Pairings: Sasuke x fem!Naruto
Disclaimer: I don't own Naruto or any songs whose lyrics are used in this fanfiction.
Summary: For two years, the group Tanabata ruled the music industry only to mysteriously transfer before their label Akatsuki Records was charged with kidnapping and extortion. A blonde suddenly transfers into Sasuke's class, and Kyuubi takes the music world by storm.
Warnings: fem!Naruto, genderbender
After hearing that emotional performance done by the new transfer student, Sasuke walked away from the music room. It wasn't his fault that the door wasn't closed fully and that he could still hear the echoes of her voice and the piano throughout the hallway. If he was truly the star student that everyone saw him to be, he would have told them a teacher about their inappropriate usage of the music room, but he was curious.
He was a naturally curious creature, something that Itachi constantly berated him for, not that he could help it. When he had heard her singing and the piano accompaniment, he stood outside of the room listening to sobs of his peers, and as he listened to her music, his chest throbbed momentarily in pain. But before he could explore what it meant, it went away.
Walking away from the music room, Sasuke wondered how so many people affiliated with the Konoha Alliance stood by the new transfer. With the acquaintance of Hyuuga Hinata, Nara Shikamaru, and Inuzuka Kiba, he could almost immediately conclude that Uzumaki Naru had some high-up connections with the large conglomerate.
Firmly believing in not assuming anything about anything, he pushed aside his last thought and decided that with the lunch hour almost over, he might as well return to the classroom.
His insides froze. He dared not turn his head.
He walked faster.
With a great sigh, he turned around to see a slightly panting pink-haired fangirl. He vaguely remembered her from the morning, and even though he had gotten her surname right in the morning, he already forgotten what he had guessed so he resorted to not saying her name at all.
The pink-haired airhead smiled prettily at him, and he suppressed a shudder. "Ne, Sasuke-kun, are you heading back to class?"
He didn't offer an answer. In any case, he was screwed.
"Do you mind if I walk with you back?"
At that point, he resigned himself to his fate. Just as he was about to step off with a rabid fangirl in his wake, a new voice stopped him.
Looking around, his eyes unexpectedly met up with those of Inuzuka Kiba. He hadn't heard the basketball star's footsteps, since he was quite preoccupied with his thoughts of despair regarding fangirls. To alleviate his embarrassment, he didn't offer a response.
A stifling silence surrounded them and when the Inuzuka realized that the other wouldn't respond, the brunette said, "Tsunade-sama needs you to head over to the K.A. building after school Saturday so she can discuss your contract and band meeting times."
Sasuke eyed Kiba and remembered just how much a servant both of them were to the Konoha Alliance.
The Konoha Alliance, the biggest conglomerate in Japan, was headed by a very small family, the Senju, but encompassed companies of much larger families, such as Uchiha Corporations and Hyuuga Industries. Many, if not most, of the companies under the Konoha Alliance name could have become independent, but surprisingly, the leaders of these companies avidly and strong protest any intent of declaring independence.
He, himself, was surprised when after his parents died and Itachi became president of Uchiha Corporations that Uchiha Corporations still did not become independent of the parent company.
Kiba's situation differed from his. The Inuzuka family was retainers for the Senju family, and had been for centuries, dating back to feudal Japan. Essentially, the Inuzuka clan provided bodyguards for the Senju family.
Despite the closeness that the all the families shared, Sasuke surprisingly did not know the name of the person Kiba was supposedly guarding, the heir of the Senju, the next president of the Konoha Alliance. From his knowledge of the Inuzuka-Senju tradition, an Inuzuka would be assigned a Senju at birth to guard for the rest of his or her life, and more often than not, in the past, there would be more than one Inuzuka guarding just one Senju.
Yet, the Third Great War had wiped out the majority of both clans, leaving only one Inuzuka to guard a Senju.
Kiba, as the heir to the Inuzuka family, was entitled from birth to protect the heir of the Senju, who still remained unknown to the public.
Sasuke wondered just how much this elaborate scheme came from the brains of the CEO of the Konoha Alliance. He nodded his response to the other male, and walked away, hoping that this time he could actually get away alone.
'That plan failed,' admitted Sasuke despairingly.
"Ne, Sasuke-kun, who's Tsunade-sama?
