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Ratings: M for adult themes, situations, language
-- CHAPTER 22 -- LOST & FOUND
"That's unheard of." Itachi yawned as he resumed the conversation that he and Sasuke were having before they fell into their death sleeps. "Properly trained slaves shouldn't even think of doing something like that." He narrowed his crimson eyes as they bore down into the raven's coal orbs. "Why hasn't Naruto been taught to be like the others? Why does his free will still remain?" Sasuke shifted uncomfortably upon his brother's lap, his gaze on the twilight scene outside their cave. "Are you too incompetent to act on your Master's responsibilities?" His voice was dripping with venom.
"Naruto's not a typical slave." Sasuke glared back at Itachi. "And because of that, I told him our story."
"What?!" Itachi roared while pushing the raven off his lap. "That is no one's business but ours!" He stood to his full height, face burning bright with anger.
"We can't keep it hidden forever, Itachi!" Sasuke scrambled to his feet. "Someone has to be told that the Uchiha family was once well-renowned vampire slayers."
"And that matters why?" Itachi bellowed. "Our history is long gone."
"No, it's not. It's right here." The raven pointed to his mind. "I'm tired of keeping our past a secret. We were good people Itachi, what happened to who we used to be? Proud people who flourish on our abilities and talents. Don't you want others to remember and retain that?"
"I couldn't care less about the clan." Itachi cracked his knuckles in preparation of more digging. "I live for the present." He reached for a shovel and jammed it into the foreboding mold of Black Blood.
"I should have known." Sasuke muttered.
"Enough of this useless talk." Itachi tossed a shovel to his brother. "Start digging. Deidara must be found tonight."
"It's always going to be like this, isn't it?" The raven's shovel aggressively hit the wall, causing the Black Blood to crumble in larger chunks. "These short, one-sided conversations." Itachi just ignored Sasuke as the younger continued on, "well, Naruto and I actually have two-sided conversations AND they're not centered on sex. And you know what I think, it's a good thing." Sasuke looked toward his brother, still only seeing Itachi's back. "Of course you don't care though, because whatever Deidara and I have to say, it's never good enough to fall upon your regal ears. We're just a body to fuck and a neck to bare."
"Are you finished with your childish tantrum?" Itachi asked indifferently while his shovel rested against his chest.
"No." Sasuke pouted.
"If you hated what I was using you for then why did you keep coming to me? Why did you subject yourself to such a horrible creature such as I? Why on so many occasions did you beg for my affections? My blood kiss?" Sasuke parted his lips but was silenced when the words once again fell from Itachi's pale lips, "Think long and hard on these questions before you answer because unlike Deidara, you have a choice." Sasuke bit hard on his lower lip from saying something that he'd probably regret later, instead his black orbs danced around the 8' x 8' mausoleum.
The place was literally a solid brick that only the strongest of vampires could break; however, all their efforts thus far were in vain, for not a trace of Deidara was yet to be found.
"We need to dig at an incline." Itachi eyed the massive block. "Judging by those broken caskets we uncovered, Deidara must have tried to get to higher ground."
"Then why'd we start at the bottom?!" Sasuke gestured to the gapping hole they just finished.
"Because once we find Deidara, I want a clear path out of here." Itachi tilted his shovel at a small upward angle. "Now stand beside me and help make this new tunnel large enough for two people to walk through." He started once again, the dust from the knocked free chunks of Black Blood covered his toned thighs.
Sasuke was too shocked to move, his inner thoughts speeding out of control. Here was his brother, getting filthy over a slave? Itachi never put this much effort into anything. Could it be that he's actually worried about Deidara or is it because of his loathing at becoming Konan's slave that's really driving this search? CLANG! Itachi's shovel dug into the bottom of the mausoleum, bringing Sasuke back to the situation at hand.
"What is it? Did you find him?" Sasuke stumbled next to his brother, his sights setting on... an ankle?
