Irena: This is the last chapter of Shouken Shounin. Wow this day has finally come. I didn't realize how soon this day was coming. Please enjoy this chapter.
Disclaimer- I do not own Naruto or any of the characters in it.
Chapter 22 – How Do I Go On?
Sasuke held Kohaku in his arms not letting go. He was shaking fiercely the tremors coming over his body at the loose of another he loved.
"Sasuke you need to let her go," Kakashi whispered kneeling next to Sasuke. "This is the way of the Shinobi. We lose the ones we care about most."
Kakashi prided Sasuke's fingers off of Kohaku's frail body. He took her in his arms standing up slowly.
Inari walked over to Sasuke and muttered, "Gomenasai."
Sasuke stood up not saying a word and walked next to Kakashi, not even taking his eyes off Kohaku's body.
"Tazuna, can you get someone to bring Zabuza and Haku's bodies?" Kakashi asked. "They deserve a proper barrel."
"Of course," Tazuna replied turning to walk over to talk with some of the town's people.
Kakashi started to walk again, slowly, his student in his arms. He felt the pain of her loss. He would be strong for his students but in reality he wanted to cry. He wouldn't show his emotions, but he felt like it had been himself who killed her. It was his arm that went through Haku. She was his student and he was supposed to protect her but he couldn't even do that. His grip tightened on her. Then something happened. Something that he never thought would. He felt something, something faint. He stopped and bent down laying her gently down.
"What is it?" Sasuke asked looking at Kakashi.
"Something's not right," Kakashi muttered placing two fingers on Kohaku's throat.
Kakashi's eyes grew wide and Sasuke just stood there looking at him.
"This can't be. It isn't right," Kakashi shook his head.
"What is it? What's going on?" Sasuke begged to know.
"She…She has a pulse," Kakashi replied, Sasuke froze.
"What?! But how?! You just said there was no way she could be alive!!!" Sasuke shouted in frustration.
"I don't know how, but it is there even though it is very faint," Kakashi replied. "I almost didn't even pick it up."
Kakashi picked her up again then turned to place her in Sasuke's arms.
"Take her back to Tazuna's house. Place her in a bed and wait for me," Kakashi ordered.
Sasuke got to the house quickly panting a little. He ran inside and into the bedroom laying her down softly on the mat.
"Sasuke, what's going on?" Tsunami asked as she rushed over to them. "What happened to Kohaku?"
Not long after Kakashi came into the house.
"What can we do?" Sasuke asked with fear in his voice.
"I… I don't know," Kakashi answered. "She is not wounded in the slightest. There is no wound to treat."
Sasuke started to feel shaky and was having trouble standing. His wounds bleed on the floor.
"Let's get your wounds bandaged up," Tsunami said leaving the room to get the medical supplies.
Sasuke sat by her not even leaving her side to eat. It had already been five days and her condition never changed. She was pale and cold. She seemed dead but the only thing that should she wasn't was that faint pulse.
"Sasuke you need to get some sleep. I can watch over her for you-" Sakura was cut off. "I'm fine."
"At least eat something," Sakura begged. "You aren't even letting your wounds completely heal."
"I said I'm fine," Sasuke repeated himself with anger in his voice glaring fiercely at her.
Sakura flinched. She had never seen Sasuke like this and it scared her. So she let him be without another word.
"How is Sasuke?" Kakashi asked as she entered the room.
"Still the same," Sakura answered. "I just wish he would eat."
'Damn! Why didn't I see this?! I'm her sensei I should have figured this out!' Kakashi thought blaming himself for everything.
Tazuna's home had become quite and depressing. The bridge was almost complete, but no one was celebrating because they were all worried about Kohaku and Sasuke. He barely rested and didn't eat. They found him pasted out once. His condition just kept deteriorating and if Kohaku died they weren't sure what would happen.
Haku! Haku!! Kohaku called running frantically trying to find him.
Kohaku! Haku running towards her.
