A/N: Okay. No excuses really. The only part of this that isn't completed is the symbolism section. I was almost finished when I had a computer crash. I'm still trying to recover the old files, but I'll give you what I have. I apologize for the overkill delay with this chapter. I don't mind if you come after me with pitchforks.
Bonus Chapter: Extras
Table of Contents:
I. Introductory Information
III. Random Information
IV. Deleted Scenes
...i. Chapter Titles
...ii. Within Chapters
VI. Version 2.0
VII. Information on Sequel
I. Introductory Information:
Blind was started January 31st, 2007, and completed on March 16th, 2009
Number of Pages at the End of Blind: 1009 (my estimate was off by seven pages :p)
Total Word Count: 472 400 (rounded to the nearest hundred; excludes author's notes)
Average number of chapters produced per month: 2.8
I decided to conclude Blind with this chapter of Extras because as I wrote the story, I had lots of fun putting in symbolism and including bits of foreshadowing throughout the story. When I started writing, I was just finishing off my last year in high school and was starting to appreciate the depth of English literature. When I was writing Blind, I was doing my best to include the literary devices I had seen implemented in greater works. But what really bothered me about English literature is that the authors and poets seldom told you straight out what they had intended with their symbolism. (Thinking on it now, it was probably to keep them from getting hanged for treason or something.) But I wanted to share with the readers the finer parts of the story that maybe some of you missed, to emphasize the theme and the meaning I was trying to convey.
Now, just because the story might be considered by some as "deep", and I've revealed the symbolism stuff doesn't mean you can write your English papers on it. While a lot of you complimented the quality of my writing, in my eyes, this isn't legitimate literature—it's still fanfiction.
And even though I'm getting older, I don't think I'll stop writing fanfiction—it's become my hobby, and I figure I'm too good at it (not the best, mind you :P) to quit now. So I hope to see you guys in the future with other stories as well. And I hope you guys enjoy this chapter of extras.
Most of these bloopers arose from sort of hyperness while writing, or while my editor was reading. My editor is one of my closest friends, and she was a great help throughout the story. Though when she gets hyper…let me tell you. XD
Some of these blooper ideas came from my sister while I bounced ideas off of her, even though she is a devoted NaruSaku supporter. She never actually read Blind, but I discussed it so much that she basically understood everything that was going on, and subsequently made fun of it (not meanly, mind you)—creating bloopers. Some of these may be a little obscure and wtf-ish, but I hope you guys find the most of them funny. :3
"And besides," she continued after the silence had been laid on a little too thickly, "Wouldn't you like to rebuild your clan here, in Konoha, where the Uchiha originated from? Why bother building it in a place far from here, with no historical value or meaning? You would be a group of Uchiha out in the middle of nowhere, no culture or history—just the Sharingan and a patriarch who betrayed his home. ...In Antarctica, among the penguins!"
(Brief Explanation – my editor imagined the Uchiha Clan 2.0 in Antarctica when Sakura was saying this. :p)
Nariko turned the key and then there was that funny little click that meant the door was open; she liked the click, she thought it sounded funny. She turned the key again, and again, locking and unlocking the door.
Meanwhile, on the other side of the door...
Click, click, click, click, click.
"What the hell?' Kisho muttered staring at the door with a dumbfounded expression on his face.
Meanwhile, with Nariko...
Nariko grinned: :3
They then got Naruto to blow out all seventeen candles—but he only managed to blow out twelve, meriting a comment from Kiba saying something about a harem of girlfriends. Kiba was then punted off the Hokage tower. Akamaru was not pleased.
Sasuke didn't need to see the look of shock on Sakura's face nor the look of anger on Naruto's to know who it was. He whirled around slowly, for once in a long while feeling anxious instead of thrilled upon facing this person. He looked into the red eyes evenly.
Itachi blinked slowly, "Hand over the weapon, Sasuke, or I will kill your friends."
"I call upon thee in the land of the dead to unleash thy fury of thunder," Sasuke thundered, "Indignation!"
"whut?" Itachi asked blankly, and was promptly zapped to oblivion by a lightning bolt.
(Tales of Symponia reference)
"Let go of your hatred, and embrace the love around you," his mother (who was secretly Oma Desala) said tenderly, "Only then will you find the true path to enlightenment."
Sasuke stared at her blankly.
To kill Itachi, or not to kill Itachi? To be or not to be? Sasuke pondered this deeply, a troubled look on his brow. He pulled a skull out of his kunai pouch.
Yugito stared, "What the hell?"
(Reference to William Shakespeare's Hamlet.)
"Hinata-chan, you are the person I care about most in the world—I could never love anyone else after loving you," Naruto said giving her a sneeze.
"Ew, you just sneezed all over me!" Hinata exclaimed with revulsion.
(I mistyped, and only found it when re-reading. :p)
He recalled his earlier imagined picture of Sakura, and made adjustments to it, committing her face to memory yet again. He adjusted the hue of her hair, and the detail of her eyes. The facial structure was the same, but he added the subtle pink hue to her cheeks in his mind, liking it better when there was a slight blush on her face. And then, a frown came to his face; a blemish was added to the image against his will.
"You have a zit on his nose," he told her.
Her face blanched, "Oh...you noticed."
(My dear sister's contribution.)
"Yes, I know the man you speak of—I know him as Ryuuzaki, some know him as L," her father replied, "Why do you ask?"
(Death Note Reference)
"I was originally going to send Tobi and Deidara to retrieve it, but due to unspecified circumstances, I will be sending you two instead," Pain continued, folding his hands.
"Unspecified circumstances?" Kisame asked.
"Fine, I need Tobi here so I can plot evil with him," Pain snapped, "As for Deidara...well...uh...he can't take care of himself at all. ...Even if he is armed to the teeth with...bombs...and explosives...and has a giant bird...yeah, he just can't take care of himself."
Itachi and Kisame exchanged weird looks.
She let out a delighted squeal and ran across the room, leaping on one of the two beds, bouncing up and down on the white linen. The bed she had chosen to bounce on was a pull out couch. And no sooner had she landed on it, it promptly closed on her. And then Nariko exploded.
Konan blinked, "Whut?"
Her feet took her down the path, the moonlight spilling on the road, illuminating it for her. It was a full moon now, and the silvery light shone clearly, unobstructed by clouds. The gate disappeared from view behind her when she rounded the bend, and it was only then when she heard the quiet tapping of sandals on cobblestone. Sakura heard the approaching footsteps with a sinking feeling; those footsteps could belong to anyone, but she was certain it was him.
"Hey watcha doin' ou'here sho late a' night, Shakura...?" a drunken Jiraiya stumbled into view.
