Before you read..This my friends is a Neji/Hinata fanfiction. Yes I'm gross and hideous and immoral and blah blah blah... Don't read it!

Disclaimer: I don't own Naruto.



SUMMARY

Okay, this story takes place a week after the final matches of the Chuunin exam and the Sand and Sound invasion incident. So this is also a week after Lord Hiashi spoke with Neji about his Father. After the attack on Konoha, Hinata was forced back into the hospital due to her injuries that she sustained with her fight in the preliminaries. Hinata is out of the hospital now after being there for five days. This is also when Neji first starts to grow slightly more fond of his uncle and Hinata.


.:Protector:.

"Hinata!" Kiba shouted as he and Akamaru approached her. "Are you okay?"

Hinata faught back the tears that were threatening to fall. She stood up slowly and nodded.

"I'm fine. You should stop worrying about me," she had a dismal expression on her face. Kiba gave her a sad look.

"It's kinda' hard not to, Hinata," he spoke as Akamaru jumped into his arms. "You're clearly not in any condition to be training. You just got out of the hospital, take it easy."

"I agree with Kiba. Go home, Hinata," she turned to find Shino standing behind her. "If you can't even hold your own against us, it's utterly pointless."

Hinata smiled sadly.

"It's very nice of you two to be so concerned, but I really don't need the rest. I-I want to start training again, I've already been in bed for too long. I need to be ready for the next Chuunin Exams," she argued.

Kiba narrowed his eyes slightly.

"Yeah but you won't get anywhere if you're like this."

"Ruff!" Akamaru barked in agreement.

"Get some rest and we'll see how you are in a week-"

"No! A week is too long! I need to train now!"

Both Kiba and Shino were taken aback. Wide-eyed, they stared at Hinata's balled fists. It appeared as if she were angry, but then she began to cry.

Akamaru jumped from Kiba's arms and nuzzled his nose into the bottom of her left pant leg. She sat down and gave the dog a pat on the head.

"I have to fix things," she finally said. "I felt so humilliated. I won't let it happen again."

Kiba sighed. She was obviously talking about her Chuunin Exam fight.

"Look," he said, walking over and taking a seat in front of her. "It's alright. It was Neji, everyone knows that he's a great Shinobi. Anyone would have lost to him."

She shook her head.

"But I had no chance at all. I couldn't even keep up..and he wasn't even trying," she mumbled. "I almost.." she took her hand from Akamaru's head to wrap both her arms around her waist. "I almost..died."

They heard Shino sigh from behind them and turned.

"That's why you can't get any stronger. You're too afraid of getting hurt, of people like Neji who will always seem to have the upper hand. Maybe if you had some self-confidence, it would be easier to catch up, or at least look like you are," he said, pushing himself off the tree behind him. Both Kiba and Hinata were eyeing him carefully as he made his way to stand next to her sitting form. "Please, Hinata. Go home and rest. If getting stronger is what you really want, we'll help you, but not if you're barely able to stand."

"Arf, arf!" Akamaru replied.

"Hinata, do what Shino says. Once you get better, we'll be more than happy to help you out."

Hinata looked at Kiba, then back at Shino. She looked down and sighed.

"Yes. Alright," she replied. "I'll go home. But you have to promise me that once I feel better, you'll train me."

Kiba flashed a toothy grin and stood up, extending a hand to his rather dismal teammate.

"Now c'mon, Hinata. Would we ever lie to you?"

Smiling, she took his hand and stood up. Shino made his way over to Hinata's side and nodded to her.

"We'll walk you home," he said in monotone. She smiled at him and he turned away beginning to walk down the path that lead to the Hyuuga estate. Kiba chuckled at his friends behaviour.

"See? He cares. He's just a big teddy bear hiding in that gross..bug body.." Kiba mumbled to her in a hushed voice.

Hinata tried to smile and giggle lightly, though not quite able to, feeling a sharp pain in her stomach.

Shino turned and his glasses seemed to flash an intimidating glare.

"If you choose to speak of someone behind their back, Kiba, then I suggest you try being a little more stealthy."

Both went wide-eyed as Shino turned back around. They followed after him slowly while containing small chuckles and laughs.


"Good-Bye Kiba-kun, Shino-kun," she smiled, waving to them as they made their way down the road.