Haku! Kohaku shouted running into his arms. I have been looking everywhere for you!
I know, Haku replied hugging her.
Where are we? She asked looking around.
In your mind, Haku replied.
What do you mean? Kohaku asked releasing Haku.
Your body's loss of chakra plus the shock it received was too great and now you're fighting to live.
Our bond was broken and your body couldn't handle it. I can restore your body so you can head back to Onii-chan.
Something in her heart told her not to go. To stay there with Haku. She knew something wasn't right but she didn't know what. All she knew was that she had to stay there with him at all costs.
No, I'm staying here with you, she replied.
No you have to return, Haku told her.
I won't. All that matters is you.
What about Onii-chan?
What do you mean?
Without you he will not be the same.
He'd be fine. Onii-chan is stronger then most.
Yes but you are what keeps him going.
But you're the most important person in my life. Without you I'd rather die.
If that is really what you think then let's see him then.
All the sudden Haku and Kohaku were standing besides Kohaku's body and Sasuke. It was like they were observers, ghosts. Sasuke couldn't see them but they could see him. Sasuke laid his head on Kohaku's body holding onto her hand.
"Kohaku," Sasuke said tears running down his face. "Please come back. Don't die. I can't bear to lose you too. You're all that I have left. Please."
Onii-chan… Kohaku called out.
She walked over to him and tried to comfort him, but her hands pasted right through him.
See, look how much he is suffering, Haku pointed out.
Yeah, but I'm too low on chakra even if I wanted to go back, Kohaku replied.
I will give you more then enough chakra to survive, Haku said.
It doesn't matter. I don't want to live without you, Kohaku replied tears falling from her face. I can't live without you.
Kohaku kissed him wrapping her arms around his waist. She pulled away from the kiss looking deep into his eyes.
I know, but you have a chance keep on living, Haku told her whipping the tears off her face.
I don't care! I'm staying with you! I love you! Kohaku yelled holding onto Haku tightly.
Haku pushed her off, I'm sorry, but you will live, even if I have to force you.
Haku stepped over to Kohaku's body and his hands glowed as he transferred his chakra to Kohaku.
No! Haku don't!! You promised to be with me forever!!! Kohaku shouted trying to stop him.
Sasuke held Kohaku's hand tightly not letting go for fear if he did she would disappear forever.
'I haven't cried like that since the anniversary of my clan's death, but Kohaku was there to cheer me up,' Sasuke thought. 'But if Kohaku dies she won't be able to cheer me up like she used to. What will I do with out her?'
All the sudden Kohaku's body started to glow.
"What in the-?!" Sasuke shouted causing Kakashi and everyone ran into the room.
"What's going on?!" Kakashi shouted to Sasuke.
"I don't know all the sudden she started to glow," Sasuke explained.
Kohaku's hair changed in the area where her bangs would be and they turned as black as Haku's hair and over her heart a black tattoo appeared. It said Haku of the village hidden in the Mist. It had Haku's name 白 and underneath it was the symbol for the Village Hidden in the Mist.
"What is happening?" Sasuke asked.
Kohaku's eyes flew opened and she sat up straight grabbing onto Sasuke. She was shocked and confused as she held onto Sasuke. She suddenly felt so alone and like she was broken in half.
"Onii-chan," Kohaku whispered as she held onto him.
"Kohaku," Sasuke muttered as he wrapped his arms around her. "Thank god you're all right."
"Let's leave them alone," Kakashi said pushing them out of the room.
"I had a horrible nightmare. There was something wrong with Haku and he wouldn't let me stay with him," she tried to explain.
Kohaku then realized something was wrong. She couldn't see Haku, feel him. He was disconnected from her and that scared her.
Kohaku let go of Sasuke and asked panicking, "Where's Haku? I can't tell where he is, what's happening to him?"
"Kohaku," Sasuke just hugged her tight.