Sasuke fixed his brother with a mistrustful look. "Where are your teammates?" he asked.
Itachi closed his eyes in contemplation, "Off talking about what women talk about."
"Oh, and what to women talk about?" Sasuke asked, narrowing his eyes.
Konan tilted her head to the side, pondering, "You see, Nariko, when a man and woman love each other very much..."
Sasuke paused and perched on a branch in the trees, grasping a limb tightly. There was a random field of flowers below, and two women in Akatsuki robes could be seen sitting there, weaving headdresses out of flowers. It seemed that the man on the ferry was completely useless and had directed him not to Itachi but to his two teammates. Sasuke leapt down from his perch and before the two women, drawing himself up to his full height. Both of them looked at him, the shorter of the two had a wreath of flowers placed lopsidedly on her head.
"Where is Itachi?" he asked menacingly.
"Omg! You're Itachi-sama's brother!" the girl exclaimed, leaping to her feet, the wreath dangling precariously.
"Wait! You're that girl that Naruto crashed into in that one town!" Sasuke exclaimed back, pointing at her in a dramatic and out of character manner; and then he regained himself: "Where is Itachi?"
The girl pointed in a nebulous direction, "That way!"
The other woman acked.
(Another contribution by my dear sister.)
[Sasuke] 100% hp "Are you alright?" Sasuke asked, pausing.
[Sakura] (status): Poisoned; 10% hp She shook her head, "I'm okay…just a bit tired. We're almost there right?"
[Sakura] (status): Poisoned; -15% hp
[INFO] Sakura suddenly falls down, dead!
[INFO] Title Screen: "Game over! You let the love of your life die! Oh no! Would you like to save and try again?"
[Sasuke] Sasuke's eyes grew wide: "O_O!"
III. Random Information: In No Particular Order
I wrote Blind mostly to make a point on love and forgiveness, not so much for SasuSaku. I was struck by how angry a person Sasuke was, and how much hatred he had. I wrote Blind to make a point on how love and forgiveness can change a person and give them happiness. Sasuke deserves a much better life than the one he has in the manga, but he can't get it because he's just so hell-bent on vengeance. The best way I could see Sasuke finding his own happy ending is to take away his power and put him in a situation where love can resolve the issue. SasuSaku has always been my favourite Naruto pairing, but I wanted the story to be more than that. Maybe that's partially why Blind is so much more popular than I thought it would be—because it's not just the SasuSaku, it's more? I'm not sure I can be the judge of that, as the writer. :p
The reason I refer to Tobi and Madara as two separate people is because in this story, they sort of are. I wrote it following the Tobi is Obito theory. Obito was crushed by a large rock in the manga, and that would lead to obvious brain damage (it's a miracle he would have survived), which would explain Tobi's goofy behaviour. As for Madara, I believe that in some way or another, he possessed Obito's body for some reason or another (probably out of desperation). In Blind, Tobi is Obito's brain-damaged personality, while Madara is Madara in Tobi's body. Madara can't keep very good control over a mind that doesn't work properly, so he frequently loses control and Tobi emerges. But when he does regain control, that's when we get the Madara evilness happening. In essence (in Blind, that is), he's two different people in one body. So that is why I refer to him as two separate people.
My editor has decided Nariko is combustible. This was spawned when she read Chapter 63, and was very hyper. At random intervals she would suddenly say: "And then Nariko walked in an exploded." Good times. We've decided this is how to solve world issues. Example: The UN is arguing on some horrible issue and can't agree on anything. The answer? Send Nariko in and let her explode, and that'll fix everything! :D Or: in another series, all the protagonists are surrounded by goons and have no means to escape! Just insert Nariko and let her explode. Problem solved. No more goons, no more anybody. XD
True but little known fact: after updating a chapter that I feared would spark some sort of negative reactions from some readers, I'd avoid my email for days. XD This did not help my schoolwork sometimes…and some members of group projects found it frustrating.
I am currently going through all of Blind and removing all unnecessary Japanese phrases. When I started writing, I had just finished watching the series in full, and I was having trouble imagining them speaking in English. Hence the occasional Japanese phrase. But, now that the only sub group I get Naruto subs from has quit subbing Naruto (for legal reasons), I'm reading the manga only. Hence, when I re-read earlier chapters, I cringe at the Japanese. I'm still going to be keeping words though—like dobe, and the occasional 'hai'. But gods. I can't believe how much I initially used. O_O
List of people who didn't die in Blind, but who died in the Manga:
Kakashi (albeit temporarily)
Shizune (albeit temporarily)
Many people asked me whether or not I would keep Itachi with the current manga or if I would keep him evil. The thing was, when I started writing Blind I detested Itachi for what he did to Sasuke. There seemed to be no viable, acceptable reason why anyone would do what he did to a child. So in my mind, he was formed from the mold of evil. The manga was suggesting it pretty strongly as well, and so for all intents and purposes, I was going to keep him evil throughout the fic. But you see, the person I have the most Narutardly discussions with is my editor, and we had got into theorizing the whole Itachi scenario. She has this amazing habit of picking up on the subtlest of hints, and she told me that something was wrong with Itachi's character in the manga. She said that something didn't feel right—the big brother Itachi seemed different than Akatsuki Itachi, and it seemed like they were almost two different people. She said she was convinced that he was good at heart, though she couldn't figure out how it would work. Luckily for me, I listen to my editor. So, while in Blind Itachi was headed straight down the villain path, I began plotting a means by which it would be possible for him to be good, in the event my editor was right. By that point we'd pretty much decided that everything could be blamed on Uchiha Madara, though by all rights he should have been dead ages ago. We had nothing on him aside from what the Kyuubi told Sasuke when you meet him for the first time after the time-skip. But because we figured it was all Madara's fault, one way or another, I started throwing in hints that Itachi's thoughts were suppressed by Madara. It became especially easier after Tobi was revealed to be Madara. Eventually, everything panned out according to my editor, and Blind's plot became valid, even more so than I thought it would be. I totally made an off-comment in the middle of the story about there being a hide-out in the Rain Country, and two weeks later, we find out it is Akatsuki-central. Go figure.
A few people have asked me this: "Have you read every single review you've ever received?" The answer is yes. I have read every single review. Sometimes when there are over eighty emails in my inbox, I still read them all. Thanks for all the support. ^^
VI. Deleted Scenes:
The deleted scenes consist mostly of stuff that I wanted to put in the story, but never got around to. Or stuff that was in the story but didn't fit properly, so I cut it out. There aren't very many because the earlier stuff that I decided not to include, never got to the written stage, and I've forgotten most of it. But below are the few snippets of what I do remember, or what did make it into writing and has been pulled out.
When I look at you...
