Disclaimer: I don't own Naruto. I love it like crazy at the moment. So far, this is the first manga/anime I've ever felt so much love to…I haven't felt like this in a couple of years…
Author's Note: I know to those who have been reading my other fics, will probably get angry because I went and published this before I updated any of my other stuff but I just had to get this out of my system. I need to get it out! The idea popped and strolled into my head so suddenly and I itched to write it so here it is.
Please understand that this fic is slightly based on a book I read. There will be major differences but there are some similarities as well…If any of ya'll are good, try and guess which book I'm talking about.
Pairings: Sasuke and Female Naruto.
Rating: M, I guess. I want to write some lemons. They'll come in the near future…Hopefully.
This is I guess a slight AU fic. Basically, everyone is still in the Naruto shinobi fantasy world. It's just that Naruto's mother, Kushina, doesn't die and that Naruto is actually a girl. Her sick mother dresses her up like a boy in an attempt to keep the memory of Minato, her deceased husband, alive…
I looked up into the sky. It was a turquoise blue and there were lovely fluffy looking clouds in it, all floating in bliss. I half wished I could be a cloud at that very moment. They were so free. I'd give anything for freedom.
'But you're not a prisoner,' argued a voice in my head.
'But what?,' my other self questioned me angrily. It was like that part of me sensed what my other half was about to say.
'What's wrong with mother?' the voice rang in my ears. It started to sound hostile.
'She's what? She's what, you bloody fool!?'
I winced at the anger my other self radiated from the words it spoke with such vehemence. My other self was always the defensive, hostile, spirited person I wasn't.
'Listen, you little fool! Your mother is not mad. You're the one who is mad for even thinking that! She is your mother, for god's sake! You're being nothing but an ungrateful, selfish little hog and you know it! Hasn't she taken care of you all these years? Hadn't she cooked and cleaned for you? Hadn't she bled for you? Even bloody well as given you love! Is that not enough? What more do you want?'
The question rang in my ears…What more did I want? Well, I wanted to be happy. I wanted to be my real self and to stop pretending. I wanted to be completely free of the fabricated lies surrounding the very things that was denied me the minute she shackled me to the horrible lies she created in order for her happiness. Everything was for her…She was the only person I hated and loved in this world. She was my mother.
"Naruto!" a voice called out to me lovingly.
I snapped out of my thoughts immediately. Quickly, I got up and raced towards the direction of the voice.
Mother was waving at me in the front of our house. I could see she had a smile on her pretty face. My heart felt like exploding with all the guilt that was consuming me at that very moment. Again and again, I scolded myself for ever having such horrible thoughts about my own mother.
Mother was not mad! Mother didn't keep me prisoner! Mother isn't selfish and I didn't hate her! I love her…With every inch of my heart…
"My Naruto," she said softly as I got within arms length to her. She reached out and held me with her warm hands. I could never hate her when she was like this. No! I could never hate her at all.
"My handsome boy, what have you been up to?" she asked, her eyes crinkled warmly at me.
At the very sight of her eyes looking warmly into mine; I felt my heart melted. Every single ill feeling or thought I had for her were washed away. It was as if, it had never been there in the first place. In fact, that was what I planned to do. I'll make it like as if I never thought anything of the sort about mother; ever!
I leaned in and place a kiss on her cheek.
"I was just cloud watching…," I said.
Mother looked back and frowned at me. My heart lurched in my throat. Had I done something to offend her again? I could tell when my face lit up in concern.
I've always hated it when mother got upset with me. She didn't hurt me or anything but she'd make me feel like I've just gone out and murdered all the citizens of Konoha if I so much as make her upset. The guilt I usually felt after messing up was, in my opinion, far worse than any beating. I felt like dying every time she gave me "the look". It was when her eyes would go all sad and in them was a clear other feeling than sadness; disappointment.
"Mother, what's wrong? Did I-," I quickly asked in concern but she cut me off.
"Naruto, cloud watching is a bad habit," she told me, sternly.
"Only lazy people do it and I don't want you to be lazy as well. You can enjoy it once in a while but I don't ever want you to do it constantly, you hear?"
