A/N: Okay, I've had this idea for over two months; since the start of June, really. So in NO WAY have I copied anything from my dearie I Spaz With Pizzazz's story, Gun To My Head, though you should still definitely check it out. :D I worked on it during Taiwan instead of Lightning, -coff- and finished it on the airplane!! Also, the POV will constantly change between Sasori, Deidara, and a few more characters at random. I'll try to make it as stupidly clear who's POV it is without writing it out and making you feel insulted. As for the very beginning part on the cliffside with the gunz... you decide. ;D A few more notes about the story at the end of this chapter. Otherwise, have fun and please R&R! 3
Credits: -insert clever disclaimer- I Spaz With Pizzazz beta'd this for me, she did. -hugg-
Gun 'Em Down
"You can't do this!" My voice was hoarse with terror and disbelief as I looked into his smug, triumphant eyes. The breath was caught fast in my throat, and I couldn't inhale without shuddering. The rocks under my feet scrabbled as I stumbled shakily back, and I could feel the ledge under my heels.
"But I just did." He purred, a sick smirk curling his lips. My eyes widened as he cocked the heavy machine that he wielded, the ominous click being followed by many others from his comrades' weapons. Bile rose in my throat as it sunk in that he was dead serious.
I couldn't back up any more; by now, the edge of the cliff was jutting into the arch of my feet. My stomach flipped as my balance wavered for a moment, and I flailed my arms to stay on the ground. I could hear them laughing at my pitiful performance, and when I looked up, his gun was aimed between my eyes. I staggered a bit more, my chest frozen as my lungs refused to take in any air. The world spun quickly, and then my feet slipped backwards on the rocks.
"Fuck," I spat bitterly before falling, the sounds of gunfire ringing in my ears.
The air outside was immensely humid; inhaling, my lungs seemed to fill with the liquid atmosphere. I blinked, looking towards the mountain that loomed above the town, the peak extending past the topmost clouds. It was a miracle that the range still even existed, what with the new construction the world was rushing to create.
I'd go to the tallest peak; it'd help me relax after the exams I'd had to take that day. Slinging a leg over a side of my hoverbike, I turned on the magnet, and an electric buzz hummed through the air as the bike rose slightly. I pulled away from the parking lot, not bothering to take out my crash helmet. Despite the new technology of the world, Boone was still the laziest town in North Carolina.
Weaving through the various cars that blared at me in annoyance, I reached my apartment quickly enough. Parking my hoverbike next to the building, I dismounted as the magnets stopped their circulation, letting the vehicle rest on the ground. Entering the lobby, the manager looked lazily up from her newspaper, blinking blearily at me. "Sasori," she greeted monotonously. I nodded back at her, before moving up the stairs to my room on the second floor. Sometimes, I seriously regretted getting an apartment, instead of just staying in a dorm on campus. However, I'd lived in that orphanage long enough to get sick of having a likewise environment, full of screeching teenagers who insisted on having Nerf water gun fights in the building.
Jamming my key into the lock of my beaten door, I pressed my full weight against the wooden barrier, praying it would eventually give way. Finally, the paint that stuck the door to its frame cracked, and I entered my apartment. It was extremely sparse, comprising of only a shabby kitchen, one miniscule bedroom and an attached bathroom.
I threw my wallet onto the couch, calling out to no one in particular, "I'm home, and my day was fine, thanks." Sitting down at my sofa, I mused aloud, "When do we want to go to the mountain?" Pondering this, I replied slowly, "We want to go now so I can stop talking to myself like a schizophrenic nutcase." God, twenty years of life without family or friends was finally taking its toll on me.
I walked to my sink, filling a Filter-Clean™ bottle with the liquid. Idly, I watched the container filter the water, the debris being sucked into the chamber as it drained away the chlorine and God-knew-what-else this place had running through the waterlines. Once the process was done, I pulled the filter chamber out of the bottle, wringing out the contents in my sink. Sighing, I threw my cell phone on the table next to my wallet. No way in hell was I going to get a signal up in the mountain range, much less a call, to start with.
Done, I walked out to my bike, nodding again at the landlady on my way out. Reaching under the hoverbike's handle-bar, I unfastened the helmet and placed it on my head before mounting the vehicle. The long, winding road up the Appalachians could seriously kill someone.
Said road took about thirty minutes, most of which was just me veering ridiculous corners, as the magnets in the road were old and jerked the bike around. But, the view at the top was amazingly worth it. Once my ears popped, I knew that I was nearing the peak. So I dismounted from my bike, wheeling it into one of the random parking lots that were spread throughout the mountain range. Locking it with the number code on the end of my handlebars, I took off my helmet and clipped it to the bike. This was the furthest I wanted to take it up, and I'd easily hike the rest of the way up.
The humidity was a lot better up there, though when a cloud would drift into me, I would feel just as saturated as before. To my relief, there was nobody left at the top, save for a black SunCar™, a solar-powered rip-off from the SmartCar™. Walking past the vehicle, I made my way up the rocky terrain, past the many signs warning hikers that it was illegal to be up here past seven in the afternoon, due to new, ridiculous safety regulations. I glanced at the digital clock under the words—6:34 PM, Friday. It was no matter; I could scale my way up and down the mountain peak blinded.