...I don't know why...but I want to cry...
There's just this...overwhelming presence of sadness...sadness that has never been shed in the form of tears...and you let it stay, you don't let it go...
So I want to cry for you, to try and release the sadness that hangs about you like a shroud.
You've suffered...You don't have to tell me now, I can tell without asking.
And I'd do anything to take part of your burden away... because no one deserves happiness more than you do.
"What are you saying?"
I don't know...maybe that... I love you?
Share with me...Share with me, Sasuke, the sorrows that you haul around in your heart. Shed your sorrows, my heart will take them from you.
My heart will be strong for you when you are weak. I will be your eyes for you when you are blind, and your ears when you are deaf to the world.
"Why?" he asked breathlessly—quietly, the words seeming almost afraid to escape from his lips.
Do you really need to ask...?
Because I love you.
Something I wrote on a rainy day. It could seriously be from any SasuSaku drabble I've written, but when I wrote it, I had a Blind mindset going. Even if it is written in a totally different tense from the story. It's kind of weird in that it's written like it's Sakura's thoughts going on, but then Sasuke is responding to them like he can hear them. I still like the way it sounds in my head though.
"Are you alright?" Sasuke asked, pausing.
She shook her head, "I'm okay…just a bit tired. We're almost there, right?"
He studied her for a moment, and then came to a complete halt, "I can carry you."
She was almost unsure if she'd heard correctly, "Are you sure?"
He smirked at her slightly. "We're almost there, right?" he mimicked, and then without waiting for consent, he picked her up in his arms anyways.
This was supposed to be inserted during the part where Sakura and Sasuke cross the threshold of the Konoha gates. I had initially imagined in my head that he would carry her up until they reached the gates, but two things stopped me: 1) Cliché. By now, you should all know I don't do clichés in a normal way. I either do them uniquely, or break them. 2) That's an awfully far distance to carry someone. And even if Sakura hadn't been eating properly, it's too short of an amount of time to lose enough weight to be described as "light in his arms." That, and it would be weird to describe him putting her down at the village gates.
"It seems like you are always crying because of me," he said quietly, wiping a tear away with his thumb.
"No, I'm crying for you," she stated angrily, fury amid her tears.
This was a bit of conversation that popped into my head during the Sakura-depression bit. As you can see it would fit well with the situation, but sadly, I could not find a home for it in which it would fit best. Thusly, I never got to add it in. Though I think it really emphasizes some of the reasons for Sakura's tears.
For those of you who were with this story waaaaaaaayyyy back. Do you remember vaguely how I mentioned that Sakura was going to get embossed photos made of Sasuke's family? That I suppose is a deleted scene, though I never got around to actually typing out that segment. I decided that the embossed photos were going to be irrelevant, since Sasuke's vision started returning while on the mission anyways, and I cut them out entirely. As you can tell removing the idea of embossed photos had no impact on the story whatsoever.
"Anytime," she smiled.
There was a pause of silence between them. They were just content to sit like that: close, together, lovingly. It was after a while that Sasuke broke the silence again.
This segment of conversation was inserted between Sakura's description of the sunset, and Sasuke telling her he had an idea for them to move in together again. Upon rereading the epilogue three weeks before it would be posted, I decided that it seemed to ruin the atmosphere I was trying to create, and that the way I wrote it flowed better. Though, because of the mundane-ness of this scene, it could almost be stuck anywhere. I think the plainness of the words was what made me feel it destroyed the atmosphere.
She was so light in his arms, her thinning frame no heavier than a feather. Her head rested gently on his shoulder, the petal-pink tresses falling in front of her eyes, and she sighed slightly in her sleeping state. There was no one the in proximity of his senses, so he risked brushing a kiss on top of her head. Itachi may no longer be a threat, but there were others who could use her against him. But his worries were not for himself—but rather, for her.
He made sure that she was securely in his arms before walking onward towards Konoha—towards home.
Again, this had to do with my visions of Sasuke carrying Sakura home to Konoha, but as I mentioned earlier, ten days isn't enough time to get as sickly and unhealthy as she's described here. So this was cut even before it had a placement.
Sometimes Nariko couldn't sleep. Sometimes she found it very hard to even pretend to sleep, because behind her eyes she would see horrible things. She had not let the demon go, and it was already the third month into the year. The longer she kept it, the more it fought against her, and the long and harder it fought, the more horrors she saw.
At the beginning of the New Year, it had started with the occasional nightmare. She had had them before, but now they were more vivid. By mid-January, they were becoming more frequent. By February, she had them at least three times a week, and she began to experience more than just horrible images. By mid-February, she could smell burnt flesh and taste blood in her dreams. In the middle of the night she would wake up, and the first thing she would do would be to stare at her hands, looking for blood.
The demon always had the best influence over her while she slept, and when she woke, as its grip quickly faded, she would hear its laughter.
This I started writing in the middle of my comp sci class because I was really bored, and stuck with what I was going to do with Blind. But because it contradicted the fact that I said earlier in the story that Nariko was always tormented by the demon at night, it got cut. I'm not sure if I miss it or not.
She had seen him at his weakest, seen him afraid. She was always there for him, by his side, watching out for him. She tried to understand him even if she couldn't begin to understand, and she helped him when she could, even if there was nothing that she could do.
She had always helped and supported him for as long as he could remember. She gave everything for him and saved nothing for herself. And he realized that he loved her.
And he was afraid.
A segment I found on the very last page of my first Blind notebook. It was supposed to go near the end, but it had no home. Oh well.
i. Chapter Titles:
Chapter One: Blackness and Darkness:
The blackness refers to Sakura's clothes, while darkness to Sasuke's blindness.
Chapter Two: Beneath the Blossoming Cherry Tree:
When one sits beneath a tree, it's usually for shade or shelter or something along those lines. It was intended as a foreshadowing of Sakura taking care of Sasuke
Chapter Three: An Offer:
None really. Sometimes I name the chapter after the biggest highlight. The offer put forth to Sasuke was that highlight in this chapter.
Chapter Four: The Unforgotten Memory:
Amid all the talk of Sasuke having his memory erased by Orochimaru, he remembers that Sakura told him she loves him, which is why she was healing him. Again, it is the most important highlight of the chapter.
Chapter Five: A Curse of Damaged Dignity:
Not overly symbolic, just references to Sasuke's curse mark, and a reference to the humiliation Sakura put him through. (grin)
Chapter Six: Mismatched Pieces of a Puzzle:
Refers to Ino and Shikamaru's confusion on Sakura's behaviour as our favourite pink-haired kunoichi sneakily runs errands around Konoha like a ninja.
