The red sky was intoxicating. The black clouds were poisonous. The katana slid into flesh over and over again, and the screams of pain were music to Itachi's ears.
"Come on, only ten more minutes," Itachi consoled, and Kakashi cringed.
"Itachi, please stop," he cried. Itachi smiled and shoved the sword into Kakashi's side once again, forcing Kakashi to release another scream of pain. "Itachi, please! Stop!"
Itachi gave him another smirk and one last response:
Kakashi passed out for the final time, and Itachi realized that his jutsu was over. He slowly released Kakashi, adjusting his vision to the sunlight of the present.
Kakashi shook with pain, his mind torn apart by Itachi's torture. He collapsed to his knees, breathing hard.
Itachi grinned. Apparently, twice was too much for his victim…
"Come on, Kakashi," Itachi murmured as the jounin collapsed. "Surely it wasn't that easy to break you? Well, this is the second time I've taken you…so I suppose it might be a bit harder to bear the second time around."
Kakashi could no nothing but let a small whimper escape his lips at this point. He was entirely helpless, and Itachi had purposely waited until their battle had been raging for a while to inflict upon him Tsukiyomi-to ensure he was hit with the full force of the jutsu and to ensure he was broken by it. Kakashi had been forced to relive the worst days of his life, and then Itachi had tied him to a cross and stabbed him for the remaining day and a half. Kakashi had had enough at this point; all he wanted now was to slink home into the arms of someone who cared, and slowly regain his sanity.
"I'm afraid letting you go was never an option," Itachi purred. "But you knew too much." Kakashi fell to his side, breathing still fast and labored. The wounds all over his body were painful, but not as painful as Itachi's stare: that cold, hard stare of death.
"Why…" Kakashi whispered. "Why are you doing this…?"
"You know too much," Itachi repeated. "About Akatsuki. Who told you so much? I know it wasn't Orochimaru; he would have killed you straight off…possibly Kisame, but then again I doubt you've had more contact with him then me…Deidara comes to mind, but I know you haven't had contact with him…well, there is one way to resolve this."
Kakashi tried to move back as Itachi approached him again, but his wounds screamed in protest, and several wounds that had stopped bleeding promptly opened again. Kakashi felt a choked sob escape his throat and was suddenly ashamed to even be in the same room as Itachi, simply for how weak he was.
"Now, there are two ways we can do this," Itachi said slowly, kneeling down in front of Kakashi. "You tell me who told you all this about me and Akatsuki, and I let you go, no questions asked. But, if you keep quiet, I'm going to have to take you with me, and I get it out of you some other way later. What's it gonna be?"
Kakashi put his head down, blood-stained silver hair falling limply into his face. He didn't want to endanger Jiriaya, since the moron probably wouldn't see the attack coming. But then again, he was Jiriaya, and even if he didn't see the attack coming he would more then likely be able to defend himself fairly quickly…
"Being quiet? Fine."
Kakashi saw Itachi's hand coming down towards his face, and he was almost grateful when he felt the fist connect. Now he could lose consciousness; and maybe even some of the pain.
Kakashi woke up in a very uncomfortable position.
His hands were chained together above his head, and he was basically dangling from where he was hung. Kakashi sighed and forced his feet under him, noticing how hard it was to breathe. His clothes were blood stained and torn from the battle with Itachi, and he knew he had lost a lot of blood. He saw immediately that there was nothing in the room…except some torture equipment. Kakashi gulped; they better not be planning on using that on him…
"You're finally awake. Good; you can stand now. For a while we thought we were going to have to take you down because you weren't breathing right."
Kakashi's sharp intake was breath was so small, the blue-skinned creature on the opposite side of the tiny, stone-walled room didn't even hear it. "You're lucky, bitch," Kisame muttered, "that you even survived. Kakuza had to stitch you up, and even now you're in bad shape. The stitches dissolved a few hours ago, so don't count on finding them. God, you're a heap of trouble. Wasting my time…and Itachi's too. He hates you, you know."
Kakashi whimpered and drew back. He knew it was true, and also that Kisame was vicious, and the chains, whips, handcuffs, collars, and other unpleasant metal things in the room were not good together with Kisame. The sadistic shark-man would surely find a use for each and very one of those terrible metal devices-
"And I'm supposed to clean you up," Kisame muttered, glancing around the room. "Feh, like I'll do it. What I really wanna do right now is kill you."
