DISCLAIMER: I do not own Naruto or any cannon characters or storylines. I do own any introduced (aka: new) characters and storylines. I also own my own lazy state-of-affairs and unusual sense of humor. I reserve the right to only put the disclaimer with the first chapter, but it carries over to all chapters henceforth. I also do not own your personality. You are to enjoy or not enjoy this at your leisure. I also reserve the right not to care that this story contains spoilers. In other words, you shouldn't read this if you don't know as much of the cannon story as I do.
Her eyes slowly flitted open. She was still in a haze, groggy from sleep. She knew her room's layout, so it was easy enough to get around. It was her usual routine. She carefully lifted her bra under her nightgown and fastened it while glaring at the sunrise through her window. She heaved a sigh. How long has it been since they'd failed yet again to bring him home?
As she lifted her nightgown in order to change into her clothes for the day, she glared at the image reflecting from the mirror. She immediately spotted something wrong! The scars on her left shoulder weren't there! Her green eyes glowered at this. The scars were never obvious, but she could still notice them when she tried looking. That was when she noticed something else. Her sakura pink hair was longer, touching her shoulders.
"Sakura!" Her eyes widened as she heard her mother call her name. "What's taking you so long?!" She really didn't know how to reply to her mother's question. She licked her lips, realizing how her nervousness caused them to dry. She quickly tried closing her eyes and concentrating, molding her chakra. She found herself whispering, in spite of herself. "Release!"
Sakura opened her eyes. Nothing happened. Her eyes widen and pupils dilated in pure surprise. There's no way she could mess up! She was an expert with genjutsu, so the illusion should have dispersed. She bit the tip of her thumb nervously. "Even Kurenai has trouble keeping me in a genjutsu…"
She only had a moment to ponder this before her door suddenly flew open. She could see the bold lettering of 'SAKURA' on the nameplate as it caught enough pressure to lift it off the door, and she heard it rattle as it came back to rest flat against that same door. Through the portal, she saw the worried expression her mother wore. She also saw that expression turn to anger.
"Sakura! I was worried when you didn't answer!" Sakura looked at her mother confused. Before she could respond, her mother continued. "You're not even dressed for school!" She could feel her pupils constrict at this. She was about to retort about already being a ninja, but her mother just continued her tirade. "You need to stop being so vain and get dressed! I have breakfast ready, so you better hurry up downstairs. Naruto and Ino should be here soon to pick you up."
Sakura was left speechless as the door slammed on her. Her mother was mad about not being ready for…school?! She already graduated the Konoha Academy, and she'd trained under Tsunade for so many years she could feel her body ache at the mere thought. Something else had hit her, though. Her mother called her vain. That wasn't a word she'd heard in a long time.
"It was that sound nin." She thought bitterly. "During that first chunin exam, she called me vain because of how 'perfect' my hair was." She had a sour look on her face as she took a few strands of her sakura pink hair between thumb and forefinger. "I got rid of this a long time ago, though." Her last statement said with an obvious hint of confusion.
With a huff, she walked over to her closet and opened it. What she saw made her want to scream. She didn't recognize a single piece of clothing in there! The Konoha symbol was emblazed on a patch on the right shoulder of several of the blouses she saw, and she could immediately tell that they were all her size. The blouse was pure white with forest green highlights. She looked at the rest of the ensemble. The skirt was long enough to cover to just below her knees and was neatly pleated. It was also forest green. The white socks easily came halfway up her calves.
As she looked herself over in the mirror, she couldn't help but have the sense she was wearing a uniform. She stared at the symbol on her left breast through the mirror's reflection. That was definitely the Konoha symbol she knew, but the idea of going to school at this age was unnerving. She also, finally, took the chance to look around her room. That's what she thought it was, anyway. It was somewhat unfamiliar. There were things here she was familiar with, but there were also posters and CDs she wasn't. She was about to pick up an unfamiliar CD when the pages of an open magazine caught her attention. It contained pictures of unfamiliar shoes, and a particular white pair of shoes with forest green highlights was circled. There was a phrase written next to the shoes which she read aloud to herself. "…possible tennis shoes for school…"
As she opened her door to leave, she spied her diary, resisting the temptation to open it and scream her frustration on its pages. She could only sigh as she gently closed and locked the door and made her way to the stairs. As she rounded the corner and made her way into the hall, she was surprised to see Naruto and Ino standing there. Ino was dressed like her, confirming her suspicions. "This is definitely a uniform." She paused as she looked at Naruto, who gives her this sheepish grin. "Not to mention, why is he here?"
Not really sure what was going on, Sakura acted casually and greeted them, nonetheless. "Mornin'. I'll be back after I finish breakfast." She was stunned by the sight when she turned the corner from the hall into the dinning room. Her mother was so angry she was tapping her foot on the hardwood floor with hands on her hips. "Wh-What is it Kaa-san?"
