Disclaimer I do not own Naruto!

Warning: Angst

Summary: She would celebrate life and live on through the pain. A lone tear escaped her emerald eyes and fell harmlessly on the blue petal. "I will live on and make this village powerful." Sakura is now 22 and a powerful ANBU captain. On a solo mission gone wrong she runs into Sasuke and her cold heart starts to melt once again. Can she convince Sasuke to come back to Konoha and her?

Let me Love You

- I -

Death

There was something wrong; she could feel it in the fibers of her being. She looked away from the wooden pole she had just been punching. Her emerald gaze drifted from the familiar red building, perched next to Hokage Mountain, to the familiar face of the fifth Hokage. Her eyes narrowed when she saw dark clouds begin to descend on the quiet village.

'Something is definitely wrong…'

She quickly picked up her pack from the grassy ground and turned to leave but was brought up short when a masked ANBU appeared before her.

"Sakura come with me quickly it's the Hokage," he whispered quietly.

Sakura felt a cold stab of fear crawl down her spine.

'No…'

She quickly took off after the ANBU, a mere blur in the evening light. When they reached the hospital, Sakura made her way through the hospital.

'Room 121.'

Her emerald eyes gazed at the black numbers etched on the door. She hesitantly reached out her hand and pushed the door open, stepping inside. When she entered the room Naruto, Shizune, and an elder all looked up. Sakura's eyes glanced at Naruto and what she saw in his blue orbs caused fear to course through her. Her melancholy eyes drifted to the white bed behind Naruto and the still person lying there. She slowly walked over to the bed and sat weakly.

Her gaze took in the familiar blonde hair, the purple mark on her forehead.

"Sensei…" She whispered, brushing a strand of hair away from the pale face.

Tsunade's caramel colored eyes opened and Sakura's emerald eyes softened. Tsunade smiled weakly up at her student.

"Sakura I thought you would never come…" She started to cough and Sakura saw blood start to trickle down the side of her chin.

"Tsunade-sensei what's wrong?"

Tsunade closed her eyes and swallowed, turning her head to face Sakura more fully.

"Sakura… I'm dying; it's far past my time to go….I want you to know that… that I'm proud of you, you have far exceeded any expectations I had." She coughed again and more blood trickled down her chin.

"Sensei please don't talk anymore, your making it worse; please just rest so you can get better."

Tsunade shook her head gently. "I'm sorry Sakura, It's my time to go, I just wanted to say goodbye." Her eyes drifted to the quiet blond haired man behind Sakura.

"Naruto thank you for letting me believe in myself again… With the last of my power I will grant you your dream… you will be the next and 6th Hokage of Konoha."

Naruto's blue eyes widened in shock, his mind hardly registering the words he had just heard.

"But Hokage-sama, we can't let the Kyuubi…" the elder spoke up, red faced.

"Enough! This man has done more for this village then you know; he deserves to be the Hokage!" Her eyes softened when they turned back to Naruto's shocked face.

"Naruto you will be a good leader, protect this village with your life as I have, I love you Naruto… never forget that."

Naruto nodded silent tears flowing down his cheeks. Tsunade turned back to Sakura and she smiled.

"Sakura help him, he will need you there… Make sure my last wish as Hokage is followed through." She lifted her hand weakly and rested it gently on Sakura's shoulder and squeezed. Sakura smiled a rare smile and she gently bent down and hugged the one woman she had looked up to for a majority of her life.

"I will sensei, I love you … thank you… for everything," she whispered in her ear.

She felt Tsunade smile against the skin of cheek and then she felt her go limp in her arms. Sakura clutched at the lifeless body harder as if to try to keep the life she had loved so much in its body. Silent tears slipped down her cheeks, her emerald eyes filled with sorrow. After what seemed like hours she let the limp body slip from her grasp and she gently kissed Tsunade's forehead.

"Good bye… sensei."

She moved from the small bed and bowed her head respectfully and then walked out of the door never once looking back.

-0o0-

Sakura's eyes gazed at the picture of her sensei, the 5th Hokage, smiling, her honey brown eyes sparkling with life. She stepped forward as the line moved again. All around her the ninja of Konoha, all dressed in black lined up, white flowers in hand. She looked down at her own flower; unlike the others hers was not white. Her emerald eyes drifted to the front of the line where Shizune had just added her flower to the pile already forming before the picture.

Sakura had been shocked, as well as most of the village, at the Hokage's sudden death. She knew that lately Tsunade had not been acting herself. She had closed herself up more frequently working late into the night on papers.

