Ok so this is another multichapter nejiten fic, but it has a lot more structure to it than till death do us part and is a lot more angsty. hope you enjoy it! please let me know what you think.
disclaimer: I don't even own the laptop I'm typing on.
Surname:the name used to identify the members of a family, I don't have a surname. People assume this means I don't have a family. I can see it in their faces, the pity, sometimes being a little too lenient or a little too generous.
People are wrong, I do have a family, I Just don't want to carry the name of a man I am ashamed to call my father. My father died when I was about five. When people hear this they instantly think he was a great shinobi and died on a mission. They're wrong. My father was an alcoholic, abused my mother and me, and then eventually froze to death when he passed out on the side of the street late one night.
To say I was pleased would be wrong, I wasn't pleased, to be honest I even regretted everything bad I had ever thought against him, I thought it was my fault. I grew out of those thoughts a long time ago.
I know I come across as cold now, but I'm not.
In fact most of my friends, my teammates would call me an overly friendly and determined person. A testement to my acting.
Shortly after my father died, things had improved for my mother and I, we had a new life, there was no-one to spend my mums wages on alcohol and in brothels. And most of all there was no-one to intimidate us or to abuse us.
My mother used to wait at the school gate and we'd walk home together and sometimes stop at the local store for sweets and icecream. We lived like that for about three years, but with our luck, mum lost her job and then couldn't find another, and when she did they were always temporary bar jobs which she would lose again and again and again.
She started working multiple jobs to afford our rent and my schooling. The long hours took their toll on her, and she usually has a bad temper. Things went from bad to worse for me and mum and we had to move out of our home to a small apartment further away from school, mum had to sell her car and couldn't pick me up from school anymore.
I used to walk three miles home every day even in the rain and snow. People started to talk but me and mum kept our heads high and carried on.
When I was fifteen I got a job working at the local bar as a waitress. It was the type of bar where nobody ever ate anything other than pork scratchings and the only customers I served were at least 40 and always perverted. I could easily imaginemy father amongst them and often wondered if he had ever drank here. The manager was an overweight man of about 60 and always wore a sweatstained vest with holes in it and a pair of threadbare corduroys. He valued his customers more than his waiting staff and I knew if any of the low lifes tried anything I'd get no support from him.
Although our life was hard and my mother and I argued often one thing she never did was hit me. Don't get me wrong she had gotten pretty close but she always caught herself in time. That was until last night.
I was late from work, I knew she would be annoyed, she usually was. But tonight I wasn't anticipating mum losing her job. I got home and closed the door behind me as quietly as I could, the lights were off and I assumed she had already gone to bed, I hung my coat on the peg on the back of the door and walked over to the kitchenette in the corner of the room. As I slid past the small table to reach the cupboard for a glass I tripped over something. Looking behind me I saw a figure leaning on the fridge.
"Your late." She snapped, lighting a cigarette.
"Yes, I'm sorry, I..Mr. Ikasu..." I started
"Don't give me that shit!" she hissed taking a step towards me.
"It's not shit mum, I had to work late, I'm getting paid." I took a step back and tried to keep my voice low.
"Yeah? well I say it's shit. You know what I think?"
I shook my head, stepping back again. She reached out and grabbed my wrist gripping hard, I could feel her alcohol soaked breath on my face as she gritted her teeth, trying to remain calm.
"I think you've been out with them friends of yours, I think you've been spending my hard earned cash on one bloody night out. That's why we struggle. You're just like your father." She spat the last word out like poison.
I wrenched my wrist from her grasp and straightened up trying to match her for height.
"I have not been out, I have been working. And I am nothing like him"
"WHERE'S THE BLOODY MONEY THEN?!" She almost screamed at me, and then she did something neither of us thought she would ever do.
She slapped me, hard, across the cheek.I clapped my hand to my face, eyes wide with shock. My mother stood, mouth open with her hand frozen in the air above my head. Her cigarette fell onto the floor and I made for my bedroom.
"Ten...Tenten I'm... I'm sorry" she stammered a tear fell down her face.
"Save it." I slammed the screen door shut, separating us.
