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Prologue

That Heavenly Scent

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It was a beautiful, sunny morning in the Village Hidden in the Leaves, Konohagakure. Birds were singing, the wind was lightly blowing the Sakura petals, and all was calm.

Until, that is, a certain pink-haired kunoichi started yelling ,at the top of her lungs. Why on earth is she screaming, you may ask. Well, the answer is, Miss Sakura Haruno had just been woken up by none other than her alarm clock. Yes, that's right, an alarm clock. Not much later, a large thud was heard as said clock was rudely smashed against a wall.

"Damn alarm...damn beeping...damn sun...damn Iruka. I hate them all." Sakura was always on the grumpy side when she woke up. Like many other people, Sakura likes her sleep, especially after pulling a double shift at the hospital. You can't really blame her for cursing the source of her unhappiness...but you may be wondering, why is Sakura cursing Iruka? The answer to that question is simple: today was Career Day at the Academy and Iruka had kindly asked her if she would talk to the students for a few minutes about her job as a medic-nin. Sakura, being the kind, loving person she is, despite her bad morning attitute, graciously accepted.

And so, on this fine Thursday morning, Sakura Haruno had to force herself out of bed and into the shower. She cleansed herself throughly and slowly, letting herself enjoy the sweet scent of her vanilla shampoo. It was not often that she had a day off where she could take her time and enjoy the feel of the hot, soothing water against her creamy skin. Finally, after ten minutes of "invigorating self-indulgance" as stated by her body wash, Sakura turned off the water and stepped out of the shower, wrapping herself with a fluffy blue towel.

She quickly dried herself off and brushed through her hair before putting on a soft white robe and standing in front of her closet.

"Hmm...what to wear, what to wear..." she thought, "Well, I suppose it's not really a formal event...and if I show up in civilian clothes then I don't exactly look like a ninja...I'll just wear my regular ninja clothes I suppose."

So, Sakura pulled out her red zip up tanktop with the Haruno circle on the back, her favorite white sports bra and white underwear, her black spandex shorts, her white skirt, and the black boots Tsunade gave her. Dreading the loss of her warm, comfy robe, Sakura slowly pulled it off, stretching as she did so. She glanced up at the clock as she got dressed, noticing that she still had about an hour until she had to be at the Academy...perhaps she would grab some breakfast at that cute little cafe just down the street from her house.

Moving into the bathroom again, Sakura applied some light pink eyeshadow and a very, very fine line of black eyeliner - just enough to make her eyes stand out a bit. She topped off her makeup with clear lip gloss, applying it generously. Just because she was a ninja - and one off the best in the village, at that - didn't mean she couldn't feel pretty once and while on her day off. Looking in the mirror, she brushed through her hair once more, proud of her beautiful pink locks. She reached over and grabbed a round green bottle and squirted some of the product in her hands, then applied it to her hair. There, that way when her hair dryed it wouldn't be a frizzy mess.

Before she headed out the door, Sakura stopped to put on one more thing - her favorite perfume. She went over to a small table in her room and grabbed the little red bottle. She held it in her hands for a moment, just looking at the bottle's shape and design. This was her favorite perfume ever...she couldn't really describe it's smell...to her it was simply free, bright, promising, airy, springy...everything. She loved it, especially since her mom had given it to her just days before she died. It was just last year, Sakura had been on her way home from a S-rank mission with Naruto, Sai, Sasuke, and Kakashi. She hadn't even been in Konoha when it happened. Upon her return to the village, Sakura was called up to Tsunade's office and was told that her mother had fallen down the stairs in her home and broke her neck from the strange angle she landed at. Sakura was told she died peacefully, quickly. The next few weeks had been rough, but her team was always there for her...

As Sakura reminisced, she heard the sharp sound of glass breaking. She looked down and discovered that while she was thinking, she had dropped the perfume bottle on the hard floor, where it now lay in many pieces. Sakura allowed one tear to fall from her eye...luckily, the perfume was not the only thing she had left of her mom, and the perfume was almost gone anyway. Of course, she was sad that her favorite perfume given to her by her deceased mother had just shattered to pieces....but she had endured worse. And she still had the blanked her mom had woven for her, and the necklace she had given her, and many other things. She would be okay....minus the fact that now she needed new perfume, especially since the Jounin banquet was in two days. Well, maybe she could stop by that new perfume store near Ichiraku. She looked at the clock, she still had forty-five minutes.

She strapped on her kunai and shuriken pouches (not that she much needed them as a medic-nin) and stepped out the front door.

