This chapter has been rewritten as of February 20, 2009. As this is the rewritten version, the style will vary greatly until a certain point in the story.
Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto. But this plot is entirely my own and any plagiarism is unintended.
Warning: This story contains mature and dark themes in later chapters. This includes elements like profanity, sex between women, and the rape. It also contains OOC characters as well as a few OCs of my own. Let me remind you that this is a story in an alternate universe [i.e. no ninjas and jutsus], and takes place in its own world. If this bothers you in any way, please leave now.
Chapter 1: The Beginning of the End
There was a certain unexplainable esteem in her movements that turned the head of every person in the student body. Where ever she went, eyes followed. Those who didn't know her would give anything to exchange a few words, feeling giddy inside whenever her gentle blue eyes found theirs. Girls aspired to be just like her, beautiful and respectable. Boys just can't help themselves but stare. But those who did know her knew exactly the reasons why she was as popular as she was.
Personality, appearance, intelligence--she had it all. And in no way did she deny it. In fact, she was well aware of her popularity. She didn't ask for the attention, but why complain when she had half the school ready to do anything for her.
That was why she took full advantage of it.
Though her promiscuity was no big secret, it didn't stop anyone from not wanting to be a part of it themselves. Of course, there were people who hated her it. Self-esteems had been crushed to virtually nothing, hearts broken to pieces, and hard-ons never taken care of, but that was fine with her. It wasn't her problem humans were so fragile. She moved on quickly enough, even though she was seemingly co-dependent on men. Besides, she knew no one could really hate her. After all, who could blame her for being naturally magnetic?
It was only the ones closest to her, those who suffered through her complaints, who knew what a burden it was for her. Especially those clingy boys. "Hold hands for a day, have sex for three, and suddenly, you're supposed to act like you're getting married," she always told her friends.
Yet…what could she say? It was fun.
A bitch for playing with the human heart she may be, but, hey, everyone needed an outlet for stress. Exactly what kind just varied among people--some likes to dance, others liked to write, some may scream, and some may cry. Others still, seek to gain pleasure from screwing with the simplistic male mind.
"Yamanaka Ino, please report to the office. Yamanaka Ino, report to the office."
Ino slammed her locker shut, trying her best to resist the urge to slam her forehead against the locker. She sighed and started in the direction of the office. On the way, she approached a boy, showing off and acting tough in front of his friends as he shoved another boy against a locker. She cleared her throat behind him and smiled when she felt everyone's eyes on her.
"W-what do you want?" he stammered, as he tried to maintain the fierce look on his face.
"Do you have the time?" She inquired, using the sweetest voice she could muster. He looked at her, wide-eyed and confused. He nodded to the boy he had shoved earlier, his badly gelled hair bobbing as he did. The smaller guy against the locker fumbled for his phone and uttered the time: 12:42pm. The blonde thanked him politely and turned to his aggressor. She leaned in close. Touching his bared arms lightly, she whispered, "I'll see you in the detention room after school."
Giving him a wink, she strode off. Not a few feet later, she heard an explosion of congratulations from the spectators to the bully. She could even hear him bullshitting away about his own success and attractiveness. A guy with boundless vanity, she concluded. Couldn't ask for a better outcome, she thought, smiling inwardly to herself. If only he knew he'd be dealing with the biggest asshole of a teacher after school. We were right to let Kisame be the one to torture the little dumbasses.
As she continued on, she separated an over-zealous couple and broke up a one more "fight". She had passed by students talking about something that happened on the third floor. Telling from the amount of chatter going on about it, it must've been a pretty big issue. All she was able to make out, however, was that it involved some violent people and a lot of noise. If that was the case, then Ino was definitely not going to get herself involved and opt to pretend she didn't know anything. Wannabe bullies were one thing, but hardcore ones are on a whole different level entirely.
"Hey baby!" Ino felt her face muscles involuntarily twitch. Great, more nuisances, she thought, picking up her pace.