I nodded immediately. It was like a reflex action. I did automatically. I was like a trained dog responding to its master. To me, her word was law.
"Good," she said in a satisfied nod.
As quickly as it had appeared her stern expression completely dissolved as it was replaced by a happy smile. I almost breathed a sigh of relief. Anything to make her happy…
"I was thinking of going down to the bookstore so we can get you more for your studies," Mother said happily. Her sweet voice was nearly singing. I could tell she was really delighted.
"You need to get more books so you can become smart like your father was…," her voice trailed off and she had a far away sad eyed look. It was like she was strolling down memory lane in which there was a time of her and father holding hands and falling in love. She always got like that whenever father was mentioned. I've never had the pleasure to meet my father as he died when I was born but mother always spoke highly of him. She always mentioned what a great shinobi he was and how much of a hero he had been to Konoha. When she spoke of him, I'd eagerly listen to every word she said. I was of course very curious about the one man I desperately wanted to meet but could never do so. I'd pine for every little bit of information I could get whenever it was about father. My own father who I'd never met…
Form all that I have gathered father was some kind of legendary shinobi in Konoha. Everyone respected him and looked up to him.
Never once did I think of him as anything other than that of goodness. I believed every word mother said. I was her obedient and loyal son. Every word she spoke was law…
The only mystery was that I didn't understand mother sometimes. If father was such a great shinobi then why didn't she turn me into one? She always said that I was destined to be as great as my father but she didn't send me to The Academy where they trained you to become shinobis or kunoichis. It puzzled me to no end. How was I supposed to get "as smart as my father" when I wasn't learning ninjutsu or the other things a shinobi would? How could I become "as strong as my father" when I wasn't trained as a shinobi?
Of course, in all my puzzlement never once did I voice them out to mother. I was her obedient and loyal son. I didn't want to bombard her with my questions and earn her disappointment. Knowing mother, she was bound to get disappointed with me and say things like "I thought you would do as I tell you and not ask stupid questions". I hated it when she did that. And she never failed to do it whenever the need arose.
She took my hand in hers as she walked to the front of our gates. Our garden is really huge though it's quite bare and it really isn't as pretty as other people's gardens.
You'd have to walk quite a way to reach our front gates. But mother and I always did this and it wasn't a chore for us at all.
I walked slowly with her hand clutching onto mine. Suddenly, I felt like a child again, back then when I was little I'd hold hands with her and walk with her to the ramen stall. Then, I'd eagerly ask her if I could have twenty bowls of ramen. She'd laugh at me, pat my head affectionately and then tell me I would never be able to finish twenty bowls of ramen all at once. She told me I'd get a stomach ache that would last for months if I managed to swallow the amount of ramen I asked for.
Thinking of ramen suddenly made my stomach growl. I realized that I hadn't eaten anything since I woke up. I patted my stomach and it made another growl, this time loud enough for mother to hear. Mother raised an eyebrow at me and I blushed.
"Could we have ramen later?," I asked her sheepishly.
Mother giggled and squeezed my hand.
"Sure," she said as she flashed me her dazzling smile, "If I know a growing boy they need to get all the food they could eat, right?"
"Yeah…," I said and looked away shyly. I could get like this with my own mother sometimes. It was probably weird to be shy with your own mother but I couldn't help it. Mother can get to me in a way nobody else can…Then again I didn't really know anybody else besides mother…
We were nearing the front gate and I took a deep breath. This was another thing that I hated. Mother took her hand away from mine. She didn't look at my face and I had the feeling she was avoiding me.
"You know what I have to do, right?" she said softly.
I watched her tensely as she made a few quick hand seals and muttered the words needed to perform the jutsu. This is a ritual for us. Every time we have to go outside, mother does the jutsu on me and we're safe to go.
We waited a second for the effects of the jutsu to take place. Then, I reached a hand to the gate and pushed it open.
We held hands again as we walked down the street.
Passing several shops and houses, I watched mother silently out of the corner of my eye.
