Here is my second probably-gonna-end-up-being-super-long-assed story. Who knows where this might end up?
Not mine.
To my poor, darling Alex, who is stuck in the hospital. Honey, I wish SO HARD that I could come over and visit you, but I'm in Canada, and I'm sick too. Tears darling, I shed tears for you. Also to Chelsey, because she got me a super-awesome pair of Jack the Pumpkin King earrings when she was in Disneyland.
Tenten's chicken-scratch

Sakura's chicken-scratch


I like where we are when we drive in your car…


Haruno Sakura was staring out the school window. She turned her head slightly, just enough to see her four best friends, sitting in a circle around her.

The idiot teacher was blathering on about something that really had nothing to do with her.

She was going to be a rock star. She had known it from the first time she'd held a guitar. She'd known it from the first second she'd first let a note come ringing out of her throat.

She hated certain people in her school. She hated they way they looked down on her, just because she was on orphan. She hated the way they threw her dreams on the ground, just because she liked to skateboard more then put on makeup and slutty clothes.

And she really hated the way -when they realized what she did for a living-, she really hated the way they all suddenly wanted to be her new best friend.

It kind of made Sakura sick.

She could hear Temari cracking her knuckles. How many times had they berated her for that?! But the stupid teacher who kept talking, and talking, and talking deserved the teeth-grating sound.

Stupid bastard.

Sakura turned her attention towards the window again.

Hey, there was Anko! Wait, why was Anko at school…? What was going on there…? It looked she was having a huge-ass fight with… someone.

Someone that looked suspiciously like Tenten's father. Uh-oh.

She tapped Tenten on the shoulder, and pointed. Tenten's eyes got wide. The bun-haired girl grabbed a piece of paper and started scribbling, her printing furious and messy.

Sakura, just what the hell is my jackass of a father doing here?!

Don't ask me! I wanted to ask you! Ever since Anko got custody of the two of us, nothing's been the same, has it?

No, it hasn't. We're lucky Temari and Ino and Hinata's parents don't give a damn what we do, as long as they don't have to see them.

Ya, I know. Oh, shit, look, he's trying to get in the school… How much you wanna bet they're going to call us down in about… three minutes?

I give 'em two and a half. No, less then that, he's pulled something out of his jacket. Oh, it's a piece of paper. Because you KNOW a piece of paper's going to conquer Mitarashi Anko. As if.

Oh, you were right, there we go.

The intercom crackled to life, urgency in the voice that spoke from every where.

"Sakura Haruno, Tenten Mitarashi, please come to the office immediately."

Both girls sighed, grabbed their stuff, and walked towards the door. When Hinata tilted her head, Sakura simply pointed out the window.

The entire class got up as soon as they were out the door, and queued around the large window. Really, when thirty-ish people circle around a single little space, bad things tend to happen.

Temari snapped one single knuckle. They were up in her personal space.

The class backed off, slightly wary. Temari wasn't infamous for being dangerous for nothing - good for them; they knew when danger comes calling.

Then she looked out the window herself, and Ino and Hinata were doing, their eyes wide and horrified.

Tenten's father was out there. He was brandishing a piece of paper, and a knife. Temari hissed.

Temari didn't even say anything; she just stood up, and walked out of the room. Hinata and Ino followed her as soon as she got up, and left the teacher spluttering after them.

"Damn it, damn it, damn it. We have to get down there, like, right the fuck now. There's a restraining order against him for a reason!!!"

All three of them broke into a run at the exact same time. They caught to the slowly walking pair of Sakura and Tenten.

"Tenten, the freak has a knife."

The colour drained from Tenten's face.

"Then why are we still standing here?! If Anko gets hurt, I will never be able to forgive myself!!!"

Both Tenten and Sakura dropped their bags, and started running. They had to get down there. Now.

Besides. All that was in the bags were a couple of textbooks, nothing really important.

