The way of the Hyuuga
A/N – OK, so I plan to make this a really long angsty ficcie. The rating may change depending on whether I want to go lemon or not. And the pairing could change too, it'll be either NejiTen or NejiHina…But most likely NejiTen and one sided NejiHina. Enjoy!
Disclaimer – I do not own Naruto…but boy I wish I did…
Tenten remembered the day her life was turned upside down more vividly then any other. Her memory of that day was even clearer then the day she graduated from the academy, the day she saw the boy she admired beaten by a rookie who failed three years in a row…she even remembered it more vibrantly then the day she kissed that boy she admired, and the heart of that boy she admired thawed out into something that warmed the arms that embraced her at night. That boy had become a man…But still, it was not her clearest of memories…
Hyuuga Neji, that man was called. His demeanour had softened after the day Tenten's heart fluttered by the feather-light touch of his lips on hers. It was softened by her gentle caresses only for him; they were not the types to show public displays of affection. But Tenten knew the admiration she showed him behind closed doors was enough to unlock the doors in his mind and let her see a new side of Neji she had barely known existed. However, in the public eye, he was still a monotone amongst the bright canvas, he was a shadow lurking, veiled in seriousness and blunt words that spoke no emotion.
So it wasn't surprising her clearest memory was when Hyuuga Neji proposed to her.
That monotone became the brightest colour on the canvas, and Tenten was only too happy to see it drown out the lesser tones. It had been strange to see someone as distant as Neji so close to her on one knee, and it was even stranger to see the anxiety in his eyes when she hesitated…but she hadn't hesitated from doubt…just pure, undeniable shock. From then on, Tenten had never been happier, had never been so confident in herself (not that she wasn't confident before, but Neji had somehow managed to tenfold it)
But now, at the tender age of twenty five, The brown-haired kunoichi was nervously twiddling the golden ring coiled on her finger, sweat beads dotted her bare forehead and she gulped inaudibly…She had never been so confidence-deprived in all her life.
Tenten was sitting outside a set of large sliding doors with plain wood panels, nothing sentimental or thought provoking could be seen in these walls of the Hyuuga. She hung her head, hazel eyes focusing on the navy colour of her three-quarter lengths. For a moment she ceased playing with the ring to clasp the blue cotton material, hoping that perhaps fisting the fabric from time to time would calm her nerves.
Her fiancé sitting adjacent to her caught sight of this nervous behaviour from the corners of his pallid eyes, they narrowed slightly at her actions; thinking they were weak and unnecessary. It wasn't long until Neji's head turned completely to face her; if anyone could read body language it was Neji, and he just had to comment on it.
"Stop that, they'll notice." He rasped under his breath, not only looking a little annoyed, but perhaps a little anxious too, even someone as stoic as Neji had a right to look that way, what with this thick tension weighing down his shoulders.
Tenten looked up, and even though he was feeling the pressure just as much as she was, she noticed his fingers didn't twitch, and his head was still held up high, unlike hers. The kunoichi couldn't help it; she wasn't used to dealing with the seriousness of the Hyuuga's and their traditions. Tenten wasn't usually like this, she was strong, independent and confident…but in a situation like this; it was difficult to be all those things at once.
Suddenly without warning Neji's hand brushed across hers in a swift and chaste movement, it was then that Tenten knew she didn't have to be those things, because Neji would be them for her…She was grateful for his strong will, but at the same time, she felt saddened that hers was not as sturdy.
Nevertheless, a curve found it's way to her lips, one that somehow managed to reassure herself.
"Sorry, just a little nervous." She explained in a whisper, not wanting to disturb the still hallways of the Hyuuga manor. "It'll be ok though." Tenten finished, hoping that her usual confidence was slowly sinking back into her. Neji didn't reply to her remark and simply turned his head to look at the wooden door, his hands fell back into his lap and soon Tenten withdrew hers too.
Before Tenten had time to regroup her feelings the plain wooden door slid open, almost making the Kunoichi jump from her place seated on folded legs. Neji had never felt more tempted to let a look of disapproval wash over his features, but with Hiashi's eyes firmly locked onto his, Neji knew that it wasn't an attainable option…
The head of the clan sat opposite the two, in front of him was a low table with neat stacks of papers, but nothing that seemed to bring life to the dull room he sat in. Shadows twisted and turned in every crevice of the area; some fell onto Neji's uncle and lavished his serious face in an ominous glow. It wasn't surprising Tenten wanted to shuffle a little, and perhaps drown out this tense silence.
It was soon broken by Hiashi's voice, beckoning the two to enter. They did as they were told, both standing from their places in unison and pacing forwards to sit opposite the head of the clan. Neji still sat with his head held high, knowing this visit was only compulsory routine, soon enough Tenten had begun to catch onto the Hyuuga gist, sitting with a straight back and a serious expression. Maybe too much time with Neji had rubbed off on her, but she didn't complain; at least it meant she could bare those snow-white eyes piercing into her entirety, and still manage to look composed. Tenten just kept reminding herself that this would be over soon, and she could get back to being plain, relaxed Tenten, not Tenten that had to please her fiancé's uncle to get his consent for their marriage.