I continued to ascend the mountain trail until I broke the path through the blocked off cliffside where I had made it my home. But ducking under the rope restricting hikers from crossing, I saw another figure already sitting in my spot, where no one else ever dared to find, due to the law enforcements. No—not in my spot, but rather next to it, as he'd been waiting for me. I hesitated, debating whether or not I should leave my cliff, and find another place of serenity. Then he turned around, and looked at me with the wide blue eye, his long, golden sheets of hair swinging slightly from the mountain gusts of wind. "Hey there, yeah." And his smile was so sweet, so calm, yet so contaminated…
I sat down next to him and greeted him back.
"What're you doing here, yeah?"
"Uhm, this is where I always go." I amended sheepishly, as if I'd been the one to stumble across his space.
He nodded. "Yeah, it's a really peaceful place, isn't it? My name's Deidara, by the way."
"I'm Sasori. Akasuna." I weakly added my unconfirmed surname.
A small, twisted smile flitted across his face for the briefest moment, andthen it disappeared, leaving his features as smooth as before. "So, you're a college student, yeah?"
"Yes, just in this town. And you?"
He moved a black gloved hand at the setting sun coolly. "No, I got special teachings for that, if you will, yeah. I work with the government now."
"You don't look like it," I commented, looking at his apparel, which consisted of a fishnet top with a black belly tank top over it, matching loose pants, and fingerless gloves. Even his high ponytail somehow commanded impressive attention. He seemed the opposite of what I'd always imagined the government—stiff suits and matching faces.
Deidara chuckled lightly, tugging a strand of his hair. "Yeah, I surprise a lot of people about that. What year are you in, anyways? In college, I mean?"
"I'm a junior," I answered, not wanting the conversation directed towards me.
"Really? You look like a sophomore. In high school. No offense, yeah."
I cringed, but answered, "None taken. And I get that a lot anyhow. I've always had a growth problem or something."
"Hm, that couldn't have been fun, yeah. So what're you majoring in?"
"Biology. I did Pre-Med too, though I still have no idea what I want to be."
"At that college? Biology?"
"Well, I was raised in the orphanage close by, and without parental support, it was too big a trouble to move far away…"
"I'm an orphan too, yeah."
I paused, looking at him with widened eyes. "Seriously?"
He nodded casually, as if it were no coincidence at all. "Yeah, but it's never been a big deal, just two less adults in my life."
"…Not to pry, but since when have you been orphaned?" I asked as politely as I could, turning the conversation toward him.
"Ah, since birth. Before, even." But he seemed to firmly object explaining 'before', so I moved on.
"So… how long since you've been in Boone?" Great subject transition, Sasori, you dumbass!
Deidara shrugged, his fingers flicking up in a count. "I don't know, maybe a week? I'm on business, yeah, and I'm supposed to stay as long as it takes for me to do my job."
Interested, I continued. "How long do you expect it to take?"
"That honestly depends. There's a federal problem with someone here, yeah, and I have to get it sorted out. Problem being, I don't know my way around town, and when I'm not working on him, it gets really boring, yeah."
"Well, this mountain's amazing… It's where I unwind when I'm stressed."
He laughed, the vocal gesture harmonizing beautifully with his voice. "I kind of just saw the biggest freaking thing here and drove to it, yeah."
I smiled in return, thinking. Deidara seemed like someone I could trust, and he really was new in Boone. "…I could show you around sometime," I offered, mentally kicking myself as soon as the words left my tongue. Every lesson about not instantly trusting strangers, that I'd heard from the orphanage came flooding back, but his gorgeous azure eye lighting up in gratitude forced me to abandon all of it.
"Really? I was hoping you'd say that, yeah."
I couldn't help it, but the smile grew into a grin.
"But don't you have friends you'd rather hang out with?" He asked concernedly.
A breath of air fell from my lungs. "I have no friends, but I'm not going to spill some tragic story of how they all hated me."
My new acquaintance cocked his head slightly. "Why then, yeah?"
I shrugged carelessly. "Just that no one I ever met appealed to me as a friend. They all seem so… material, I don't think I'd click with them."
Deidara nodded in what I thought might've been approval. "Better lacking bonds than to have them and break them later on, yeah. And thanks, for offering to take me around."
"Anytime. It's not like I've got much else to do."
"Anywhere I should meet you?"
I considered this for a moment, before returning. "I work at the Lone Star; it's a dingy little restaurant near the South Coast hotel. Following?"
"I think I know what you're talking about, yeah."
"Just go there anytime, Saturdays through Wednesdays. I get off at six."
"Thanks, yeah. I really appreciate it."
"It's fine, really."
Then, he reached into a pocket, pulling out a buzzing silver phone, apparently on vibrate. He glared at the caller ID screen a moment before lifting a finger. "Hold on. Sorry, it's my jackass boss, yeah." Pressing a button, he put the device to his ear. "Deidara." Listening for a moment, he snapped, "I'm under Clouds now, Yahiko. It's not the best idea for formalities, yeah." Another pause. "Look, I'll get back to you later and give you a full summary, okay?" Impatiently, he stabbed another button, stuffing the phone back into his pocket. "Stupid asswipe… worst timing ever, yeah."