The five of them dashed as fast as they could towards the exit, but even that wasn't fast enough. As they were running, they passed the lockers they used on a daily basis. They stopped, and looked at each other.

"D'you think…?" Hinata was looking longingly at her locker.

"Ahh, what the hell. Hina, grab your board, and mine while you're at it. Sakura, grab yours and Tenten's. Ino, you grab yours. Please." Temari's voice was full of the steely ice she was known for.


After fiddling with the locks for a second or so, five skateboards were pulled out of three lockers. Ino was lucky. She got a locker to herself (because the crazy blonde had scared her locker mate into using a different locker. Poor, scared little children). Ino really was a terror when she wanted to be.

The boards were slammed down on the ground, and they all took off.

They got to the office in two minutes instead of ten. They were pointed out the door, where Anko was frantically dodging that knife, over and over again. Apparently, the administration really wanted nothing to do with them.

Ugh, stupid people.

There was school security ringing the fight, now. The five girls stood warily outside of the large wall of bodies. On a silent command, unknown by any of the girls we know and love, all the giant security guards pounced on Tenten's father.

They carried him away, screaming.


As his screams faded into the air, Sakura wrapped an arm around Tenten's shoulders. God, that creepy bastard needed a life.

A life that did not involve Tenten in way, shape, or form.

Tenten was shaking.

The other four girls (and Anko, but she was not a girl; she was too old to be a girl) crowded around her, and pulled her into a many-armed hug.

Tenten's lips quivered for a moment, before she wailed, and curled into their embrace. It spoke of safety, and loyalty, and the bond that friends seem to share that shows they can communicate without saying a word.

After a few minutes of this silent little group hug, they separated from each other, Tenten giving the other girls a tear-stricken smile.

That was all the prompting any of them needed.

"Anko, we're taking Tenten home, right this fucking instant. We'll grab our stuff." Sakura said this. It was an unspoken agreement; Sakura spoke for all of them.

Anko nodded absently.

"Grab all your stuff girls. Clean your lockers out. We're moving somewhere safer."

Ino, Hinata and Temari looked at each other.

"What about the parental units?" Sakura spoke for all of them again.

"I'll speak to them. I don't think they'll mind much; I'm almost your guardian as it is. You girls are the important thing to me."

The group of sixteen-to-seventeen-year olds nodded. They were a group, they were a band. Nothing should split them up, nothing.

Anko gave them the 'shoo-shoo-ing' gesture she had picked up from Ino's mother and had perfected. They all looked at each other for another second, before Sakura whooped with joy.

"We're going on an adventure! Who gives a damn about this piece of shit?! Let's go grab our stuff! We have packing to do!"

Hinata and Temari stared at Ino and Sakura and Tenten in vague amusement, all of whom were whooping and cheering from being able to leave this god-forsaken place. Then they too joined in the laughter, and went to clean out their lockers.

Sakura was boarding ahead, down the hallway, cheering at the top of her lungs. She came to a staircase. She jumped on the railing and slid down it, letting out a scream of terror and adrenaline as she zipped down.

She had her iPod in her ears.

Hinata sighed in something like resignation as she walked with Tenten and Temari at a slower, saner pace. Sakura was going to get herself hurt, and since Ino was following after yelling that she was going to kill herself, it would probably end up in the two of them having a race or something, in which both of them would ultimately end up in trouble.

Not hurt, but in enough trouble to get expelled.

Wait. That didn't matter any more, did it?

Sakura was singing, now at the top of her lungs. She was not making life easy for the people trying to teach a bunch of curious teenagers.

And she had a last defiance. After she had cleaned her locker out, she was going to do something evil, and if the only ones who were going to follow her into were her girls, it just proved how much she could depend on them.

Both Ino and Sakura were sitting against their lockers, laughing so hard they couldn't breathe.

It was just like when they were little. Tiny little things more concerned with the colour of the flower Sakura had just picked, or when Ino got a haircut.

"Hey, Ino… do you ever wonder what would have happened if my parents hadn't kicked the can the way they did?"

