A/N: Hey, guys, this is my new story which I mentioned. To begin with, there are few things I'd like you to know about it.
Firstly, if you read the summary (duh you did), you've seen that I based this one on nouvele (or film) „Chocolat". Don't worry, it will wander off from it quite a lot. I just wanted you to understand that I needed a certain basis and mood to begin this. I bring this up, because some people come and flame at me for doing such things (earlier stories for Shaman King). Forgive me in advance if anyone conciders this a plagiarism. Note this: IT IS NOT!!!
Secondly, this fic will be based on songs at some parts, mostly of Norah Jones. If you don't have her albums „Feels like home" and „Come away with me", just give me your emails and I'll send you certain songs before I add chapters. I also plan ahead for some certain music from „Chocolat" soundtrack itself. If anything else, I'll write it at the end of previous chapter. NOTE: it is very importaint for you to hear the songs or pieces.
Thirdly, the pace of uploading this story won't be so precise. It is because of the way I write it. It won't be as easy as „Confusing what is real" because I simply looked up at manga or anime and turn it all from drawing, to writing. Here, however, characters will be with a little more detail (the main ones with a lot of detail) which will take time, so gomenasai in advance.
Hope you will enjoy this one as much as the previous one.
Lady of The Dark Sky
The New Wind
Tsunade was sitting in her office, her table all covered with the mountain of papers, scrolls and books. She sat motionless, her head leaned on her palm…only her eyebrow twitching. Shizune smiled to her continuously, her smile reminding more of a grimace, which in addition was tense and nervous.
"This is nothing, I assure you, Tsunade-sama" Shizune bowed to her mistress, the Hokage of Konoha. Tsunade sighed and a vein popped out in her left temple.
"How on Earth do you imagine I can read this in one SINGLE DAY?!!!" Tsunade showed to the pile of documentary books in the corner of her office room. Shizune giggled nervously. Oh dear, I thought I should've told her this sooner.
It was another annual report to the elder advisors…and Tsunade hated it the most of all in her Hokage job. Not only because it was boring, but also because the elders still obviously didn't recognize her as a true Hokage…even though it has already been three years since she had become one. In other words, it was a matter or principle.
"Well…I…um…" Shizune stuttered, but Tsunade stopped her with another question.
"How about you tell me something more interesting than this? So I could cool down a little and then sit onto this" Tsunade didn't really ask – she ordered.
"Well, um…oh here it is" Shizune pulled out a single scroll out of many she was carrying in her scroll bag and handed it to Tsunade. The Hokage read it carefully.
"Hn. I see" she raised a now serious look to Shizune "new arrival. This is ought to be interesting. And it's today"
"Yes, mistress. Do you want me to wait at the gate?"
"No, that won't be necessary. I remember ordering those two at the gate to make a safe arrival to here" Tsunade stood up and walked to the window, overlooking the rock where the faces of previous Hokages and her own were carved "just make sure you be here. I'll have you as an escort to the living place"
"Yes, mistress" Shizune bowed again.
Tsunade stood immobile for a while, thinking to herself. This new arrival…a wanderer. Wonder how it's going to be like…to meet somebody like that…Suddenly, she was woken up from her thoughts by an unexpected wind, which came along with golden leaves of early autumn and blew away papers from Tsunade's desk. The blonde woman looked to the flying papers for a while. This is unusual. This wind…it came from the West…it never blows in this part of the country…this sure indicates some changes.
Three shinobi were rushing through the golden woods, talking among themselves.
"I don't get it, why does this mission have to take place so early in the morning?" the blonde-haired shinobi, with orange and black outfit and deep blue eyes yawned as he flew through the air.
"It's not that early, Naruto" the other one, with black hair and eyes, extremely pale skin and black outfit, which didn't hide his developed belly, said with emotionless voice and a smile…which was slightly fake "it's ten in the morning"
"Give it up, Sai" the third one said with commanding voice "the sky will crumble down on us before Naruto will get up easily in the morning"
"Very funny, Sasuke" the blonde-haired boy mocked his friend, who was rushing ahead of the two. The shinobi named Sasuke had raven hair and pitch black eyes, also pale complexion, but it had at least some prove that he spent days in outside. His outfit consisted of white shirt, which opened his developed chest and dark blue pants, tied with violet rope. On his back, Sasuke was carrying a long sword, placed inside the sheath.
"Indeed it is" Sasuke said sarcastically.
"No, it's not! I didn't even have time to eat breakfast" Naruto said it not without a pity, recalling the delicious taste of ramen.
