title: Forgive But Never Forget
summery: Because it's not simple and not straightforward and it will take time to heal the wounds. Sasuke and something that could be recovery.
pairing: Team Seven. Sasuke x Sakura
note: This whole thing started as a one shot. Then, it got way to long. Then I read a review of someone that wanted a chaptered story. And thus, this was born. Unfortunately, I can't really write straightforward, chronological stories. So this will be more like a collection of one-shots that are connected and intertwined and - in the end - hopefully tell a complete story.
But, be warned, might fail miserably.
word count: 492 (pathetic, really)
all the right reasons
She remembers him smiling at her, once.
She doesn't remember when and she doesn't remember why, but that doesn't' matter because she has the memory and she holds onto it tightly and reverently and uses it to light up her darkest days. It was all the proof she needed, all the proof she would ever need, that he could be ok. A monster could never smile like that. A devil can't feel joy.
When she remember that smile she also remembers his protection. The way he stood between her and anything that threatened her. She remembers his voice, so close and so serious, tickling her ear, thanking her for something she never understood. She remembers that he was her teammate and that teammates are forever and that you always, always, always protect your fellows.
But she remembers him leaving her too. And the sick feeling of earlier, as she rushed through her village - her home - to the sight of black cloaks with red clouds and him, leading them.
And so, even though it rips open something inside of her and hurts like Hell and reminds her that this is her worst nightmare, her Devil's choice, she makes her decision. Because Naruto has smiled at her more times than she can count. Naruto had been her teammate, is her teammate, would always be her teammate and no matter what, she will protect him. The world may be crashing down around her and she might want to go hide under her sheets and not come out until the world wasn't blood and screams and making choices that could only break her, but she will not let him down.
The shock is plain on his face as she rockets over Naruto's fallen body.
In the time it takes him to recover and his face to shift into a sneer, she has drawn back her fist and let it fly. Around her impossibly small knuckles, the chakra pumps and gathers and becomes the weapon only she has the power to forge. Her punch connects with his already shocked face and she grimaces to hold back the tears as his body soars back and crashes into the ground with a thud that reverberates in the earth below her feet. He struggles up to stand, breathing hard and his body crackling in anger, angrily swiping at the blood that flows steadily from his nose and mouth.
"Foolish," he spits.
"I could say the same," she retorts and lets her body shift into ready mode.
They look at each other and the world tilts and shifts and changes and in the end, they are there, and she is breathing hard and willing herself not to cry and he is laughing without joy and Naruto is pushing himself up with shaky determination. Then, with a twitch of trained muscle, he steps forward. Eyebrows lowering, she charges to greet him.
Sasuke and Sakura fight.