"Onii-chan," Kohaku pushed him off her. "What's going on? Where is Haku? I need Haku! Tell me where he-"
She stopped talking as she noticed two mats with sheets on them. She stood up slowly walking over to them. She gripped the white sheet with her shaky hand and was about to pull the cover off when Sasuke grabbed her hand.
"Kohaku, don't," Sasuke pleaded.
Kohaku pulled away from Sasuke and pulled the cover off. Her eyes grew wide. She started to shake.
"No," Kohaku whispered shaking her head. "This can't be."
Kohaku looked at Haku's body lying on the floor. His hair was messy, his eyes shut, and his skin was so pale that it was white. Her hand reached out to his body as she touched his face feeling no warmth, realizing it was really him and no illusion.
"No this isn't possible. If he's dead I should be too! Why am I not dead with him?!" Kohaku muttered tears flowing from her face.
"Kohaku, there is nothing you can do," Sasuke spoke but she didn't listen.
"No," she shook her head. "Noooooooo!!!"
Everyone could hear her cries as she shouted her pain. The house shook from her screams. Sasuke grabbed her and tried to calm her down but it was no use. She grasp for breath as the tears flowed. She just couldn't handle it. This loss was too much for her to bear.
Kohaku pushed him off her, "Leave."
Sasuke was shocked by what she said, thinking he had not heard her right.
Then she shouted, "Leave!!!"
Sasuke obeyed and left the room. When he left the room everyone was staring. He leaded against the door.
"Why did he have to do that? Why did he leave her?!" Sasuke shouted in frustration.
"He didn't leave her. Usually a Shouken Shounin dies together," Kakashi answered.
"What are we suppose to do?!" Sasuke asked. "How can we help her?!"
"All we can do is wait," Kakashi answered.
"That's all you have to say?" Sasuke replied his hands shaking. "I'm tried of waiting!"
Sasuke stormed out of the house. Slamming the door behind him causing the house to shake. All of them just looked watching him go.
Kohaku bent over Haku and kissed him on the lips. They were ice cold.
"So you really are gone," Kohaku said her voice quivering. "Why did I survive? I should have died with you. Why didn't you let me die? What about your promise?! To be together always!"
Kohaku brushed the hair out of his face and placed her head on his chest. Tears streamed down her face and her hand gripped his cloths.
"Why?" Kohaku asked as the tears came. "Why?!"
For the next seven days Kohaku wouldn't eat and stayed in the room the door locked.
'Haku, I will join you,' she held a kunai to her wrist the feel of ice cold metal on her skin. She pushed the metal down blood starting to drip down. She then threw it across the room. 'Damn! Why can't I do it?!'
She slammed her fist into the ground. The tears started to flow all over again.
The door to the house opened and Tazuna came walking in.
"She still hasn't come out?" Tazuna asked as he walked in the house.
"No," Kakashi replied sitting at the table.
"I have something for her," Tazuna said placing a small backpack on the table.
"You can try to give it to her but I doubt that she will open the door," Kakashi told him.
Tazuna nodded and walked over to the door and knocked. There was no answer.
"Kohaku, I have something for you," Tazuna called. "The workers and I gathered all the weapons that Haku and Zabuza were using and everything else of theirs. I thought you might want them."
After a minute he heard the lock click and the door opened. Kohaku appeared. Her hair was messy and it looked like her she hadn't slept in days. She was thin, pale, and looked horrible.
"Here," Tazuna said holding out the backpack.
Kohaku took the backpack without a word and shut the door. She sat down on the floor opening the backpack and dumped out the contents. All of Haku's Senbon where there and there were at least a hundred. There was also some kunai and Shuriken. A necklace also fell out of the bag. It was the same one Haku was wearing when she first kissed him. It was black leather choker necklace like a dog's collar. She held it in her hands and gripped it tight.