Shino kept his back to her as Kiba was smiling and waving enthusiastically.

"Don't you worry, Hinata!" he called out. "You'll be better in no time. We'll come by every day to see how you're doing!"

Hinata blushed and nodded so that he could see. She then quickly made her way inside the estate. As soon as she slammed the rice-paper door shut, she pushed her back up against the door and slid down to sit with her knees bent up to her chest. Wrapping her arms around her knees, she let a sob escape her lips and she did her best to hide her eyes.

The pain in her stomach had been growing, not getting any better. This wasn't supposed to happen. The whole point of her sneaking out of the hospital early was so that she could train, not stay inside and rest. If she wanted to do that she would've stayed in the hospital, and that truly would've been wise at the moment.

She suddenly felt a thick, metallic liquid rise up through her throat and she coughed vigorously, hiding the germs in her hand. But when she took her hand away, she found a bright red, sticky substance covering her skin. She cried. The bleeding had never stopped, she'd always just clean it up before a nurse would come to inspect her.

Hinata made her way to the kitchen and washed her hand in the sink as best she could before taking a seat at the table.

"Hinata," her father spoke as he entered the room.

"Otousan," she replied.

He moved to her side, setting a gentle hand on her shoulder.

"How do you feel?" he asked, a little more sternly than a normally concerned question.

"Better," she lied, tensing under his slight grip.

"Good. I want you back training as soon as you can. How did your training session go with your team?"

"Fine," was her only reply. She felt his hand tighten on her shoulder slightly. He was probably growing annoyed of her one-word answers. He released her shoulder.

"I don't want you here, Hinata. Keep out of sight for the rest of the evening if you will. I'm having a guest over to spar tonight. I don't want any interruptions from you, is that clear.."

"Yes, Otousan," she replied.

"Very good. I'll see you in the morning. You'd better get a good night's sleep," he spoke as if there would be consequences.

After he left the room, Hinata sighed and stood up, making her way down the Hyuuga main house hallways. She stopped at her room and slid the rice-paper door open. It had to have been around eight'o'clock by now so she decided to heed her fathers words and head to bed early.


"Hiashi-sama, I-" he began, but was stopped when the man put up a hand to stop him.

"No need to apologize again, Neji. I've heard enough. Let us begin with your training."

"U-uh, yes sir," Neji replied, bowing slightly before the man. He followed him throughout the main hallways, trying not to turn his head and gawk at the unfamiliar main house manor. It was so clean, and well-kept. No holes in the walls to boot. They came to a gap in the hallways where the open night sky shone through and the floor was grass and dirt terrain. Neji stared.

"Wonderful, isn't it?" Neji turned to the man. "The perfect Hyuuga training battle ground, is it not? Have you truly never been here?"

Neji shook his head slowly.

"No, sir," he replied. Hiashi merely sighed and shrugged in return.

"Well now, there's no time for small talk, boy. Come show me how this prodigy gets his 'genius' name."

Neji's eyes widned. He nodded and followed the man onto the small field. He didn't want to say anything rude or do anything inappropriate as lord Hiashi was in fact letting him train here, with him, nontheless. As distant as Neji had been to him in the past, the lord's new found kindness seemed to make Neji feel as if he should respect him...as an uncle.

Neji stood across from his uncle and slid into the Hyuuga fighting stance.


Hinata tossed for a moment, rubbing her eyes and trying her best to sit up straight. She yawned and opened her eyes. Staring outside the single window in her bedroom, it looked to be around 11:00 at least.

Streatching out her arms, she swore she heard something from outside her room. Clad only in her white silk night gown, she stood up and walked over to the rice-paper door, sliding it open carefully. She made her way throughout the Hyuuga main house hallways tip-toeing the whole way, remembering what her father had said about not coming out until morning. She had to be extra stealthy.

When she began to get closer, she heard voices.

"Your stance structure is lacking, straighten up, boy. Your leg muscles are weak," she heard her father say from the dojo.

She only heard a muffled grunt of a reply from the anonymous 'other'. Who could possibly train with her father until this time of night without collapsing. She crept over to the end of the hallway and peered around the corner. She should've known she'd be caught in mere seconds because of her fathers keen Byakugan. ..And it was activated nonetheless.