He hoped for some mercy from any deity out there.
Saturday couldn't come any faster. Between the constant nagging of his fangirls and his obvious evasive maneuvers from Itachi, he could hardly catch his breath.
Getting into the Konoha Alliance building wasn't hard, as he was the heir to Uchiha Corporations. He had been to the building for more times than he could count in his life since his family's company building wasn't that far and he had, as a child, delivered files between the two buildings.
Walking down the hall to the meeting room where the receptionist had told him the meeting was going to be held, he noted the absence of people in the hallways. In other hallways of the 99-story building, there were always signs of life, figures racing up and down the hallways, doors almost always open; but this hallway lacked the usual luster of the lively building.
He doubted that this incident was pure coincidence, but let the subject float into the back of his mind.
Suddenly, a door opened several doors down and someone stepped out into the hallway. Long dark red spiked hair, that didn't flare out like his hair did, topped a person shorter than him, with whisker-like scars marring each cheek.
He blinked, trying to keep his surprise off his face. This was Kyuubi?
Kyuubi wore a black pinstriped dress shirt, a bit of smooth cream-color skin peaking out of the v of the shirt, with black slacks with gold-colored embroidery. There probably was a matching jacket for those pants, but… Kyuubi looked… nice.
Sasuke would not lower himself to say that this she-man (still can't tell whether he is really a guy or a girl) was hot; he could appreciate aesthetics, and if asked, he would reply with a "Nice" but that would be all.
"Kyuubi, get back in here! We need to talk—"
Behind Kyuubi came Tsunade, standing nearly half a head taller than the redhead. The last time he had seen the Konoha Alliance president up close was at a conference held at the Uchiha Corporations building several months ago. He noticed that she looked younger than last time.
Kyuubi spun around to face the president and replied loudly and forcefully, "I'm fine. You saw those music scores; my music is fine!"
"I'm not talking about your music, Kyuubi! Your health is not your music!"
At that point, the two had noticed his presence. None of them said anything.
Sensing this was the perfect moment to escape the K.A. president, Kyuubi started walking off. "I'll send you the scores for the next few ones I wrote up today."
"Damn it, Kyuubi! Get back here! I'm not done with you!"
But Kyuubi didn't come back.
Tsunade sighed and turned to look at Sasuke, noticing his blank expression, a sign of an Uchiha. She furrowed her eyebrows, wrinkles suddenly appearing on her forward. "Come on in, Uchiha," she gestured for him to enter her office.
He followed her into her spacious office, an office that looked extremely normal. He half-expected Senju Tsunade's office to be cluttered with various knick-knacks from all over the world that she got during her travels before succeeding the Sandaime, the previous president Sarutobi Hiruzen.
Looking around, Sasuke also fully expected the room to be drowning with paperwork that the Godaime neglected to finish; he heard about the woman's chronic laziness and about the amount of work required as president of the largest conglomerate in Japan. Yet the room was surprisingly neat, with very little mess, though he did think that this room was only a secondary office for the woman, a meeting place for people already in regular contact with Konoha Alliance.
Sitting behind the desk, she opened a drawer and pulled out a stack of papers. "This is your contract. Itachi has already negotiated most of it, so all you have to do is sign."
Taking the contract out of Tsunade's hands, Sasuke quickly started reading it. He trusted his brother had the best intentions in mind when negotiating the clauses of the contract, but the man was… strange in ways.
"What about the conditions of my leaving this band?"
Tsunade searched his face for any clue on the meaning behind his words, but didn't bring up any of her suspicions. She coolly replied, "Kyuubi offered you a position in his band. You can leave any time you wish, and he will not hold you back. Of course, the moment that you announce to the public that you're leaving, your contract terminates and the special conditions stated within the contract come into effect."
"Hn." The contract was pretty straight forward; there were no outstanding or unusual conditions that required special attention. More importantly, there were no loopholes that gave him any wiggle room. It was a standard contract, one expected from a company as grandstanding as Konoha Alliance.
Stilling reading the contract, he didn't look up at the Konoha Alliance president and asked, "Just what exactly does Kyuubi expect me to do in this band of his?"
The woman shrugged, irritating him. "How am I supposed to know? I gave Kyuubi full jurisdiction over the affairs of this project; of course, Hatake Kakashi will be handling most of it anyway."