Sasuke furred his brows at the position of the uncovered foot, the toes pointed downward, the heel towards the brothers, and the once smooth milky skin was now ashen, covered with blisters, and stained a hellish black.
"Does that belong to Deidara?" He took a step back from the eerie sight.
"Yes." Itachi calmly replied. "And he is still with me."
"How can you tell?" Sasuke looked from Itachi to the ankle and back to Itachi again. "You've only uncovered his foot."
"I only bite the strong ones." came the stoic reply before he began to dig with his own hands around the foot. His motions were delicate, yet firm, as if he were an archaeologist freeing a rare and priceless artifact. Sasuke's eyes almost bulged from his head while watching Itachi. "Stop gawking and help me." He snarled. "But don't actually touch Deidara, just move the hardened Black Blood away from his body." The raven gave a brisk nod before running to the front of the mausoleum to gather some smaller shovels.
"I'm not doing this because you're willing me to." Sasuke stated once next to Itachi.
"Good." Itachi huffed out as more of his slave's leg was uncovered. "I'd have been disappointed if you did." Sasuke glanced at his brother, Itachi's once beautiful face now blackened by the Black Blood residue.
"I'm here because when you spoke to me through our mind connection," Sasuke panted out, his hands and arms getting cut up from the sharp edges of the solidified Black Blood. "I sensed your distress." He successfully unearthed Deidara's other leg and bum.
"Distress? Don't be ridiculous, Sasuke. I don't feeling something as frivolous as that." Itachi worked his way up until a hand was found, followed by an elbow and shoulder.
"Face it, Itachi, you're worried about where your future is heading. You thought you never would, but after seeing Deidara's foot...." The raven took the same path as Itachi, but on the other arm.
"Enough." Itachi harshly grabbed onto Sasuke's arms. "Deidara is going to be fine. Our future is secure."
"Okay." Sasuke winced out before the two brother's finished excavating in silence. "Ugh!" The raven immediately covered his nose and mouth as the fowl stench of a rotting corpse permeated the air. Next, he turned away, his body bent over in anticipation of vomiting. Itachi merely raised a slender brow at his brother's weak stomach and then focused his attention on his once lively, ready to serve slave. The overall picture revealed Deidara to be bent at a ninety-degree angle and face down.
Deidara's bluish-grey skin hung limply from his small bones. Large bruises, mixed of reds, blues, blacks, and purples covered the outside of both thighs. His calves and feet sported smaller marks, but they looked just as menacing as the larger ones. The cloth which clothed his bottom kept Deidara's lower regions free from stares; however, blisters, both popped and on the verge, stuck out from the waistband. Their contents a slimy mixture of black and red blood. Deidara's lean shoulders and back contained various claw marks giving Itachi a good visualization of how his slave had tried to fight this thing.
The lines on Itachi's face hardened even more as he watched very clearly how the Black Blood was killing his slave. It's slim, wicked tentacles, embedded beneath the blond's transparent skin, were attacking Deidara's red blood vessels. First they would suffocate the cherry streams which carried the blond's delicious blood, and then change them into slivers of miniature black rivers with all conjoined near his heart. Itachi growled at this threat, but forced himself to continue looking at his slave.
Deidara's hair was no longer bright, smooth, and sleek; it was now straw-like and brittle to the touch. Itachi tentatively reached out but stopped short upon seeing that his slave was still gripping the wall chains, Deidara's head sandwiched between two outstretched, mutilated arms. "He has to let go of those." Itachi said to no one in particular before stripping off his shirt. "I need to see his face."
"You can't be serious?" Sasuke coughed through yet another round of vomit. "What if that wretched stuff attacks you?"
"I've already received the shot to prevent it." Itachi tore his shirt into two equal pieces. "You, on the other hand, haven't."
"I...I could be infected?" Sasuke paled.
