Tell Me, We're not Enemies
Disclaimer: I don't own Naruto.
A/N: This is my latest venture in Itahina and is not considered an AU like The Sun under the Fan. There are manga spoilers in this story so if you don't want to be spoiled don't read though not everything follows the manga exactly. Anyway, review and let me know what you think.
The scream ripped through Hinata's voice as she glanced at the fox-boy being thrown into a tree by the orange masked man.
"He's not that weak, Hinata," Sakura said looking at the girl distastefully.
Naruto grinned as he got back up. Nothing ever kept him down for long.
Hinata felt her insides twist as they kept fighting. What if the Akatsuki got its hands on Naruto-kun? Naruto-kun could be killed instantly or taken away and then when would she have time to confess?
The fighting continued for hours neither side seeming to make a difference. He was just too strong an enemy even with the eight of them attacking him.
"This is some type of nightmare," Kiba yelled. "What the hell is with this guy?"
Naruto was going off about how nothing would stand in his way to Sasuke. He was preparing for another attack when a plant-like-man showed up.
"Well?" the masked man asked.
"Itachi is dead. Sasuke won but he's fading fast."
"Who could have predicted that? Me. Well better hurry."
Naruto started screaming as he tried to follow. The remainder of the team couldn't see where they had gone. No one seemed to notice the Hyugga girl had vanished.
Hinata followed closely behind. They were fast but her byakugan was showing her a trail that they left. No ninja no matter how skilled could avoid bending grass where they walked or breaking twigs. They could mininialize the signs of their prescence but sooner or later there was always a trail.
When she reached the cave like area the two Uchihas had faught she felt her blood run cold. If these ninja found her she would be dead for sure. Sasuke was grabbed quickly and taken somewhere else by the masked man. In the blink of an eye he was back looking at the battered body that the plant-man had in his arms.
"Leave him, Zetsu. He is no good to me now."
Hinata watched the plant-like man dump the body. There was a thud and then the sprayed out Akatsuki cloak. The pair disappeared quickly leaving Itachi's corpse to rot in the cave.
Hinata felt her heart quell with pity. How could anyone do such a thing to a comrade? She had learned long ago that each comrade was precious. Each member of a team played a specific role and the loss of a teammate was to be treated with at least respect even if the teammate was disliked or didn't properly contribute to the group. A comrade was sacred.
Cautiously she approached. How had one of the most wanted criminals fallen? Itachi was bloody all over. His face and body showed signs of a brutal battle. She had heard from Naruto of Sasuke's hate for his brother but this—
She could still remember Sasuke riding on his brother's shoulders as Itachi walked through Konoha. Back then she had been so envious of Sasuke. He had a big brother who loved him while her older cousin ignored her. Neji was the closest thing Hinata had as a brother but he never played with her or took care of her like Sasuke's brother did for him. She could not even imagine Neji giving her a piggy back ride.
Glancing at the bloody face she felt her stomach churn. His eyes were blood and his face was covered with layers of dirt and sweat.
This was the boy she had known years ago when their clans would meet. She could still remember his small smile as he watched his excited brother barge into a clan meeting to tell him about a new jutsu. How had he become a cold hearted killer?
Hinata didn't really want to know. She could understand dislike of one's clan. The Hyugga had not been kind to the heiress. There had been the constant snickering of the main house members and the disrespect from the branch. There were times she had wished she had never been born Hyugga. If she had been like Tenten or Sakura without a clan then none of her inadequatecies would be an issue but she had no choice in to who she was born.
Still why had he changed?
The eight year old girl sat next to her father at the clan meeting. The Konoha clans had their meeting together for the first time in five years. Hinata had been too little to come before and had been left of the care of aunt and uncle. Instead she was there with her father staring at the other heirs.
The younger heirs were sitting with their family members. Each one seemed to be paying attention closely to the Council, the hokage, and the various clan elders.
"The day will come soon when these children will be our future," the Sandaime said.
"That day has not yet come, elder," remarked the head of the Abrume clan.
