I apologise for not updating "Heaven Sent" just yet but I seem to have 'misplaced' the pen drive in which I saved Chapter 3 on. And so I've decided to start writing a new one while I look for my missing pen drive. Wish me luck on finding it!
Please review this one too!
Disclaimer: I don't own Naruto although I wish I did.
It had been 5 years since Tenten had disappeared. No one knew what happened to her or what provoked her to leave her comfortable life being Konoha's Weapon's Mistress. She lived a simple life, no designer dresses on her wardrobe, no luxurious furniture, no collections of jewels and no extravagant parties of any sort, except for the odd birthday celebrations thrown for her by her close friends. Many theories have surfaced about her mysterious disappearance. Some had said that maybe she had wanted more than a simple life and had gone on an adventure while some had said that she was killed in her sleep. Others didn't even bother themselves to think of a theory because to them, Tenten was just another shinobi – just another kunoichi. The point was that none were the wiser. For 2 weeks, Konoha had searched for her but no more after that. Tsunade herself had ordered them to stop the search stating that they cannot lose any men at this time of need. Tenten, at 16 years of age, was now officially a missing-nin.
Our story begins with Neji, a stoic, 22 year old man who was a team-mate of our beloved Tenten. Class prodigy, attractive and an absolute prick, he was the oldest student in Gai's team, 8 months Tenten's senior. ANBU captain at the early age of 18, he had developed – or in Lee's words, bloomed – into an absolute god. He had a nice build, not too stocky and not too lanky. His hair was still as gorgeous as ever, his face, a mask of absolute control. Or that's what they all think anyway.
It was a beautiful, cloudless night with the moon at its full glory. Small pin pricks of light flickered now and then on the ebony curtain we call the sky. Neji was lying on his bed, wide awake as usual. It had always been like this ever since Tenten's disappearance. Every night, he would lie awake, staring at the only picture he has of her, the one from their genin days. Her innocent, chocolate orbs would stare through him, piercing through the depths of his soul. He longed for her, her cheerful face, her no-nonsense attitude and everything else that was so unique about her, although he wouldn't admit this to anyone, private or not. He never realised it but when he was with her, he always felt – whole. He was in love with Tenten.
'How could I have been so stupid? She was right there with me, all the fucking time and I never, not ever, realised that it was she alone who could bring out the best in me. To everyone else I was either a jerk or a pretty face look at,' he scoffed at himself. 'Why is it that when someone loses something, it's only then they appreciate what was once theirs. I guess, she was never mine, but at least she was just right there.'
When Tenten was declared missing, all her friends went into a panic frenzy, especially Lee. Hinata had broken down, sobbing her heart out for the first few weeks. Neji had stayed unreadable but everyone else could see that it had also taken some toll on him. At night he would weep, his body racking from his sobs of despair but in the morning he would remain impassive. Those outside of his close circle of "friends" would say that he's an emotionless bastard but his friends knew better.
After a year, they all stopped grieving, but not Neji. Every night, except for when he was on a mission, he would follow his usual routine. Unable to sleep, he would cry within the comforts of his room while reminiscing the good times he had with her. He would berate himself for the times he did not comply with her simple requests such as eating lunch at Ichiraku's or going to the fair with her and Lee. Tiring himself both mentally and physically, he would drift into the land frequently visited by Shikamaru.
The Hokage had gathered everyone who was still capable of fighting from the original Konoha 12. Aside from Tenten, who had mysteriously disappeared, there were others who were also – unavailable. Kiba had lost the function of his nose and his arms, Akamaru had been put to retirement due to old age and Chouji was still in a coma from a freak accident that occurred in his own home. All three were declared medically unfit and therefore unable to do any more missions.
Tsunade looked up wearily from her desk and nodded in greeting to the shinobis in front of her. "We have been given information of …irregular activities happening near the south of Suna. I would like the 9 of you to go down there and investigate. You are all either ANBU or jonin and we've already gone through all the minute details the last time I sent you to do some … research. This is supposed to be an A-ranked mission but it could easily change into an S-ranked one. Be careful, we are dealing with Itachi here. This is only meant to be an info gathering mission so stay no more than a week but if you believe that this has some sort of lead to Itachi and his accomplices, I can grant you a further week. Shikamaru, as captain you are to report to me via the birds for any development. Are there any questions?"
No one moved.
"I take that as a no. Pack lightly and go quickly. You are to leave at 0800 hours tomorrow. You are dismissed."
The 9 ninjas departed with a small bow.
So ... what do you think? I realise this is short but I wasn't sure if this would appeal to the readers. Please review and tell me if I should continue this as well after I have finished Heaven Sent (that is - when I've found the bloody pen drive).
Appreciate any comments. Constructive criticism accepted.