"Ino, baby, why are you running from me?" the voice continued. Ino, baby, why do you ever date jocks? The blonde asked herself with a roll of her eyes before pivoting around to face the persistent individual.
"What do you want, Inuzuka? I have nothing to say to you," she retorted. The flat sound of his shoes told her he wasn't going to give up easily.
"Please, you can't fool me, babe! You still love me!"
"No, Kiba, I don't. I never did."
"Ino-o-o-o! C'mon! You don't have to play hard to get with me. We both know what you really want."
"Oh do we now?" She stopped and stared at him, as if trying to pin him down with the ice in her eyes. "Tell me, do you ever get tired of your own voice?"
The shaggy-haired boy frowned. "Who is it this time?"
"I asked you who you're fucking behind my back!" He growled. Ino let out a loud, heavy sigh and, pressed on.
"Is it Nara? I've always suspected you two. You're too close to him to be 'just friends'."
I guess he doesn't get tired of his own voice after all, Ino thought without saying anything. The closer she got to the office, the faster her legs seemed to carry her. She tried to drown out the sound of Kiba's voice droning on and on, one name after another. The walk to the office had never seemed so long.
Finally, she entered the office, knowing for sure she had lost him. She knew he wouldn't be stupid enough to follow her in. After all, the staff had a few issues with him that he had been evading week after week. She knew she wasn't worth the risk of him getting suspended, if not expelled.
The first thing she had noticed when she stepped through the doorway was that the school's secretary wasn't in her designated seat. That would only mean one thing in this school. After greeting the other staff with a nod, she invited herself into the small corridor where the executives' offices were. She gave the door two firm knocks and stood aside. Not ten seconds later, the door flew inwards. The missing secretary stumbled out, her cheeks glowed a bright shade of pink as she nodded toward Ino in acknowledgement. For a few moments, she stood outside the door, hastily fixing her shirt before regaining a sudden composure and strode back into the main office.
"You know this kind of thing is highly inappropriate during school hours, Tsunade," Ino said with a smirk as she slipped into the principal's office. "Poor Shizune."
"I don't imagine you to be any better, Miss Yamanaka."
"So what's the damage this time?"
"Really, I'm surprised you don't know. Incompetent as always, hm?"
"You're one to talk. At least I do my job."
"That's still no excuse, especially because it concerns the Vice President of the Student Council this time."
"W-what happened? Did she get involved in a gang-fight or something? I always tell her to keep away from the dangerous kinds."
Tsunade cleared her throat. "First of all, let me remind you that as the president of the Student Council, it's your responsibility to deal with these types of problems. I should not have to remind you how large a role the Council plays in this school. A student's problems are your problems."
"Yeah, yeah I know. It still may be early in the year, but I was still an active member. Just reminding you, because I know old age has that kind of effect on people," Ino scoffed.
"Anyway, I'll just pretend I didn't hear that. Now, go see Tenten, find out who the culprits are, and bring them to me."
"Are there any ideas as to who they are? You know…tell me who I'm up against before shoving me into the arena."
"In all honesty, I don't have a clue."
"Is it Uzumaki? She asked hopefully.
"Ino, he's nothing but a harmless prankster. Besides, even he wouldn't go that far. Why don't you just go to the nurse's office and ask Tenten. Oh, and on your way out, could you call Shizune back in for me?"
"Oh, my god! What happened to you?"
"Gee, I don't know, maybe I slip and fell," a brown-eyed brunette said sarcastically, giving Ino an exasperated look.
"I got punched, okay? The back of my head hit the locker pretty hard afterward. I can still see stars..."
"Who the hell would punch you? You don't have any enemies! Everyone in this school loves you!"
"Yeah well maybe a little bit too much," she growled. Pointing to her lips, she said, "'Cause she kissed me so fucking hard after. And y'know what's worse? I actually fucking enjoyed it!"
