play doll

Sakura bit her lip silently when the katana went through her. With her medical expertise she could feel what happened instantly, each muscle, tissue and organ sliced by the metal, the poison on the blade seeping into her bloodstream yet again. She had been influenced by Naruto she sighed inwardly- Sakura wasn't normally the type to act then think later. Sakura kept the coldest glare she could in her jade eyes focused on the enemy but couldn't help a small gasp escaping her lips from the pain and looked away. If she hadn't she might have noticed him looking angrily at the woman behind her. He was aiming for the women who lied and told him his parents were still alive when they weren't, he had only changed since her betrayal.

He was going to pull the katana out and let the girl bleed to death quickly, would be quick if not utterly painless because of the poison, but as he moved so did she and gripped the blade. Her hand was cut by the sharp edges but she seemed not to notice. Her eyes quickly met his again, almost begging him to stop trying. Sasori was shocked when he realised he just unclipped the lower part of his arm almost without meaning to and rapidly made the blade shoot out the end of his elbow to make up for his lack of judgment.

Out the corner of his eye he saw his "Mother" and "Father" rushing toward him and in a split second he decided that he would die in their arms, puppet parents and almost puppet son. One of the blades missed his heart and just cut a small insignificant vein, but the other went through cleanly a section of his heart. He had more respect for women than he ever did, beaten by an old witch and a girl. He had already decided that if he had won, he would make the girl a puppet. He mouthed 'mum.. dad..' unaware Sakura saw as she fell to the ground, still impaled with the katana. The old wrinkly, liver spotted woman began to heal the girl and injected the antidote.

"You won't be able to heal her," he said blankly.

"I'm not just healing her, I'm giving her my life force."

What was it with everyone offering themselves in the place of others? Why do people care - links with other people only hurt when they break so just don't get attached. Simple. His granny was talking about how she would have used it for him if he hadn't changed so much.

Sakura was gazing blankly at the red hair, blurring and spinning in front of her eyes, but she knew what she saw him mouth, he was just misguided. Like Sasuke. Her eyes became more and more focused and she saw Sasori looking emotionless as puppets do, but his body position, even stuck between puppets and embedded on swords looked weak. She knew deep in her heart that he could change, if she could help him.

"Chiyo? Are you OK?" her voice was husky from all the rock dust in the air, coating her throat and all the screaming she was doing earlier.

"Don't worry about me, Sakura, how are you?" the old womans voice was weak and wheezy.

Sakura twisted her body round in time to see Chiyo slump over, skin ashen.

"No! CHIYO!"

"Ha ha don't worry, I'm not dead yet." Chiyo joked although she only lifted her head slightly to meet the pink haired kunoichi's worried gaze.

Sasori suddenly wanted to live again, if the old bag lived - he was certainly going to. Looking for a nearby puppet, he boosted his chakra and pulled one puppet missing both its legs to Chiyo, it violently pulled her up and held a sword against her neck.

"Sakura. If you want her to live heal my heart." She was staring at Chiyo horrified, knowing that if she hadn't let her guard down this wouldn't have occurred.

"NO Sakura! Don't" She blocked out the protests from the older woman and pulled her self to her feet, staggering over to the wooden man. She felt her heart beating impossibly fast, she was doing to heal the man they worked so hard to defeat? But she had no choice, Chiyo was not going to die for her mistakes.

"Hai. But promise you will not attack us again if we do," Sakura said softly. She reached him as he nodded and placed one hand on his shoulder to steady her self although the warm wood was a surprise, as she expected the wood to be cold, she focused a the last dregs of her chakra in her left hand and placed it over the seal on his heart box. She could tell it was only one sword which did the most damage and decided to work on that one first. Her right hand slowly slid down the wooden paneling of his body until she felt the handle, and began to pull. She was up against the puppet who was still pushing it up, yet with her strength she soon overpowered it and pulled it out milimetre by milimetre until she healed the heart. Sakura chucked the sword away so the puppet of his father wouldn't push it right back in and moved onto the other. She pulled it out in one motion even in the awkward angle she was in and healed the final part.

Sakura looked up making eye contact, his dull brown eyes seemed so realistic, even this close. Her green eyes widened in fear.. Would he keep his promise? His left arm gestured and Sakura turned round fearing the worst. Except it seemed this Akatsuki kept his word. The puppet lowered his sword away from the womans heaving neck.