Sasuke frowned. Hatake Kakashi produced several of the world's top artists, models, and the like, but the man was the laziest, chronically tardy dumbass alive. If the man were left to handle his own affairs, he would have been dead in the gutters within a week. Sasuke knew of Hatake Kakashi from personal experience; the man had teamed up with one of his distant cousins, Uchiha Obito during the Yondaime's reign over the Konoha Alliance.
He calmly repeated, "Hatake Kakashi will be handling the affairs of this project?"
Luckily, Tsunade understood the notion that he hinted at. "Hatake Kakashi will handle most of the affairs, but Kyuubi has been authorized veto power." Noticing that he still hadn't signed the contract or even made the motion of looking for a pen, she said, "I'll give you a week to think about your contract, but Kyuubi wants a response immediately."
Inwardly, he twitched. Kyuubi seemed to be an impatient bastard.
Standing up from her seat, she said, "While you think about this offer, how about we go see how Kyuubi's doing in the Glass Box? He should be working with his drummer right now."
Without a word, Sasuke stood up and went along behind Tsunade, his contract still in hand.
"Damn it, Kiba. It's supposed to go like this!"
"I am doing it like that!"
"No, you're not!"
"Yes, I am!"
"Would the two of you just shut the hell up?"
Both Kyuubi and the other person in the room turned around to see Tsunade standing in the doorway with Uchiha Sasuke a little bit behind her. The two stepped into the room once sure that the arguing stopped.
Kyuubi grinned. "We were just having a discussion about the differences in our musical styles."
Tsunade raised an eyebrow and droned out, "I see…" She paused before changing the subject by turning to the young man following her. "Uchiha-san wanted to see how you're doing, Kyuubi, with your project. He also probably wants to ask just what he is to this band."
The redhead leaned to the side to peer at the man in question. He blinked, "Uchiha Sasuke, right? Itachi's younger brother?"
For the briefest moment, Sasuke twitched in annoyance, but no one noticed. "Yes."
With those red eyes, Kyuubi looked him up and down, analyzing him for who-knows-what, and he felt a shiver go down his spine. There was something unnerving about this man, something that said that this man wasn't exactly a man but something more.
"He'll play the guitar."
That shook him out of the stupor that those penetrating crimson eyes left him in.
Everyone looked at Kyuubi in surprise. Tsunade repeated, slightly shocked, "He'll play the guitar?" Briefly glancing at Sasuke, she turned back to Kyuubi and asked, "How do you know he plays guitar?"
"His fingers look like guitarists' fingers," Kyuubi replied, as if that explained everything.
Both Kiba and Tsunade looked skeptical but accepted it without another word of protest. They trusted Kyuubi, seemingly, and they blindly went along with what the redhead said despite not knowing whether or not what he said was true.
But damn it, what he said was true. Sasuke knew how to play the guitar; out of all the instruments that he knew how to play, guitar was the one that he played most often, not because he liked it or anything like that, but it was the only instrument that was most handy when Itachi demanded him to play something.
"Itachi probably makes you play the guitar, right?"
Sasuke fixed his eyes on Kyuubi, surprised confusion flitting across his eyes.
Kyuubi continued on, sensing that Sasuke was probably not going to answer. "Itachi used to play, you know? He played professionally for about two years before he had to stop."
He never knew that about Itachi. His older brother never told him these things; heck he didn't know when his older brother did these things.
"This was several years ago, so you probably don't remember, but he was a really big hit back then, rode the music industry as Tengen."
Tengen, he remembered that. A solo artist under the Konoha Alliance label with the name Tengen charted #1 on Oricon with his very first single. He was around six or seven at the time, and he had asked Itachi to get that single. Itachi had chuckled, something that rarely happened nowadays, and handed him the CD on the spot. Back then, he thought it was magic and that Itachi could make thing appear out of thin air, but now it all made sense.
With a fond smile, Tsunade added in her two cents, "I remember that. You helped produce his works."
Kyuubi helped produce his brother's works nearly a decade ago? That made the man probably thirty at least!
Kiba laughed suddenly. "I remember when the Sandaime introduced you to him as his new producer. The look on his face was priceless!"
Sasuke inwardly frowned. Kiba was there when Itachi met Kyuubi?