Ino said nothing for a moment, slightly taken aback at the sudden explosiveness from the usually collected vice. Then, when the words finally sank in, it finally hit her that something wasn't sitting quite right with her. "Wait a second… She?"
"I know! It was so strange. I didn't even know her!"
"But…you enjoyed it."
"That's what I said so don't bring it up anymore," she grumbled, clearly irritated.
"Well, you've always had more female fans than I did…"
Tenten groaned. "I don't understand! What did I do to deserve this? I don't have time for this kind of bullshit!"
"Reality-check, Tenten," Ino said with a small smirk, "You're one of the smartest and most athletic people in this school. You're nice to everyone and you don't have a nasty habit like me. To top it off, you're in the student council, just a spot below me to boot. You don't have a bad face either. Nobody can hate you even when they want to! So you must have some fans. Besides, going out with that bastard Neji says a lot about you."
"Thanks, Ino, but you really could've left the last part out. And you may just be a little oblivious, but people don't see me like that--trust me. I know what they say about me, okay?"
Ino frowned. "But I've never heard anything bad about you."
"That just goes to show how oblivious you are sometimes," Tenten replied with a small one-sided smile.
If enough rumours had flown to the point where Tenten's self-esteem had sunken to that degree, how the hell did everything manage to fly right over her head? Of course she had notice her friend's change over the past few months, beginning with her break-up last spring. But she just couldn't pinpoint exactly what the change was.
"Well, I'll just go look for those people now. There were only two, right?" Ino said, changing the subject in embarrassment.
"Yeah, one's about my height and the other super tall. If you ask me, they both stand out--especially the tall one. Her hair is like a cross between blonde and brunette, and most likely has European blood in her. The shorter one's the more serious one, but she's got pink hair."
"Pink…?" Tenten shrugged and fell back onto her pillow. "Okay then, I'll have to go haul them back to Tsunade. At least I get to skip part of calculus."
"Ah, you know how crucial that is though. It's still early in the year but your math…"
"Yeah, I know. Don't worry I think I'll be able to manage. It's just numbers! Shika will help me…I hope," Ino said sheepishly with a shrug before slinking off towards the doorway.
Tenten shook her head and wished her friend a silent "good luck" as she watched her disappear. She had a feeling that she would need more than luck to get through to those two. Even if she did, there would be nothing but trouble ahead.
Ino stomped through the hallways, feeling nothing but frustration. The last bell signaling the start of class had rang a while ago, but there were still a few students taking their time through the halls, either trying to slip into class unseen or trying to slip out of the school unseen. She asked a few students she knew about the whereabouts of "a super tall Euro chick who stands out and her friend with pink hair". No one claimed to have seen them. Although some had a look in their eyes that told otherwise, while others were very intrigued by such a description. Ino didn't question them further than that.
She trekked through all three floors of the school building, not forgetting any of the washrooms. She would've asked Shizune where they were supposed to be, but how could she when the students refused to give her a name? The teachers weren't much help either--most of them can barely remember their own students' names, much less some random troublemakers'.
She glanced at the time on the screen of her cell phone: 1: 14. Time had passed much slower than she had anticipated--class only started almost fifteen minutes ago. This is such a waste of time, she told herself miserably. The idea of giving up and going to calculus seemed much too tempting to her.
But just as she started towards the direction of her locker, a slight sound tickled her ears. She stopped, almost completely sure she had just heard the clinking of metals. Chains, maybe? She turned around and caught someone staring directly at her. About ten metres away stood a girl, her eyes masked by a pair of sunglasses. And from the way she smirked at her, she knew instantly she was the one she looking for.
Wasting no time, Ino advanced toward her, eyes not straying from her target. The girl looked at her amusedly. A sly grin took place of her smirk before she turned and fled through the hallway previously concealed to Ino from where she stood by the row of lockers on either side. Ino's brows shot up in surprise, her pretty features contorting into a full-blown scowl as she picked up the pace.
