Author's Note: I apologize in advance for this. But I really, really couldn't resist.
…And yes, that is probably the shortest opening note I will ever write.
A little bit of this is dedicated to my sister, Crystal Child. She'll know which part when she gets there…and will probably hit me for it once/if she reads this.
Disclaimer: Nothing concerning the series "Naruto" belongs to me…despite how many times I harass people to buy the rights for me.
Title: Ambition's End
Rating: K-T (somewhere in there, probably)
Once upon a time, Uchiha Sasuke had pledged to revive his clan. But with current circumstances, he would vehemently protest if someone even so much as suggested he had made such a statement. In fact, these days he had sworn off even threatening to revive the Uchiha.
When he was younger, Sasuke had always assumed children simply were (or would become) miniature versions of their parental figures, if given enough time. This conclusion was drawn from a variety of sources: the demeanors he and Itachi possessed, Shikamaru (who was as whipped as his father, but preferred not to acknowledge it), and even Kiba's personality had an uncanny resemblance to those possessed by his older sister and mother. Lately, Sasuke wished for nothing more than his teammates to take these examples into consideration.
Suigetsu and Karin would have been abandoned long ago, had they been born as Uchiha children. And really, they might as well be Sasuke's children, considering how they generally acted around him. Karin was needy and clingy. Suigetsu was moody...and clingy. And because of this, in the end, Hebi was really nothing more than an extremely dysfunctional family, a type the world had never before seen (well, besides perhaps the Hyuuga clan).
Sasuke, of course, was the patriarch of said unusual family. He was cold, silent, and constantly telling Suigetsu to put his clothes back on or declaring "No, I will not play doctor with you" to Karin. He also often hoped his "children" would soon leave the toddler stages.
As mentioned, Karin and Suigetsu were basically the children of the group. Though entirely competent otherwise, the two of them together turned into arrogant children desperate to have the most attention from "daddy"—aka Sasuke. Both were willing to obtain this attention by any means necessary. Maiming, killing, arson, and sabotage were all acceptable methods. Actually, almost anything was an acceptable method. Though, creating Sasuke clones was the one method that was permanently off limits. Both were still recovering from the last incident.
In the relative scope of things, Juugo was either the stoic older brother, or the family cat that tolerated people…occasionally. Most of the time, it was hard to discern between the two personalities. Both of them did a lot of quiet reflecting and liked taking naps in the sun. And may some God take pity on you and save your sorry ass if you dared interrupt Juugo when he was basking contentedly in the sunlight.
Itachi, of course, was the crazy uncle no one liked to talk about. Well, at least not in front of Sasuke. Both Karin and Suigetsu had their own opinions about the familial cold war, and (once Sasuke was out of hearing range—neither of them was quite that crazy, thank you very much) would sometimes drop their usual conversations to discuss it or some other touchy subject. But once Sasuke-daddy could hear them again, the original monologues would resume.
"Are we there yet? How much further?"
"I need a rest stop."
"…Are we there yet?"
"Suigetsu's touching me!"
"No, I'm not."
"Yes you are, you damn liar! Why do you have to be so childish? Stop it!"
At this point, Sasuke generally threatened to kill one or both of them, sped up his already break-neck pace, or told them in no uncertain terms to shut up. Juugo generally interjected a suggestion for nap time.
Needless to say, the idea of returning to Konohagakure to face Naruto and almost certain execution was quickly becoming Sasuke's new mistress. The old mistress was of course the wish that he would lose his hearing. That one had come with a twin brother who wanted two certain someone's to be struck mute. Permanently.
"Suigetsu, put your socks back on." He didn't even need to look anymore to know when the order was necessary. Sometimes he would let the smaller articles of clothing go, figuring the other man would regret their loss sooner or later. But lately the lenience had led Suigetsu to become bolder in the removal of his own clothing.
"What? But Sasuke—"
"You heard me."
"…Can we at least stop for a minute so I can do it?"
"You took them off while running, you can put them back on as well."
"No, I can't."
"Well, you should have thought about that before." Sasuke wasn't getting used to being a father figure. Really, he wasn't.
Karin snickered at the scolding, as she did any time it wasn't aimed at her. Sasuke didn't have to turn to know she would be silently pointing and laughing the entire time Suigetsu attempted to keep moving while attempting to put the previously discarded socks back on.
He was never having kids. Ever. No matter how prepared for it he was becoming. The revival of the clan was most likely not worth nearly this much effort, anyway, right? Besides, Itachi was the oldest. He may have killed the rest of the family and been arguably insane, but damn it, he was still the oldest. Passing on the name and the bloodline was still so totally his responsibility. Plus, he had killed the rest of the family. It was his fault they were both in the current position in which one of them would (or at least, probably should) have children. And Itachi was the oldest, so he really should know how to clean up his messes and fix his mistakes by now. Sasuke was just young and stupid, after all. Oh, and pretty. Don't forget pretty. Or would handsome be a better adjective? Because—
"…Do you know where Juugo is?"
Sasuke paused in his stride to scan the area. Suigetsu was finally pulling on his second sock and muttering darkly to himself. Karin was standing with her arms crossed and one foot tapping incessantly on the branch she was currently standing on. The fourth member of his uncooperative little "family" had, for all intents and purposes, disappeared. Glancing at the sky, he sighed. It was a couple hours past noon.
Sasuke barely contained the sigh threatening to escape, and even more narrowly restrained the urge to strangle something. This was one of the reasons they were never really able to get anything—shopping, traveling, missions—done.
"Alright," Sasuke muttered irritably. "Take a break. We won't be going anywhere for a while."
"Huh? Why?" Karin asked, somewhat disarmed by Sasuke's words.
"It's mid-afternoon. Juugo's napping."
"Wait a minute," Suigetsu interjected unhappily, "we can stop—for what will probably be hours—so he can sleep, but you won't wait two minutes so I can put my socks on?!"
"Basically. If you want to go wake him up so we can keep moving, be my guest."
Suigetsu knew better than to even try such a thing.
This was another situation that had become all too common to Sasuke. They had this conversation at least once every other day. Suigetsu would now let out a sound of irritation and would either go mope until they stopped traveling later that night for dinner or attempt to goad Karin into finding Juugo and waking him up. Suigetsu was so thorough in his irritation of the girl, that roughly once a week he managed to get her to make the attempt.
The resulting situation was never much fun for anyone involved.
And dear god, it looked like today was going to be one of those days. Suigetsu was smirking. Karin was stomping off back in the direction they had come, already yelling at Juugo.
Once again, this would not end well. It never did.
Uchiha Sasuke was never having children. Ever. If the two were this bad when they were technically adults, he could not even begin to imagine what horrors they would have been as children. And he had quickly decided he would never, ever open himself up to a situation where he would find out.
Ending Note: I love these four, I really do…but for some reason I felt the need to write this. Maybe it's just because they really don't get as enough attention as they should. But really, don't ask, because I really have no valid explanation. Either way let me know what you thought and if there are any obvious mistakes that need to be fixed (which is entirely possible since I just started typing and let the damn thing go where it wanted…which is probably why it is so rambling.)