"Will you let us go?" asked Sakura

"I will let her go."

The puppet picked up Chiyo in its wooden arms like a bride and sped out the cave with her.

"WHERE ARE YOU TAKING HER?" screamed the girl who was left, preparing to batter his wooden chest with her fists.

"Sending her back to your other team members."

Sakura fell silent and looked away, her legs were weak and she didn't want to fall but she still began to back away. Unsurprisingly they gave out beneath her and she started to fall onto a pile of sharp rocks. Suddenly her fall stopped and she was floating in the air by pale blue strings attached to her.

He had placed the threads on her when she was healing him unbelievably easily, she didn't notice a thing. The pretty little doll would be a fine first puppet after his army had been destroyed. Pulling the other blades out of his body, he strode over to his original body through the jumble of puppets strewn about and slid the ring off the finger and put it back onto his new body's. Sakura was frozen with fear, she had none of the security she had when Chiyo was directing her, then she also had some leeway to move herself, now she was completely held solid.

Sasori walked over and around Sakura, noting her from every angle.


Even though the puppet near her looked a lot younger.

Sakura shut her eyes and held back the tears, How was Naruto getting on with the others? Would he be forced to rescue her again? Would they even know? She was so weak.


Naruto at this moment was too focused on the blond man flying away from him with Gaara in the clay bird's mouth, Kakashi was almost succeeding in calming him down but they were still moving further and further away from the cave at a blinding speed. The other boy, Neji, the only one who would be able to see what was happening in the cave was occupied in fighting his duplicate. No one would know what was happening to her. She could only wish and hope Chiyo would be coherent enough to talk sense to the other ninjas when or if she arrived.


Sakura was suspended above the pile of rocks for a few minutes while Sasori was rummaged around and pulled a few objects from the discarded and destroyed puppets. he was soon done and walked outside, floating Sakura behind him. Forcing her eyelids and mouth shut with his chakra, Sasori decided to take her to the Akatsuki headquarters to turn her into a puppet. After they had traveled some way, Sakura passed out hours earlier with the poison in her system, he stopped and checked her vitals. If he was to make her into a puppet while still alive he had three days before the poison killed her. Fortunately the HQ was only a day away if you went through a hidden tunnel near to the cave and he could move his puppet body without getting tired. That was the beauty of his body. He shot a chakra controlled senbon from his mouth through a fern bush and it pressed an almost invisible knot on the tree's bark behind it. With a slow hypnotic rumble, a rock just to the north of the pair moved to the side and a small entrance was visible.

Walking inside, the twitching and shivering body of Sakura in front of him, Sasori pulled the senbon back from the tree and into a pocket in the puppets torn cloak. The rock juddered back into place, shutting the two in darkness. With compressed dirt beneath his wooden feet, Sasori traveled at an unearthly pace, Sakura shooting in front like a blur until after 4 hours he made it to the end, his chakra reserves were running really low and for the first time in years he felt weary like a human. His heart only just got healed after attaining an almost fatal wound. Walking up stairs to get to the basement of the huge house that served as the Akatsuki base he wondered how he was going to tell the Leader he brought a girl home. Deidara was surely going to laugh about it once he returned - that reminded Sasori, he would have to send a message so Deidara wouldn't wait for him.

Once the soil beneath the pair turned to concrete, Sasori entered the nearest dungeon and shackled the pink haired girl to the wall with special metal which would stop her chakra flow entirely. Leaving only a few chakra threads on her he watched as her body slumped, arms straining with her weight. Without realising he added another string to her waist and helped support her. Afterwards he realised he did it so he didn't get a puppet with deformed arms, that was obviously the reason.

Sasori of the Red Sands left the few objects he retrieved from the fallen puppets in his workroom, casting a quick look in his surgery to see if it was prepared. Climbing up more stairs to reach the ground floor, he realised he must go and tell the leader now.

As he knocked and entered the room, the first thing he noticed was Itachi leaning nonchalantly against the wall. The leader was sitting in his chair, looking as if he had all the time in the world. Sasori knew from one glance both knew what he had done.

"I know you plan to make her a puppet but I feel having a medic on hand here would be more useful. She was trained by Tsunade herself so she must be very efficient. Cure her of your poison and tell me when it's done."