Her mother was disappointed by the casual address her daughter gave her, but she was angry about something else. She couldn't believe how Sakura was acting this morning, and she wasn't going to let it go without a lecture. "What were you doing, taking so long?! Your vanity is just going to drive away your friends! You can't even invite your best friend and boyfriend in for breakfast?!" Time froze right there.
Sakura knew her mother was still going on with her tirade. She knew words were still spilling out of her mouth, but she couldn't hear it. "Kaa-san just called Ino my best friend, and Naruto…" She paused in her thoughts as a hand gently graced her shoulder. She turned only for her cheeks to flush at what she saw. Her mother had finished yelling while she was lost in thought and invited Naruto and Ino in. Naruto stood, ever so casually, with his hand on her shoulder.
She finally took that moment to appraise him. If it wasn't obvious before, it was plain as the sky was blue they were all wearing some kind of uniform. "Is it for school?" Sakura thought to herself. He wore a white shirt with the Konoha symbol also over his right shoulder and left breast, of course he had what she assumed was a pocket. Besides thin and sparsely placed stripes running up and down his shirt, there were no forest green highlights. His pants and shoes were forest green; his shoes were a much darker shade.
"Sakura-chan?" She was interrupted from her thoughts by Naruto's voice. Ino sighed as Sakura's cheeks flushed in the sudden realization she'd stood there doing nothing for several seconds. She approached Sakura and quickly flicked her upside the forehead. "Oi, Sakura! You two have been going out for almost a month! You shouldn't be thrown into that kinda daze from just one touch."
If she had slight color to her face before, Sakura was beet red, now. She can't even come up with a retort before her mother comes from the kitchen, carrying a tray with three plates of a home-cooked breakfast and three glasses of orange juice. She placed them on the table as she called the three youths. "You can't go to school on an empty stomach. Go ahead and eat up." She said this smiling as three hungry, and embarrassed, children took their seats around the dining table.
A gentle knocking at her door roused her from her slumber. She looked out the window to see how high the sun had already risen. Her pale, lavender globes gently disappeared behind raven lashes before she bolted to a seated position, eyes wide in concern. As she was about to jump out of bed, she heard a voice coming from the other side of her door. "Hinata-neechan…" Blinking, Hinata continued to listen. "…breakfast is almost ready, and Oto-san asked me to get you.
There was a long pause. Hinata felt like something wasn't right. Then she heard her sister again. "Nee-chan?" Hinata nearly fumbled as she got out of bed and responded to her sister. "Y-Yes, Hanabi. I'll be right down." She could tell her sister has obviously been satisfied as she heard footsteps quickly retreated from her door. "Something's not right here…" She just couldn't place her finger on it.
As she walked to her closet, she removed her nightgown. She needed to get ready in her hurry. That was the thought running through her head anyway. She was met with an unfamiliar and almost frightening sight as she drew the doors of the closet open. She saw unfamiliar clothes hanging. She wasn't about to question things. She was in a hurry. She quickly fastened her bra before fumbling the unfamiliar blouse and skirt on. They were unfamiliar, but they felt like a uniform of some kind.
Hinata traced the Konoha symbol over her left breast. It felt familiar yet distant. Her room was also so different than she was used to. It didn't have that traditional clan feel. She couldn't really describe it that well, but it definitely felt like something was amiss. She tried molding chakra around her eyes to summon her kekkei genkai. As she opened her eyes, she silently stated her intention. "Byakugan!"
She blinked in dismay as nothing happened. The colors of her world didn't change, and she couldn't see the flow of chakra. She was alarmed and dismayed, and the door suddenly opening to reveal Hanabi didn't exactly help, either. "What are you doing, neechan? Oto-san is still waiting…" She watched her older sister for a moment. Hinata was slow to reply and found herself stammering. "Y-Yes… L-Let's go eat."
Hanabi watched Hinata smile nervously as they both moved out to the hallway. Hinata saw something in the hall that left her speechless. It wasn't unusual for her to see Neji in the household; it was an unusual feature. He wore clothes also unfamiliar to her, and they matched her own in color. He also had the Konoha symbol over his right shoulder and left breast; the latter was over what she could only assume to be a pocket. He also wore nothing to cover his forehead and, to her surprise, absent curse mark.
"You're oddly slow this morning, itoko." Hinata was almost glad to hear a more familiar greeting from her cousin than his usual -sama honorific. She wasn't sure what brought that on, but she could only smile and nod. She felt her cheeks warm up a little, perhaps from a bit of joy. "I'm sorry, Neji-niisan. I must be holding you up." Neji gave her a curious look before turning around and heading towards the stairs. He replied as he did. "Not at all. I'm just heading down, myself. Ojisan will be mad if we allow breakfast to grow cold."