'How do I keep on living without Haku? I can't kill myself, why?' Kohaku thought. 'What do I do? Why did he break? How could Naruto be able to break him? If I had just be strong enough to beat the Nine Tailed Fox inside of Naruto… That's what I'll do. That's why I'm still alive. I will become powerful enough to beat the Nine Tailed Fox. I will train hard to beat him. I will prove that I can be strong. It would be just like Haku beating the fox and if he had then everything would have been different. Haku told me that he was useless not being able to beat Naruto. This will prove that Haku is strong and that he was worthy for Zabuza.'
Kohaku stood up looking into the mirror on the dresser.
'I look so much like him. Why did my appearance change? Did it have something to do with Haku is part of him still in me? I'll keep him alive in me so he will never be forgotten,' Kohaku thought.
There was a soft knock on the door.
"Kohaku please eat something," Tsunami begged.
Kohaku thought for a moment an idea entered her mind so she decided to open the door.
"I need your help," Kohaku said. "Will you help me?"
"What do you need help with?" Tsunami asked.
Kohaku let her into the room shutting the door and locking it behind her.
"I want to make myself look like Haku so he can live on in me," Kohaku answered.
Tsunami thought for a moment then answered, "I will help you if you eat something, deal?"
"Alright," Kohaku replied without hesitation.
"Now, what do you need help with?" Tsunami asked setting the food down in front of Kohaku.
Two days pasted and they were almost always in the room door locked. Tsunami refused to tell them what was going on just saying that they would find out when she finally came out.
"What have they been doing in there?" Sasuke asked frustrated. "It's been two days!"
"Be patient," Kakashi ordered him.
Sasuke was about to yell at him when the door to the bedroom opened. The turned to look as Kohaku walked out of the room. They looked at her in shock. Her appearance had changed. She looked so different. She wore the same shorts, but she now had a dark blue shirt. It was like a cloth wrapped around her chest also it made her tattoo clearly visible. She no longer had the bandages that covered her arms and legs. Now she just had gloves that were black leather, that had a metal plate on the back, and the fingers were cut off. Her hair was up in a bun that only her black hair hung down and in her bun was two Senbon poking through it. She had two pouches on each of her sides filled with Senbon and her kunai pouch strapped to her right leg. Lastly she had a small bag on her back fill with the weapons Tazuna had collected for the bridge and Haku's necklace/collar around her neck.
"Kohaku," Sasuke called to her coming up and giving her a hug. "I'm so glade you are alright."
He had been very worried about her and was glad that she had finally left that room. He didn't care about her changes as long as she was getting better.
"So this is what you have been doing in there," Kakashi noted to Tsunami.
"Yes, it was only was to get her to eat," Tsunami replied.
"Is that shirt made of Haku's cloths?" Kakashi asked.
"Yes," Tsunami answered. "We used a section of his cloths to make it. She wants to be as close to him as possible."
Kakashi nodded in response walking over to Kohaku.
"Kohaku, I think it's time for their funeral," Kakashi told her looking worried at Kohaku.
Kohaku nodded and they walked outside and into the forest to the graves Kakashi and the others had dug. They laid down the food offerings and finished the graves. There where two crosses made of wood sticking out of the ground. Behind one of them was Zabuza's sword sticking out of the ground and the other Haku's kimono tie was tied around the cross. Kohaku stepped up to them and laid flowers on their graves.
"Kakashi," Kohaku said breaking the silence.
"Yes?" Kakashi responded.
"Why did I survive?" Kohaku asked.
"Hmm, I'm not sure," Kakashi answered.
"When I was unconscious Haku said I could keep on living if I wanted to," Kohaku started. "But I told him that I didn't want to live without him. Haku then asked me 'What about Onii-chan?' and I told him he would be fine on his own. But Haku made me listen to Sasuke telling me not to go and that he needed me. I knew that he needed me, but I didn't want to, I still don't. All I want is to be with him, but Haku transferred all of his chakra into me and brought be back to life against my will. I should have died like all the other Shouken Shounin died when their other were killed. I should be dead. I want to be dead."