"As you wish," Sasori murmured, looking at the ground respectfully. As he left the office he was unsure of how he felt. Sasori really wanted this girl. Her strength, both in spirit and physical enraptured him. But he was not strong enough to go against the leader and he had proof first hand of how good at healing she was.

"This girl was in my brother's team, she also knew the kyuubi container." The tall, looming man behind Sasori stated.

"Oh yes the kyuubi, I think I might change my target, he seems very powerful." he retorted angrily, he felt possessive over the girl, he had almost died fighting her, he wanted her to be a puppet and they took that from him.

"Just remember Sasori, I'M the one who is supposed to capture the Kyuubi vessel" The tone of the Uchiha's voice was cold "She is far more useful alive than just a part of you little collection"

Little?! It was the largest any puppeteer had been able to control at once. He had to start rebuilding. His eyes showed none of his inner feelings and he stood as still as a statue.

"I must go and cure her, excuse me Itachi," Sasori said. "I would hate to keep her waiting," and went back the way he had come.

Finding Sakura exactly how he had left her, he went into his laboratory and proceeded to make a lasting antidote from the small batch he had been forced to make by the leader, Pain, if he should accidentally poison one of the others. Damn that Itachi for being annoying. After working and calculating nonstop he finally had an antidote that would heal the damage done, and stop the poison from working for 24 hours, if this time the poison wasn't out her system she would have to take another until it was. Picking up the vial of golden liquid he got a clean syringe and pulled up all of it, pushing a small amount out the end to make sure there was no oxygen air bubble in the end. Tiredly, he drifted out of the room and moved down to Sakura's holding cell. Least this saved him work as turning her into a puppet would have taken weeks. She was sweating and groaning, still unconscious though every know and again she mumbled Naruto and Sasuke. Ha, what if Itachi heard that, Sasori thought. Placing a hand under her chin, he lifted her head to get better access to her neck. With a sharp motion the syringe was in and the antidote began to work. He could tell because her groans picked up and her shaking became worse, things were about to get worse before they got better. The antidote would first stop the spread of the poison, then would speed up the healing process. Sasori didn't know how soon after this she would wake up, so he just went back to his room, which was right next to the workshop and resting on the bed. Puppets didn't need sleep but he needed to restore his chakra levels after they were so depleted after the battle, and being used to get them here and Chiyo near the others. With one final burst the puppet holding Chiyo dumped her to the ground near the chakra signs of the ninjas. Sasori hoped he had carried her through a sandstorm and that the sand had flayed every inch of skin and muscle from her time-ravaged bones.


"LET ME OUT. ARGHHHHH," Again the girl, chained to the wall attempted to burst her way out with her strength except it wasn't working. Lifting her leg in front of her she pulled a thin piece of metal from the heel of her shoe with her mouth and used her tired arms to drag her body up, making her mouth nearer to one of the chains around her pale wrists.

As soon as she moved, Sasori felt the pull on the chakra strings left on her and it "woke" him from his resting meditation. Still in the damaged body, he walked to the dungeon Sakura was kept in and watched her as she attempted to set herself free. To his surprise she managed to open the first one easily, but the shock of falling opened up her wounds and she growled in pain. Defiantly she twisted, hissing when the cut on her side protested violently. About to slide the metal into the lock it flew backwards out of her hand and surprised she shot round again to see Sasori looking at her emotionlessly.

"I wouldn't do that If I was you."

Focusing her chakra, which was still low, she healed her big cuts slowly but surely with her free hand.

"I was uncomfortable." Sakura said, meeting the gaze of the man in front.

"You have two choices. You can become my living puppet like the sand kazekage, or you can be prisoner here and give your word to serve as our medic." As soon as he said it, he realised Itachi must have wanted her to heal his failing eyesight. "I'll let you think about that alone for a while," Pushing her back to the wall, feet on the ground this time, he held her still and in place with his chakra control. Sasori turned and walked back out. After sending a message to Deidara, he decided to start on his new puppet army and to his immense annoyance, Itachi had been inside his workroom and left a note.