Chapter Seven: Of Trust, Spilled Secrets, and Other Things:
Sasuke admits he is willing to trust Sakura, while Naruto drops the ball by letting everyone know Sasuke's returned to Konoha.
Chapter Eight: A Crafty Intruder, and an Interfering Instructor:
Refers to these persons respectively: Ino tries to break into Sasuke's room, but is foiled by Kakashi.
Chapter Nine: The Shoehorn, the Kunai, and Hot Chocolate:
Since this chapter had no unifying event, I named it after the most random objects that appeared in this chapter.
Chapter Ten: Confrontation and Homecoming:
None really. Sakura confronts Ino, and then later talks with Sasuke about how he's home again.
Chapter Eleven: Those Who are Cursed
Refers to the conversation held between the only two people in Konoha who are cursed by Orochimaru.
Chapter Twelve: Lectures:
None really. In addition to highlighting a certain event in a chapter, I also name chapters things that can sum up all events nicely. The whole chapter was practically composed of lectures. XD
Chapter Thirteen: Juxaposition:
A juxtaposition is a comparison of two things that have something in common but are complete opposites. I did an art project where I put an image of a fawn and a wolf cub next to one another; they are both innocent and adorable, but when they grow up, the other will hunt the first. The juxtaposition in this chapter is between Itachi and Kanaye. They both are brothers, however, Kanaye ended up a much different brother to Sakura, than Itachi was to Sasuke.
Chapter Fourteen: Ice Cube:
This title is meant to deliberately point out the ice in Sasuke's lemonade, which is symbolic in this chapter. See the different iconic symbols section for further detail on the ice cube.
Chapter Fifteen: Nightmare:
Highlight of this chapter: Sasuke's horrific nightmare.
Chapter Sixteen: The Dawn and Dusk:
The dawn, of course, indicates our beloved Akatsuki, while the dusk refers to Sakura's first description of the sunset to Sasuke
Chapter Seventeen: Genjutsu:
Very basic. Genjutsu is mentioned a lot in this chapter.
Chapter Eighteen: Trial:
Sakura's going to teach Sasuke something new, if he can pass her ultimate test: beating up on children. XD (coughHyuugaIkanecough)
Chapter Nineteen: A Red Petal on the White Rose:
According to my symbolism book (my best friend in the form of a book), in the language of flowers, white roses are often symbols of unrealized love. Now red roses are pretty universal symbols of love. This is the first time Sasuke feels that "unexplainable emotion" that he feels. The white rose is his love for her, and the red petal is the emotion. It's also foreshadowing to when he finally realizes he's fallen in love with Sakura.
Chapter Twenty: Dinnertime:
The highlight of the evening: a Haruno Kisho vs. Uchiha Sasuke fiasco.
Chapter Twenty-One: Illusion:
The vivid dream Sasuke wakes him, and in a state of panic, he thinks Itachi is in the house. Illusion refers to this illusion Sasuke created out of his own fears.
Chapter Twenty-Two: On Hatred:
Sasuke and Sakura discuss hatred. No symbolic meanings there.
Chapter Twenty-Three: Genjutsu Revisited:
More discussions on genjutsu, which ate up most of the chapter.
Chapter Twenty-Four: Prodigy and the Prodigal Son:
Possibly one of my favourite chapter titles. The prodigy of course being Neji, and the prodigal son being Sasuke. Now if you don't know the story of the prodigal son, then you obviously haven't read a Bible recently. Wikipedia "Parable of the Prodigal Son" and the overview sums it up nicely. Sasuke is quite the prodigal son, even if he didn't come back of his own free will. :3
Chapter Twenty-Five: Clarity:
Where everything becomes clearer! :o Lol, no. Better explanation: Sasuke fine-tunes his chakra senses while Sakura begins to work around the mystery of his blindness. In a sense, this clarity of his chakra senses is foreshadowing to the return of his sight.
Chapter Twenty-Six: Traces of Self-Sacrifice:
There are indications of self-sacrifice throughout the chapter. Konan sacrificing her time to watch Nariko, Sakura sacrificing her physical well-being for Sasuke, Sasuke refusing to be treated on the behalf of Sakura's health. Yeah.
Chapter Twenty-Seven: The Bastardly Bastard of a Client:
I'm creative. :3 (Translation: No symbolic meaning at all. XD)
Chapter Twenty-Eight: The First Indications of Trouble:
Again, no symbolic meaning. The title speaks on behalf of the chapter.
Chapter Twenty-Nine: In the Lion's Den:
Metaphoric here, not symbolic. Team Seven and our beloved Tokugawa Manzo are staying in a town that's basically an Oto outpost. Aw damn.
Chapter Thirty: Confessions, Mistakes, and Deceptions:
Again, highlights the parts of the chapter. Sasuke confesses he was a traitor, the mistake being he walked in on Sakura while she was washing at the river, and the deception being Deidara and Konan being nice to Nariko despite the fact that they are going to kill her.
Chapter Thrity-One: Cornered:
Metaphorical again. Team Seven and Tokugawa are caught by Oto nin, and thus separated.
Chapter Thirty-Two: An Awkward Situation:
The Teahouse Incident. The title sums it up nicely.
Chapter Thirty-Three: In Cold Blood:
Sasuke and Sakura discuss the ramifications of killing in cold blood. Foreshadowing to Sasuke's cruel mercy on Itachi.
Chapter Thirty-Four: The Value of Exchange:
No real symbolic meaning. Sasuke's worth something to Kumo, and thus to Orochimaru, that's all.
Chapter Thirty-Five: Fragility:
Pointing directly to the line: "creates a world of fragile things". See the symbolism covered in this chapter to get a better description
Chapter Thirty-Six: Slipping Between Fingers:
Sasuke makes a narrow escape from being arrested. Metaphorical again.
Chapter Thirty-Seven: The Last Peaceful Slumber:
Refers to the last night of good sleep Sakura gets for a while because she finds out that her father is missing the next day.
Chapter Thirty-Eight: The Broken Mug:
Points directly at the mug Sakura' breaks. See the symbolism for this chapter to get a better explanation.
Chapter Thirty-Nine: Perspective:
Sakura talks about putting things in perspective. Nothing overly special about this title.
Chapter Forty: The Beginnings of Realization:
The look the Shichibi's host gives Nariko gives her an inner inkling of her fate. Title is foreshadowing to the next chapter.
Chapter Forty-One: Fateful Choices:
Again, highlighting chapter events. Choices are made, things decided, ho hum.
Chapter Forty-Two: An Overdose on Chocolate:
Did you realize how much chocolate Ino was giving Sakura? Chocolate: the best remedy for angst, imo.
Chapter Forty-Three: Walking Around with Your Eyes Closed:
Points directly to a line Sakura says which is deeply metaphorical. Which see in in-depth chapter symbolism section.