But to her surprise, he hadn't noticed her. She watched him for a moment, his eyes narrowed with the horrifying bloodline. He was clearly having a hard time with his opponant..of course, he wasn't trying.

Hinata's gaze drifted to the boy he was sparing with. Her eyes widened. She dashed away in a heartbeat.

"Hinata."

She stopped dead in her tracks as soon as her name was called in an all-too familiar monotone. She turned and peaked her head around. They'd stopped fighting. She could only bring herself to look at the man, and him only.

"Yes..Father," she spoke quietly. She could feel the other boy's eyes digging into her.

"If you're going to sit and watch from behind the corner only to run off, then I don't see the point. But you shouldn't be out of your room anyway."

"I-"

"It doesn't matter. Come sit, I'd like you to watch your cousin," he ordered. Hinata gulped and closed her eyes tightly.

"Yes, Father," she replied, walking slowly over to sit in the opening before the dojo. She bent her knees and sat on the backs of her heels. Only then did she steal a glance over at her cousin.

He was staring right back at her. But to her surprise, it wasn't the same look he gave her at the Chuunin exam. It was quite different. His eyebrows were furrowed lightly and his face wasn't disgruntled. His eyes seemed soft and regretful. She couldn't help but stare back.

"Neji," Hiashi called his name, signaling for him to begin.

Neji turned his head slowly away from Hinata and fell into his stance again. Hinata watched.


Intensity. That was the only word to describe it. The way they faught made Hinata feel like fighting as well. The way their movements matched one anothers; the way it seemed as though they were dancing. But they were growing weary. Two of the Hyuuga clan's greatest giving it their all against eachother was truly a sight to see. But it wasn't rough or deadly in Hinata's eyes; it was beautiful. She smiled.

She was knocked out of her daze when the two stopped. Hiashi nodded to Neji.

"You are truly my brother's son. Well done, boy."

Neji had his hands rested on his knees. His breathing was rapid. He glanced up and narrowed his eyes at the barely-phased Hiashi.

"Thank you, sir," he replied anyway as he bowed his head again, attempting to catch his breath. Hiashi smirked. He turned to Hinata and narrowed his eyes.

"Hinata," he began. She looked to him with a rather frightened expression.

"Y-yes Father?" she braced herself. Neji looked up at this.

"This is getting to be ridiculous. Learn to follow my instruction and do as I ask. When I tell you to stay in your chambres, stay there."

His eyes were narrowed. When he made his way over to Hinata, he gestured for her to do something that Neji couldn't understand, so he watched more intently when Hinata gulped. She raised her hand out from her side and he retrieved his Kendo Shinai (Japanese bamboo sword...just a really hard bamboo stick, lol) and raised his arm high in the air. Neji's eyes widened as Hiashi brought the sword down to sharply slash her wrist. The boy winced and opened his eyes again to find that hers were tightly shut. Hiashi raised his arm again and repeated his action. Hinata didn't even flinch.

Neji's mouth fell open. The Lord turned toward him while sheithing his Kendo Shinai. He nodded and spoke,

"Neji, your performance is not surprising. I'd like you to spar with my daughter sometime."

The boy glared at his uncle in shock.

"U-uh, sir?"

"She isn't much of a fighter, as you can tell. But I'm sure with a little bit of..'personal' help from you would do her good. It certainly won't help at all considering who she is as the heiress of our clan, but it will certainly prove worth-while if the elders see that she isn't completely useless in that sense. Don't you agree?"

Neji's face turned pale and he avoided his uncle's gaze gradually as he listened to him speak about his daughter. He didn't reply at all. Looking over at Hinata, he saw her expression. It wasn't pained really, it was more of a defeated look, a knowing and agreeing look as she stared down at her father's feet.

He narrowed his eyes at this.

"Anyhow," Hiashi began again with a more relaxed subject. "I'd like it very much if you spent the night here in the main house guest room and shared a training session with Hinata tomorrow morning. Have a good nights rest, boy," he said as he turned and walked past Hinata. "And you'd better get to sleep," he mumbled harshly, passing by the dismal girl.

She stood there for a moment longer, keeping her gaze down at where her father's feet had been merely moments before.

