(A\N: Sorry for the wait you guys but...enjoy the chapter! :D)
Chapter 7: Plans
D. A. Nico
Konan gently put two fingers to her forehead and rubbed gently at the throbbing skin. The three boys in front of her had been at it for about two hours now. They were all determined, and in this supreme game of domination… no one was going to give up on their staring contest and admit defeat.
Sasori, Kisame and Deidara were all sitting in a hunched over manner as they stared directly towards one another. Sasori with his impeccable nonchalant manner sat stoic and unbending to the potential but pathetic will of his opponents. Deidara sat, arms crossed with a slight scowl on his face; he apparently lacked the knowledge that this would have taken so long. Then there was Kisame who was probably asleep now with his eyes open by the way he stared off in the general direction of his competitors but with no real direct eye contact.
The apparent rules of this game were no laughing, and no making your opponent bleed. To lose you had to look completely away from your opponents or fall asleep. Konan couldn't help thinking they might want to start making some new rules. The Akatsuki hardly ever made each other laugh without morally attempting to injure someone. She was sure it was taking great will power to keep from harming another, and then if Kisame was asleep there was no true way of proving it considering his fish face never really transformed into anything further then that shit eating grin he always wore.
Konan sighed and decided that she couldn't take this much longer. It was time to make someone lose at this game. Her eyes played towards Sasori as he was the only one that had any sort of view towards her; her hands on the other hand gently began moving and twisting in the motions of a jutsu.
The door on the opposite side of the room opened with a rather sneaky, unwanted slowness that would have seemed suspicious in this house hold considering everyone busted through it like they owned everything.
The first the notice the unwanted intruder was Deidara and in an alarming manner his head swung around quickly, "Hey!" he exclaimed suddenly as his finger quickly pointed towards a yellow haired boy who had frozen in the door way.
Kisame lurched forward confirming Konan's suspicion that he had been asleep. "Kyuubi!" he screamed and reached quickly for his massive weapon. Then without a thought he swung the weapon around in a boomerang manner and watched it swirl and fly towards Naruto. Samehada cut cleanly through both of Naruto's knee caps and then lodged itself into the wall so deep Konan was sure it was peaking out on the other side of the wall.
Naruto instantly crumbled to the ground and instantly separated into thousands of little origami papers. Everyone froze, and then Deidara swung around, "Konan, what the hell was that, un?" he yelled demanding an answer.
"Yeah you ruined our match!" Kisame complained.
"You've been at that damn game for two hours." Konan said easily examining one of her nails.
Sasori sighed and glanced back towards the giant weapon that had shoved its way into the wall, "Do you realize if that had truly been the prisoner you would have killed him?" Sasori asked.
Kisame was quiet, "No he wouldn't we could have had that pink haired prisoner heal him right up."
Konan heard Sasori sigh.
"You've drained all her chakra, how would you expect her to keep him alive?"
Kisame just rolled his shoulder in an unknowing shrug.
"Exactly!" Deidara piped in suddenly.
The bickering started up almost instantly and Konan let out a loud sigh in hopes that it would get them to shut up; but of course she didn't get a reaction.
Itachi walked into the room, followed by a bouncing Tobi. His eyes strayed only for a second to the sword and then wordlessly he leaned up against the windowsill. Tobi on the other hand examined all the paper on the ground and sword itself, "What happened? Did fish-man upset Konan-san?" he asked suddenly.
"No just training," Konan smirked as she leaned further back in the chair. She as well as everyone else could sense Pein coming. Itachi and Tobi hadn't just come in to socialize with everyone else; they were finally going to have another meeting on what they were going to do with the three prisoners.
Pein walked in and easily stepped over the handle of Samehada without paying any heed to it. His eyes trailed to everyone in the room. "How are the prisoners doing?"
"Shitty if you ask me," Kisame said leaning backwards and crossing his arms with a giant smirk on his face.
"The girl is a little shaken from the presentation of my new puppet," Sasori easily commented. No use trying to hide the facts from Pein. He'd figure it out sooner or later.
Pein stared him down in an awkward manner but kept his mouth closed on the subject.
"Let's rephrase the question. How is Naruto doing?" Pein asked.
"Angry but fine," Konan remarked, "Very angry."
"Good, it means the fox is alive and well in his veins. For the next couple days I want you lighting the fire more and more. Make the kyuubi want to come out. The closer to rage he is the easier it will be extract it. This will be the hardest yet; we will all be exhausted for days after." Pein remarked simply.
"Master-sama!" Tobi suddenly raised his hand and wagged it around in the air for a bit.
Pein easily glanced over without saying anything.
"How do you want us to piss him off for the final extraction?" Tobi asked.
Pein smirked, "Cripple the girl, by then her use for us will be expired and she will just be on extra mouth to feed."
