Ch 6: Out and About
The Fifth Hokage walked to the room Naruto was currently in, it was five in the morning, the first rays of the suns light was starting to show over the horizon. Tsunade walked in quietly in case he was asleep, she was surprised to see him awake and staring out the window. "Naruto?" he slowly looked over as the woman closed the door behind her.
"Grandma Tsunade…" his tone held tiredness.
The first female Hokage grabbed the clipboard from the end of his bed and scanned over his health report. "You've healed well. You can leave in a few hours."
"He's slowly coming around, though still unconscious." The older blonde answered. "Until I can get a report from him I'll ask you for details. Who were the ones who stole the scroll?"
"Just rouge ninja. We came close to finding out if they were working from someone higher up, but the enemy about to spill the info was killed by one of his partners."
"It's that way in the shinobi world, sometimes you have to kill your friends and partners to keep certain information in order to protect it from enemies."
"I understand that, but he killed him with hate. Hate I have seen from many people before. It was almost like looking in the mirror of my memories. Like the two were forced to work together and not in it because of friendship. The look reminded me of Sasuke…"
"So is there any valuable information you have gathered?"
The Kyuubi vessel shook his head, "No… nothing. Sorry."
"Well this leaves us in the dark." Tsunade looked at the tired boy. "Get some rest Naruto. So you can leave when you wake up. Would you like someone to escort you?"
"I'll be fine."
'I'll send someone anyway, so he has someone to hang out with.' She decided before exiting the door, leaving Naruto to himself as he lay back down – still thinking of ways to keep his new promise to Sakura.
It was early morning, at least nine o'clock and Hinata was walking down the street, she had a few things to do today. But she was starting to wonder why the Hokage requested her. She walked to the Hokage tower with a constant pace. When she knocked, she was greeted with a, "Come in."
Hinata entered and discovered the Hokage was speaking to someone concealed in a cloak. "I will consider your request, but you should continue your mission, once you've rested a day or two. Inform me immediately when you come across something valuable, but I can't guarantee that your request will be approved. You're dismissed."
The cloaked figure bowed, "Thank you, Lady Tsunade." Hinata then realized the figure was a young female by the sound of the voice. As the figure stood upright and proceeded toward the door, the Hyuuga could see two pupil-less green eyes, just a little darker than Sakura's. Hinata blinked as the figure stopped for a brief moment and bowed. "Lady Hyuuga." Then left the room completely.
'Who is that? How does she know me? What's going on?' Hinata pushed that aside, she was here for a reason. "You wished to see me, Lady Hokage." The Hyuuga heiress closed the door behind her and made her way to the desk and bowed her head in respect.
"I did," the woman looked at her and continued. "I would like you to pick Naruto up from the hospital. He's ready to leave."
Hinata tried to suppress a deep blush, which caused Tsunade to smirk inwardly. 'Bingo!'
"L-Lady Tsunade, m-m-may I as-ask why you wish f-for me to pick h-him up?"
"He just finished an A rank mission, I think he deserves to spend some time with a friend or two. Don't you?"
"Y-Yes, Lady Hokage."
"Good, besides you are the only one available. The others are on missions and Sakura is working at the hospital. I would also like Sasuke to accompany you."
'I don't even know him.' Hinata thought.
"You will have to go and get him; he should be at the training grounds. And give him this." Tsunade handed her a scroll. "So he knows it's an order. He won't be happy."
"Yes, Lady Tsunade." The heiress bowed before exiting and the blonde went back to paper work.
Hinata walked toward the training grounds in search of Sasuke. When she arrived she could hear the sounds of something smacking wood and went to investigate and discovered it to be the one she was seeking. Just as she arrived at the clearing, she seen him activate a jutsu she had seen once, blue lightning seeming to form in his hand. 'He tried to use that on Naruto…' she thought back to the day she helped capture him. An explosion of splintered wood made her stare in awe of this power.
"Is there a reason you're standing there watching me?" Sasuke asked with a somewhat annoyed tone as he walked toward her with his hands in his pockets, only sparing her a glance as he did so.
"Y-Yes. The Hokage w-wan-ted me to give th-this to-to you." Sasuke stopped as he walked passed her; he just turned his head slightly so he could see her hold out a scroll.