"No." Itachi answered sternly. "I overheard that this parasite only infects those who've had sexual intercourse with the already tainted." The raven breathed a sigh of relief. "However, I want Kimimaro to check you over and then you're to let him know that I will be arriving with Deidara shortly."
"Yes, Itachi." The raven gave a curt nod before reaching for his cloak.
"Oh, and Sasuke," Itachi glared at his younger brother. "Make sure Kimimaro has a cure."
"Deidara," Itachi wrapped the two pieces of his shirt around his hands, creating make-shift gloves. Next, he leaned over his slave, his hands planted firmly on each side of the blond's hands. "I'm taking you out of here, but first I need you to loosen your grip on these chains." All five of his senses heighten; hoping for any kind of reaction from Deidara.
"Mas....ter.....no....." The blond's words were faint, his breathing strained.
"I gave you an order." Itachi clipped before placing his covered hands over Deidara's and then pulled firmly. "And like I've told you many times before, you're my slave and I'll never let you go." A small crack was heard as Itachi pried the blond from the rusty metal. Next, Itachi slinked back and pulled the blond by his legs until Deidara fell into his awaiting arms. "When you recover from this, you're going to suffer severely for what you've put me through." His voice remained emotionless as a single tear fell upon Deidara's swollen cheek. The Uchiha's red orbs looked down at the battered face of his slave.
The blond's eyes were closed and sunk deeply into his skull. Streams of Black Blood flowed from the corners of Deidara's eyes, nose, ears, and slightly parted lips. His fangs were fully extended and cutting deep into his bottom lip. Blisters uglier than the ones on his body adorned his face and his once delectable neck now nothing any vampire would desire.
"You'll no longer be tempted to do foolish things like this." Itachi shifted Deidara to a bridal style hold and then bent down to retrieve his own cloak. "I know about Sasori and the influence he has over you, but his soul has moved on, never to cross our paths again." Deidara remained still as Itachi tossed his cloak just high enough for it to float gracefully back down upon the blond. "No one will steal you from me." Itachi tightened his hold on his slave before moving towards the front of the mausoleum. "You're my everything." He whispered into the night air before heading back to the castle.
"As much as I wish last night didn't happen," Naruto stated groggily while rubbing the sleep from his eyes. "it did." He finished with a frustrated sigh. "If only Ino hadn't threatened Sakura, she may still exist. Still, I can't help but be a little haunted by her final words." He nervously scratched at the tiny hairs on the back of his neck.
"Sasuke will learn of this and you'll suffer a fate worse than I." ~ Ino
"She sounded so confident last night. Perhaps I'd better come up with my own story just in case Sasuke wants to question me about it." He threw back the dark chocolate, soft blanket that covered him and pushed himself up from the cocoa, silk linens. "Huh?" He looked down at the mattress as it bent with his weight. "I don't remember coming here." Naruto's blue orbs darted around the small room. To his right, in the center of the room and nestled against the back wall, was a single candle sitting on a small nightstand, its flame just seconds from diminishing. The stone walls were bare and the floor beneath him was covered with a deer skin rug, its colors closely matching those of his bed. Two small, windows were covered with mauve pillowcases, which billowed slightly as the wind rippled through them. "Where am I? Was it Sasuke who bought me here?" His gaze continued to sweep across the foreign room until they settled on an identical bed directly across from him. "Sasuke?" Naruto sucked in his breath as he watched the upper half of the covered lump, ease up and down. "No," He eased his legs around the front of the bed. "that's not him. Sasuke doesn't breathe." Naruto walked softly across the room. "So who is it then?" He carefully approached the bundle.
"Sakura?! She brought me here?" Naruto's jaw dropped upon seeing his friend's bubblegum pink locks. She faced away from him, snuggled in her blanket; however, she wore an expression of distress, fear, and sadness. "I'm sorry Sakura." He spoke as his hand lightly feathered along the curves of her upper body. "I'm the source of all your misery, but you should have left like you said you would."