At those words Pein turn and walked back out of the room.
Konan easily got up to follow without staring at any of the members in the room.
Tobi gasped slightly, "That's going to hurt."
All Kisame could do was smirk as he saw Sasori's face darken with the prospect of having a crippled puppet.
Karin gave a small moan as her eyes flickered open drowsily. She was lying on her back and staring up at a painfully clean white ceiling with a long, dull yellow light hanging from it. Kind of like in the old research facility at Orochimaru's old base…she thought dully, her brain still trying to wake up.
She was sore all over, small pinpricks of pain shooting through her body. Where had the pain come from? And then she let out a choked scream as she remembered what had happened. They'd sprung a booby trap and been taken down before she had known what was happening. A part of her realized rather ashamedly that it was her fault.
Her vision was blurry as she blinked a few more times, trying to sit up. Her body was sluggish, her muscles tired and heavy. It was like moving through wet sand.
Karin's brow furrowed as she turned to her right. What she saw was a black blob with black hair. What the hell? What was wrong with her sight?
That voice was different—calmer in a sense, and a little less cheerful. And that was when she realized that the voice was correct—her glasses were missing.
"They were broken when we came in." The first voice cut in—the black blob. She guessed it was Sai, who moved towards her slowly, as if in great pain. Something was placed into her hands and she looked down at the broken remains of her glasses. Surprisingly enough, the lenses weren't broken—at least not irreparably—only the bridge and the plastic part that went behind her ears was snapped.
She grabbed the frames, pushing it up her nose and holding it there. Her vision clearing a bit—there was one lone crack down the right lens—she looked to her two companions. Both of them seemed to be in the same predicament as her. They looked tired and pale, and there were small pinpricks on their body that showed where the needles had hit them.
"What happened? Where are we?" Karin asked impatiently, feeling panicked. They had been captured! Who had taken them? Dammit she should have sensed someone's chakra before they had been ambushed—had they been ambushed? Maybe they had merely been found after all three of them had collapsed.
"We thought that maybe you had planned it, since you're Kabuto's old partner after all, but seeing that you're here with us, I suppose that isn't true." Sai commented offhandedly.
"Kabuto?" Karin whispered weakly, not understanding what Sai was talking about.
"Kabuto has captured us." Kakashi answered, his voice calm and serious.
"WHAT!?" Karin shrieked, lunging forward and grabbing Kakashi's shoulders. The older man winced as her fingernails bit into his sensitive, cut skin, but he did not push her away. He couldn't afford to waste the energy, and his arms felt like they were currently made of lead.
"I thought that Kakashi-san explained it quite well." Sai smiled his fake smile. "Kabuto has captured us. He was the one, I suspect, that replaced the traps on the base. He was probably waiting for us to try and enter it."
Karin let go of Kakashi, seeing him glaring at her softly. She leaned back against the wall of their cell with a small huff and then a sniffle. Things were going from bad to worse! First her Sasuke-kun had been taken and then she'd been stuck with Suigetsu for days on end. Then they'd practically been arrested by Konoha and she had been stuck with two emotionless bastards—who weren't hot and sexy when they were emotionless like her Sasuke-kun—and she had found out that her Sasuke-kun could be with an apparently extremely beautiful ex-teammate and now THIS?
Fate hated her, it seemed.
"Why would he capture us though?" Karin asked stupidly, after a moment of silence.
Kakashi shrugged. "You know him better than we do."
Karin gave a small inaudible grumble before nodding. "Yes but…listen, Kabuto was clinically insane the last time I saw him. And he was never someone who could do anything without help. He's a pushover." She laughed at that. "Kabuto couldn't do anything without Orochimaru there to hold his hand and lead him through the steps."
"I'm wounded that you think so little of me, Karin." Came a soft voice from the doorway.
Sakura gave a small, rattling breath as her eyes slowly opened. Her body felt weak and tired, but she knew that she couldn't afford to remain like she was. Despair in a place like this meant death. And she would be damned before she died in this shithole.
She slowly pushed herself into a sitting position, trying to hold in a few remaining sobs at the thought of Souta's cold, lifeless body. It was now Sasori's tool…a weapon that he would use against others. Against her friends? What if he took her body as well? Would be enjoy killing her friends and family with her corpse? It sent shivers down her spine and she merely gritted her teeth.
Like hell that insane bastard is going to turn me into a puppet. I'm going to turn him into kindling. The thought of a burning bonfire made out of Sasori's wooden body gave her a strange sense of comfort, and she let out a dry laugh.
"Sakura-chan? Are you awake?" Naruto's voice was soft and hesitant, but relieved.
"Yeah." She managed to rasp out, her voice husky and rough, her throat dry.