Hinata and Hanabi weren't far behind Neji. As they reached the bottom, Hinata spotted two unusual backpacks and a suitcase. The larger backpack and suitcase had the Konoha symbol on them and were forest green. The smaller backpack had three circles getting consecutively smaller within each other until the last was almost a dot as its symbol, and it was sunrise orange instead. She felt her eyes contort into surprise. She looked at Hanabi. While her younger sister was dressed similarly, she wore sunrise orange instead of forest green, and the symbol on her right shoulder and left breast was the same as the smaller backpack.
Before her thoughts could continue, their father and Neji's uncle appeared in the portal leading to the kitchen. He wore a faint smile, and it looked like there was flour on his shirt, face, and, very surprisingly – at least to Hinata, apron. "I've got the table set. You three seat yourselves." Hinata, Hanabi, and Neji complied. They were feeling hungry, so there was no reason to complain.
Hinata looked to Hanabi and Neji. They didn't appear the least bit surprised. As her father put the food on the table in front of them, she couldn't help but stare. Her father noticed this, and he quickly tried to comfort her. "I gave the servants the day off, so I thought I'd try my hand at making breakfast." He rubbed the back of his head nervously. He rarely got to do this. "I hope it turned out all right. I know it's not as good as the chefs' meals."
"That isn't the problem!" Hinata thought to herself. She smiled as she reassured her father, however. "No. I just have something on my mind." She looked quickly at the three. They seemed to be in character. She picked up her fork and put a bite in her mouth. She didn't know what her father was talking about. The breakfast was quite good.
As she began chewing, Neji and Hanabi glanced at each other. "You're not thinking about Naruto-niisan again; are you?" Hinata can't help but gape at what her younger sister said. "He's been going out with that Sakura for almost a month now. Maybe you should give up on him." If she was surprised by her younger sister's sudden words, her jaw was slackened by what Neji had to add on.
Hinata managed to remain somewhat composed. She didn't think an outburst would be the most prudent course of action. If she was under some sort of genjutsu or other trick, she couldn't risk saying the wrong thing. She had two choices. She could play along as if the news weren't really news, or she could slam her fists on the table and ask how that happened. She almost felt a smirk cross her face as she came up with an outside-the-box alternative.
She carefully wiped her mouth before taking another bite. She chewed it as if she had a thought running through her head. It was true their last mission to bring Sasuke back failed, and they were, of course, surprised to hear he'd succeeded in killing Itachi. She wondered at just how different this world she was experiencing was from the world she knew. After several more mouthfuls, she could clearly see how astonished Hanabi and Neji were at her calm demeanor.
Hinata gently put her fork down. She had a smile on her face as she gently tilted her head to one side. At the very least, it wouldn't hurt to be informed on what was going on in this world. "Naruto-kun and Sakura-chan are going out? I thought she was still enthralled by Sasuke-san?" Her father had long since disappeared back into the kitchen. She could only guess he was preparing his own breakfast as she watched how Hanabi and Neji reacted. They blinked several times as they glanced back and forth between each other and Hinata.
Hinata felt miserable after she heard the explanation from Hanabi and Neji. She figured she could use the information later, nonetheless. Hinata picked up her forest green backpack while Hanabi picked up her sunrise orange backpack. Neji was already at the doorway with his forest green suitcase, and he was carefully putting his tennis shoes on. As the girls were putting on their tennis shoes, their father brought over three bentou. If it weren't for the scent still clinging to the clothe, Hinata never would have imagined it was their lunch.
The three left the house, headed in the same direction. Though they would soon part at Hanabi's school, they were together for the moment. Hinata really felt happy to walk to school with her younger sister and elder cousin. She just didn't understand what was going on.
Welcome to the first of x chapters of my first Naruto fan-fiction. I'm sure some of you are wondering at why I choose to rate this for violence and suggestive themes. You'll see as future chapters unfold. As you might tell from my disclaimer, I will not be putting it up in future chapters as it is implied to carry over. I will also use horizontal rulers to inform my readers of major shifts (at least I think they are). The double horizontal ruler will be used to separate author notes from story, primarily opening and closing notes.
I appreciate reviews, but I don't respect outright flames. If you have a constructive criticism, I trust you to keep it civil. I work on fan-fictions rather infrequently as I usually require some major inspiration. This is the first time I have ever published one of my works. I chose this one because (a) it was inspired by a dream and (b) it is on one of the more popular series currently out there. Personally, I like the other fan-fictions I'm working on, mentioned in my profile, a lot more.
Well. I hope you enjoyed the story. If you see any grammatical, spelling, or tense errors, please tell me in reviews! I take my writing seriously, and I tried to keep it all in my preferred writing format and past tense for action.
Story Word Count: 2,726
Story Page Count: 5