The hokage chuckled. "True but the clans must form friendships."
Hinata continued to sit nervously as she watched the dark-eyed Uchiha heir sitting across from her. He was thirteen and among the oldest heirs present. She had met him several times and he was always kind to her. She had hoped to talk to him a bit and go visit his mother some time soon.
Itachi smiled slightly at her.
The meeting dragged on for what seemed like hours and Hinata began to fall asleep. The hokage smiled at the sleeping girl but her father didn't. At the nearest break he pulled the sleeping child roughly by the arm and shook her.
"How dare you defile the Hyugga like this? Must you show your weakness in front of the other clans?"
"Don't you dare stutter at me Hinata. You are an embarrassment."
"Gomen chichue, I will try harder to—"
Haishi's white eyes reflected with anger. She always made the same excuses and promises when she displeased him. He had granted her mother weakness but he would not do the same for her.
Immediately Hiashi's eyes narrowed at the intruder but he backed off when he saw Itachi Uchiha. The Uchiha branch may be lower than the Hyugga but Itachi was strong and known for not involving himself with petty clan politics. The boy had made a point to remove himself from everything that didn't concern him.
The Hyugga and the Uchiha had signed a treaty not even two months ago and Haishi was skating on thin ice around the other clan. The two clans had decided to stop their petty rivaleries and stand as an united front. Though the hokage couldn't interfere with clan law there were still threats to the clans' independence particularly from Konoha's Council. Even though each clan head had a position on the Council there were many others who had no loyalty to clans. Still the brat had no reason to bother him but bad blood between the clans wasn't needed.
"Itachi-san, what can I do for you?"
"My hahue wants to see Hinata-san. I am to return home now because I have an Anbu meeting this afternoon. May I take her with me?"
"Hai. Be good for Mikoto-san, Hinata. If you dare to misbehave there will be consequences."
Itachi bowed his head to Haishi before taking the little girl's hand. His mother was the closest thing to a mother Hinata had at this point and with Mikoto's inability to have more children Hinata filled the role of a daughter.
Once they were out of Hokage Tower, Itachi picked up the little girl.
"Hush Hyugga-san, I'll carry you so you can go back to sleep. I'm tired as well that meeting was boring."
Hinata only smiled as she buried her head into his shoulder.
She had forgotten that time so long ago. Back then she had been friends with Sasuke and a constant visitor to the Uchiha Compound. Mikoto-san had been friends with her mother and Hinata had loved her deeply. The little girl had sobbed for weeks when she found out that Sasuke was the only survivor.
After that Sasuke had grown cold and Hinata felt him distance himself from everyone. She had wondered about what had happened to Itachi and had been led to believe for several years that he too had died in the massacre. It was only when she was twelve and Itachi had returned to Konoha that she learned the truth.
She glanced down at the still body. Gently she knelt over him. It didn't really matter what he had done, she reasoned, he had once been the kind boy who had taken her to his mother rather than allow her father to punish her. She owed him at least some respect and a decent burial.
Later when asked she would say she didn't know what possessed her. Gently she stroked back the greasy hair from his face. His eyes were bleeding and her medic nin training told her that he had most likely blown out his corneas and some of the capillaries. She found herself examining his chakra network with the byakugan.
Strange, he still has chakra even though…
She leaned over towards his chest and listened cautiously. It was faint but there was a heartbeat.
Kami, what do I do?
Her medic nin oath and her own conscious wouldn't allow her to leave him there. She couldn't let him die not like this anyway. He had a limited amount of time if she didn't do something soon.
Hinata dragged his body even though he was heavy. She felt her muscles strain as she pulled him. She had been concerned about moving but leaving him there wasn't an option. He had to be taken away from that spot before they came back.
His heart was still beating but she was worried. He needed to get stronger soon or else he might die before she made it make to camp. She silently cursed herself for forgetting her medical supplies.
He was alive and she couldn't leave him there. It didn't matter what the others thought. Naruto-kun would surely see that she couldn't leave him to die even if he was the enemy.
To be continued…