At that moment, the redhead noticed something about his face that changed the focus of the conversation. "You don't know much about what goes on in Konoha Alliance, do you, Sasuke?"
He didn't say anything; there was nothing he could say, because it was true. All his life, he had focused on the Uchiha Corporations and how he support the company; he was almost always at the U.C. building, if he wasn't at home or school. He had always thought that his life was set and that he didn't have to worry about life or anything outside of what he did. But… why did he suddenly feel so small?
The contract stared back at him.
The benefits didn't really matter to him. Work hours were flexible but dependent on the leader of the band, but according to Tsunade, he wouldn't have to worry too much and her word held much weight even though he wasn't one to normally believe people's word. Everything about the contract didn't hurt him in anyway.
"Still wondering if it's a good idea?"
Sasuke swiveled around in his chair to see Itachi leaning in the doorway. Itachi walked over to his bed and flopped down, probably catching a break from the endless paperwork mounting on his desk.
Out of the blue, Sasuke decided to ask, "Did you like being Tengen?"
Itachi's eyes flickered over to him for a moment. "I love music, you know that, Sasuke, but I gave up my life as Tengen for the company."
'That doesn't tell me anything,' thought Sasuke cynically.
"But what I can tell you is that from what I know of Kyuubi, all the band members will have to give up this project in the future," confessed Itachi, not really revealing much about Kyuubi.
Sasuke, seeing an opportunity for what it was, immediately latched on. "What do you mean 'all band members'?"
Itachi, knowing what Sasuke was doing, let him have the chance. "Inuzuka Kiba has to take up his traditional duties as a convoy for the K.A. president, and your other band mate will probably be Hyuuga Neji."
Snapping his head in his brother's direction in surprise, he demanded, "What do you mean?"
"Kyuubi has always had good relations with the Hyuuga clan, especially with Hyuuga Hinata and Hyuuga Neji, since they are all around the same age. Besides, other than Nara Shikamaru, Hyuuga-kun is the only one to able to discern any reason out of Kyuubi's actions."
Frowning, Sasuke admitted that he was confused. He knew that he grew up isolated from the rest of the Konoha Alliance compared to his peers, and the reason for it stemmed from his parents, moreover his father, Uchiha Fugaku. Itachi, on the other hand, had grown up half in the U.C. building and the other hand in the K.A. building so he knew more about the inner workings of K.A. better than him, but actually acknowledging all that hurt his ego.
"Besides," his brother continued, "Hyuuga-kun is a prodigy, not so much like how Kyuubi is a musical prodigy, but I bet Hyuuga-kun would play the bass, no matter if you accept Tsunade-sama's offer or not."
He scowled at his brother for openly informing him that he wasn't exactly needed with the project.
Itachi got up from the bed and headed out without another word, probably feeling that he wasn't needed anymore. Itachi had the annoying habit of knowing when his presence was need despite no foreknowledge at all, so he made the most out of it by putting it to use with Sasuke.
Sasuke knew from the start that he wasn't really needed, so it was honestly his choice if he really wanted to go through with the contract.
After all this time, he still couldn't discern how Kyuubi was able to pick him out of a crowd of reporters or even the reason for Kyuubi picking him. If he signed the contract, he would probably get the answers, but if he didn't, then he would never know.
If he didn't sign, his life wouldn't change. He would still be dodging fangirls and getting through high school. He would go to college, get a degree, and get a job at his family's company. He would work there for the rest of his life, maybe find a wife, have a few children, not inherit the company, and die a nice and quiet death.
If he didn't sign, his life would be very quiet.
The moment Kyuubi called him out in that crowd of reporters, his life became chaotic and he didn't know if he liked it.
He stared at the contract and knew that the next week would be a long one.
Author's Notes: Whatever… I've finished this chapter. I had this chapter sitting in my hard drive for a while since I didn't know how to finish it. Taking it from a non-emo Sasuke viewpoint is harder since he's not depressed or out to destroy the world. I don't know the update status for the next chapter, but I'm currently working on my Harry Potter fanfiction. Since I've been getting a lot of reviews for updating New Future, I'll work on that next since I have my outlines and a general idea of what to write. Don't expect much out of the next update from me.
matte - wait
Thank you for reading and please wait for the next update!