Quickly, he snatched the document out of her hands, causing her to pull back – startled. The Uchiha rolled it open and read its contents with a scowl on his face and crumpled it up when he was done. 'Who does she think she is?! Giving me orders! I will not become some subordinate to this village.'
The boy looked at her, his scowl still present; he seemed to glare at her. She took a step back in fear. He looked around cautiously. 'Someone else is here.' Just then he felt the presence leave quickly. "Hn." He walked away.
'I may not have known him before he left, but what I do know is that this is a different Sasuke. Not the one from Naruto and Sakura's team."
Before she could go on with her thoughts, Sasuke growled. "Are you coming or what Hyuuga?"
The said girl followed a few yards behind him, she was starting to annoy him like Sakura, and he didn't even know her. He turned back though he kept walking, "Do you think I'm going to kill you?" he inquired without emotion. "Are you afraid of me?"
She looked down as she picked up her pace and fell in step with him as she was to his right. Suddenly Hinata felt so small, so inferior compared to him. 'He was always the best in the academy. But now he's stronger, so much stronger. Perhaps stronger than Neji. I'm even in his shadow.' The dark haired girl felt just as she was when she was in the Chunin Exams. 'Everyone's come a long way.' Without her realizing it, they arrived at the hospital. Sasuke led the way to Naruto's room and Hinata trailed behind him, but not to close and not too far.
When they arrived, Sasuke opened the door without manners only to find the blonde teen dressing himself, putting on his pants. Hinata instantly squeaked as she flushed. Naruto looked up when he heard the door open and a squeak only to find a beet red Hyuuga and a scowling Uchiha. "Don't you know how to knock, Sasuke?" Naruto growled as Sasuke glared at his best friend – both seemingly forgetting Hinata was even present.
"Hn. Idiot." Sasuke scoffed. "If you went into another room we won't need to." Sasuke blinked, once he realized he said 'we' and looked over to see the crimson dark haired Hyuuga female.
Before Hinata or Naruto could exchange a word, she fainted, falling to the floor. Though Naruto had caught her before she could get hurt.
'I forgot she was here.' Sasuke thought as he looked down at the unconscious female and blonde, who shouted at him.
"Good Lord Sasuke! Did you even remember she was with you? If you had knocked this wouldn't have happened!"
"If you had changed in another room she wouldn't have fainted, idiot." Sasuke growled.
"Everyone else seems to have manners, except for you. Geeze Sasuke, a little privacy would be nice." Naruto picked up Hinata and carried her to the bed. "You almost killed her."
"Tch, whatever." Sasuke crossed his arms and looked away. "Like I care."
Naruto turned sharply, anger emitting from his blue eyes, which were threatening to change. "Of course, it's always about yourself… or your clan…" his voice was dripping with venom. Sasuke turned his head back and narrowed his eyes at the blonde. His hands now to his side and fists clenched. "I have nothing against your clan, Sasuke." Naruto admitted. "But perhaps you should think about someone other than yourself. Like you ever would." The atmosphere became tense and Naruto continued to change. "Why are you two here anyway?"
"Tsunade wanted us to 'hang out'. I had better things to do than hang out with someone like you."
After a few moments Naruto was finished then he proceeded to try and wake up Hinata. He tapped her cheek softly. "Hinata."
"Hinata. Wake up."
She could feel something warm continue to tap her cheek.
"C'mon Hinata, wake up."
She opened her eyes. At first it was fuzzy then everything came into focus. Her body tensed when she realized Naruto was hovering over her and Sasuke was behind him, looking at her over his shoulder, his impassive features there. "Glad you're awake." Naruto grinned sheepishly. Hinata blushed a little. "Geeze Hinata, I don't know why you turned red every time I see you. Is there something you're not telling me?" he asked stupidly.
Sasuke shook his head. 'Naruto you really are stupid. You can't even tell that she's blushing because of how close you are to her.'
"Uh… Hinata, you're turning even redder. Do I have something on my face?" then he turned to his best friend. "Sasuke! Something's wrong with Hinata!"
