Disclaimer: Masashi Kishimoto is the creator of Naruto. Yue Takasuka owns the manga Good Morning Call, which was the muse for this story. As for me, I simply decided to twist the world of our favourite ninja by adding some of my characters. Therefore, aside from my characters and the plot, I own nothing.
Title: Welcome Home
Genres: Drama, Romance, Humour, Friendship, Angst
Main Pairings: Naruto x Hinata
Romantic Pairings: Shikamaru x OC, Choji x Ino
Romantic Hints: Sasuke x Hinata, Sasuke x Sakura, Shikamaru x Temari, Neji x Tenten
Authoress Note: Ever since I started reading Shogun, by James Clavell, that I decided that it would not hurt to add a few Japanese words here and there. I know some people don't like it, but I thought I could give it a try, and see how it worked. I hope you guys don't mind. Also,I just want to apologize for the errors you'll find; since English is my second language, it's rather hard for me to correct the mistakes that I leave on every page before posting the new chapter.
Summary: A marriage of convenience forces Hinata to abandon her home, and start living by herself. What she was not expecting was to move into her new apartment only to discover that it was also rented to non-other than Uzumaki Naruto, the guy she has loved ever since she was little. With no money and no home to return to, Hinata and Naruto decide to live together as flat mates. But what about Hinata's fiancé? Naruto x Hinata
That could only be described as a bad dream…a very bad dream. Every time she reached out for a piece of clothing, she would hear her father's words echoing through her mind, almost as if taunting her…daring her to leave although she was fully aware that everything would end up the way her father had predicted one way or another.
But at the moment she did not care. All she wanted was to get away from the prison she once called home, and try to be free. It did not matter if that freedom was an illusion…it did not matter if that need of hers was nothing but a silly delusion of hers; she still needed to feel it.
She still needed to get away from those ill-fated chains.
Without bothering to fold her clothes properly, she continued taking what she found essential from her closet and from her bathroom. She barely looked at the things she took; instead, she practically threw everything inside her bag, her eyes scanning her bedroom swiftly yet attentively. She could not forget anything, for she knew she was not going to return for a long time.
At least, that was what she was planning.
As she continued running from side to side, making sure she had everything she needed, her eyes ended up falling on one object that she would eventually throw inside her bag. But when she spotted that same object, she unconsciously stopped moving and stood still, observing what had caught her attention with a blank expression on her face.
A sigh escaping from her lips was what snapped her back to reality, but instead of walking towards her closet, she approached the item she was still staring at. With a pale hand, she reached out for it, and a faint smile gradually blessed her pallid features.
Professor Iruka had been the one to take that picture. In it were all the members that completed the group that was known in their village as 'Rookie 9'. For a moment, her eyes scanned all the familiar faces, and before she knew it, she was sitting down on her bed, her right hand still grasping the frame.
She wondered what they would think about her current actions. She guessed most of them would not even believe that she was indeed going to abandon her house, being that too audacious for her nature. Others would most likely say that she was out of her mind, and not aware of her actions.
But the truth was that she was conscious of what she was doing. She was aware of what everyone would think of her actions, but for the very first time in her life she simply did not care. And surprisingly, that sudden change in her personality was due to her father.
Slowly, she lay down on her bed, now holding the frame against her chest with both her hands, and she stared at her white ceiling. Who would have thought that her father would be the one who would force her to do something so extreme? But then again, it was his fault. No one had asked for him to decide what he had determined; apparently, even one or two members of their clan was against his verdict, but they were too afraid to voice their real opinion.
Instead, the whole clan had eventually given in, and accepted her father's decision. But then again, it was not as if her father needed their permission to do anything; he would require their support yes, but she knew he would still do as he pleased no matter what.
A sudden knock on the door of her bedroom forced her to entitle her head backwards as she informed that whoever was outside was allowed to walk in. She watched the door being unhurriedly opened until a pair of pallid lavender orbs, just like hers, fell on her only to glance at the open bag next to her seconds later.
"Are you sure this is what you want to do?" the newcomer questioned, but instead of answering, she simply sat up again, her back turned to the entrance of her room. Quietly, she glanced down at the frame that was now on her lap. "You know this won't solve anything."
"But it will give me time to think." she replied in her gentle and low tone of voice still without looking behind her, "And right now I think that's what I need. I…I have to do this, I know it's not the best thing to do, but I…I just have to do this."
A sigh was all that followed her words, and for a second she wondered if he was going to try to stop her. The only reason why she had actually told him about her plan was due to the fact that she needed help to find a place to stay in, and she could not do it alone. Thus, she had asked him if he could look for an apartment for her to stay in until that situation was cleared out.