"Na...ruto...." Sakura dreamily spoke as she rolled onto her back causing the blond to quickly shift his hands to lay next to her shoulders. "...loves Sasuke...." She murmured in her restless sleep.
"Huh?" Naruto gazed down at the girl, his eyes staring intently at her lips, wondering what will come from them next.
"...He'll never come back now...." tears threatened to fall until suddenly Sakura tilted her head to the side giving the blond a good view of her slender neck. Instantly Naruto's fangs lengthened and his eyes flickered to their purple state. "master...slave...blood kiss...fangs....bite..."
"Gah!" Naruto pulled at his hair. "Stop saying things like that, Sakura!" he hissed out. "You're not making this any easier."
"Blood...there was so much blood..." Sakura's breath was warm against his lower arm.
"I can't take it anymore." Naruto leaned in to bite the sleeping girl until WHACK! The blond now found himself clutching at his groin.
"Why don't you focus on that vein instead of the one on my neck." Sakura smirked as her leg relaxed back onto the bed. "I'm not that stupid. Did you really think that I'd just lay here while you feed on my humanity?"
"Did you have to knee me that hard?!" Naruto gritted out as he fell to the floor.
"Yeah, I did." Sakura smoothed out her clothes before standing up. "You were seconds from biting me."
"You were leading me on."
"I was merely proving a point." Sakura assisted her friend.
"And that is?"
"That the first thing vampires think about when they wake up is blood."
"You could have just asked me."
"I thought about it, but......oh, nevermind." Sakura become flustered while helping Naruto to a seated position on the edge of a bed.
"You know what I think?" Naruto purposely ran his tongue along his canines. "I think someone's curiosity is getting the best of them."
"What are you talking about?" Sakura's eyes looked down as she stiffly sat next to the blond, her hands planted firmly on her knees.
"Sakura," Naruto placed a hand on hers. "never willingly put yourself in a position to be bit."
"I didn't." She lamely replied.
"We both know that isn't true." Naruto gently took a hold of her chin and turned her face towards him. "Being a vampire isn't all the glamor you think it is."
"Look, I appreciate you bringing me here after what happened, but you really need to go." Naruto cut in firmly.
"Is that all you ever say?" Sakura's tone became defensive. "Leave Sakura. This place is too dangerous, Sakura." She angrily mocked him. "Just come out and say it already." Naruto quirked a brow. "Well, you may be in denial about it, but I clearly see what's going on between you and that demon who bit you."
"You, you do?" Naruto gulped nervously.
"You like him." Sakura flat lined.
"I don't know how I feel about Sasuke, but ever since I've signed the contract binding me to him, I've been determined to make our relationship be one of friendship not of a status gap."
"Hah, friendship." Sakura sat back and crossed her arms like a child. "Didn't know that being 'friends' involved sleeping together."
"I've never had sex with Sasuke because I wanted to. He's always been the one to initiate and I had no choice but to follow." Naruto stared directly at her, his eyes never wavered. "But I can't lie and not say that my feelings have changed towards him. Sasuke's spared me from much pain and for that, among other things, I feel I owe him."
"Owe him?!" The girl bit out. "He stole your soul. How could you owe him anything?"
"No kidding." She sulked while bringing her knees to her chest and then wrapping her arms around them. "Now, we'll never be a couple."
"Why can't you just accept us being friends?"
"It's just that....um...well...." she tried to mutter her way to some sort of reply. "You could have just humored me once in awhile." Sakura gave a small laugh. "You know, give me a friendly kiss here," she pointed to her cheek, "a friendly kiss here..." her fingers touched her lips. Suddenly a low growl reached her ears. "You need blood." Sakura's tone did a 180 before she extended her arm, palm up. "Take from me."
"I can't." Naruto averted his gaze from the tempting vein. "I don't want to hurt you."
"You won't." Sakura shifted to her knees and crawled beside the sitting blond. "Look, I've read lots of previous reports of when people are bitten on the wrist. And do you know what most of them say?"