"Perhaps moving a few feet way would be helpful, idiot." Sasuke suggested and Naruto nodded doing as he said. Hinata finally came around, once Naruto backed away.
"Now that you're awake, let's go get some ramen!" the blonde grinned again. Hinata could only nod and Sasuke didn't gesture anything, though he was very annoyed he had to 'hang out'.
The party of three made their way out of the room; Naruto was walking beside Hinata, constantly talking, nothing new there. Sasuke paced slowly behind them, hand in his pockets. "Hey Sakura!" the loudmouth shouted as the medic walked up to greet them in her white coat.
"Shut up! Keep it down! Now many times do I have to tell you you're in a hospital?" she scolded quietly as she stopped in front of them. Then she smiled, "Hey Hinata, hey Sasuke."
"Good morning Sakura." Hinata greeted kindly.
"What are you two doing here? Picking up Naruto together?" Sakura raised a brow. It wasn't normal for Sasuke to be with a Hyuuga, or with people for that matter.
"Grandma Tsunade told Hinata and Sasuke to come and get me so we could hang out." Naruto explained.
The pink haired kunoichi giggled, "Let me guess, a trip to the ramen stand?"
"How'd you know?" Naruto asked as if it was the hardest thing in the world to figure out. The other three sweat-dropped.
"Where else do you eat?" Sakura asked with her tone full of sarcasm.
"Well you guys sho-" the four heard what sounded like metal crash against a wall a few rooms away.
"Sir you're not allowed to leave!" a female voice tried to reason with someone.
"What? You expect to keep me in here for over three weeks I don't think so!" the door opened.
"You can come with me if you like. I wouldn't mind the company." A man backed out of the door, Sakura sighed in annoyance. His scruffy features had made him well known throughout the hospital.
"Harassing my nurses again?" she asked. He stopped dead in his tracks when he recognized the voice in front of him, and this time she was in the company of three others.
The man smirked in a seductive way. "Maybe, but if there's anyone I'm trying to win over it's you, Dr. Cherry Blossom."
Naruto glared at the man, Hinata's mouth was hanging open with the words he said, and Sasuke was staring at this man as if he had grown another head, but it quickly turned into a glare – one that no one could see.
"Are you attempting to leave again? You know what happened the last time." Sakura had her arms crossed, she controlled the urge to tap her foot.
"That was a lucky punch; I know you wouldn't make me bedridden for another three weeks."
"Do you want to beat on that?"
"If I win I get a kiss." The other three twitched, Sasuke's gone unnoticed.
"You won't win, and I wouldn't give you one anyway."
"Would you give that, blonde brat one?" he growled as he looked passed her. "Or that dark haired pretty boy with the scowl on his face? You know they say losers wear a frown." Sasuke glared daggers at the guy, Naruto clenched his fists. Then the guy noticed Hinata. "She's pretty hot too, though not as much as you." He smirked at the Hyuuga.
"Don't you dare talk about Hinata like that, or Sakura!!" Naruto demanded.
"Hinata, huh? She looks like she would converse more friendly words than Sakura."
"You can talk about whatever you want about me, but leave everyone else out of it." Sakura interrupted. "I'm the one who kept you here longer that necessary."
"Only because you want to get to know me and play hard to get."
"As if," Sakura puffed blowing a strand of stray hair out of her face – which refused to move. The man only grinned and he reached forward.
"I'll move that for you…" the medic grabbed his wrist.
"I got it," she said in annoyance. "You can try every trick in the book, but it won't work on me." She released his hand which dropped to his side. "Get back in there before I have to drag you."
"Such threats," he shook his head. "Ladies shouldn't be like that… but I must say it looks good on you."
"Room. Now." The medic kunoichi growled.
"Sorry, I've got places to go, ladies to see." He pushed passed her. "And you are welcome to come, the more the merrier." He looked back with a sly smile.
Sakura sighed as he placed a finger on his forehead with a quick green glow. It all happened so fast he was out before you could blink. "Nurse!" Sakura called as the man fell into a state of unconsciousness – who she decided to catch. Three nurses came up and Sakura told them to place him back in his room.
"How long did you put up with that guy?" Naruto asked, rubbing the back of his head.