"Well then, let's hurry up, before you collapsed from hunger"
"How far are we?" Sai asked.
"Not far. Another fifteen minutes and we should be there"
"Correct me" Naruto interfered "we gotta capture some idiot, who has stolen some kind of important documents from that damsel in distress we saw at Tsunade-baa-chan's office, right?"
"Right. And retrieve the documents of course. But, Naruto" Sasuke slowed down and now he was going foot by foot with the blonde-haired shinobi "since I'm the leader of this assignment, I'll say this once: do as I say. Got that?"
"Right, got it" Naruto agreed, not without displease. Boss-wannabe. He thought to himself.
The three rushed ahead, with Sasuke in front. Suddenly, something caught the leader shinobi's attention: a slight change in the wind. Just what is this? A western wind? I haven't felt this since my parents died…this sure promises some changes. What on Earth will it be this time?
Kotetsu and Izumo were sitting behind the reception desk at the main entrance to the Konoha village…and they were bored to death. Kotetsu, the guy with spiky hair and bandage on his nose, yawned.
"This is getting impossible. Why the heck it is we who always get to sit here?"
"Maybe because we always happen to be in wrong place at wrong time and Tsunade-sama would always pick us?" Izumo guessed, playing with two pens.
"Yeah, you're probably right" Kotetsu agreed and continued his swinging on a chair. Suddenly, both shinobi were woken up from their slumber, because a strong wind blew right to them, carrying golden leaves.
"That's strange" Izumo said, looking to the west "this wind isn't usual, is it?"
"Yeah, you're right" Kotetsu suddenly tensed, as if he heard something "hey, Izumo, I think I hear footsteps"
"Yeah, you're right. Maybe that's a new arrival Tsunade-sama mentioned before"
"Should be it. I wonder what the person will be like"
The men listened to footsteps behind the gate getting closer, until a person they were waiting for came from behind the gatewall and stopped right in front of them along with the wind. It was a young woman, wearing a bright red cloak and carrying an old luggage, bag and a backpack. She had unusual pink hair and bright green eyes, which pierced everything through.
"Hello" she smiled to the two shinobi, who were staring at her with a surprise "I'm new arrival here. Your Hokage-sama gave me a permission to live here. She told me that somebody will be here to take me to her office"
This young woman had a light and free voice, which reminded a little of a sound of music itself…music, coming from distant lands. She herself wasn't the usual type and soon everybody will know about it.
"Right" Izumo coughed out the voice, which was stuck for some reason "yes, Hokage-sama mentioned you" the shinobi took one of pens he was playing with few minutes ago "could you please tell me your name? We need to sign it here"
"Haruno Sakura" the young woman said with a soft smile. This looks like a nice village.
"The new arrival is here" Shizune said, looking through Hokage's office's window down to the street.
"How does it look like?"
"Well, it's a young woman…different is how I would describe her"
"I see. Well, we won't know how different until we meet her" Tsunade sighed. That wind, unusual stranger…might as well I start winning the lottery. This does indicate changes for Konoha. Heck, as if it isn't enough already.
Since three years ago, when Tsunade became Hokage, many things happened. To start with, the incident with Uchiha Sasuke. He left the village in order to train under Orochimaru, the former comrade of Tsunade herself and the killer or Third Hokage. Orochimaru ended up being killed by Sasuke, who formed a new team, called Hebi, and continued pursuing his brother, Uchiha Itachi, whom he wanted to kill more than anything for slaying an entire clan. Turned out it wasn't originally Itachi who did it, but the leader of Akatsuki, another danger, which continued to threaten the Konoha and other villages.
Right now, with a help of Naruto, we have Sasuke back and working under us. However, who knows what he might come up with. I wouldn't be surprised if he'd just disappear one day and we hear of him being responsible for killing half of the Akatsuki members. Oh well, not that it matters now. This girl…I think I'll have an eye on her for quite a while, if she stays long enough. After all, she could be a spy for Akatsuki or other villages. Hn, maybe I shouldn't have let her live here in the first place. Oh well, too late for that now.
Tsunade woke up from her thoughts when she heard a knock on the door.
"Come in" she said. The door opened and a young woman with red cloak entered the office, Izumo carrying her luggage and bag behind.
"Hokage-sama" the shinobi said as he put down the tote "this is Haruno Sakura, the new arrival" he introduced Sakura to Tsunade and the young woman bowed.
"Pleased to meet you, Hokage-sama"
"Yes, welcome to our village" she showed Izumo to leave. When the shinobi left, Tsunade continued her conversation with Sakura.