"I'm not going to stop you," he announced, and it was then that she realized she had been holding her breath in anticipation. "I do not agree with this, but you are old enough to know what you're doing. I have also looked for a place for you to stay in. I have asked around, and I found you an apartment, on the opposite side of the village."
Involuntarily, she licked her lips at those words, her eyes still resting on the picture. Then, she straightened her back up, and started moving her torso to the side so that she could finally gaze at the person who was still standing by the doorway.
That was the first time she was actually seeing his growth, and she was quite happy for it. Every time she recalled the past, she would evoke his words, and the way he would look at her as if she was not worth of nothing. But now there he was, standing a few feet away from her, helping her even though he did not agree with her actions.
She knew that he would only tell her father about what had happened if he was ordered to do so, and for that she was extremely grateful. All she hoped was that her selfish wishes did not harm anyone in the future.
"You should leave in one hour." he declared suddenly, and she raised her eyes to look at him, a mix of surprise and confusion written all over her face, and he crossed his arms against his chest. "If anyone asks, you can use a mission as an excuse to abandon the manor. However, if someone discovers that your teammates are here, when you supposedly are away, and asks me about it, I will not lie."
"I would never ask you to lie for me," she said still in the same hushed tone, their eyes locked, and she smiled gracefully at him. "You're already helping me a lot, I cannot ask for anything more from you."
"Contact me, if you ever need anything." the tone of his voice was enough to indicate her that the subject was now closed, and that it was time for her to hurry up. With a short nod, she rose from the bed, and carefully put the frame she had been holding the whole time inside of her bag. He was right; time was too precious to be spent imprudently with words.
"You are to stay at a house that belongs to an ANBU member." the young man standing by the door explained as she finished gathering her belongings, but she sent him a befuddled look at those words. "He barely spends any time at home, and apparently he was thinking about selling it until my offer caught his attention."
Swiftly, he took a paper and a set of keys from inside his pouch, and walked towards her in order to give her the items. Carefully, she grabbed it, and quickly read what was written in the paper; it contained all information that was connected to the apartment, and to the monthly payment. Needless to say when she noticed that she would be capable of paying for the apartment with her savings, she was relieved.
"Now, hurry up."
At those words, she gazed at the young man who was still standing in front of her, and nodded before folding the paper, and put it inside one of her coat's pockets along with the keys. Then, she walked towards her bag, zipped it up, and glanced one last time at her bedroom.
Even now she had to admit that although that was a hasty decision, it was still the best thing to do. With a sad smile, she took in her surroundings, drinking in every detail at same time she promised herself she would never forget how it felt to live in a top-security prison that was supposed to be called 'home'.
Then, her eyes fell on her helper, and a sense of sadness and appreciation erupted from the bottom of her soul. She was sad because she knew that his torment within that residence was far greater than her own, and yet he still managed to stay there. Perhaps that was the real difference between them; he had the courage…he had the audacity to face the elders, while she was still a weakling in that aspect.
"Neji-nii-san," she started as she unconsciously raised the strap of her bag, and rested it on her right shoulder, and then the corner of her lips curled upwards, "Thank you…for everything. I promise I'll return as soon as possible."
"I just want you to be safe." the young man retorted, his arms crossed against his chest once again. "Make sure you contact me everyday, for you know it's my duty to watch over you all the time."
"Yes, don't worry." she reassured with a nod, and with quiet steps she made her way towards the door of her bedroom.
"Make sure to contact me if someone bothers you," Neji informed as he turned around, following the young woman with his attentive eyes, "Hinata-sama."
"Hai," Hinata answered as she looked at her cousin over her shoulder, and then she nodded. "I'll see you later, Neji-nii-san, and please, watch over Hanabi-sama for me."
At those words, Neji bowed, silently reassuring his cousin that everything would be alright during her absence. With one last smile, Hinata looked away from Neji, and stared ahead as she reflexively increased her grip on the strap of her bag.
That was it…
Silently, Hinata gave on step forward, mentally telling herself to never look over her shoulder.
…There was no turning back.
To Be Continued…
Alright, so this is my newest Naruto story. Aside from this one, I am only going to focus my attention in The World of Yesterday. I really want to finish that story so I hope that those who have been waiting for an upload will give me a few more days to write the next chapter down.
As for Welcome Home, I really hope you guys enjoy it. I am currently writing chapter 17, and the plot has suffered several (some even unexpected) twists. I can only hope you will all enjoy the surprised that have been planned.
Thank you for your attention!
~ Maresia Eterna ~