"A little over three weeks."
"How did you not kill him? I've experienced your temper firsthand."
"If the guy would stop trying to leave earlier than he's supposed to he could be gone, but he's way too stubborn." Sakura was leading the group to the hospital entrance, Sasuke trailing behind.
"Um… Sakura… w-was that t-the guy you t-told us g-girls about?" Hinata asked.
"That's him. The womanizer. I had to paralyze him for three weeks so he would stay put, but as I said, he's too stubborn. He harasses my nurses any male nurses he attacks. I think I should just put him in a coma until he's ready to leave. But I could get in trouble if his village finds out I mistreated their lord and he has left me no choice on more than one occasion." As they reached the front desk Sakura asked if she had any new patients.
"No, not right now." The receptionist said.
"Fine. I'm going to take a half hour lunch." Sakura walked out once she received a nod and walked with her friends.
"Lunch? Already?" Naruto asked.
"Yeah. I've been here since midnight. I haven't had anytime to eat and I'm starving." Sakura answered as they walked their way to Ichiraku.
"That's already been nine hours how much longer is your shift?" Naruto inquired, he and the others were listening.
"I don't know," Sakura then yawned, "I figure 'til about nine."
"You'll have worked a twenty-one hour shift that's almost a day without rest!" The blonde Kyuubi shouted.
"Yeah. But what am I going to do? The hospital is a little short handed and being the top medic practically means I have to live there. If it slows down I'll take a nap."
"Yeah, in my office." They arrived at Ichiraku shortly after.
"Sakura, can't you request two or three days off?" Naruto asked as they sat down. Naruto sat between Hinata and Sakura, who sat beside Sasuke making Sasuke and Hinata on the outside.
The pink haired teen shook her head, "Not even if I wanted too."
Teuchi greeted them and looked them over, "The Hokage is working you hard, eh Sakura? How many hours per shift?"
"Yeah. About twenty-one to twenty-four for about eight days now."
The owner whistled, "I don't know how you do it. I know I wouldn't be able to."
Once all of them placed their orders, Naruto continued, "I'm gonna talk to Grandma Tsunade."
"It's fine, Naruto." Sakura waved him off. "Only a couple more days and I'll have a couple days off."
"How long until you get a break?" Naruto questioned, more like demanding.
"Five more…" she said as if it was casual.
"Five!? You're already the walking dead, Sakura. How can you go on that much longer?" The blonde went ballistic.
"Um… Sakura… I-I agree with Naruto. You n-n-need to rest." Hinata spoke up.
"I knew what I was getting into when I became a medic-nin. I decided it was something I wanted to do and I enjoy it. Besides I don't get enough money on missions, I haven't been on many."
Their meal came shortly after. "Is everything going well with you Sasuke?" Sakura asked, because he had said so little since she was with them.
"Hn." He answered, slurping up some noodles.
Sighing, the female of Team Seven continued with her meal. Then the sound of a beeper went off, distracting the others. Sakura pulled it up so she could read it. She let out a small barely audible groan. "Sorry to eat and run I have to go! See you later, guys!" with that she disappeared. Naruto looked at her bowl.
"She wasn't even with us for ten minutes and only took two bites, she's working too hard." He said. The dark haired female nodded.
"S-She needs a-a break."
"What do you think Sasuke?" Naruto asked.
"Hn." He carried on. His best friend sighed and shook his head sadly.
"Why don't you care? Why can't you care?" Sasuke heard him mumble under his breath, but pretended not to. He was currently and almost always in thought, of how those he knew had changed or haven't and he was starting to see change in those of his teammates. He spared a glance at Naruto, who was now conversing with Hinata – who was blushing, as usual – his trademark smile on his face, oblivious to Hinata's red face. He would occasionally ask her if she was ok.
'Hn. Idiot.' The Uchiha thought, shaking his head and finishing his ramen.
Done. I think this chapter turned out alright, I used an idea from a review. It's a little different then I'm sure b4ngdg33k was thinking. Anyway, here's a new chapter that has come and gone, though I'm not sure what I'll do for the next one, reviews and criticism is and are welcome and appreciated. 'Til next time…