Chapter Forty-Four: Fear and Irritation:
Again, a title that best suits things covered in the chapter. Sakura's apprehensive about seeking help for her depression. Konan's irritated with Pain. Nariko's nervous around Sakura's daddy.
Chapter Forty-Five: The Tainted Daisy:
The daisy is symbolic of Nariko, and Nariko spends a lot of time in this chapter working on a paper daisy. See in-depth section for more info.
Chapter Forty-Six: Hard Knox:
A.k.a.: the University of Life. Translation: Life gave you lemons, and you really kept screwing up until you learned how to make lemonade. This title refers to Kakashi's past. He's been down that road before, doesn't want Sasuke to follow.
Chapter Forty-Seven: Festival Lights:
I imagine bright coloured lights against a dark sky. Just kind of highlights the touching ending of this chapter.
Chapter Forty-Eight: The One Word:
Chapter Forty-Nine: Snapshots:
The epically long New Year's chapter. I did segments of almost every pairing hinted at in this story, each one having a little event happen to them. It doesn't progress the plot that much, but it's a cute insert. ^^
Chapter Fifty: The Written Exam:
Sasuke writes a paper. Yay! And this title completely masks the happenings of the tenth question. Oooh! A shroud of mysteriousness!
Chapter Fifty-One: Teammates:
Sasuke meets his new, temporary teammates. Nothing else special.
Chapter Fifty-Two: The Forest of Death:
Introduction to the setting of the chapter.
Chapter Fifty-Three: Nekomata:
It just fit.
Chapter Fifty-Four: Shards of Truth:
Bits and pieces of actuality start appearing. Itachi starts to suspect that Nariko is self-harming herself, which is true. Madara also reveals parts of his intentions, which is another piece of truth. Things are starting to come together.
Chapter Fifty-Five: Pride:
Talking about pride. Meant to highlight the fact that if Sasuke doesn't lose his pride, he'll lose more in the long run.
Chapter Fifty-Six: Forming the Ties that Bind:
Sai climbs his way to forming bonds. And even though they don't say it, Sasuke and Yugito have grown attached to that socially clueless idiot. ^^
Chapter Fifty-Seven: Bright Candy Colours:
This title presents the idea of a situation completely opposite to what happened in the chapter. It sounds light and happy, but it's dark and grim. Kinda the same idea when you see porcelain dolls and merry-go-rounds in horror films. The candies used are actually used as an excuse to fall out a window. Grim.
Chapter Fifty-Eight: The Rules of Engagement:
I just realized how most of the Chuunin Exam chapter-titles really suck. Ones directly talking about the exam are flat and have no symbolic or metaphoric meaning. They just state what happens in the chapter, like this one. Fail.
Chapter Fifty-Nine: Erratic:
Because I used the word "erratic" at least once in each scene of this chapter. Kind of a hectic chapter, so erratic fits.
Chapter Sixty: Sasuke's Decision:
When Sasuke officially decides that he's going to blind Itachi. Though of course I string you along forever, making you think he's going to kill him still. I stopped saying "kill Itachi" after this chapter. It becomes "eliminate" or "deal with", etc. It gives the same impression, but it doesn't actually say Sasuke's going to kill him anymore.
Chapter Sixty-One: Misunderstanding:
Sakura has a misunderstanding when Sasuke doesn't come home. Kanaye misunderstands his sister's feelings. Nobody understands anyone. D:
Chapter Sixty-Two: Stepping Forwards and Falling Back:
A step forwards for Akatsuki. A setback for Sasuke. Kinda sucks to be blind again, doesn't it? Yeah, just a little.
Chapter Sixty-Three: The Unanswerable Question:
Sasuke knows, but he doesn't.
Chapter Sixty-Four: Encounter:
The second crossing of the two worlds. This is sort of a leading up to the part where Sasuke crosses the two worlds for a third time: when he takes revenge against Itachi.
Chapter Sixty-Five: Uh-oh:
I couldn't think of anything. It sums up everyone's thoughts very well though. The shit hit the fan. :3
Chapter Sixty-Six: A Simple Gift:
Because even though it didn't cost anything, it had more value than any other gift Sasuke could have given. Thus simple, but not.
Chapter Sixty-Seven: You're Annoying:
Nobody seems to get this. Every time Sasuke says: "You're annoying" he's saying: "I love you." A la the Princess Bride—except I didn't steal it from there. No, I thought that the first time Sasuke left in the manga. He didn't dislike Sakura anymore, but he still called her annoying. This is why: it's his "I love you". He doesn't even have to realize he's in love with her to say it. Every time in this story when he calls her annoying, it can be translated as "I love you". Even at the beginning, even when he didn't. It's because he loves her he calls her annoying, even if he didn't love her yet in the beginning.
Chapter Sixty-Eight: Faith:
Sakura places faith in Sasuke. Even when nobody else does.
Chapter Sixty-Nine: Cruel Mercy:
Because living is better than dying: you can do something with your life no matter your condition, as long as you're alive. If you're dead, you can't do anything, nothing. Nothing is nothing. (Unless you're Sasuke's mommy, and have a demon cat friend, but that's not the point.) Sasuke is merciful by not killing Itachi, giving him a chance to live life still. But he also wants to make sure that he can't do any harm while he lives. Thus the cruelty part. See in-depth section for a more thorough discussion.
Chapter Seventy: A Fool's Death:
In the chapter where you first meet Nariko, Itachi thinks her a fool. She is a fool who will die a fool's death. Nariko dies, but he realizes it's far from a fool's death.
Chapter Seventy-One: The Return:
A dual return: Sasuke and Sakura to Konoha, and Nariko to her hometown.
Chapter Seventy-Two: Crossing the Line:
Even if the line is blurred, you can still tell when you're distinctly on the other side of it. Sasuke and Sakura both crossed the line between friendship and love, knowing truly where they lie. Kanaye's not to pleased that lying on the love side of the line means lying next to each other. 3
ii. In-Depth: Symbolism Within Chapters:
Rosebay bush Sasuke falls into: Rosebay (a.k.a. oleander) means danger, or beware in the flower language. Without Sakura's help Sasuke will fall into danger on his own. When Sakura helps him out of the bush, it shows that she will help him get out of it, should he fall into it.
Patch of Canary Grass Sakura avoids stepping on: Canary grass apparently in flower language represents perseverance—by stepping on the grass, she would ruin it, but by keeping it intact, it represents that she will perservere.