"Since you're going to live here, I'd like to ask you a few questions"
"Yes, of course" Sakura bowed again.
"I've read your letter, but still, I want to hear it from you where have you lived before?"
"Well, um…let me see" Sakura frowned her forehead a little and then answered "I lived in the Village, Hidden in the Sound for a while. After that, the Village, Hidden in the Sand, after that the Europe…and after that, the Village, Hidden in the Rain"
"I see. That's pretty impressive for only eighteen years of life" Tsunade leaned back in her chair and locked her fingers in front "I'll give you an advice, concerning your past: do not go around, bragging about connections with Sound and Rain villages. They do not have a good reputation around.
"I understand" Sakura nodded.
"I also heard that you are a fine medical ninja. I'm sure we will have some use of those abilities"
"I will do my best, Hokage-sama" Sakura bowed again "I also wanted to ask about my living place"
"Yes" Tsunade showed to the woman, standing behind her "this is Shizune, my most trusted companion. She will be escorting you to your new home. I also read your request for that matter and I've chosen the most suitable place"
"I see" Sakura smiled politely to Shizune "thank you for taking the trouble"
"Well then, I suppose there's nothing left for us to discuss for now. If you may Shiz-"
"Hey, Tsunade-baa-chan!" a voice came from the door as they banged open. Sakura whirled around on her heel and saw a blonde-haired, smiling shinobi, followed by another one, with irritatingly fake smile.
"Naruto!" Tsunade gave him an angry look "I thought I told you to stop calling me like that!"
"Well, yeah, but-" Naruto stuck in the middle of the sentence, as he noticed Sakura. His mouth fell open as he overlooked her up and down.
"You got to be kidding me" he said, still staring at the kunoichi. Sakura crossed arms on chest and one of her eyebrows shot up.
"What's your problem?" she asked, her tone and look turning into dangerous ones.
"No problem anymore. Seeing a babe like you…no one would have any problems left in the world" Sakura's eyes widened, since the thing Naruto said didn't reach her mind at first.
"What was that?" she asked.
"Naruto, you're getting into trouble with hags again" Sai warned his comrade, fake-smiling to Sakura…which annoyed the kunoichi even more. Don't tell me they're ninja for real. I've seen much during my life…but this? Did they get literal brainwash when they were born or what?
"Both of you are getting into trouble, talking like that in front of your Hokage!" Tsunade shouted on them "where's Uchiha?"
"Here, Tsunade-sama" a voice flew from behind the Hokage. Sakura looked that way and saw another shinobi…it took one single glance and she already noticed that he was somehow diferent from the rest. Who is that guy? He seems…different. Although, from the amount of chakra, radiating from him, I could say that he's dangerous. Still…his eyes are…lonely. Sakura watched the shinobi, who was sitting on the window sill and…looking back at her. However, it only lasted for a second.
"What is going on?" he asked with mid-low, a little throaty voice.
"Nothing really, Sasuke" Sai smiled to him "it's just Naruto messing with hags again"
"Why in the world are you calling this chick a hag?!" Naruto shouted on his comrade. Sakura turned to the two and was about to say something, but didn't make it.
Sakura suddenly felt other person appear behind her. The kunoichi also felt that this person was radiating not only strong chakra, but also a heat…heat, which made Sakura feel warm from inside after many years of inner winter and loneliness. Another thing Sakura saw was Sasuke's recomposed shoulders. There were two snakes, coming from shinobi's shoulders and wrapping around Naruto and Sai's mouths. Is this training of Konoha? No, it's definitely Sound's. Where did he get this power? If he was training at the Sound, I'm sure to have heard of him…I think I need to keep my eyes open for this guy. Those snakes…they look awfully like Orochimaru's, but…this guy…he seems nothing like that… Sasuke was standing back to back with Sakura, his eyes turned from black to red.
"Sai, stop reading that bullshit about nicknames and think before you say something" after saying that, Sasuke released his comrade from snake trap "Naruto, get a life and some manners along with it. You'll do a favor for entire humanity" he also released the blonde-haired shinobi from traps. Then Sasuke's hand slid into his pocket and took out two scrolls. He tossed them to Tsunade.
"These are the documents you requested. Men that you ordered to capture are already in slammers"
"Good work as usual, Uchiha" Tsunade nodded, feeling relieved that at least one person in the team has a sane mind.
"Forgive them" Sasuke now looked at Sakura from behind and she looked back at him "I sometimes think that maybe they had received a literal brain wash when they were born"
"Hey, what's that suppose to mean?!!" Naruto yelled. Sasuke sighed, closing his eyes, which turned back to normal.