I blanched in shock. "Did you hang up on your boss?"
He shrugged generically. "Ah, whatever. Yahiko deserves it anyways, yeah."
"But—won't you get in trouble?"
He shook his head easily. "Nah, he needs me, yeah. He wouldn't dare drop me. And," he added, "isn't it 7:20 now? We're not supposed to be up here anymore."
"Oh, that's fine," I assure him, standing up. "It's an easy walk down. Just follow me." Carefully skirting the lip of the cliff and the tree-choked ravine below, I led the way down the peak looking back at him once in a while.
Reaching the topmost parking lot, he thanked me before getting into the black SunCar, which apparently belonged to him. "I'll drop by tomorrow, if that's alright, yeah."
I nodded in agreement. "That's fine. So, see you soon then?"
He started up the vehicle, the solar panel on his room humming softly, as it struggled to suck up the faint, remaining sunlight. "Yeah, and do you need a ride?"
"No thanks," I declined, starting to walk away. "My hoverbike's just in the next parking lot."
"Okay, if that's what you have. Later, Sasori." And then he pulled away, bright blue eye regarding my reflection in the side mirrors.
As I left the redhead on the mountain road, I reached into my pocket, retrieving the phone. Pressing a speed dial, I replaced it at my ear, hearing a computerized female's voice.
"Midori's Bridal Gowns, how may I help you?"
"Deidara Iwa, password Katsu."
The feminine tone was gone, taken by Yahiko's. "Well?"
"You called me while I was talking to the Hitokugutsu, Yahiko," I snarled, annoyance obvious in my voice.
"Tone down the attitude, Iwa, or I might just call you off. But you already found it?"
"It's a male. Kabuto's records were right, just a bit outdated, yeah."
"How so? What'd you get?"
"His name is Sasori Akasuna, he's a junior at Appalachian State University, has an interest in biology, has no idea of his Hitokugutsu powers, and works at a restaurant, probably for tourists, titled Lone Star."
"That's it? You didn't even get his number?"
"He's taking me on a tour of this town tomorrow, yeah, so shut the hell up."
There was a moment's silence on Yahiko's end, before he returned, a dry chuckle sounding on the phone. "Give me as much attitude as your little heart desires, Iwa. You're a gift, you are. How soon can I expect you back?"
"I'm not sure yet," I admitted. "Give me another month at least."
"A month?!" He spluttered, making my ear ache.
"He's dangerous, didn't you tell me? I'm not going to do something assheaded and get stabbed through by one of those freaky tails like Hiruko's yeah!"
"Fine, but make it clean, Iwa." Yahiko growled bad-naturedly.
"Is it ever any other way?" I asked back, my voice sweet.
"Just don't kill anyone, you know the mess we got last time you went on such a long-term mission, yeah."
"It's fine, stop fretting your pretty little head about it." I snarled.
"Alright, I'll leave it to you then. Oh, and keep your gloves on at all costs."
"Yeah, yeah, Mom, bye."
"I still expect to hear from you!"
Only mumbling something back, I hung up on him again. Yahiko had no cause to worry though. This mission was going to be amazingly simple, but it was only so easy for me alone. I'd probably need to talk to Orochimaru though… Humming a note of indecisiveness, I finally jabbed in the snake freak's number, steering down the rugged road.
"Deidara Iwa?" Came the reptilian voice in surprise.
"Miss me yet, Snakey?" I could picture his pale face scowling darkly on the other end, a humorous satisfaction on my part.
"Don't plan on it, Terrorist. What do you want?"
"The Instantly Effective you were bragging about, yeah."
"Why so cautious? I thought you were invincible." He purred sickeningly.
"You know how there was a third one?"
"A third what?"
"Besides Hiruko and Sandaime. A third Hitokugutsu, yeah."
"You're getting it?" He yelped in shock.
"It's a he. And yeah. Like I said, I need Instantly Effective."
"How big a dose?" He asked me, all business now.
"Uh…" I wondered dumbly how doses were calculated.
"How tall is he? And a guess on his weight?"
"He's about up to my chin, but I can't be sure, yeah. And maybe a hundred pounds give or take, what with being a puppet and all, yeah."
"I'll have it ready within a week. When do you need it?"
"Not 'til the end of the month, yeah."
"Perfect. Good doing business with you, Deidara."
"I beg to differ." Ending the call with my last rude comment, I slipped my phone back into my pocket. This could end up being possibly the most exciting mission I'd ever been given.
A/N: Yes, there are gunz. But not yet. Sorry. And I also apologize if it's confusing. Everything will eventually be explained in the end though! Oh, and Orochimaru's not a rapist in this fic! :D Uhmmm... can't think of anything else to explain at the given moment. Any questions and I'll try to answer them as best as I can in your reviews. Speaking of, little purplish-gray button in the bottom left corner of your screen... clickies? :D