"Most, if not all victims, say that nothing happened to them." She lectured. "Heck, the only symptom they all shared was wooziness afterwards. I'm pretty sure I could handle that."
"This isn't a good idea."
"All vampires, including you, have to feed when they wake up otherwise they could truly perish."
"You're exaggerating." Naruto scoffed.
"Do you really think I'd joke about something like that?" She swung her legs around the edge of the bed and moved herself close to Naruto. "For your information, the day after you attacked me in my apartment, I've done nothing by study up on the undead."
"Really?" Naruto drawled out. "Must of have been a slow week for missions, huh?"
"No, it was my choice." She answered proudly. "Anyways, you're right, being a vampire isn't as wonderful as people perceive them to be, but if it's one thing I've committed to memory, it's their weaknesses." Naruto couldn't help but be amazed at his friend's wealth of knowledge on vampires. "I give my blood to you willingly, now bite it. I refuse to watch you go all crazy with blood lust." She placed her wrist in front of his mouth.
"You're the only girl I know who could actually convince me to bite her." He gave a smirk before sinking his canines into her flesh.
"Ow!" She gasped at the sudden prick. Instincts flared up inside her; telling Sakura to recoil her hand; however, Naruto made sure she stayed put by clamping his hands, one above and the other below her now blood covered wrist. "Wow..." she laughed warily as she felt the continuous pulls upon her wrist, "..I must have some pretty good blood, huh?" No verbal answer came from Naruto for he was completely absorbed in drinking from her.
"So different from Sasuke's" the blond thought while sucking feverishly at the vein before him. "I thought blood all tasted the same, but after sampling Sakura's, I now know that only the blood of one master's could fully sate their slave." Naruto released the girl's wrist and licked gently at the wound.
"Enjoying ourselves, are we?" a voice startled both Naruto and Sakura.
"Madara." Naruto grumbled as he stood. "What are you doing here?"
"Whose he?" Sakura mimicked the blond's actions.
"Hn." The Uchiha sized up the girl; completely bypassing Naruto's question. "Not much to look at, but either way, Sasuke's going to be very upset about this. A slave is absolutely forbidden to bite anyone except for his master."
"You can't blame him." The girl boldly spoke. "I told him to take my vein. So if someone needs to be punished then it's me."
"Don't be silly." He smacked the girl hard across the face, sending her flying into the wall; where she fell unconscious. "I can't torture those not vampire."
"Sakura!" Naruto wanted to help the girl, but was stopped when Madara painfully gripped his shoulder.
"She's not dead." Madara stated with a large grin. "I purposely made sure to keep her alive. It makes it that much more fun for other vampires to find her that way. She'll make a good buffet."
"Bastard! Let go of me!" Naruto tried to struggle out of the Uchiha's grasp, but soon learned that the more he fought the more Madara's nails sunk into his skin, their tips etching his bones. "Damn it! How'd you even find me?"
"Your blood." Madara simply stated. "It may have been dry, but I could still sense when new blood has been split on these castle floors and walls. After that, I lapped at it until I could identify it's carrier."
"You did what?" Naruto was disgusted by Madara's actions.
"Hey, it's free blood." The Uchiha clenched his other shoulder. "So now that we're done with all the explanations, I think it's time for your final punishment."
"Don't be so surprised." He shuffled the blond out of the room. "This is time number three which means the sun will claim you."
"Wait a minute!" Naruto hammered out. "I have to speak with Sasuke!"
"You think I'd let a slave do as he wishes?" Madara pulled the blond so that Naruto's back was against his chest. "Do you?!" His voice dripped with malice.
"I want to talk to Sasuke." Naruto repeated through gritted teeth.
"Denied." Madara extended his large fangs and buried them deep in the juncture between Naruto's neck and shoulder forcing Naruto to fall into darkness.
--- END CHAPTER 22 --
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