Sasuke walked up to Kohaku and wrapped his arms around her waist and leaned his head on her shoulder.
"You're alive for a reason," Sasuke said quietly. "Just to keep on living your life."
"I'll be okay," Kohaku replied placing a hand on his arm.
"Come on guys," Kakashi said. "Let's go."
They all nodded and headed back towards the house, Sasuke holding her hand. As they were leaving Kohaku took one last look at their graves.
'Good-bye Haku, Zabuza,' Kohaku said a small tear fell from her eye. 'I love you, Haku. I always will. When I beat Naruto for you I will join you.'
The bridge had finally been finished and Kakashi and team seven where leaving for Konoha.
"Thanks to you the bridge has finally been completed," Tazuna said. "But it will be awfully dull around here, once you've left."
"We have enjoyed your hospitality," Kakashi thanked them with a smile.
"Don't worry Tazuna! We'll come back to play again!" Naruto replied happily.
"You better," Inari said in a quivering voice.
"Inari, don't let it get you down," Naruto replied trying to show he was not sad when he was. "But, if you really want to go ahead."
"I'm not going to cry!" Inari shouted. "But Naruto, Nii-chan, you can cry! Go ahead!"
"Me? No way," Naruto replied walking off.
As he was walking off Naruto started to cry and so did Inari. They walked across the bridge instead of taking a boat, it was faster.
"Let's get home! Because Iruka-sensei's gonna treat me to ramen to celebrate an accomplished mission! Also I have to tell Konohamaru my epic tale of martial arts bravery," Naruto shout happily.
"Um, Sasuke, when we get home, would you like to go out with me," Sakura asked.
"No, thanks," Sasuke answered.
"No?" Sakura replied disappointed.
"I'll go out with you!" Naruto told Sakura.
"No!" Sakura shouted.
'Its almost like nothing happened at least to them,' Kohaku thought sadly.
Sasuke took Kohaku's hand and told her, "When we get back you're going to stay at my place for a while."
"Why?" Kohaku asked. "I'm fine, really."
"No you're not," Sasuke replied. "And until I think you are you're staying at my place."
"Fine," Kohaku agreed not feeling like fighting. "For a week."
"No," Sasuke said determined. "A year."
"One month and that's my finally offer."
"A month, but not a day less."
When they finally got to the other side Kohaku turned around to look back at the bridge and the Land of Waves.
'I should never have survived. I should be dead with Haku. I wish I was dead with Haku,' Kohaku thought with tears in her eyes. 'No! Damn! No more crying, no more losing, and no more mistakes. I will beat Naruto and the Nine Tailed Fox. After that I will die and join Haku. I don't have any ill will towards Naruto but I need to prove that I can be strong, that maybe Haku didn't die for nothing. Nothing turned out the way we planed. We were supposed to stay with Zabuza to repay him for everything and then get a home for just the two of us. We would get married have a family but I guess dreams don't come true. That is the curse of the Shouken Shounin.'
Kohaku turned and headed back for Konoha to begin her new level of training to prepare for the day she would battle Naruto and prove that she could beat Naruto. That Haku could beat him through her. The training would be hard but she would do it. She knew that she could.
Irena: Please don't kill me! -Quiver in a corner- Hear me out! I have finished Shouken Shounin yes but I can still continue the story that is if you want me too. Send me messages or on review tell me if you want me to continue or not. If not this is the last chapter but if so I will start the squeal. I started writing a little just to see how it would come out so here is the summary of what the story will be about if I am to continue:
"Haku's dead, Kohaku is still alive, and now their bond is broken. Now what? Kohaku decides to prove herself by beating Naruto but that means she has to train hard. Even more troubles arise as she starts to loose control of her Kekkei Genkai. Without Haku will she ever be able to become whole again?"
Irena: So what do you think should I continue or not? In one week I will post an authors comment saying my answer.