"You wished to speak to me?" The older Hyuuga spoke, his voice as lifeless as stone, and yet his gaze seemed to be carving out great anxiety in the pit of Tenten's stomach.
Neji nodded his head in affirmation before lifting his gaze to meet Hiashi's. "Yes sir. I have a request to ask of you." He spoke with that same lifelessness as Hiashi, and Tenten could only hope that Neji wouldn't turn back into that block of ice she had spent so long melting. She didn't like the way it made his voice sound. And the fact he even had to call his own uncle 'sir', Tenten had never liked the idea of that either, the ways of the Hyuuga were far too serious for their own good. A sudden thought crept into her mind that almost made the woman want to laugh out loud, who was she to judge? After all, with Hiashi's consent she'd become a Huuga herself!
For a moment Neji had paused, his throat ran dry and it seemed Hiashi had caught on; his head leaned a little closer, his gaze even penetrating the likes of Neji, urging him to continue.
The Hyuuga conjured the use of speech from places unknown, and made Tenten want to sigh in relief, for a moment she had though Neji had lost the will to continue…
"Tenten has accepted my hand in marriage," Hiashi's eyes skimmed down to the finger decorated in a simple golden ring, which immediately twitched under his eyes, inside she slapped herself for that silly error of showing weakness, and she knew Neji was mentally slapping her too…
"As the Head of our clan, I request your consent for out marriage."
Tenten wanted go give her fiancé a round of applause for a job well done. Hiashi was a very scary man to be dealing with she realised, and in his presence her voice had disappeared into thin air and she had to settle for letting Neji do the talking. Maybe Neji didn't stutter or sweat because he had to deal with Hiashi for all of his life…maybe it was because he was used to seeing these routines of having to ask the Clan's Leader for consent…Or maybe he was just a very, very brave soul…Tenten had always liked to think so, even if she didn't voice it.
Hiashi didn't look too pleased about the news; not even a 'congratulations' passed his lips, however…it didn't look like he was going to object either.
"Very well." He spoke, managing to lift Tenten's hopes a little higher, however, Neji didn't look as pleased about the news, he could practically feel the 'but' about to roll off of the older Hyuuga's tongue.
He knew it…absolutely knew it…
"Do you even know where you're going?" Asked an aggravated Neji, his footsteps patting softly on the lush glass of the Hyuuga gardens. A girlish laugh rung in his ears, one that didn't really suit Tenten, but her high-pitched voice had always made it that way. Neji wasn't too keen on anything shrill of high-pitched, but that laugh seemed to sooth him as he ran after the girl who chortled through the grassy clearings surrounding the manor.
"No, but does that matter?" She retorted, swivelling her body the same way she would when they sparred, and she was about to aim a lethal weapon at him. Only this time there were no weapons, only a dazzling smile lighting up her feathers as the wind whispered through her brown bangs. For a moment she let Neji close some of the distance between them before she ran off in the other direction again, she could hear a pronounced sigh leave his lips and it only made her laugh harder.
She only stopped completely when her path had been blocked of by a lake, with a silent huff she sat and decided she'd let Neji get close enough to ask why on earth she was being so childish.
The question never came though. For secretly Neji liked her childish antics, and that innocent in her eyes when she laughed. He caught up, taking a seat beside her and watching the sun light up the concave shapes made by gentle waves. His eyes locked onto hers and narrowed a little as the kunoich stifled back a laugh.
"What's so funny anyway?"
"I guess I wasn't expecting that meeting with Hiashi to go so…smoothly…" She admitted, causing Neji to raise a curious brow.
"I mean, so what if we have to live with your family, they're not that bad."
Neji wished he could agree with that, but truth be told he couldn't. Nevertheless, Tenten seemed happy about it, so for the time being he stayed quiet and decided not to dampen his fiancée's mood. Neji didn't like the sound of having no privacy, and it wasn't as if they'd get the chance to be alone if they lived away from the Hyuuga compound anyway. Neji was an ANBU squad leader, constantly on missions, and soon Tenten would be supervising a genin squad of her own…their lives would not be peachy, but maybe that's what made being with Tenten so alluring.
"Anyway, I like the idea of having maids." She giggled, trying to make up for Neji's lack of laughter. Although he didn't smile back, he admired her optimism and slowly one of arms coiled around the kuoichi's waist. She jumped a little; startled that she had only just felt Neji's hand move there. Her eyes seem lost in his for a moment as he leaned down, closer and closer until his lips were pressed against hers.