She hurried around the corner. The short hallway was dimmer than the rest, with only a photocopying room on one side and a heavy double door at the end. She must've ran outside, Ino thought. Please, please don't be far. You're enough trouble as it is, much more than its worth.
Ino braced herself for the chill autumn air and pushed open one of the doors. Well these clothes sure help, Ino muttered, shivering as she pulled down her skirt. Her blouse and vest wasn't much help either. Crossing her arms for meager warmth, she strode out into what appeared to be part of the staff parking lot. She barely took a few steps forward when she heard a whistle behind her.
"Nice," the blonde heard a voice say, "very nice."
Ino spun around to catch a pair of dark green eyes trained hard on her, examining every curve in a way that made even her feel more than uncomfortable. Involuntarily, Ino blushed in embarrassment and attempted to pull her skirt down further.
Staring at her intensely was a dirty blonde (a pun perhaps?)--no doubt the one Tenten had mentioned. From where she stood two metres away, Ino was easily able to tell that this girl was at least a good head taller than her. Even in the cold she wore a thin white tank that cut off a little ways above her bellybutton, showing off her toned stomach. A black hoodie jacket hung from her elbows as she leaned against the wall, doing nothing to protect her from the cold. She had on a pair of jeans and a pair of dark green army boots. From that position, Ino could make out a tattoo of some sort on her right arm that completed the look with the line of piercings down her ears and the small stud on her lower lip.
Beside her was the girl from before. She looked to the side, but somehow Ino could feel her peripheral vision focused on her through the dense blackness of her glasses. She had her hands in her pockets and a cigarette hanging precariously on her lips. She wore a black leather jacket that exposed nothing but a pale triangle of a T-shirt underneath. However, one sleeve appeared to have been personally torn off to reveal a tattoo of a perfect circle. A waste of money and pain was Ino's impression. Even so, Ino had to admit that it fitted her nicely. But, what stuck out the most was her head of short pink hair, just as Tenten had said. Pink hair? Ino thought, why would anyone dye their entire head pink? That's so...ew.
"Been looking for me, hmm?" The taller girl said with a low laugh. Her voice was husky, almost masculine in a way.
"You and your friend here," Ino replied indifferently. She had seen enough "bad boys" to be intimidated like this.
"Ooh, you like it like that, do ya?" Ino blinked. Real dykes! Why the hell hadn't I realized back in the infirmary? Ino thought, mentally kicking herself.
Before Ino could reply, the pink-haired girl smiled that sly smile from before. "You must be a friend of that little brunette we met earlier," she said, her cigarette moving as she spoke.
Her friend looked at her incredulously, as if she hadn't even thought of the connection before. "My, Haruno…quick as ever, eh? So you lied when you said you went to the washroom."
"No, I did," she replied boredly, "but then I saw her." Haruno kicked herself off the wall and advanced towards Ino. She circled her, her hand running along the edge of her skirt. Ino gasped and reflexively slapped her hand back, pivoting around on her heels to face her. The two-inch she wore skidded along the bits of gravel on the pavement with the quick movement she had executed, causing her to stumble backwards. Before she could catch herself, she landed hard on her rear. At the sight of Haruno's risen brows, Ino quickly pulled her skirt down, feeling her blood rush to her face. Behind her, she heard a laugh.
"You see, Temari, it matches up," Haruno said with a short laugh, peering down at Ino almost contemptuously. "A little blonde slut wandering around the halls after the bell without a guy on her leash, who else could she be looking for? And the recognition in her eyes when she saw me…suspicious, don't you think? Besides, since I'm the only one who was awake during the assembly in the beginning of the year," she rolled her eyes at Temari, "I knew you were the President of the Student Council."
Temari gaped at Haruno, and then propelled herself around to face the blonde sitting on the ground. "You sure don't look very competent," she assessed with a smirk.
"Mmhmm, my thoughts exactly. I know you don't know this, Temari, but the little brunette was our Vice President."
"Oh. Well, shit. At least that explains things."