It was then that Neji noticed her attire. His eyes widened as his they trailed over the white silk she was wearing and how it stopped mid-thigh. He gulped lightly as he brought his eyes back up to her face. She looked...beautiful. He quickly averted his gaze and narrowed his eyes. When he looked back and she was still staring in the same spot, he gave her a soft look.

"Hello...Hinata," he chose to speak. When she looked up, Neji swore he could feel his heart rising up into his throat. Her look consisted of pure terror. It was faint but she clearly displayed her emotions. Her eyebrows were furrowed and her eyes seemed to symbolize her growing discomfort as they became wider. He needed to speak to her, to calm her down. He couldn't stand looking at her disgruntled features any longer. "I-" he began, but as soon as the simple word escaped his lips, she dashed around the corner in the direction her father had gone.


Why couldn't he bear looking at that face? He was her protector; it wasn't supposed to be like that. She wasn't supposed to be afraid of him.

But he already knew the answer. It was the exact same look she gave him at the Chuunin exams, just before their match had started. He didn't want to remember.

Staring up at the ceiling in the guest chambres, Neji became restless and unable to sleep. He rested his hands behind his head. This place was unfamiliar to him, so the awkwardness was preventing him from drifting off. But it wasn't only that. It was Hinata, and the way that look made him feel like hurling. He sighed and closed his eyes tight.

Sitting up in bed, he threw off the covers that were uncomfortably warming him and stood. He would leave. It just wasn't possible to spend the night there after what had happened.

He walked over to the rice paper door, casually sliding it open and disappearing behind it.


Her hands and knees were grounded to the wooden floor of her bedroom. Coughing up the disturbing, platinum tasting liquid, she cringed at the pain in her chest. She breathed hard through her mouth and kept her eyes tightly shut.

She cried. The pain was unbearable. The bleeding had stopped for now but she kept her body where it was, hunched over the floor. She knew it would happen again. Her fists balled against the wood and she let out a faint sob.

Blood trickled down to her chin, making her feel worthless; like her pain was mocking her. She heard footsteps. She had a paining feeling that it was her father. He didn't know this was happening; or he wasn't supposed to know. No one did. She tried to fumble back into her covers before he stopped at her room as he always did during the night to check on her. But her body wouldn't budge. It was trembling. Rapid jerks crawled up her spine as she tried to contain her cries. But she could feel that horrible taste rising up through her throat and it couldn't be held back.

She coughed again and it was even worse this time. Blood pooled over the floor as her tears continued to flow down her cheeks.

"Hinata!" she heard someone yell out to her. It wasn't her father's voice. It was someone else.

She looked up from her shocked state to find her wide-eyed cousin standing in her doorway. He wasn't moving, he was simply staring at her with a look of terror on his face. Her face held no emotion as she stared back at him from the floor, just a look of utter exaustion. She couldn't deal with him now. She looked back down at her growing pool of red liquid, hoping that he would leave her alone.

She wiped the sweat off her forehead with the back of her hand, smudging some blood over her face. She was pathetic. Looking up again, she saw that there was no longer anyone in her doorway. Suddenly a sharp pain hit her again, but it was different. Her heart ached and the loneliness felt even more dreadful than the taste of her own blood.

She coughed again, and again. She was now almost sitting in the sticky substance. An even larger sob escaped her this time. She just couldn't take it anymore. She let out her tears and gasped, sitting on her heels and covering her face with her bloody hands.

She gasped again and muffled a scream when a hand was placed on her back. The other came to rest on her shoulder soon after. She looked up to find her cousin. His face was concerned but somehow angry. He sternly spoke,

"Drink this," as he took his hand from her shoulder and held out a cup of water. She stared at the glass a moment before taking it from his hands and began to chug it down her throat. "Slow down," he said a little softer.

So she did. It felt so good; not only the water, but his presence. She finished off the glass and let out an exasperated breath, setting it down onto her floor. She suddenly felt extremely dizzy and began to rock lightly before falling down from her knees. His hands caught her.

"Whoa, be careful."

She opened her eyes again to find him staring right back at her. She could feel that she was slightly rested on his knees now and he held up her neck with his arm. Her body was pressed up against his and he held her there.