She looked over to her right to see Sasuke leaning against the other side of the cell, eyes closed. She knew he wasn't sleeping, however. Sasuke was a light sleeper, and the way his body subtly tensed when she shifted into a more comfortable position told her he was wide awake.
"Sakura-chan…" Naruto began again, and he seemed hopelessly lost.
"It's ok, Naruto. I don't want to talk about it." Sakura whispered. "We need to focus on—"
"Was he your lover?"
Sakura blinked at Sasuke's abrupt question. There was a long moment of silence as she stared into the darkness, not wanting to meet his eyes. For some reason if she looked at him she felt guilty, as if she had betrayed him some way.
Righteous anger bubbled up inside of her. She shouldn't feel guilty at all! She held no obligation to him. It wasn't as if she had to wait her whole life till he came back to Konoha for her. Besides, she didn't even think he would ever come back to Konoha, even if he had killed Itachi.
"You didn't expect me to wait for you forever, did you?" Was her only reply, as she brought her legs up to her chest, placing her chin on her knees.
She saw Sasuke tense and it confused her—because on any other person she would think his facial expression and movements portrayed jealousy—but this was Sasuke, and so she didn't know what to think.
So she merely tried to think of anything that could help them get out of this place. "How thick do you think the walls are?" She finally asked.
"A good four or five feet of stone." Naruto spoke. "And then a layer of steel, and then some more stone."
"They really don't want us to leave, do they?" Sakura asked wryly.
"How do you know that?" Sasuke directed his question at Naruto.
Naruto shrugged. "I knocked on the wall and I…I guess I listened for it. The Kyuubi's good with those kinds of things. He has sharp hearing."
"So the Kyuubi's senses still work for you Naruto?" Sakura asked, leaning forward expectantly. This was good. They could use this to their advantage.
"Yeah. I can't access his chakra but I can use his sight, hearing, and smell."
"When were you able to control the fox's senses?" Sasuke bit out.
"If you'd been in Konoha, you would have been there to see it." Sakura called back airily. "Naruto has come far with containing and manipulating the Kyuubi's power."
"Naruto, can you tell us anything else about the building?"
"It smells like rain outside."
Sakura nodded. "We're probably in Rain. Tsunade-shishou said that Jiraiya-san told her the Akatsuki's main base was in Rain. It's also where their Leader is from."
"How does that help us?"
"It's said that Pein can control the Rain. He can sense our chakra through it, so even if we were to escape the base we'd never make it out of Rain alive. He'd find us in seconds." Sakura concluded.
"So we have to escape when it's not raining?"
"Konan's jutsu is paper-based." Sasuke added. "For her to use her jutsu to its full potential, he will have to stop the rain."
"When she scouts out, he stops it." Naruto grinned, his eyes shining. "So we can escape then! HA!" He pumped his fist in the air.
"There's still the little problem of escaping in the first place." Sasuke drawled, making Naruto pout.
"Well, we can't use my strength to bust down the walls. Pein would hear it and start his rain up, so that wouldn't work. And plus we'd have all the Akatsuki members after us." Sakura muttered.
"You don't even have enough chakra to break the wall open anyway." Sasuke spoke blandly.
Sakura said nothing, merely smiled softly.
"Sakura-chan? How can you have chakra when that Kisame guy keeps coming in here and draining us with his sword?"
Sakura merely grinned, "Don't worry Naruto. When we need to, I'll have plenty of chakra to help. But we need to figure out how we're going to use that chakra and how we're going to get out without anyone noticing."
"They have us guarded at all times."
"At the door?"
Naruto shook his head. "No, down the hallway…there's another door, they have someone stationed outside of that one. Right now it's that Deidara guy."
Sakura nodded. "Alright...well I've been out in the hallway and there are no windows or any means of escape that way. We'd have to go through that other door."
"What if there's a chakra seal on it?" Sasuke asked.
There was a moment of silence as all three stared down at the floor, deep in thought.
"I guess we'll just have to find out." Naruto cut in.
"How…?" Sakura asked, and Sasuke's eyes flickered with the same question.
Naruto grinned. "We'll have to think of something to make them take one of us out for a while!"
"Alright, so that's out next plan of action…" Sakura let out a deep breath. "We don't know how much time we have till they try and take out the Kyuubi. Because of that we have to work fast. We need a way to get them to take one of us away. They won't risk letting Naruto out of his cell, and I doubt they'll let you out, Sasuke. That means I'm the only logical choice." Sakura swallowed, remembering the last time she'd been taken out of the cell by Tobi.
"Alright, time to start planning."
(A\N: I hope you guys liked it. :D I can't promise when the next chapter will be out...but hopefully since it's summer we can work on it some more. But anyway...the plot is thickening! Muwahahahaha!! -coughs- ok well...um...till next time, see ya!
Sincerely Lady Hanaka and D.A.Nico)