Sasuke's curse mark: Sasuke's curse mark, or moreover, the sealing of it is a deep (admittedly unintended) symbol. It was my editor who pointed out the parallel, and I was amazed. When Sasuke's curse mark is permanently sealed by Tsunade, it also corresponds with his permanent wish to kill Itachi. Later, in chapter sixty-nine, the curse seal breaks under the strain of trying to escape Tsukiyomi. Tsukiyomi is the embodiement of that hatred, and breaking free from it symbolized the escape Sasuke made from his hatred. At the same time, he broke something that was supposed to be permanent—the seal. While at the same time, his desire to kill Itachi evaporates entirely—another thing that was permanent, was broken. Sasuke then relies on the seal Kakashi put on him, one that only works if he wishes it to—this seal differs symbolically in that it was used to save Sasuke from the power of the curse mark. This seal prevents the use of the curse mark based on Sasuke's will alone. Similarly, Sasuke's hatred for Itachi will only return if he wills it to return.
Sasuke's reflection on his curse mark: Again another link to the curse mark symbol. He had sworn only to use it to kill Itachi, but when the seal broke, he did not use it to take Itachi's life.
Sasuke's request: Not symbolic, but there was a bit of confusion about what Sasuke asked of Sakura. He asked her if she would tell Naruto what happened to him before he got to visit. Having her tell Naruto is Sasuke's way of avoiding revealing it himself—and he wouldn't ask if he didn't trust her.
Uchiha Fugaku's Kunai: This object isn't so much symbolic as it is a recurring theme throughout the story. It is more a representation of the past—Sakura clings to it during her depression, using it to keep in mind what happened to Sasuke's clan. And Itachi recognizes it for its significance as Sasuke holds it up to him. It also plays a bit with irony when Sasuke blinds Itachi. Itachi killed the clan, and now the past has come and bitten him back.
Uchiha Mitoko's sheet music: another recurring theme, and another representation of the past. Like the kunai, it's woven throughout the story, though it occurs more often. It represents another piece of a happy past, as it comforts Sasuke in his dark moments. Again it plays an ironic role when Sasuke plays it endlessly in Itachi's head as a genjutsu. Another way in which the past comes back to torment Itachi. As my editor put it, in a distressing tone: "That was unkind!"
Sakura's mother having no name: This is totally un-symbolic and completely unintentional. Usually it would symbolize that she's expendable, but in this case, I just never managed to give her a name that fit. I only gave Sakura's father a name because it was unavoidable. :x
Sasuke's headband: It is symbolic of Sasuke's allegiance to Konoha. When he accepts it, on a symbolic level he's also decided he is going to swear by Konoha again. He wears it with pride throughout the story, and it also enforces his promise to return to Konoha at the end, because he is wearing it as he leaves, unlike in the manga. The scratch is also important in that in a backwards sort of way, it represents the bond between him and Naruto. Refusing to receive a new headband is how he reminds himself of what happens, and keeps in mind the importance of his friendship with Naruto.
Tsunade and Anko's discussion on the Bijuu: Or more specifically, Tsunade's statement: "Wouldn't it be ironic if the power of [the six-tailed weasel] was bestowed upon Itachi?" Tsunade's going under the assumption that with the Bijuu, they're going to distribute them throughout Akatsuki's members. Here, it's heavy foreshadowing. It's practically a spoiler, though you don't realize that until you get to the part in the story where it actually happens.
Naruto's comment: about Sakura's luggage seeming to indicate she's going to move in for good = more foreshadowing
The key under the shingle: Not particularly symbolic. It's more of an important item in the story that seems insignificant now. Kanaye remembers it, and that's how he makes his incursion in the epilogue.
The Moon: Right at the beginning of the chapter, right with the first descriptions of Itachi's appearances, you'll see the moon: described as orange and mask like. The moon is hanging over where Itachi is positioned, as if it's watching over him, right? This ended up being unintentional foreshadowing to Madara's control over Itachi. As nobody knew that Tobi was Madara, I couldn't have written this chapter with symbolism pointed in that direction. However, rereading it, it makes scary amounts of sense. O_O
The squishing sound of the mud: These are the first indications that Itachi regrets killing the clan, though his thoughts conflict with the regret he feels. This is also the first indication that Madara is controlling this thoughts by suppressing his mind with the Sharingan.
Nariko: Particularly here, in this chapter, Nariko parallels Itachi's thoughts towards Sasuke. His suppressed thoughts towards his brother make him think of contempt, the same feeling he feels towards Nariko. But as the story progresses, and Itachi's thoughts start to evolve and slowly change underneath the layer of Madara's control. He starts to grow attached to Nariko and at the same time, he begins to subconsciously remember the truth about how he feels about his little brother.
The ice cube: So deeply symbolic! Particularly in the sentences I've used to describe it. The ice cube symbolizes Sasuke's detachment and icy nature towards others. He won't let others in. But as the chapter continues and the dialogue goes on, the ice cube begins to melt in Sasuke's mouth. To quote: "He let it slowly melt in his mouth, the frozen water thawing slowly as time ticked by." The underlined section particularly indicates this. Another quote: "…he stated indignantly, the ice cube getting in the way of his tongue and slurring the words slightly." This indicates his frigidness to others prevents him from properly conveying how he feels. As the dialogue continues, it doesn't impede his speech much, further indicating that the more he warms up to others, the easier he can talk to and trust them. Quote: "The ice cube in his mouth was no larger than a sliver on his tongue and it slowly melted away, becoming no more than a trickle of water." Water is a representation of life and sustenance—we've all learned in science class that without water, there would be no life. Having said that, when the ice cube melts, it symbolizes and foreshadows how that Sasuke's cold and distant nature is converted to something nourishing. The melting of the ice cube in the chapter is also followed by Sasuke's version of 'I love you': 'You're annoying.' Here ends the symbolism on the ice cube.
Training Ground Three: This location is important in that it is the location of the infamous bells challenge Kakashi went through with Team Seven. Thusly, all important training events happen at Training Ground Three in Blind, simply because it—in a way—represents that things from the past persevere to the present: some things never change.
Sakura's Description of the Sunset: Particularly the line: "As I look at you now, the light patterns shift over your face and dispel the shadows, seeming to fade into them and eradicate them." Under Sakura's watch, the darkness in Sasuke's heart begins to fade and disappear. Also the lines: " "The first star has appeared in the southwestern sky, shining like a shard of the purest crystal; the moon is nowhere to be seen." She finished off her description, while gazing out at the river, watching the lone star tumble over the waves of the ultramarine surface, disappearing and reappearing from view." Stars typically represent the spirit, and the forces of that spirit struggling against evil. As the star disappears and reappears on the water, it foreshadows Sasuke's inner struggle of whether or not he will kill Itachi.
Sakura's inward promise: Of never letting Sasuke leave again like that. Foreshadowing again.