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The walk to the perfume shop was quiet and uneventful. Sakura had never been there before, but Ino had spoken about it many times, and she had even walked by here on occasion while on her way to work. The morning air was cool, but Sakura enjoyed the way it felt as it gently caressed her skin.

There it was, the new perfume shop that just showed up in Konoha a few months ago. Sakura looked up at the sign hanging above the store, it read That Heavenly Scent! She grabbed the door handle and walked inside the little shop.

What she saw baffled her. There were shelves upon shelves upon shelves of brightly colored perfume bottles! She looked up, trying to see if there was anyone who worked there around; no, didn't look like it. Sakura began to wander around the store, not sure how to remotely begin trying to pick one out. She started to just grab random bottles off the shelves, read the names, and see what they smelled like. She came across a couple of interesting ones. There was one in a sky blue bottle that she liked...it wasn't really fruity, nor was it flowery. It was unique...just like Sakura. She was really liking this one and was considering buying it. Just as she was about to walk up to the counter to purchase it, she felt a bony hand on her shoulder.

"Ah, I see you have selected one of our...finest scents, young cherry blossom." Sakura spun around, looking at the stout old woman who had spoken.

"Um, yeah, I suppose. I just thought it smelled nice. I was just on my way to purchase it." Sakura turned again, ready to walk to the counter. The old woman didn't necessarily scare her, she was just creepy. She was wearing clothes that seemed to have outlived their use and had many beaded necklaces hanging down her chest. She was short, yet so skinny you could almost see her bones. Her skin was tanned and wrinkly. All in all, she was just a wrinkly old lady who was kind of odd.

When Sakura turned around, the old woman appeared in front of her yet again. Talk about creepy!

"My dear, do you realize what you are holding in your hands? Do you know of it's power?" The old woman said, grabbing Sakura by the shoulders.

Sakura was beyond confused. All she was trying to do was buy some perfume and suddenly there's this creepy old lady talking about it's power? Psh. The old hag must be on some sort of drug...not even Lady Tsunade sounded like this when she was loaded up with sake.

"What are you talking about? It's just a bottle of perfume!" Sakura nearly yelled, pulling out of the woman's grasp. She was starting to get annoyed. She was supposed to meet Iruka in what she guessed was about twenty minutes and she wanted some breakfast, dammit!

"Oh, it's much, much, much more than that. Don't take my word for it...but you may find youself regretting it." The old woman disappeared into a back room after saying this. There was no one else in the store, how was she supposed to pay for this if no one was there to make the transaction? Sakura looked all over the bottle, searching for some sign of a price. She couldn't find one.

Sakura sighed. She didn't want to have to go find that crazy old bat, but she also didn't want to just leave with the perfume. She had to buy it now, she wouldn't have another chance before the Jounin banquet.

"Whatever. I'll just leave some money and my name. If it's not the correct amount, then they can let me know." she said to herself. On the counter at the front of the store, Sakura wrote down the name of the perfume.

"Essence of Love? What kind of name for a perfume is that? It's just some smelly liquid!"

Under that, she wrote her name and how to reach her at the hospital. She didn't want that crazy old lady knowing her home address. Next to the note, Sakura left a bit of money and walked out of the store, spritzing some of the new liquid on her as she walked.

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End Prologue

That Heavenly Scent

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A/N: Well, there you go. It's the first revised chapter of this story. So far, I like this prologue better than the first. I'm sorry it took a bit longer to get out than expected, but with the end of the school year I've gotten really busy. Updates should be coming quicker now though. I'm going to apologize in advance for my lack of being able to write long chapters. For whatever reason, I always struggle with that. I hope you guys will be okay with 1000-2000 word chapters (unless I get really into it lol) and can just appriciate the story for what it's worth.

I realized I missed one especially crucial character when I made that list....ITACHI-KUN!!!!. Well, now Itachi and the rest of Akatsuki will be in the story too! I've only seen the first episode of Shippuden, so I don't know anything about the Akatsuki member's really, except what the internet tells me. So try to bear with that in future chapters, kay?

By the way...this story is kind of messed up. Sasuke is back home in Konoha. He did, in fact, leave for Orochimaru. No one is dead that died (I won't spoil anything lol). So basically, this is set in the "Ideal" Naruto world.

So is this prologue better than the first for those of you that have read the original? Do tell!

Reviews make me happy!! Suggestions, comments, and constructive criticism are always welcome! Flames will be laughed at.

Much love,

UchihaSakura-chan