insignificant, fat boy stuffed the noodles inside his mouth disgustingly, just like Naruto in front of the pig, both throwing meaningful remarks to each other. He could hear some painful words referring to the blond's poor skills and weakness that spitted out of the fatty's mouth, but Naruto ignored them and came back in force, proclaiming he would be some day Hokage and then kick his butt. Obviously, this Naruto wasn't appreciated by anyone, just like him, but wouldn't stop to that.

From the tree, he could observe their behaviour outside of battles. They acted in a carefree manner, far from the harsh reality of ninjas. How they could be so cheerful, it escaped him. The warmth of their relationships would soon cool once they would realize that they could only trust themselves, that only you will love yourself and no one else…

As to prove his belief, Gaara moved his fingers to his forehead, touched delicately the tattoo that he put upon himself six years ago. He watched the people below him pepping vigorously. Temari had now sat down at the ramen stand and helped herself with a bowl while countering the boy every time he came with an argument. She never relaxed in his presence like she did now with that Shikamaru, just like Kankurō. Unlike him, the fourth Kazegake haven't sealed up a demon inside of them. They both shared a common fear; their little brother that had a good taste for blood. Temari and Kankurō followed the sibling out of habit, maybe in some kind of brotherhood relation. As long as they didn't obstruct to his will, he wouldn't lay a finger on them. The sand ninja knew they didn't love him, there was only himself to love such a wicked demon.

Naruto left his bowl of ramen to the stand and ran up to a Chūnin. Gaara looked at the man and the hyper excited blond kid dragging him to the stand. "Iruka-sensei, have some ramen with me!" Iruka smiled pleasantly at his former student and took place next to him. Naruto said something and the adult turned his head towards him, and in a friendly gesture, patted Naruto's right shoulder. "I'm proud of you Naruto". The young genin grinned at him.

Gaara felt his heart pinched as he looked at the demonstration of affection between them. "That's only an illusion…" he shook his head and jumped of the tree, landing right next to the ramen stand. People over there stopped talking and checked out the chilling teenager as he gracefully rose and started to walk away. They nearly sighed in relief when he turned around. His face twisted into a hateful grimace. He glared at them, the bunch of idiots, sickened by the merry atmosphere, and left for the forest surrounding Konohagakure. Temari watched him leave, somehow worried more than relieved. Gaara has such a habit to break the fun but maybe all he wished was to be part of it. She noticed in the corner of her eyes the smirk on her opponent's face who stared at her, amused. She turned towards him, attracted by his invitation and prepared for another round of bickering.

When Temari, Kankurō, Baki and he made their way to the village hidden in the leaves, he already presumed that he would be uneasy around so much greenness, used to the miles of sand and the burning sun, as well as the cold nights and the cleared sky, scattered of hundreds of stars. He followed the path in front him while trying to see the sky for a glimpse of the twilight, to no avail. The foliage kept him from admiring such beauty, one of the few he acknowledged.

His body soon relaxed, away from the animated children. He walked at a slow pace, enjoying the silence and loneliness. Suddenly, his ears detected sounds of birds flying up in the sky and panting. Gaara immediately crouched behind the nearest tree, though he didn't need to hide at all. He stayed still, careful not to make a sound and listened. Judging from the sounds, the person already exhausted itself. He was disappointed of this; he wished that the stranger would put a show to exterminate him at least. A dark smile appeared on his lips, already considering the outcome of the fight and the blood spilling on the ground. He could almost smell it.

The red haired genin began to move slowly from his hiding place then froze in the spot. In front of his eyes was a young girl around his age, he assumed, panting fiercely. He followed the direction of her gaze and saw the birds that he alerted him earlier flying away. His eyes came back to the girl. He noticed the bruises and her shaking figure, as well as the worn out expression. Her colorless eyes were full of deception that she couldn't contain. She fell on her knees, facing him, and sobbed softly. A thought crossed his mind, she's broken.

Then her voice rose, a small, delicate sound in this wide forest. "S-somebody help me!" He kept watching her intently, while she rocked herself. "I-I want t-to-t b-be strong t-t-oo… I'm a-all alone" she repeated weakly. Gaara waited until she stopped moving, drained from crying, to show himself.

She only became aware of his presence when he stood straight before her and stared at her frail body impassively. Hinata has stopped crying and wiped off the tears that streamed down her red cheeks. Then she discovered a pair of shoes on the ground. She lifted her head and met piercing eyes, surrounded by darkness. She only took note of his eyes and the tattoo on his forehead that meant ai, but somehow, she didn't think that 'love' suited him at all.

A frightened cry escaped from her and she stepped back, now on her feet. She held her arm in front of her to create a distance between them (1). She tried to keep her breathing steady to regain control over her body but the tension was hardly bearable. Her body started to ache all over now and she winced.

Gaara left his steady composure and walked to Hinata until only three feet distanced them. His eyes uncaringly swept her body but finally focused on her face. Hinata's lips trembled; she tried to figure out what was going on. Then it hit her. She saw him not too long ago, among the strangers that arrived to the village. He was accompanied by two exocentric persons, a blond girl and black dressed boy but he stood out of the lot. She remembered the indescribable fear that took possession of her at the moment she laid eyes on him.

Hinata lowered her head, playing with her fingers. The stranger didn't say a word. It puzzled her. She dreaded that kind of situation so much, if only Kiba and Shino were there to talk instead of her. But her shyness stopped her from talking. However, she gulped and tried an attempt. Maybe he wanted to train and she was in the way.

"I-I-I'm s-s-s-sorry, I-I'll l-l-let you t-train a-a-al-l-one." Her stuttering was even worse than usual.

The guy's head tilt slightly to the right. "What makes you think I'm here to train? I'm thirsty for blood." He said, slowly tasting each word.

Hinata's legs abandoned her again and she crumpled, scared for good now. What is she going to do?

The girl fell on the ground again with a tortured look on her face. He smirked at her reaction, just what he expected. But then the smile withdrew.

Gaara kneeled down next to her. She made a move to escape but he grabbed her arm too fast for her tired eyes. While she futilely shook her arms, he examined her deeper. Her hair was cut short above her shoulders. She had several bruises on her face and a bit of dirt mixed with sweat. He looked for her chakra and smirked again.

In a low tone of voice, he spitted the words. "You're too weak to even bother killing you." He got up and left nonchalantly, glancing at her a last time. She hasn't budge from her spot but her body wasn't shaking anymore. I hit the right spot, Gaara thought contently, going back to the village.

Hinata has stopped trembling, yes. She sat in an Indian position, brought her fists to her lips and thought over what he said. And then decide he was right, after all. She wasn't even worth killing.

(1) I picked that idea from the episode 46, opposing Hinata against Neji, when he guesses all the reasons behind her movements.

I don't know if I'll update anytime soon, I haven't update my last fanfic since… since… well a long time! Well I won't talk here, it's not the place so come see my bio.