Sasori, Leader Pain has said that because almost all your puppets have been destroyed you must stay here until you are strong enough to go out again with new ones. Also because of your chakra control, he feels you are the best one to keep an eye on our new medic. Remember she was trained by one of the legendary Sannin, like your old partner. Speaking of partners, since you are out of duty, Deidara has a new partner, as of when he returns. Itachi.

Sasori hated any of the others coming in his workroom. They could break or misplace things. He sat in the big chair at his huge desk surrounded by discarded puppet parts and began to draw numerous designs for new puppets, better than ever before so he wouldn't be defeating by a weak old woman and a headstrong girl.

At that very moment, the cerise haired "headstrong" girl was deep in thought. She had finally made a decision, she hoped it was the right one, if all went well she'd just have to think of it as an S-class mission, gathering information on one of the most infamous, notorious terrorist group that existed. She had no idea if it would work. She'd just have to hope for the best and wait patiently until Sasori would return for her answer. She lost all track of time except for the fact her bladder was about to BURST. She hoped he would come in soon.

Deeply engrossed in his work, Sasori almost forget about the girl nearby. Reluctantly, he put down his pencil and went to her.

"Fine, Fine FINE! I'll work for you! Just let me go to the bathroom!"

Sakura had planned a less eager response but it had been a long time since she had decided on what to do.

"Follow me," He unlocked the remaining shackle and held in his laugh as she twisted and twitched as if she was poisoned all over again. "I will have my chakra strings on you so don't try anything or I'll come in,"

"Arghh DOES IT LOOK LIKE I'LL DO ANYTHING EXCEPT THE OBVIOUS?!" In times like these Inner and Outer Sakura became one. "HURRY!"

He swept out of the room, a new black and red cloud cloak billowing behind him. She rushed to follow, running awkwardly, as soon as she went through his room, ignoring everything around her except the door to his en suit bathroom which was slightly open and she could see the welcoming white tiles. She went into a full out run and began muttering how she'll be out in a second.

Sakura finished washed her hands and was about to hit her head on the sink with embarrassment when she suddenly stopped midair. She heard Sasori mumbling 'how you don't want to hurt yourself' and felt a blush creeping up her cheeks. She dried her hands on her dusty, bloody outfit as she walked out.

"You need a new uniform. I will make one. Wait." It was obvious he wasn't much of a talker, but Sakura nodded her assent and sat gingerly on the edge of the bed. When he left the room, she had the urge to look around, but because of the chakra strings she knew he would know exactly what she was doing so she fought it and sat still. The bed was basic single bed, covered in clean sheets. Sakura grimaced at the thought of the dirty marks she was putting on the red material. It was in the far left corner of the room, with a table with a lamp on it near by. Near that, there was a wardrobe and the other side of that was a bookshelf. All the objects were made of a mahogany and the walls were dark red which made the underground room seem darker and claustrophobic. She could tell she was underground by the fact there were no windows. How could Sasori live without natural light?!

At first she was forcing herself to wait patiently. But after an hour restlessness attacked and she began tapping one leg of the floor repeatedly.

After half an hour more she decided she couldn't not move any longer, so she walked over and pulled the first book she reached and rushed back to her seat.

The cover of the hard back book was a deep, rich blue. And the title was reflective gold.

"Wood carving - an in depth look at the fine art... I had to pick that one didn't I?" Sakura opened the book, and glanced at the dark wood door holding her in the room, wondering if he would mind that she got up. After a few seconds of silence, Sakura looked down at the non-fiction book and winced at the sight of extremely small font. She began reading the foreword, her eyes started to itch and burn and although she knew it wasn't a good idea she curled up on the end of the bed and continued reading.

With the left over material from various people's outfits, Sasori managed to patch together a fine outfit. As he walked into his room holding a spare white tank top, long black and red cloud patterned shirt jacket and a blood red skirt, he didn't know what to do when he saw her sleeping on the bed like a cat. On the floor, underneath her relaxed hand, he could see one of his books. So that was the one she ran and picked, no wonder she's asleep, he thought with dry humour. Hanging the clothes on a hanger on the bathroom door handle, he left the room and turned off the main light so only the glow of the table lamp was left.