Ino glared at the two of them. "For your information," she said angrily, "just because you ignorant assholes don't know anything about our work, it doesn't make me incompetent, alright? I'm out here dealing with you two bastards, aren't I?"
"Aw, Haruno! You made Her Royal Highness cry," Temari chuckled. Ino tightened her fists.
"Well that's a crybaby for you," Haruno said, squatting down to meet Ino's fiery blue eyes.
Ino glowered at her as hard as she could, but the other girl did not waver. Calm down, Ino, relax. You know what they're trying to do. Breathe, just breathe, she told herself, taking a few small breaths. She closed her eyes and pushed herself up. If these jerks think they can provoke me like that, they better think again.
She ran her hands up and down her skirt, smoothing it out and dusting off the dirt. "You know," she started, flashing the two a brilliant wide smile, "I don't know what you're trying to accomplish here, but I'm not afraid of you. You're just two lecherous old men and that's not something I haven't dealt with before. Now, how about we do this like mature individuals? That means keep your hands to yourself."
Temari glanced at Haruno with uncertainty in her eyes.
Haruno's face was void of emotion. "Mature individuals, huh? Alright, we'll negotiate if thats what you want."
"No, no need. All you have to do is follow me. Both of you."
Haruno laughed humourlessly. "Cheeky, aren't you? Or are you just arrogant?"
"If anyone here is arrogant it's you."
"Arrogant, am I?" Haruno said. Her face was blank, but there was something in her eyes that Ino couldn't quite decipher. "Well then, I'll co-operate. That is…with a small catch."
That was surprisingly easy, Ino thought with a smile.
"I'll follow you, but Temari will stay."
Temari raised a brow. "That's not like you, Haruno."
"Well, let's just call it compensation for taking the other girl out from under you," she replied with a triumphant grin.
Temari frowned. "So you're going to take this one too? Now you're just being unfair."
"Well, whatever, this one's not my type anyway," Temari said with a shrug.
"I'm not! But I still won't forgive you for taking that panda-girl from me."
"Maybe you'd like to come with me then?"
"No, no, no thank you. I got stuff to do."
"Are you two done saying your goodbyes then?" Ino said irritably with one hand on her hip. Receiving no response, she turned around, beckoning to be followed. It was about time she escaped the biting cold. But when she turned around, neither of them had so much as taken a step forward, opting to watch her amusedly instead. With a roll of her eyes, she marched toward the pink-haired girl and grabbed her by the wrist, dragging her toward the double doors.
"Meet you by your bike after school!" Ino heard Temari call after the doors slammed shut.
"You know, you can let go now. I can walk by myself," Haruno said with a sigh as Ino dragged her through the empty hallways. Every time they passed by a classroom, Ino could see the curious looks and the craning necks and contemplated on letting the girl go. However, if she ran away and forced another pursuit, Ino would much rather not risk missing her entire class.
"I don't really get why girls have this insatiable desire to make little physical touches with other girls. Straight girls especially. I don't know if this is your way of appeasing me, trying to be a tease and all, but why are you gripping so damn hard?" Ino ignored her and marched on.
"Hey, Miss Piggy."
"What?" Ino barked, taken aback by the tone of her own voice. Haruno slowed down, pulling the blonde beside her in one swift move. What the hell? Jesus, she could've stopped me at any time! This is all a joke to you isn't it? Ino wanted to ask. She felt her captive's hand wriggling out of her grip. But before Ino could say anything, Haruno slipped her hand in her own. She interlocked their fingers and used her free hand to gesture silence.
"What are you doing?" Ino whispered harshly.
"Doing you a favour." Haruno smirked and nodded slightly behind them.
Ino looked behind her. Immediately, her eyes narrowed and a string of curses ran through her head. Into the seemingly empty hallways, she said in her usual tone of voice, "I see you Inuzuka. Go away, will you?"
The distressed athlete emerged from the men's washroom not twenty paces away. With a sigh, Ino asked, "Why aren't you in class?"