After Tsunade had died in her arms last week, Shizune had explained that Tsunade had known for a while now that she was dying. She was determined to write out her wishes for the future Hokage. Shizune had said that Tsunade had used a technique that prevented her from getting injured in battle but at the same time it shortened her life because it caused her cells to multiply rapidly which can only be done three times in a person's life. The first time Tsunade had performed this technique she had been twenty, the second was when she fought Orochimaru with Jiriaya and Naruto, and the third had been during the war that had ended seven years previously. Sakura stepped forward again.

The war had been against the last of the sound Nin, many rogue and missing Nin, and the leaders had been Akatsuki. The village had come a long way from the wreckage it was years before but if you looked closely you could still see the affects of the war. It had taken two years to defeat them but in the end Konoha had prevailed and defeated Akatsuki, now only one remained from the group.

'Uchiha Itachi…'

She withdrew from her thoughts and stepped forward to face the picture of Tsunade. She knew she would miss the willful and ill tempered woman, but she would move on and help Naruto. She would always remember her and she will always do her best to live up to being her one and only apprentice.

She placed her blue flower on top of the mass of white flowers. She knew many people had looked at her oddly when she had showed up with the blue flower in hand but she didn't care, this had been her sensei's favorite flower. Tsunade had asked her to be happy and live on and for that reason she would not mourn her sensei's life by adding a white flower to the many already present. She would celebrate life and live on through the pain. A lone tear escaped her emerald eyes and fell harmlessly on the soft blue petal.

"I will live on and make this village powerful."

She turned away from the pictures and took her place back in line between Kakashi and Naruto, the last two people she loved dearly.

-0o0-

A week had past since the funeral and the village was a dreary place. The villagers walked the streets, sadness radiating from them in waves. Even though Tsunade had been an ill tempered woman and very strict she had found a way into the hearts of the villagers. They saw past her rough exterior to the inner Tsunade who loved her village and the people in it. They had learned to lover her dearly and now they felt that they had lost yet another loved one to the hated war that had ended so long ago. Soon after the funeral the late Hokage's wishes had been revealed to the rest of the village. Many have come to care for the Kyuubi container and they had accepted him over many years of seeing the happy boy come and go through the streets of the village. Many knew the power of the man and welcomed the idea of such a powerful Hokage.

Sakura stood behind Naruto as he donned the usual red and white Hokage hat and robes. Her emerald eyes held a spark of happiness at seeing her long time friend and teammate finally reach his goal. She could see the happiness in his eyes, and she knew as she watched him look down upon the villagers below that he would be a great Hokage and a wonderful leader.

"I, Uzumaki Naruto, 6th Hokage of Konoha give my life and all my power to protecting and leading the village of Konoha to prosperity and peace. I will continue in the goal of the first and second Hokage to create a powerful village full of happiness and peace," Naruto's strong voice boomed over the quiet villagers.

He walked away from the ledge of the giant red building and turned to the eight elders and his former team mates that stood behind him. He could hear the villagers cheering in appreciation and he couldn't help but smile finally feeling a sense of peace within him knowing that the villagers had finally acknowledged him as a person and not as the Kyuubi. He finally felt happiness bubble inside him for the first time in years. His blue gaze shifted to Sakura and his smile faded into a small frown. Even though he could see a small glint of happiness in her green eyes, it was only a small glint. It saddened him to see the girl that used to be so expressive and full of love and caring slowly turn into such a cold person. Over the last seven years he had seen his best friend grow colder and colder. Her expressive green eyes had become more and more guarded until now when you looked into her eyes you saw nothing, her eyes had become blank like Sasuke's eyes.

He knew that she had changed ever since the end of the war. Many of their friends had died since then and he knew that Tsunade's death had impacted her greatly. He just hoped that he didn't lose his friend anymore then she had already withdrawn from him.

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Authors Note

So that's the first chapter how do you guys like it so far? I usually don't like the Sasuke/Sakura pairing but I got an idea and I decided to write this story. I'll try to update as much as possible but I'm still in the process of writing my Kakashi/Sakura fic Of Love and Betrayal. Well I'll update next week and please review I love getting reviews! Ja Ne!

Next chapter:

Naruto sends Sakura on a solo mission to follow up on rumors of uprising against Konoha. The mission goes wrong and Sakura finds herself fighting for her life. What happens when she finds her self unconscious and a very familiar male hovering over her….