Mother is very pretty. She has lovely pale skin her hair is kept long and shiny. Even at forty five she still has a slender figure that could be envied by other women her age. Mother used to be a kunoichi once so that's how I guess she keeps her figure that way.
There had been several times when I'd catch a couple of men leering at her. Mother was always oblivious to this but I certainly wasn't. Usually, I'd feel like attacking the men and scratch their eyeballs out of their sockets just so they wouldn't be able to keep their filthy eyes on her ever again. I was very possessive of mother but so was she to me and my possessive nature was nothing beyond family love. I get very pissed off when I hear these foolish people in the town make stupid comments about me and mother…They'd say things like "incest" and all other kinds of nonsense. People just didn't understand us. But I didn't care about other people at all. Not really at least. The only person that really mattered was mother. She was the one important person in my life.
I walked with her all the time whenever we went out but this time I felt a bit uncomfortable.
I've noticed men looking at mother before but I've never, in my entire life, had anybody leering at me! There were actually people looking at me while we were walking to the bookstore.
I am not, in any means, a vain person. Well…I don't think I am. I'm never the type to look at myself in the mirror every chance I get and I usually don't give a damn about what I wear (mother does tend to scold me on this). Seriously, I don't think I'm at all good looking. Maybe I'm okay as I don't believe I am ugly but I'm quite certain I'm no Brad Pitt.
But then…how come all these girls were looking at me?
Two girls, dressed in skimpy clothes, had watched me with interest. And they were really looking at me. Even after we passed them I could still feel their gaze boring into my back.
I flushed at this. Mother, however, hadn't noticed a thing!
I didn't want to tell her because I didn't think it would be wise to get mother's disproval. She really hates all these skimpy dressed girls nowadays. Sometimes, when she thinks I can't hear her, I catch the words "slut/whore" among her mutterings.
After a couple of minutes and when I was really starting to forget the two girls, we walked pass this dear little café and I saw this girl practically smirking then winking at me! She smirked and then winked! And at me too! I just couldn't believe it.
Mother noticed it this time! I was getting really confused, as I wasn't sure how to react when people looked at me. Rarely does anybody ever look at me.
Maybe I wasn't such a plain looking guy after all…Maybe…Just maybe people thought I was quite appealing perhaps?
Before the thought settled in my head I chased it away in absolute fear! I'm a guy! Why the hell should I care about being good looking and what not? Mother always said that men are not meant to be vain.
Mother 'tsk'ed at the girl in disapproval.
She quickly reared me further away from the girl before I had a chance to do anything to her.
I was sort of thinking that it wouldn't hurt to smile back at her. It was rude to ignore people but I guess mother didn't care about being rude.
"Girls like that aren't worth your time, Naruto," mother began talking. She said it in a hushed voice like as if she didn't want anybody else to hear her.
"They're sleazy and cheap. No honest man would ever go near that sort of female," she continued as she looked into my eyes, "My Naruto…You're a good and honest boy and mark my words, you'll get a good and honest spouse in the future but now is not the time to be thinking of such things. You have to concentrate on your education first. Then, you can move on to such relationships, alright?" I looked back into her eyes and I smiled at her.
"Yeah, I know that, mother," I assured her, "I wouldn't ever want to abandon my education for something like that."
Mother seemed so pleased at my response that she hugged me tightly.
Pulling back, she grinned into my face and I mentally made a victory yell. Score one for making mother happy!
"My good boy!" she cried, "You can have a treat at the bookstore when we get there!"
My face lit up at this. If anything that I loved just as much as I loved ramen it was books.
I was home schooled by mother, of course, but I did love reading. It was one of the joys I had whenever I went into my scary-other-self-mode.
"And ramen too!?" I asked, eagerly.
Mother chuckled at me. She stood on the tips of her toes as she ruffled my golden blond hair.
"And ramen too!" she agreed.
I whooped loudly and punched the air with my fist. Ramen and books! I was literally in heaven.