Sakura's Illusion: Namely the line: "As much as you might want believe that you can see this, you can't forget how things really are. Don't lose yourself to an illusion." This is sort of implying that things aren't always what they seem in respect of the clan. This was going off my editor's prediction that Itachi was good and had a good reason for massacring the Uchiha Clan. This line implies that Sasuke shouldn't get lost in only what he knows but search for the truth. Sasuke doesn't find out the truth about the Uchiha Massacre until the sequel, but he does manage to overcome the desire to kill his brother, which is a result of what Sasuke perceives as true about the Uchiha clan.
The walk back to the village: Holy crap, there's a whole lot of symbolism here. Okay starting with this quote: "Sasuke was getting by the rough patches easily, having grown accustomed to various surfaces. It had been worse when they had first come down this path, having almost fallen a number of times on the rough parts, but she was always there to make sure that he didn't actually fall." The path of course represents the course of their lives. The rough patches on this path are the rough patches in life. Sasuke is growing accustomed to these rough patches—i.e. Sasuke's suffered so much he's gotten used it. The first time on the path refers to the now—as in the second time would be when they're married down the road. Sasuke stumbles on the rough patches of life—a.k.a. his blindness—and Sakura supports him, or makes sure that he doesn't 'fall down'.
Computer failure here. Missing symbolism due to computer crash.
Snake and the Weasel: Now for some of you symbolism buffs. You're probably thinking: "wait, if this implies what I think it implies, it never happened!" Well, you're right. It didn't. This is foreshadowing to the sequel, and as such, I'm not going to reveal what it means, or else it'll have major, major spoilers for the climax of the sequel. But very few people actually guessed correctly about the symbolism, so I'll just leave you happily confused. :D
Lock and key to the Uchiha Manor: Okay, this was another unintentional symbol, until one of my readers said that it was her favourite one. And then instant she mentioned it, I noticed it right away too. The manor is like Sasuke's heart, and it's protected by a gate. Nobody else could get into that manor while Sasuke was gone, and the key had gone missing some time ago. But now that Sasuke's returned, there's a new lock and key for the gate, but still, not just anyone can get it. Sasuke of course is the owner, but the only spare key to get in, is owned by Sakura.
Roses: The whole symbolism on the roses is pretty obvious. They are symbols of Sasuke and Sakura's souls. The pink rose and the black rose. Sakura's pink rose is the soft gentle spirit she has while Sasuke's black rose represents the deadness of his soul as a result of the horrors he's been through. Sasuke's suggestion that pink is a delicate also indicates that Sakura, despite her maturation with time, still has a soft spot that is both her weakness and her strength: her love for him. Also, Sasuke's analogy of the red roses turn black when they die is an allusion to the song "Black Roses Red". I have never seen The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants, just for the record.
Sasuke's Face Half In Shadow: The shadows of the tree's leaves make it look like the curse mark is spread over Sasuke's face—at this point in time in the story, he's half converted from his old ways to his new ways. He's mid-way between Sasuke at the beginning of Blind and Sasuke and the end of it.
Konoha's Cherry Blossom Never Fades: Some foreshadowing that Sakura is not going to die in the story.
Nariko's jealously: I think this is where a lot of people got the misconception that this fic would have an ItachixNariko fanfic. This isn't symbolic but I felt that it should be mentioned. Nariko's jealousy is like that of a child. She selfishly wants all Itachi's attention—she's never had anyone pay any attention to her before, and now she doesn't want to give it up. The reason Nariko doesn't initially like Konan is because she feels that Konan steals away Itachi's attention. This is all due to Nariko's underdeveloped mentality.
Konan's comment on disfiguration: This comment Konan throws playfully at Itachi before he leaves to retrieve the Shichibi comes back to haunt them both in Chapter 71 when Itachi is left barely alive by Sasuke. This is foreshadowing.
Kit: This one is pretty obvious, but just thought I'd say. Konan calls Nariko "Kit", because Itachi's name means weasel. And the way Nariko follows Itachi around, it's like she's the weasel's kit. :3
The Paper Konan is writing on: The page Konan is working with is the representation of Nariko. The way Konan folds the paper represents how she and Itachi help shape her and change her. But when the ink flicks off the end of the brush and lands on the page, it foreshadows Nariko's loss of innocence.
Sasuke's dream: In Sasuke's dream, Sakura points at the Land of Waves on a map and says 'there are problems there' and that in order for 'everyone to be safe' they have to get rid of the problems. This is foreshadowing to the showdown between Sasuke and Itachi, which takes place in the Land of Waves. Now, don't mistaken this dream as Sasuke subconsciously knowing that he'll fight Itachi. Dreams are a good way to foreshadow things, and many great writers use it. For example: J.K. Rowling has a dream sequence in the first Harry Potter book where Harry dreams he's wearing Quirrel's turban and it's talking to him, telling him it's his destiny to be in Slythren. Now, only if you've read the whole book do you realize what a big spoiler it is. Same thing goes here.
The Pinky Finger: Dedicated anime fans and manga readers will understand this bit, but for those who are newer on the scene, I thought I'd explain. Raising your pinky finger represents your significant other. The linking of pinky fingers is a bond or promise of friendship. But in this part of the story when Tokugawa raises his pinky at Naruto in a questioning manner, he is quietly asking Naruto if Sasuke and Sakura are actually together.
Upright Floating Tea Leaf: This was floating in Sauske's mug of tea. In Japan, this is a sign of good luck. I used this to foreshadow that things will go well between Sasuke and Sakura in the future. Also the part "staring at the floating bit without really seeing it" signifies that Sakura is unaware of this approaching future.
Call of a single crow: This happens during their conversation about death and killing people. There's an old rhyme I read once which went hand in hand with superstitions about what it meant if you saw so many black birds. One black bird meant sorrow. The conversation here, is sorrowful.
Sasuke's returning sight: Sakura's line: "I'm glad that you can tell the difference between the light and the dark now, Sasuke…" Foreshadowing, foreshadowing, foreshadowing.
The other signature: When Sasuke, Sakura, and Naruto leave the house to go out for dinner, Tokugawa's great nephew runs into an adult signature. Said signature leaves the house after Team Seven does. Now nobody made the connection because nobody looked. But The boy told his parents that Team Seven was going out for dinner—and they only found this out because when you see a child sulking, you typically ask them what's wrong (if they're your child). The boy wasn't spying on them, but he tipped off the adults, and Team Seven was actually followed to the restaurant. Though they weren't overheard, they were spied on. And it's only if you look carefully that you'll notice this.