"That's ok" Sakura said, smiling slightly to the man behind her "I figured that much" Sasuke hn-ed, but also smirked to her words. Catching up already? Interesting.
"Well, if you're done talking" Tsunade interfered "I'd like you, Uchiha, to go on a single-man mission right now" she tossed him another scroll "it's an A-ranked mission. Don't screw up"
"Right" Sasuke walked towards the door and left without saying another word.
"How come he always gets such important missions?!" Naruto stormed at Tsunade.
"Because you only joined the Jounin this year and Sasuke is already on his way to ANBU" Tsunade simply answered "now then, Shizune, please escort Sakura to her new home"
"Thank you, Hokage-sama" Sakura bowed before gathering her stuff and following Shizune.
"Who was that anyway?" Naruto asked when the two kunoichi left.
"New arrival. Haruno Sakura to be more precise" Tsunade answered "she will be living in Konoha for some time"
"She's a wanderer, isn't she?" Sai said with his emotionless voice.
"Wandered? What the heck is that?" Naruto asked, sounding clueless.
"They are the type of ninja, who move from one place to another, never really settling down. They are an extinct type of ninja though" Tsunade's eyes were already gazing into her own thoughts "it is really unexpected for someone like that to show up around here"
"You mean you don't trust her?" Sai said again.
"Yes, not completely. I'd like you two to keep an eye on her. I'll ask the same to Uchiha when he gets back"
"Well that will be easy" Naruto locked his arms behind his head "she seems to be quite an inviting person to watch"
"Not exactly" Tsunade corrected "she's a medical ninja, with a possible strength, which is equal to my own. You know what would happen if I caught you peeping somewhere" Tsunade cracked her knuckles, which made Naruto's spine ripple.
"Y-yes, Tsunade…-sama" Naruto bowed to her "a-any possible missions now?"
"No. For now, I'd like you to keep an eye on Sakura. I'll have you two on reserve"
Sasuke was rushing though the forest again, hopping from one branch to another. This woman…she seems a little suspicious to me. A wanderer, by the looks of her. I should watch her for a while. Who knows, maybe she's working for somebody. Then again…what am I thinking? Maybe she's just different…heck, I didn't get her name. Maybe then I could ask Suigetsu to check on her…oh well, so much of that for now. I'll do it sooner or later. If she has any relation with Akatsuki, I can never be too careful. Who knows, maybe I'll even have some use of her.
Sakura and Shizune were walking for almost fifteen minutes now and didn't stop talking. Sakura wanted to know much about how people are like here or where to get things needed for everyday life. But the kunoichi couldn't help but notice that although everyone around were busy, they'd always follow her with a strange look. Sakura felt somewhat uncomforted about that, but kept telling to herself that this wasn't the first time anyway and everything's going to be ok.
"Sakura-san" Shizune smiled to the kunoichi "relax a little. They just aren't used to new people coming to live at Konoha. I mean it's ok for some by-passers to go around, but you…well, I think you know what I mean"
"Yes, I do know what you mean" Sakura smiled "still, I don't think I'll every get used to people looking at me with suspicion" for a slight moment Sakura's smile faded and her eyes gazed into world, impossible for others to see. However, she was quite quickly woken up by Shizune's calm and cheerful voice.
"Well, here we are" the black haired kunoichi showed to the house in front of which the two had stopped. It was a small, two storey house, with yellow bricks and big showcase window on the right of the first floor. Little steps led to the wooden door with also yellow glass row in the middle of them.
"Looks cozy" Sakura smiled to the building. New home, huh? Might be the best I ever had yet.
"I thought you might want to live in more lively part of the town, so this house was just in perfect place" Shizune handed a key to Sakura.
"Thank you, Shizune-san" the pink-haired kunoichi bowed.
"No problem. If anything, just find me, don't be shy"
"Alright. I'll remember that" Sakura promised and waved goodbye to Shizune. She then turned back to the house and by putting her bag down onto luggage, she rammed her fists into hips. Cozy or not, this promises a lot of cleaning anyway. I have to make it look good if I want to have at least some profit. Heh, this village sure promises some interesting days ahead. A soft wind, carrying golden leaves, blew right past Sakura, as she unlocked the door to her new home…
A/N: ok, so, here's the info for the following chapter: I need you people to listen to the piece from "Chocolat" OST. The piece is called "Minor swing" by Rachel Portman. I repeat, if you don't have the means of downloading, just let me know your emails, I'll send it to you.
By the way, since you've read the first chapter, do you think it's worth continuing?