For the rest of our journey to the bookstore, mother and I were relatively in a good mood. I chatted with her happily and for the most part, managed to ignore most of the girls eyeing me. It was still very unnerving but I didn't want to show them that their stares affected me. I wasn't used to all of this…
Once we reached the bookstore, I hurled myself to the usual book shelves I always went to. The bookstore is called The Scarlet Kanji. It is currently run by the very old, very grey and white Mr.Yamamoto. We visit this place all the time when we need to get something for my studies. It's practically the only bookstore we ever go to.
Mother went to the educational side of the store.
The whole place smelled of paper and ink. I closed my eyes and inhaled deeply. I loved this place as much as I love the Ichiraku ramen stall. I truly felt like I was in my own private island as I looked at the familiar titles of books I had bought and read. I was at my favorite section of the store, the part where all the books were under all my favorite genres; action, adventure, romance, drama and young adult. Fingering some of the books I sighed in content.
If I had the money, I'd grab all the books this store could offer and buy them all without a second thought. That would keep me happy until the day I died, I was sure of it.
I was strolling down the action aisle when I decided I didn't want another action/adventure story. I was, actually, craving for romance.
A loud yell escaped my lips as I jumped over to the romance aisle.
Mr. Yamamoto, the bookstore owner, made a 'shh' sound at me.
I smiled apologetically and my smile brightened when I saw he grinned at me.
Mr. Yamamoto was a good friend of ours. Mother and I were regulars at his bookstore after all. As a result, Mr.Yamamoto always gave us discounts and sometimes even gives the books for free.
He'd wink at me and mother and whisper the words "Let's keep this our little secret, shall we?"
Over the years, I've developed a certain fondness for the old man.
Turning my attention back at the books, I let my eyes travel all over the shelf.
It was a habit of mine, to scan the shelf and find something that grabbed my attention. Then I'd pluck it out of the shelf and read the cover, figure out if it was to my liking and returning it to its place if it wasn't. If I did like it then it would make its way back home with me. My eyes roved over the whole shelf.
I didn't know how long it took me but after some time my eye caught this book.
It was orange, my favorite color, and it was thick too. 'Icha Icha Paradise' it read.
I grabbed it and pulled it out immediately. I turned to its back and felt my heart fell as I read that it was for eighteen year olds and above only. Darn it! And the book had looked quite promising too.
There was in no way could I read an adult novel when I was only sixteen.
Just as I was about to put it back in the shelf a thought struck me.
Without a second thought, I yanked the book back and tore off the label behind it. The one that said "Warning! This book is for 18 only!"
I didn't think anyone would notice anything. Mr.Yamamoto was very old and mother didn't proof read the material I bought.
I made my way to mother.
"Found something you like, honey?" she muttered at me as she trailed her finger on the covers of the books on the shelf.
"Mm-hm!" I replied eagerly.
"Good," she turned to me and handed me a stack of books she'd been carrying.
"Go put these and your book at the counter. I need just one more thing for you and then we can head to the Ichiraku for some ramen."
Clutching at the pile of books I stumbled over to the counter where Mr.Yamamoto was smoking pipe.
"Come to get updated on your studies now have you, Naruto-chan?" he asked kindly.
He pulled the book on top of the pile and scanned the label. After scanning it, he shoved it in a large paper bag.
"Yeah!" I said, and rather angrily added, "And don't call me Naruto-chan, old man! I'm already sixteen!"
Mr.Yamamoto chuckled although I did think the sound he made was more of a choking cough. The man was all old, wrinkled, going blind and probably senile too…Nevertheless; I was still fond of him.
"My, my, is that how old you are now?" he grinned a toothless grin at me.
"I could still remember the day I first met you when you were nothing but a skinny-boned boy of six. Times do pass by so quickly…"
"It sure does…" said mother in agreement.
I looked back at her in surprise and so did Mr.Yamamoto. Neither of us, I think, realized she was there. It wasn't too surprising when I remembered that she used to be a kunoichi after all.
"Kushina-san, lovely to see you again, my dear," Mr.Yamamoto greeted her warmly.
"Likewise, Yamamoto-san," she bowed at him.
"Getting updated, I see," Yamamoto continued, nodding at the pile of books on the counter as he shoved yet another into the paper bag.