She watched as his eyes narrowed slightly in doubt and he shook his head. Her eyes furrowed, as if asking him why.

"You're," he paused a moment to stare at her again, his eyes still narrowed. "You're covered in blood, Hinata." She closed her eyes at this. She felt herself being picked up bridal style and carried out of her chambres. "I'm taking you to get washed up," he said in a soft and barely audible tone.

About a minute later, she felt the cool wind on her skin. She shivered vigorously because of her inappropriate outdoor wear. Though the second she did, she felt Neji pull her even tighter against his chest. She snuggled closer to him.

The next thing she knew, Hinata could hear the slight flow of running water. She opened her eyes as she was set down onto the cool ground. She was next to a lake with a small waterfall.

"Take of your clothes, Hinata."

Her eyes immediately widened.

"W-what?"

Neji sighed at this and pointed to the water.

"I meant the water. Wash yourself up, I promise I won't look," at that, he turned and crossed his arms over his chest. She let out a stutter as he said this and turned to face his back.

"B-but-"

"Your face and hands are covered in blood, same with your knees. You have to wash up or else your father will know," he spoke as he turned his head to see her shocked expression. "That's why I took you out here, you don't want your father to know, do you? Because he'll call you weak again."

She shook her head slowly. He sighed and turned fully towards her with a narrowed gaze. He seemed disappointed; almost angry.

"Hinata, I know what you did, and you're an idiot. How the hell could you leave the hospital. It was simply foolish-" he paused and let his brow soften slightly. He shut his eyes tight. "You could have..." he stumbled on his words. "You could have been killed."

Suddenly, Neji felt a rain drop knick at the tip of his nose. He tilted his head upward to find that more were following. It was freezing. Hinata looked up to her cousin and he could see the blood from her face slowly being washed away. She stood up from her spot on the ground and walked over to him in her bare feet and gown.

"But I wasn't," she spoke in her usual, soothing voice. "I'm still here, aren't I?"

His eyes were still shut tightly and he didn't dare reply. His eyes shot open when her hand gently held his.

"Thank you, Neji-niisan."

At that, he tore his hand from hers and held an angry expression.

"For what?" he almost yelled. "For hurting you? For almost taking your life?" His fist balled at his sides and he averted her gaze completely. "How can you possibly thank me when I havn't even asked for forgivness..."

His eyes darted up to hers when he felt a cool, soft hand on his cheek. She was there, Smiling at him.

"You don't have to. I've already forgiven you," she said quietly. He shook his head at her, but brought his hand up over hers and carressed it gently.

"Hinata, you're in...so much pain. I had no idea that it would go on for this long. I really- ...hurt you," he spoke. He could swear that there were tears falling from her eyes now, but he couldn't tell from the rain that was falling down her face. "I-I will never bring myself to hurt you again."

He knew she was crying now, because she let out a small cry. But she had a smile on her face. It was slight, but it was definately a smile.

She brought her other hand up to his other cheek and she stepped closer to him. He rested his other hand on the small of her back and pulled her in for a chaste kiss. They broke away pretty quickly with blushes spreading across their cheeks. He took his hand of hers and wrapped both of his arms around her waist. She pulled her hands into his chest and rested her head under his chin. She couldn't believe what was happening.

By this time, the two were completely soaked and all of the blood had washed off of Hinata's exausted figure.

"I won't hurt you," it almost sounded as if he were half asleep. He was exausted as well and was simply content with holding the small girl. "I won't let anyone hurt you."

He pulled her tighter to him.

"Neji-..."

He smiled lightly at that. The rained poured down onto the two of them as they embraced eachother, content in eachothers arms.

"I am your protector."


HOOHA! I'm done, finally! Okay so tell me how you like it, and yes flames are allowed because I do like criticism...BUT if the flames have to do ANYTHING with my choice of pairings then F--- you...I bleeped that off cuz this is only a 'T' rated fic, lmfao.

ALSO!!! I'm thinking of sending out a multi-chapter but not if you think my writing sucks..because you are the people I'm trying to please (the Neji/Hinata fandom) and if you hate my writing then there's no point in doing it. But I reallt do have a great idea and it would be rated 'M'.

So tell me how you liked my ficlet!!! And if you did, check out my profile if you want:D

luv melanie