The Internet wasn't connected as I wrote this story and I was almost wasting my afternoon away with card games… which isn't exactly fun. Then, I decided to draw. The first thing that came to my mind was Pein and Konan (I'm getting addicted to that pairing, darn it.). Then something clicked in my mind. I couldn't remember what I was supposed to draw… but I found something to write.
And it's this. Not exactly one of my best so, apologies.
Disclaimer: I don't own Naruto.
The raindrops hit the ground simultaneously yet with a rhythm no one can ever foretell.
She could feel her body go numb and the air get thinner. If she wasn't mistaken, her eyesight was getting blurry and it wasn't just because of the drops that fell onto her eyes.
Konan tried to move off the wet ground, feeling stiff and weary. Despite her efforts to get up, she still lay there, almost immobile. She could feel herself panting for air like a fish out of water and somewhere, there was a prick of sharp pain.
'How… How did this happen?' Konan thought to herself as she struggled, 'How did they defeat me? Why… don't I know what happened?'
Indeed, Konan was in battle with about eight ninja, all of them hunting for any Akatsuki member. Pein was with her when they came across the opponents but when the battle commenced, Pein took on the other four farther from where she was.
And she didn't know why.
Managing to turn her head from the gaze she had at the crying sky, Konan looked to her right, hoping to find something or someone there. Only now did she feel helpless and it just had to be now. She tried to send out a simple paper butterfly, but the rain kept her from doing so.
Rain… her weakness. How ironic that it turned out that way. After all, she came from the village of Rain, the little place where the rain never stops.
She grunted as the same sudden pain hit her again. Konan felt slight shock when she glanced at her side and found blood. How did that come to be? Weapons literally went through her since she's virtually made of paper.
One more time, in the intention to find help, Konan made another paper butterfly but, again, it fell back onto the ground, soaked.
With that, Konan realized something. It was the end for her. Strangely, Konan flinched and strained to smile one last time. It was something she hasn't done in such a long time and she just wanted to feel it again.
The feeling of happiness, of relief and… that light feeling you get simply with a grin.
But, her efforts were in vain. Who could smile at her own time of death? What kind of happiness will one feel at this point when she isn't even suicidal? Will there be relief? Not now. And that light feeling?
Ah, that one. It's completely foreign to Konan. It has always been.
Konan turned again to see whatever was at her left. She found nothing beyond the hard rain and since that was the case, all she could do now was close her eyes gently and wait for death.
It was as if she was in the middle of nowhere, dying. She felt her chilly breath float near her face and with every passing moment, her breath ran thinner and thinner.
Konan has always been pale and sickly-looking but now, she was whiter than the origami flower she wore on her head. Unable to take it anymore, Konan flickered her eyes open and even if her eyes were failing her now, she just wanted to see him one more time… one last time.
Yes, even if he was the last person she'll see, she'll just be glad to see him that's all. All she wanted to do was glance at him then shut her eyes forever. Was it too much to ask for?
In this situation, it was. He must've gone far by now. She assumed he's alive, knowing how strong he has always been. He wasn't exactly the best partner and not someone you can count on to take care of you…
…But, she liked him as he is, for some reason.
All that man ever knew was pain and suffering, like what his name says, and his dream was to make everyone alive feel his pain. She was disappointed in herself to just die like this, letting him down. But, she just wished she had done more.
Knowing that nothing was in store for her anymore, now that she was slowly dying, Konan finally decided to go back to closing her eyes and she promised herself that she wouldn't open them again.
Yet, there was again something that kept her from keeping that promise…
With those words, Konan immediately drew her eyes open, frantically hoping that it wasn't an enemy, back to completely finish her off. Her stiff neck stopped her from turning to the other side and with that, all she could do was wait for him to approach her near enough to see him.
Her throat went drier than ever and with a huff of air, she croaked, "…Who… Who's there?"
She wasn't answered verbally with the same masculine voice but she felt and heard splashing footsteps, running to her. Her face still faced the opposite side and she couldn't turn even the slightest bit.
The man knelt down, looking at her with a slight worry. Still, Konan didn't know who he was since she was facing the other way. Konan felt the man reaching for her chin and when he did, he moved it carefully.
He turned her head to his way and when he saw Konan's pale expression, all he could mutter was, "What happened?"
Konan now realized who he was. It was her partner, Pein. Rain from above fell on the back of his head, falling down the sides. She didn't move as they just exchanged forlorn looks until she muttered, "I don't know."