Kakashi sighed. He and Kisame both knew it wasn't exactly impossible…
Kisame sighed. "But the Itachi will kill me…eh, what the hell. As long as I can hear you scream. You have such a beautiful voice-why not share it with the rest of us?"
Kakashi drew back as much as he could as Kisame approached him, something swinging from his hand. "Come on, don't be difficult-"
Kakashi yanked back, a small mewl of terror slipping from his mouth. Kisame lunged forward, pinning Kakashi to the wall and forcing his head up. Kakashi screamed in pain as his wounds were lashed open again and new ones were created. He suspected some previously-broken bones might also be at fault…
Kisame dropped the collar he had been holding, looking only slightly chagrined at Itachi's appearance. "Hehe…Itachi…"
"Get away from him! Can't you see he's hurt?!"
Kisame slowly backed away, smirking at Kakashi. Itachi was at his side in an instant, picking him up and taking his wrists out of the chains. "Come here, it's okay…I won't let him hurt you."
Kakashi didn't believe it for a second.
But he was in pain, and here was someone who was willing to lessen it, if only for a minute, and Kakashi took advantage of the opportunity. When in doubt, pick the better of two evils. Kakashi settled into Itachi's chest, and the missing-nin swept him up into his arms, carrying him away. Kisame tagged along slightly behind Itachi, seemingly afraid of provoking the Uchiha's wrath.
As they walked, Kakashi couldn't help but wonder what Itachi was going to do to him. He had said he was going to find out where Kakashi had gotten his Akatsuki information if he had to kill him, and if the equipment in the basement was any clue of how, Kakashi probably wasn't going to like it.
Itachi glanced down at Kakashi, not even breaking his stride to do so. "Wh-what are you going to do to me?" Kakashi asked timidly, curious to know but afraid of the answer.
Itachi shrugged. "Well, now that I have you back I probably won't hurt you…but I still do have to find out how you know so much about us."
Kakashi sighed. "I was afraid of that."
Itachi kicked open a door and stepped inside, walking right through to the last room on the left.
"This is your room. You're sharing it with me. Any problems, ask. If I feel like it, I'll help you. If not, you're smart; you'll find a way to fix it."
Itachi gently set Kakashi down on the second bed, the one closer to the door, and sat down next to him. "I probably should clean you up…you look horrible."
Itachi sighed and picked him up again. "You probably can't walk either, what with that lovely gash I set across your thigh. So, it looks like you'll be staying put for a while; or at least, until it heals, which will probably be while yet. So…no, I don't think I'll chain you down just yet…" He pushed open the bathroom door and gently set Kakashi down on the closed toilet lid. "I hope nobody bothers me for you…there are some nasty people here looking for slaves, so just be careful and stick with me. If people know you're mine, they'll leave you alone for the most part."
All the time Itachi was talking, he was fishing around under the cabinet for some bandages and ointment; if it still existed under his particular cabinet. "Ah! Yes!" He emerged triumphant and immediately went to Kakashi and pulled him into his lap. "You poor thing…Kisame did this, I take it?" he asked, bandaging a large wound on Kakashi's wrist. Kakashi nodded and leaned into Itachi's chest.
Itachi glanced down. "Itachi-sama? What changed?"
"What you were saying earlier…about people wanting me for a slave…what's that all about?"
Itachi sighed. "As you may know, we're all S-ranked criminals who got together to try to gain 'world domination' and all. So we're not exactly nice people. All I'm saying is that some people are really into that kind of stuff-in fact, that's the sole reason one person-I'm not naming names here-is here. He wants the prisoners, so he uses them."
"Smart one, here. But he left. But it doesn't mean people aren't going to want you. Some want a nice little fuck they can screw whenever they want to. Some just want someone they can take their emotions out on. And some people just want you, just to say they have you. Social status and all, you know about that. So it's kind of like a trophy, to have a slave or a prisoner. It gets bad, sometimes. But everyone has made it through alive, and as far as I know…" Itachi smiled at Kakashi, "One of them even rose to be a member. He just couldn't be broken, stubborn little thing. So when we caught him, we just kind of…let him run around. Oh, we had jutsus, we had tortures, we had…well, everything, and nothing you need to hear about. But he just kept popping back up like a dandelion, so we just said, 'Screw it, he's not going away, we can't let him go, he can be one of us since we just lost Orochimaru.' No, I'm not saying it's Deidara-for all you know, he could've been with Zetsu and been moved to Sasori so Zetsu could get someone new."
Kakashi swallowed hard. He knew this was bad, but not this bad! Itachi smiled when he saw Kakashi's horrified expression.
