A/N: In fact, I do sometimes write hetero pairings. xD Is anyone else surprised? I am. So the cursed plot bunnies were at it again; thus! Another oneshot. I know, I know. Work on your chapter fics, you idiot! But…but it's the plot bunnies… -sigh- So, I wrote this in one day just because. It isn't my favourite, but I liked it enough. So here you are! :3 Please review…?

I don't own Naruto. Next time I'll tell you by using interpretive song and dance, 'kay? :3



(Kurenai's POV)

I don't think either of us expected to fall in love. Since we're ninja, I don't think we should have gotten attached in that way, but… Once in a while the urge to break the rules makes you reach out and touch the hand of someone; and soon enough you'll be touching their heart. Not much later, you'll treasure that heart. And as for yours? They'll take yours just the same. Before you know it, you won't know how to reclaim that heart. More so, you won't even want to.

Keep mine, Asuma. Okay? Forever.

I remember when your heart in my hands was still warm, still alive. In my head, I keep a video of that time, and I play it in my head every night, no matter how much I used to scream for it to stop.

I didn't want to keep watching it, I didn't, because it was simply too sad…but at the same time, I never wanted it to shut off, because it was you.

I remember it. Everything… Back then.



Cradling my swollen stomach, I smiled as the baby gently kicked. I looked up when I noticed a slight whiff of cigarette smoke on the wind, and Asuma guiltily snuffed it out, coming up the path.

"I though you were quitting?" My eyebrows raised, but I wore a smile anyway. Being mad at him never lasted more than a moment. Lately, things had been too happy for brooding anger or even annoyance. Almost too happy, I couldn't help but worry, but I pushed away those thoughts. It was possible for peace to happen. The baby was a tiny proof that good things could happen in this world.

I refused to let the bad things take over me.

"Sorry, sorry. I know. I won't do it again." Asuma sheepishly apologized, his eyes trained eagerly on me. "But how are you two?"

I smiled. "Great."

"Good…" He was grinning as he softly brushed a stray strand of hair from my eyes. "That's all I need to hear… Ah, that makes me feel better already."

Watching him wearily, I asked even though I wasn't sure I really wanted to know, "Is there…something going on with the Akatsuki or Orochimaru…?"

"You don't need to hear about it. I'm sure it's nothing."

There he went again, trying to shield me. I was on leave, yes, but I still deserved to know. "No, I think I do. What's happening now?"

He twitched and sighed, looking like he was yearning for another cigarette. "I wish you'd stop worrying and rest for once. It's not good for you to know all of this; it'll only get you more worked up."

"I may be pregnant, but I can still kick your ass if I want to. Now tell me!"

This made him laugh, and I tried to keep a serious face, not to smile at him. That didn't really work, of course, because seeing him laugh makes me happy, too.

When his breath came back, he finally gave me a shortened version of the answer. "A pair of Akatsuki are around, so I'm leaving on a mission today to go intercept them…"

"Akatsuki? You aren't going alone, are you?"

"No, no. I said to stop worrying, it makes me nervous too…okay? I'll be fine. We'll get them, and I'll come right back. Right back to you two. Alright?"

His soft eyes stared me down, and I nodded, praying to believe him. "Alright." The word was a whisper on my tongue.

Offering me a small kiss goodbye, he smiled down at my stomach, at the baby, before he left.

I felt the tears gathering in my eyes the moment he was out of sight. For some reason, watching him go had never made me feel so hollow before.



…I think maybe I knew he wasn't going to come back like he promised he would. That would explain the funny feeling I had. The feeling of the world skipping.

When the world took Asuma away from me, he still had my heart with him. It's starting to grow back some now, but he'll always hold it.

At first when I heard you were gone, I screamed, Take me with you!

Being alone made me feel so small… Remembering you though made me realize that what I should have be doing was taking Life up in fistfuls and loving each bit of it, because we are all so, so lucky to have it.

Asuma, that's what I'll do.

Don't worry.

Worrying isn't good for you, Asuma.

Look, I'm smiling again, can't you see? It's taken some time, but…it's because I'm thinking of you.