With that, Pein made a few hand signs in the effort to stop the rain until Konan managed to clench a part of his cloak, begging, "No. Don't… Don't stop the rain… Pein."
A little confused, Pein halted then glared back at her. He was obviously demanding an explanation from her. All Konan could do was let her fingers run down his cloak's hem, whispering with a dry voice, "I want to feel the rain one last time…"
His eyes grew. Pein shook his head then muttered as he tried to get Konan to stand up, "Don't talk like that. Let's go." He tried to slip an arm under Konan's back but she planted a weak grip on his nearing hand.
"Pein, can you… just leave me?" Konan asked, as if asking for a favor.
The Akatsuki's leader simply answered, almost hiding his face with his cloak, "No."
Once again, he tried to make Konan get up from the ground and when he tried again, Konan mumbled, "I told you… I'm paper. I'm vulnerable to water. I'm almost as fragile as a relic right now. One touch can destroy me before I even stop breathing."
Realizing this, Pein nodded then stopped his efforts. He then sighed, "…I'll… I'll get someone to fix your state. Just… get up."
"I can't." Konan admitted, "I'm completely numb. And I'm probably falling apart… little by little."
Pein just kept his gaze at her then shook his head, "…Hmm… what have they done to you?"
There was a silence between the two. All they heard was the hastened pit-pat of the rain and each other's breathing. The cold, unforgiving wind beat against them yet none of them was bothered.
"Look, Pein…" Konan muttered, hoping her last few words would be worth it, "…you were a great partner. And… you're Akatsuki's ideal leader. You'll… get that nine tails soon. I did my best, following your orders and…"
Almost letting go of his indifferent stance, Pein snapped back, "Keep quiet. You sound like you're going to die."
But, he knew well that she was. He tried hard not to do anything filled with emotion. He held back anything like how he always did and like always, he was successfully doing so.
Konan felt her heart beginning to fail, her beat almost fading away. "…Hm…" It was all that she could say now. There was nothing more to say and nothing else that either of them can do. If Pein picked her up, she'd crumple before she'd even die.
Soon, Pein found himself standing up then looking down at Konan, as he said not a word. After all these years with her, he expected a better path for her from fate. But he was wrong.
Finally, Konan managed to smile. It hurt Pein how she was smiling at this time like nothing is happening and because this is so, he plainly asked, "…Are you happy you're going to die now?"
"No." Konan coarsely replied, "I'm just happy that even now, as I die, you're still here, partner."
Those words hit Pein somewhere as he remembered the many times with Konan… both in battle and the other times in between.
For a second, he glanced away from his dying partner then he managed to say, "Konan, I have to let you know something important before you go." His voice didn't quiver or shake. It was still firm and gripped like always but inside, his tears were flooding.
He decided to keep his eyes away from her as he spoke, "You were a great partner. That's that. But, I hope you didn't think you were my slave or something. I just… Hm. Konan, I…"
But when he went to finish that statement with another glare at her, he stopped in his tracks.
She had her eyes partly closed now but he knew she was still alive. He tried to continue his sentence but he thought maybe it was best to just keep quiet for now.
Pein nodded, still the stern expression on his features. And after one last breath, Konan closed her eyes gently, never to open them again.
There was a hollow feeling in the Akatsuki's leader when his partner finally passed away. It was probably sadness but he has always known dismay. This feeling of disappointment must've been deeper.
Ignoring Konan's earlier words about her state, Pein tried to pick her up again in the effort of bringing her back to the hide out but when his hand touched her, she crumbled into countless pieces of torn and soaked paper.
'Torn…' Pein thought, 'Yes, I had torn her dreams apart… for my own selfish benefits.'
He then shook his head, realizing that he was beginning to act sensitive again. His old scary glare was back and he cast one more look at the paper that lay there before moving to leave.
He heaved a sigh again but when he had realized that this has happened, all he can do now was walk away, leaving the last remains of Konan but keeping the memories he had with her in his dark heart.
He knows he could've done something... but he didn't. He should've at least made an effort to save her but he didn't. After for such a long time, Pein felt guilt.
And he once again knew the meaning of True Pain.
I take it that people will be bombarding me with stuff about how OOC they were. Yeah, maybe they were. But, who knows? Maybe they'll really act that way one day. Heehee. Well, reviews are welcome. Thank you.