Sasuke's Dream: This is another big one. This whole dream is an allusion to the song Leave Out All the Rest by Linkin Park. Only two people got this reference, which is okay, because I'm going to be explaining it to you now. This whole dream is basically foreshadowing to Sasuke's leaving. Sasuke refers back to this dream a lot through the story as he contemplates leaving Konoha again. It is because of this dream that he decides he will come back, and it is also what ensures that he lets Sakura he will return. As for the curse-seal form of Sasuke appearing in this dream, it symbolizes that Sasuke is still keeping a grip on power. So to put all the pieces together in one sentence: this dream symbolizes the type of things that would have happened if Sasuke hadn't stopped his quest for power.
A World of Fragile things: This is an allusion to the song Holding My Last Breath by Evanescence. This ties into the dream, as the words compliment Sakura's death in the dream. The section of the lyrics "a world of fragile things" ties back into Sasuke's thought of Sakura being delicate in the rose symbolism.
Powerful chakra signature: Not at all symbolic. It just introduces Yugito, but you don't know it's her at the time. I'm still surprised at how many people thought it was magical Kisame. XD
Itachi and Sasuke confrontation #1: This is the first crossing of the two worlds—the first time the Sasuke/Sakura timeline intertwines with the Itachi/Nariko/Akatsuki timeline. This strengthens the story in that it builds up a foundation to their second meeting—so it doesn't seem random. It's hard to explain… Also, in this meeting, Sasuke lists a number of things he had destroyed and thrown away to live for that moment. But the second time they meet—and the first time they fight—Sasuke has built up new things around him, new bonds, and loyalties, and love. Only with these things is he able to beat Itachi. And without them (i.e. in this segment) he would have been unable to.
Chapter Thirty-Eight:Missing symbolism due to computer crash from Chapters 38 to 70. Hopefully I'll recover it so I don't have to redo it.
Nariko's gravestone: For some reason, it really bothers me that the name on Nariko's gravestone doesn't match the one she went by. I did that on purpose. It represents that the villagers never knew who she was. That to them she was just an accursed name, and nothing more. Nariko didn't exist to them, just like the name on her gravestone never existed to her. Symbolically, the name on Nariko's gravestone is someone who never existed—Nariko is the person Nariko truly was, while the name on the gravestone was who the villagers thought she was. Things like this in novels tear at my heart—I can't believe I just did it in this one.
VI. Version 2.0
I have mentioned to quite a few of you about something I call "Version 2.0". Some of you may be hearing about it for the first time, and others may not know what it means.
Version 2.0, put simply, is a polished up version of Blind. Now, this does not mean I'm going to be changing the story at all. Basically what it means is that I'll be going through it again, and fixing the spelling and the grammar, fixing a couple little 'oops's and filling some tiny plot-pinholes. Think of the version you just read being my first draft—or maybe my draft 1.5, because my editor edited draft one. After everything is edited, I'll replace all the chapters that are posted online. I'm not going to tell you guys when the second version is updated, because essentially it'll be the same as the first, with fewer errors.
The only part I may alter to some degree is the part about Sakura's depression, which sparked a lot of controversy and anger from some. One of said angry reviewers said that even if it's a fictional story, I chose a real life problem and treated it with a real-life solution, and according to them, did a botched job of it. So I'm seriously thinking of changing the solution so it's a little less 'real-life' and more of a Narutoverse solution. It's just that I'm tired of the negative responses I'm getting over that particular section; even though they are fairly few, they're nasty enough for me to want to avoid more of it.
So, that is what Version 2.0 is.
VII. Information on the Sequel:
Now the sequel is going to be more focused on completing the story part, not so much the metaphorical stuff. It's going to be more action-packed, but it'll contain meaning as well. And there will be Uchiha babies. Yep .^^ And Sasuke's actually a pretty good father—imho. How to talk about it without revealing stuff…hmm…
For starters, there is a time skip of eight or ten years from the end of Blind to the beginning of the sequel. I can't decide if I want it to be eight years or ten years yet, because that determines ages of certain characters. But I'll work that out. Also, a few things happen during the time-skip that are important, but ten years is too much time to write about, so I'm going to be trying a different writing style.
I've decided fanfiction is a good way to experiment with different writing styles so that when I get to writing my own books, I'll have some experience in the field. Now one of my favourite TV shows is LOST, and I love how they've portrayed the show with flashbacks to make characters more rounded. I've decided to experiment with something similar, but in writing. It creates a perfect atmosphere to reveal the events that happened in the time-skip while keeping to the story.
Also in the sequel we will see the reappearances of some of our favourite characters. Of course it's SasuSaku again, but the official side-pairing will be ItaKonan. But we will also get to run into Sai again, and involve Deidara in the story. We will also be seeing the long-needed reappearance of Orochimaru as our villain and I'm also going to sort out Madara and Pain all in one fell swoop. Except I hope to achieve a more dramatic end to Pain than the one we see in the manga. i.e. A little less corny. :p
We will also get to see whatever happened to Itachi, and what happened with Konan. Of course, Naruto becomes Hokage. And I will also reveal whatever happened to the InoShikaTema triangle—but doesn't play an overly large role in the story.
I think that's all I want to reveal at this point. I'm not going to answer any questions about the sequel that may arise from you as readers. This is as much as you get.
Now, for a pre-typed scene! This is a bit of dialogue that takes place between Sasuke and Sakura, which happens closer to the beginning of the story. Speculate and chew on it. XD
"Am I going crazy...or has the world suddenly lost all its colour?" Sakura murmured as she sat next to Sasuke under the large tree in their yard, "It's like...it doesn't matter anymore... The colour is muted—suppressed."
"You'll grow used to it after a while," Sasuke muttered bitterly in response, "And eventually the colour will return."
She turned to look at him, her passive expression studying him sorrowfully. A forced calm expression resided on his face, and she did not know how to react. She wanted to burst into tears, and sigh and suppress her feelings to nothing, at the same time.
"Was this what the world looked like to you after...?" she trailed off. One tragedy was hard enough to deal with without mentioning another. Sasuke may have made peace with the loss of the clan years ago, but she was almost afraid that the most recent loss would enhance the memory of the previous one.
"Hn," he replied listlessly.
She embraced him, now understanding the horror of a colourless world, tears creeping under her eyelids against her will, "I wish that you didn't have to go through that... I'm so sorry."
"It's not as bad this time," he replied, the arm around her tightening, pulling her closer to him. His voice seemed choked as he continued, "It's better this time because...I'm not alone."
A/N: And with that, I will leave you to ponder this chapter of extras and leave you with anticipation for the sequel! I hope you all enjoyed the extras, and I'll see you all in the next story! I will be posting news items on my profile in regards to writings, though I do have a couple other fic ideas that I may work on in the meantime.