When it was 2 o'clock in the afternoon, the day after the fight, Sasori felt her get up and walk over to the bathroom. He had never really attached himself to a live human before and the feeling of a puppet moving by itself was new. Every time it happened it surprised him, though his stoic face revealed nothing. After a slight pause he felt her grasp the hanger and put it on the inside of the door, locking it behind her. After a mixture of confusing arm gestures and body movements he finally realised what she was doing. She was undressing. If he was a normal man he would have blushed profusely but he just continued to make a new puppet. Leaving the chakra strings on her he slackened them so he wouldn't feel every single move. He refused to think about what she was doing and not wearing in his shower and tried to focus. It was impossible though. Every time he drew a new puppet, suddenly he would remember drawing her likeness to design her outfit, the width of her waist, her height, the list was endless.

As soon as she left the bathroom, the threads tightened their control once more, freezing her. Sasori chucked his pencil down, and decided he would go and see her, purely to see how well the uniform fitted of course.

The tank top hugged her upper body and was quite low cut. The first shirt button was just under her bust and she had rolled the long sleeves up her arms. It fell down to about half down her thighs, and the red skirt was only a couple inches longer. Considering he never actually measured her it was extremely form fitting and suited her. Sakura could believe she was wearing the enemy's clothes. She felt as though little Sakura inside was crying with the lost of the old thing she had been wearing forever with the white image on the back but old Sakura relished the new mature design. Ino would be so jealous.

If she ever saw Ino again.

Sasori was amazed, it looked even better than he imagined. She would have been a fine puppet but she suited the dark red and black. As he met her gaze he saw a darkness in there that was surprising for a girl from the leaf village.

"Come with me. Pain wishes to talk to you."

The leader?! Been here god knows how long, but not ages and she was going to see the leader! Wow, they should have tried this earlier. Sakura stood still for about a minute before Sasori realised his mistake and loosened up the chakra control. He turned and walked hurriedly out his room, embarrassed. Sakura followed, feeling rested and refreshed finally after the long battle with a sleep and a shower. They went up the stairs into the main building, and Sakura was blinded with daylight.

"Excuse me, What time is it?" She asked politely, eyes to the ground should she see Itachi and want to kill him for hurting Sasuke.

"Two-forty three PM." Sasori replied monotonously.

"Did you bring back a snack for me Sasori," "How kind and thoughtful. She looks delicious" Two different voices made Sakura look up to see a two tone man leering menacingly with a huge Venus fly trap round his head. Subconsciously, she moved nearer and nearer to Sasori, placing him between her and the creepy plant man.

"No, Zetsu. She is our new medic." Sakura was trying to store all the information she could about the Akatsuki so when the guy... 'Zetsu' blended into the wall and disappeared she was already memorising the fact he had a ring similar to Sasori on the little finger on his right hand.

She stayed close to Sasori and they were soon at the office door. Sasori knocked and at clear "Come in" entered, pulling the wary Sakura in with his control.

She couldn't see anything of the leader. She could hear him though.

"Sakura Haruno, You will do as we say,"

Finally her control snapped. She was NOT going to do everything. Inner Sakura once again took over.

"No. You listen. I have no choice I will heal when necessary. I will not go with you on any missions and I refuse to fight any of my comrades."

If Sasori was surprised he didn't show it. How could he? But he was. No one EVER talked like that to Pain and lived. Least if he decided to have her dead he would be able to build a fine collection. To his utmost shock Pain gave a gruff laugh.

"What can I expect from Tsunade's pupil. I accept your terms but you will heal all of us. You will not sabotage anyone or purposely set out to harm them. You will stay in the HQ until further notice. Agreed?" It was more of a statement than a question but Sakura bowed her head to show that she accepted it.

"Sasori, is it acceptable if she uses your laboratory if she needs too?"

He was cheated out of a puppet and now this.

"Fine." His emotionless voice stated.

Sakura didn't seem to understand that the meeting was over, so by using his chakra threads he walked her out the room. Sakura let out a hiss of surprise before holding her head high, the damp and darkened cerise locks tickling her neck. It almost looked as she was walking herself. As soon as the office door shut behind her she used her chakra to sever a few of the chakra threads attached to her.

"I get the idea I have to move. You don't need to control EVERYTHING."