"Yes, well, I want my boy to grow up smart," mother informed him. She ruffled my head again as she said this.
I pretended to pull away from her roughly.
"Mother! Please, I'm not a baby any more! I'm sixteen!" I cried out. Both mother and Mr.Yamamoto laughed at me.
"You're right! You're not a baby any more but you aren't quite a man yet either!"
I pouted at this but inside I was holding my breath and crossing my fingers.
Please, dear god, don't let either of them find out about the book, I silently begged.
Mr.Yamamoto scanned the last book; my book and without a second glance shoved it into the bag like he did with the rest.
I sighed in relief.
Neither of them discovered my secret…
Hopefully, neither of them will.
As promised, mother and I went to the Ichiraku ramen stand after we exited The Scarlet Kanji. I ordered the things I wanted after letting mother finish her order. I always let her do things first as it was the way she raised me.
She always instilled in me "the ladies come first" rule. She said all gentlemen were supposed to abide by it. You see, my mother raised me to become the perfect male specimen Konoha has ever laid eyes on. Those were her very words!
I inhaled the smell of cooking ramen as I waited for our meals.
This day couldn't get any better, I thought in delight. First it was books and now ramen! I was really thrilled that I didn't even mind waiting five minutes for the ramen to get ready.
The minute my bowl appeared, I gobbled it down like a half starved man.
"Slow down, Naruto," mother scolded me, "Gentlemen don't stuff themselves with food at top speed like dogs!"
I swallowed the ramen in my mouth thickly.
I could really tell when my face was burning from shame and embarrassment. Unfortunately for me, this was one of those times.
"Sorry," I mumbled.
I tried slowing down after that display of embarrassment. It took a lot of will power not to silence my growling stomach by just stuffing my face with the ramen bowl but I held firm.
I was mother's obedient and loyal son. The son that would do anything for her. Anything as long as it made her happy.
To me, it took us almost forever to finish eating. When we did, mother paid the stall owner and I muttered a thank you.
This time, walking back to our house, I felt a very unsettling feeling crawl into my heart.
I was really really really disappointed with myself. I felt my guilt drowning my whole body up to the brim.
Why had I gone and tore off the label at The Scarlet Kanji? If mother had known about it she would have probably had a heart attack.
And then why had I gobbled up my food like an animal in front of mother? It was really ungentlemanly! I should have known better than to act like an animal especially after being brought up by a mother who is like, this person who drills etiquette into my head practically every day since I was born. I scolded myself all the way as we walked back home.
I kept asking myself why wasn't it that I could never do anything right? Why was it that I always messed up? Mother was always lecturing me about how to act, walk and talk like the way a real man should. She always stressed on it! Always about being a real man and what not!
In all my thoughts, I looked up as I felt a gaze on me. I was thinking it had to be another girl but it turned out I was wrong.
My bright blue eyes stared into dark black ones. It was a boy…Well, more of a man actually. A very young man but a man nonetheless.
He was very handsome. He was tall and muscular but in a slim kind of way. His black hair stood up in spikes at the back of his head while his dark bangs almost covered his onyx eyes.
His face was impassive as he bore into my eyes with his.
My heart was beating a tattoo in my chest as I felt my breath caught. I was staring at a man!
I tore my eyes away from him as I stared at my feet, trying my best to hide my blush.
Good god! Why was it that I had stared at the man? Why was it that I had blushed at him when I didn't with all the other girls? Why was it that my heart beat faster when I saw him?
Then, suddenly as if it needed the calling, the truth came crashing down onto me.
It answered all my questions without a pause. The truth was...I'm not a boy.
I'm a girl….
A/N: Please forgive me for any mistakes I might have done! I don't accept flames and if I do get any from all of you sad pathetic people out there then I'll just laugh it off. Seriously, I made myself a vow that if ever I get a flame, I'll just laugh my head off, throw pop corn at the computer screen and delete the stupid thing off my inbox. Deal with it!
For the rest of you who doesn't have the intention to be a sorry sick ass then drop me some sugah! I'm all for the sugah!