Kiba frowned, his dark eyes trained on Haruno as he spoke. "Are you fucking kidding me, Ino? I don't believe it! You replaced me with a dyke?"
Haruno flinched a little and balled her free hand, but said nothing. She pinned him with her eyes through the black of her sunglasses.
"That's another hour of detention on top of your accumulated hours. Kisame would be happy to deal with you all at once," Ino said, ignoring his previous comment. Though she appeared indifferent, a bit of curious unease ran through her system when she felt Haruno's hand tense. Here I thought she'd be proud of a title like that, she thought, giving her a brief glance.
"Ino, what're you playing at? Do you really think switching teams would help you forget me? Is that it? C'mon, you're not like her," said Inuzuka, giving Haruno a look of disgust as he said the last part. Ino felt the grip on her hand tighten.
"Just go to class, Kiba! Didn't I tell you over and over that I didn't want to see that sorry face of yours ever again? Will you just fucking get the picture already?"
"No, baby just stop, please. Why are you making this so hard? We're a match made in heaven, ask anyone! C'mon, what do you see in that shit poser over there? She doesn't even have the tool you need. What the hell does she have that I don't? What can she do that I can't?" he demanded in a desperate kind of anger.
Haruno took a step forward and opened her mouth. But, avoiding trouble, Ino squeezed her hand and stepped in front of her with quick shake of her head. Taking a deep breath, she choked out something she knew she would hate herself for later.
"Look Kiba, I know this is hard, so hard, for you to comprehend; What with you being a narrow-minded, slow, dumb fuck and all. But...but...I…I…l-lo…love her, a-alright?"
Ino wasn't sure whether she should laugh at the priceless look on his face, or worry about the slightly surprised frown on her face. Though that was the case, she felt her hand tense up even more. It was a very small movement, but Ino was sure she felt it when she said those words. Damn, does this girl capable of feeling anything at all?
"L-love?" Kiba gaped at the two of them. "How can there be love with two women when you claim to have never loved me. A man! There's just no such thing, baby. C'mon let's just stop this. My house. Right now. I'll give you the ride of your life. C'mon, don't make me beg."
With a sigh of resignation, Ino ignored him and stalked off towards the office with Haruno in tow. Ino knew he wasn't going to follow them now, he had too much of an ego for that.
"That guy's fucking pathetic, disgusting even," Haruno said boredly, anchoring them down to a slow walk just as they were approaching the office, "just like your acting. Of all the dicks in the world, you had to choose his, is a one-night-stand worth that much trouble?"
Ino scowled and her hand out of Haruno's, grabbing her wrist once again. "Why don't you worry about yourself and what you're going to say to Tsunade when you see her?"
"Tsunade? Is that where you're taking me?" Haruno said flatly, a smirk playing on her lips.
With a roll of her eyes, Ino replied, "Don't play dumb. There is only so much stupidity a person can take in a day."
Haruno slinked her hand around the one that held her wrist and wrapped her fingers around Ino's wrist before pulling them into an abrupt stop. The blonde staggered backwards slightly but caught herself. "I'll negotiate like mature individuals like you said. You have two choices. And depending on the one you choose, you might come to regret ever meeting me very much in the near future."
"I already regret it. I've got nothing to lose then," Ino said warily. She tried to move on, but the steel-like grip on her wrist prevented her from taking more than a step forward.
"If I run away, I'd get caught eventually. But if you let me go and just forget the whole thing, I assure you that this will be the last of me and Temari. If I run, at least getting caught wouldn't be your fault. But if you're stubborn enough to turn me into Tsunade, all I can say is you better brace yourself. You'll regret this day ever happened. You'll regret meeting me. And most of all, you'll regret this little tattling of yours."
Ino glanced up into the dense darkness of Haruno's sunglasses. Only when she felt she had made direct eye contact did she speak. Slowly and firmly, she said, "It doesn't matter what you do, you don't scare me. And nothing you say will ever change that."
"Oh don't worry, it'll happen."