He ignored her and reattached the threads although he didn't pull on them. She frowned but was silent on their way back to the lab. Sakura froze, horrified in the doorway of the laboratory because of the onyx haired man leaning against one of the metal tables. "Itachi," she whispered. Remembering the last time they saw him -even if it was a body double- they fought, she expected him to be aggressive. She accidentally looked into his red Sharingan eyes but he didn't take advantage of that and Sakura felt uneasy. Looking at him she felt a pang in her heart to have Sasuke back and also red hot anger because it was Itachi's fault he was after more power. Sasuke may have strayed from the path but he was still one of them. Glaring furiously she subconsciously shifted nearer to the puppet master.

Walking over to them silently, Itachi ignored the man-turned-puppet and bent to look into the girl's eyes. He gave a grin although it looked very forced and he ruffled her hair, his long white fingers mussing up her pink strands.

"You gave a pretty good fight earlier I was surprised."

Sakura was standing still, shell shocked. He touched her. He said she gave a good fight. Without realising a brutal gleam shone in her eyes. She wanted to be recognised by powerful shinobi more often. Sakura was the "girl tag-along" in Team 7, Sasuke was powerful, Naruto had the Kyuubi inside him! How could she even compare?

Sasori watched angrily. Itachi only wanted the girl to heal his failing eyes. Watching Sakura's reactions carefully, he saw the look she got in her eyes and was once again surprised by her. He couldn't help but notice that she had a fistful of his cloak bunched tightly in her hand, holding it so hard her knuckles were white. "What's your name?" he asked.

"Sakura," She retorted, none of the stutter or hesitance in her voice both men had been expecting.

"Could you heal my eyes Sakura?"

"I would need to study and analyse them first."

"Start now then."

"I understand she is everyones new medic but it is too soon for you to be ordering her around," Sasori bit in, even though Sakura was coping fine by herself. Unknown to him Sakura only sounded fine, inside she didn't know what to think and was only coping due to Tsunade's harsh training. She was grateful for his interruption she didn't want to spend any more time with Itachi than she had to.

"She can at least take a look," Itachi responded.

Sakura unclenched her hand holding Sasori's cloak, the material was slightly creased but she didn't notice. She raised both hands to the temples of the tall Uchiha murderer and fearfully shut her eyes on the dangerous man. Sasori almost felt cold as she left his side. He hadn't felt temperature in a long time without a physical human body but this cold was more of a feeling of emptiness. The feeling you get when waiting for something. Particularly when waiting for Deidera return wondering whether the artist would survive.

Sakura felt all the chakra nerves to his eyes had over strained and he had burst a few, making them useless. The ones he could still see out of were blocked and almost to bursting point. Also his actual nerves connected to his eyes were inflamed and swollen. He must be in a lot of pain, an almost constant headache pounding behind his eyes, but Sakura squashed any sympathy - he was only this way because he used them on undeserving, innocent people. He was SCUM.

Slowly she opened her eyes, her tongue sticking out in concentration slid back in her mouth sheepishly. Both guys seemed fixated on her and Sakura felt really awkward. She took a deep breath-

"The work I would have to do is very detailed and focused. Various nerves have been killed or damaged and the chakra flow is blocked and in some cases completely destroyed. It would take ages to repair, heal and fix every aspect." Sakura said in her clinical medic voice. The one she used in emergencies to keep a clear head. "Also, if you continue to strain them all the work would be undone." She could tamper with Itachi eyes so Sasuke could defeat him. Or she could kill his older brother for him. Angrily she remembered the deal she had made to the leader. She was going to keep her word even if it killed her. It was the only thing separating her from these traitors with no morals.


I have EDITED THIS FIRST CHAPTER AGAIN - There still are grammar mistakes but I just worked on Itachi and Sasori's feelings a bit - Thanks to lots of help from Kamikaze Hakkeshu What you suggested was perfect, sorry for yoinking it SO everyone reading - what Itachi says to Sasori about his collection is:

(C) Kamikaze Hakkeshu

Well. Weird pairing but I fell in love with it once I saw the episode - I'm sorry if you don't agree with it but if you read through and got to here the obvious thing is just not to read it in the first place ;)

Hope you liked & enjoyed it! Please review even if it's a "Yay like it" or "needs work -crap spelling" etc :) I don't mind I'm a big girl I can take it.

And I'd like to mention one last thing - you don't really have to review I get that warm fuzzy feeling just by looking at the stats :P but a review every so often is nice just so I know what people are thinking.