Author's Notes: Hey hi and welcome to the beginning of "Re-Writing a Fairytale." It's my first Naruto fanfiction so I hope it follows through well. I'm actually a little nervous about writing in a new area, but I hope that you enjoy the story. Constructive Criticism is always welcomed. Enjoy!
Prologue: Harsh Reality
She stood at the altar, her hand in his as the Holy man began to recite the vows of matrimony. Tears chased each other down her sodden face as she barely heard what the wizened old man in front of her said as he continued to drone on, oblivious to her pain. The crystal-like tears slid off her face and decorated her bouquet like shimmering diamonds.
All her life she had dreamt of this day; to be married and live happily-ever-after, just like in the stories her mother had once read to her as a child. She had already lost that dream once, and for a brief shining moment she had believed that she had had it back. Now her dream had shattered into a nightmare as she prepared to pledge her life to the one person she loathed more than anyone in all of creation. Her vision swam before her as her aching heart began to wrench itself apart at the mere thought.
This isn't how it was supposed to happen. I would rather die than marry him, but what choice do I have…?
"…and do you, Lady Sakura Haruno, take this man to be your lawfully wedded husband? To have and to hold? For richer or poorer? In sickness and in health? 'til death do you part? As long as you both shall live?" The wrinkled old face momentarily looked up from his recitation when she didn't respond immediately, slightly confused.
Sakura stole a quick glance at her soon-to-be husband to see him staring her down with such force that her breath caught in her throat, his intense, murderous eyes holding the threat he had promised to make true if she didn't cooperate. She quickly blinked her own emerald orbs away, and let her eyes stray to the waiting gallows standing a mere fifty feet from where she stood. Her heart gave an almighty lurch at the sight that met her eyes there, and she tore her gaze away before a fresh wave of tears could overwhelm her.
"Lady Sakura," the Holy man prompted after her continued silence.
"…I…" she began, her voice meek and shaky. She bit her lip to hold back the strangled screams of rejection she wished to shout to the heavens.
You have to do this. If you don't only death awaits, for everyone. Just do it! You're saving lives, many of them, particularly his. Your soon-to-be knows you're only doing this for the sake of the one you love. Prove how much you love him, do what you have to. Do your duty, no matter how much it hurts…
Sakura inhaled slowly and released it steadily through her mouth. She re-arranged her facial features to mirror the expression of the man next to her, and lifted her sight back to the elder man before her.
He patiently waited for her response, assuming she typical wedding jitters.
Silent tears continued to course down her face, but she never wavered.
"…I," she began again, her voice stronger than before, but lacking all emotion except resignation. She felt an echo of pain that reflected the pain in her own heart as she prepared to lose all hope of love for the second time in her life.
Her dark-haired companion waited without a sound to see if she would hold through with her promise. He wondered idly if she even had the faintest inkling as to what awaited her the moment she said, "I do."