"Sakura, I prefer not to think about unpleasant things. If they hadn't snuffed it, you might not have been adopted, might not have met Tenten. There are a lot of "might's" in that, and you know how much I hate "might's". So, please, let's not think about this, okay?"

Sakura inclined her head in assent. Their laughter gone in light of current conversation, the two of them sat back to enjoy the simple quiet companionship.

And then Tenten came barreling down the hall, dancing and just being a freak all over. Hinata and Temari followed close on her heels, although not as slightly insane as her. Actually, they were walking slowly, pretending they didn't know her.

Because, please, pretending to not know your best friends is really the way to go.


Ten minutes later, they all had bags bulging full of stuff they actually needed. No useless school paper; no one wanted it anyways.

No, the bags were stuffed full of all the things that mattered most to them. It was really random stuff, too, now that Sakura thought about it.

A camera each; printed off pictures from inside locker doors, a pair of Ino's pointe shoes for ballet, Sakura's trumpet, some of Hinata's best artwork and her favorite pair of drumsticks. There was Temari's long list of felonies, her permanent record and all her lock picks. There was Tenten's scrapbook and her notebook, full of pictures and drawings and songs scribbled into margins.

Things that mattered. Things that reminded them of who they were, when nothing else could. Immortal things, in the girls' eyes.

Things like that.

As they skipped towards the front doors and freedom, they stopped.

Sakura was feeling reckless. "Girls, there is something I've always wanted to do, and I'm going to do it right now. Are you with me?"

Temari raised an eyebrow at her, and answered. "Do you really need to ask?"

"Right then. Off to the office we go. But first, there are a few things I need you to do. Hinata, I need you to distract the secretary, as scary as that man is. Temari, I need you to pick the lock to the principle's office. Tenten, I need you to press a certain button when I give you our signal. Ino, I need you to keep watch."

They nodded their assent, but Ino muttered under her breath "If this goes bad, I'll blame you. See if I don't."

Sakura just smiled.

They snuck towards the open office door. All staff, except for that incredibly annoying male secretary.

Hinata carefully went up to him, and started asking him about her timetable. He frowned, and went to get it. She turned, gave the others the finger-crook which meant 'get-your-asses-in-here-he's-gone'.

And so they did.

"We might have two minutes, if we're lucky. Temari, pick the locks, please."

"Mm-hmm…" was all Temari was able to mutter, as she was already working on the locks.

"There Sakura. Ino, is anyone coming?"

"No, keep going."

Temari came and stood by the other blonde, and they stared out the closed office door.

"Tenten, three, two, one…"

And the button clicked on.

Sakura yelled into the receiver.

"What are we still doing here guys, huh?! Why should we listen to a bunch of stupid adults who tell us what to do? Give me one good reason. If you do, we might stay. If you don't… STUDENT REBELLION!!!"

And with a cheer, she threw down the receiver, grabbed Hinata's wrist as she ran past her, and ran like hell. Hinata, out of reflex, grabbed Temari, who grabbed Tenten, who grabbed Ino as they ran out of that goddamn place as fast as they could.

They kept running, only to be swept up in a crowd of students.

Apparently, Sakura had actually woken something in them. As Tenten looked around at the teenagers streaming past her, she realized something.

They were the outcasts. They were the nerds, and the punks, and the emos, and the goths, and the stoners and every other kid who had ever felt left out.

No preps. Not a single jock. No horrible little sluts with too much makeup on.

Tenten started to laugh.

This was perfect. Way too perfect, she had to admit. You would think they would be the first to break the rules. But they were all too afraid to get in trouble.

"Tenten! Get your scrawny ass over here, now! We gotta get going!"

Tenten, still giggling so hard she couldn't speak, skipped over to them.

This wasn't the end. This was the beginning of something new.

The sun was shining, they were all so happy; there were no crazy insane-ass parents here to ruin her day.

Everything was going to be fine.