"Don't worry, I won't let anything like that happen to you," he murmured, moving on the bandage Kakashi's chest. He gently pulled the remains of the jounin's clothes off and used a clean cloth to wipe away the blood from the wounds. Itachi sighed; most of the blood was dried on Kakashi's skin, and he would need water to get it off. Standing up again and gently pushing Kakashi off his lap, Itachi ran the cloth under warm water and began cleaning Kakashi's chest off.
A knock on the door startled Kakashi.
Itachi gently dried the water on Kakashi's chest and wrapped the bandages around his body. "Come in!" he called. Kisame pushed open the door, and his lips turned up into a smirk when he saw Kakashi.
"Poor little thing," he drawled, watching Kakashi shrink away in fear. "I'm sorry, am I scaring you? Well, too bad!"
Itachi sighed and pulled Kakashi into his lap, holding him firmly in the circle of his arms. "Leave him be, Kisame. He's already had enough."
Kakashi whimpered and pushed himself down further into Itachi's chest, drawing his arms into his body and trying to make himself as small as possible before the large missing-nin. Itachi saw this and glared at Kisame.
"Get out. You're scaring him."
Kisame chuckled; a hard, cruel sound deep in his throat. "And what if I say no?"
Itachi's eyes narrowed. "Don't make me get up."
Kisame sighed. "Aw, you're no fun. See you around, little one."
Kakashi felt Itachi's arms tighten around him at the pet name Kisame had just given him, and the ninja suddenly realized something:
Itachi was getting possessive about him.
Itachi gently tipped Kakashi's face up to his, fingering the slightly-torn fabric of the mask over Kakashi's face. "What are you thinking about?" he whispered, feeling Kakashi draw back from his hand. "What, don't tell me you're afraid of me?"
"N-Not you, Itachi-sama," Kakashi whispered, seemingly very afraid, "But…Kisame…he's…"
"I know, I know," Itachi consoled. "It's alright."
Kakashi shivered and slid down into Itachi's embrace. "You're not angry with me?"
"Why?" Itachi asked, bewildered. "What would ever make you think that?"
"Kisame told me…he told me that you hated me…"
Kakashi drew back, suddenly fighting Itachi's arms. "I-I'm sorry, I didn't mean it like that-!"
"I'm not angry at you," Itachi sighed, letting go of Kakashi. The jounin almost immediately scrambled away, falling to his knees at Itachi's feet.
"Stop that right now," Itachi snapped. "I told you, I'm not angry at you, so just let it go! I'm not going to hurt you, and never planned on it from the beginning so stop being so ridiculous!"
Kakashi gasped. Had Itachi just said what Kakashi thought he said…?
Itachi exhaled, trying to let it go. Kakashi was obviously confused and in terrible pain right now, and he didn't want to make it worse. "I'm sorry, come here. I didn't mean to yell at you. Come on, come here…I didn't mean to yell at you, I'm just upset that Kisame would do this, especially to something as beautiful as you…come on, I won't hurt you, come here…"
Kakashi seemed more afraid of angering Itachi than he did of Itachi himself, because he slowly obeyed Itachi and slipped into the curve of his arms. Itachi knew Kakashi was simply trying to avoid abuse at this point and was doing whatever Itachi asked of him.
"You know, I'm not going to hurt you."
Kakashi nodded, but still held back a bit when Itachi picked him up and settled him in the curve of his arms. Itachi knew that Kakashi wouldn't completely trust him, especially since he was the one who had broken him to begin with. Itachi gently stroked Kakashi's gorgeous hair back from his face, staring into the two captivating eyes. He had no idea where Kakashi's headband had been lost, but it had been, and now Kakashi's Sharingan spoke of exactly the same pain his stormy gray one did. Itachi placed a soft kiss over the Sharingan, untied his own headband, and slipped it over Kakashi's red eye.
"I promise you: I won't let anything happen to you."
And, for the first time since he arrived:
Kakashi believed it.
A/N: This is like The Slave of an Uchiha-it's been floating around for a long time, and I honestly have no idea why I didn't get it online before…and I'm such a huge ItaKaka fan…well, here it is! Enjoy, and please review! If you don't I won't post the next chapter. Because I'm evil! Mwahahahahahhahaaaaaaaa!!!!! But seriously, if I had a review for every hit I got, I would have close to three thousand reviews on some of my stories. It just goes to show how lazy people are-unless they hated it. And then I applaud them on doing the mature thing: turning back and keeping their hatred to themselves. So: review, or no next chapter!!