Tenten was stunned, never had Neji kissed her in an open space where anyone could see them. She guessed that although he didn't show it as much as she did; he was in good spirits too. She returned his affectionate gesture, letting her tongue skim the tip of his lips before they opened to allow Tenten to explore his palette a little more. He returned this with the plunging of his own tongue into her mouth, and it wasn't long before he had leaned into her so much that they were lying down on the bank of the lake.
Tenten broke her mouth away from his intoxicating kiss, only to find they were lying side by side and somehow one of her hands had managed to get tangled in his long chocolate brown locks. Her other hand seemed to be toying with his fingers, clasping them and fiddling with the ring on his finger.
"Neji…" She said, though it sounded more like a question.
"Mm?" Came the reply, and Tenten inwardly rolled her eyes, it seemed most of Neji's vocabulary wasn't really full words.
"What was that for?"
Neji's eyes were fixed onto hers for a while until they began to focus on the surroundings. He had only just noticed his arms were wrapped around her torso and pressing her against him.
"Because I can."
Usually it was Neji dishing out the looks of disapproval, but for now it seemed to be Tenten's turn as her eyes shifted into small slits. Slowly Tenten lifted her leg a little, letting it fall over Neji's. She offered him an impish grin before rolling over and effectively mounting her fiancé.
"What are you-?"
"Because I can." She retorted, making Neji narrow his eyes in light-hearted discontent. It was soon washed away though, when Tenten lowered her head, and this time, it was her doing the kissing; and him being stunned. Her hands fell to the sides of his head to brace herself on the bank. Neji's arms slowly found themselves wrapping around Tenten's waist and pulling her closer. The two were lost in their passion, so lost infact that they didn't hear the sounds of advancing footsteps, nor did they feel a lurking presence.
"Oh my-!" The voice blurted out in a high pitched squeal, which was enough to knock a straddling Tenten off of her fiancé and fall backwards, the steepness of the bank cause her to slip and fall into the lake…hardly the grace of a Kunoichi, but at the time she had been to shocked to act in any other way.
Neji bolted up immediately, as funny as it were to see Tenten fall head-first into a lake with a boisterous splash, he failed to laugh. Instead he watched as bubbles emerged from the water's surface and up came a brown haired woman, gasping for breaths through paddles. The Hyuuga's moth fell ajar as he helped his fiancée out of the icy water; her frame was shivering uncontrollably as he helped her out to dry land…
"I-I'm s-so-s-so s-sorry!" The voice spoke again, and once Neji had helped Tenten out of the water he finally turned to see none other than Hinata, looking a paler shade of white (if it were possible).
Tenten slumped in his arms, gritting her teeth to stop them chattering, she didn't need to look to tell that it was Hinata apologising, no stutter could quite compare to hers.
"Don't…worry…about it." Tenten rasped through ragged breaths, that icy water certainly took its toll. Soon Neji turned to Hinata, not showing as much forgiveness as Tenten did.
"Hinata-sama, perhaps you could make her some tea?" He said, trying to sound polite, but it was obvious he was annoyed that Hinata had interrupted. The heir gulped, knowing too well that she had annoyed her cousin, he was only sounding polite because she was of the main branch, and he was in no position to be rude to her.
"R-right!" She said before running back inside. To be honest, she was glad she had left the scene, for it had been quite embarrassing not only to see Neji kissing his fiancée passionately, but she felt awful for ruining his happiness and making Tenten fall into the lake too. For a moment her heart sunk, why couldn't she do anything right? Why didn't she always seem to make Neji miserable?
Back by the lake, Neji was currently cradling Tenten in his arms…and Tenten, was currently letting her pride slip for allowing him to do so.
"Come on. Let's get you inside."
She didn't object, and slowly the two of them rose before walking back to the manor.
"Do you think it's a sign?" Tenten asked, making Neji rather curious. "One that's saying, me living with your family is a bad idea?" she elaborated.
"Could be." He replied, though not sounding too enthusiastic about it. "Why? Having second thoughts?"
"Nope, not a single one." She replied, sounding ever so confident that she could handle whatever challenges the Hyuugas would throw at her; she sealed her affirmation with a chaste kiss on Neji's cheek, causing the usually emotionless male to conjure an uncanny blush, from her kiss he noticed just how cold her lips had gotten, and every other part of her body infact. Instinctively he wrapped his arm around her a little tighter, hoping to give her some of his body heat.
"Life wouldn't be interesting without its little quirks…" Tenten mused, mainly to herself as she rested her head on Neji's shoulder whilst they walked. "Even if it means falling into a lake-
I wouldn't have it any other way."
Tenten seemed confident enough, but a pair of eyes lurking at the window knew that being a Hyuuga wasn't always as easy as it may have seemed.
It was a shame that Tenten would have to find out the hard way…
A/N – Sorry, I know this chapter's boring, but it'll get better I promise! The first chapters are always dull anyways, and hey! It might even get lemony! DD
So read and review, because without your precious reviews I have no inspiration to write XD