I woke up the next morning to a black eye and five neat finger shaped bruises on my arm. I winced as I touched them tentatively. It was a stifling day and the only top I owned that covered my forearms was a black crotcheted cardigan. I pulled it on, feeling my back prickle with sweat already.
I then turned my attention to my eye, I rubbed on concealer and foundation trying to hide the black/blue, then grabbed a pair of sunglasses as I left the apartment, jamming them over my eyes. It would have to do.
As I rounded the school gates my poorly masked eye did not seem to cause too much surprise and went reasonably unnoticed Unlike my cardigan.
"Oy! Tenten!" Sakura ran towards me in a yellow vest and red skirt.
"Hi" I forced a smile.
"What the hell is that?" she said, fingering the fabric of my cardigan and pulling a face.
"I...I don't want to get a tan, so..." She raised her eyebrows in understanding.
"Ohhh... pale and interesting, so retro, but you know you could have just worn suncream right?" she was frowning at me now.
"Yeah except I don't have any do I"
"Not to worry, I have a sample in my purse, spf 60, I think it's for skiiers or really pale people or maybe people who just don't go out much. whatever, here." She opened her purse and produced a sachet. Then began rolling up the sleeves of my cardigan.
"Hey! Sakura... wait, what are you doing, I don't want sunblock, wait." I was too late and Sakura had already finished rubbing cream into my left arm and was rolling up the sleeve on my right.
"Geez Tenten, what the hell is this?" She pulled my arm towards her and turned it over, examining the bruises.
"Tenten, Who did this to you?" she was holding my hand with hers now and looking at me with pitying eyes. I hated her then.
"No-one" I pushed my sleeve back down and pulled my hand from Sakuras, picked up my bag and began to walk in the opposite direction.
"Wait, Tenten! wait. what do you mean no-one"
"No-one. I fell"
"You fell." I realised she wasn't going to drop this.
"Yeah, It was really embarassing actually and I want to forget about it, I slipped at work last night in front of all the sleezes I swear from the laughs they saw my underwear. God."
Sakura pulled a face.
"Perverts" She cracked her knuckles, and prepared herself for a speech.
"Wait. Isn't that Sasuke I can see over there?" I pointed vaguely towards the school gates.
"What?! Where?" she sprinted in the direction I had pointed. I walked into class and pushed my bag under the desk, sitting next to my classmate.
"Interesting clothing choice." He raised and eyebrow and smirked at me.
"Drop it Hyuuga, Sakura's already covered that one."
I pulled out a notepad and My pen and began to scribble down the date and title already written on the board. Neji flicked his long hair over his shoulder before following suit. After about five minutes of silence he clearly couldn't resist one last quip.
"Too bright for you?" he hadn't looked up from his writing.
"What?" I sat up.
"These." He tapped the frame of my glasses. I winced as they pushed on my eye.
"I just like them. ok"
"Whatever."He shrugged and turned back to his work.
As the day progressed I got more and more questions reguarding my glasses. The cardigan not so much, but then Sakura had made an announcement in the hallway about my 'accident' last night.
I had avoided Neji for the whole day, dodging him in class, eating lunch in the library. When the final bell rang, however, he found me by my locker and leant against the adjacent one.
"What?" I took out my work uniform and held it to my chest.
"You've been avoiding me." He folded his arms.
"I haven't." I tried to walk aroud him, but he put out a hand stopping me.
"You ate lunch in the library, you never eat lunch in the library. And another thing, really, what's with the glasses"
"I told you I..I think they're cool." I cringed at the obvious lie.
"Yeah." He raised an eyebrow and reached out pulling them off my face.
"Hey!" I snatched, a little too late.
I couldn't meet his eyes but I knew he'd be wearing the same expression he wore when he first found out about the bar I work in.
"what's this?" he nodded at my eye.
"I... fell." I gabbled before slamming my locker door shut, grabbing my glasses off of him and hurrying down the corridor. I could feel his eyes boring through the back of my head.
Thanks for reading, and sorry about the previous paragraph problems, thanks to the reviewers who pointed this out. Again please give me your opinions I'm really interested to know what you think.