Character concepts are accredited to Masashi Kishimoto, the creator of Naruto. Story may coincide with other stories or events and was not committed intentionally. In mentioning this, I will not be held responsible for any kind of copyright infringement.
Yeah Yeah Yeah I want to upload this next chapter!
"My little baby, we're finally home," Hinata was relieved but at the same time, anxious. She was not sure how the Uchiha clan is going to interfere with her and her baby's life. Rocking her baby in her arms, she gazed lovingly at its face. Undeniably, her baby had some of Sasuke's traits – long feathered lashes, and his lips. The rest of features were similar to hers. She gently squeezed her baby's chubby hands and brought to her lips. She promised that from this point on she would devote all her love and attention to raising her child. When Hinata planted a kiss on the baby's hand, it began to giggle with joy. His clear and sparkling eyes were met with a melting smile.
"Welcome to this world," Hinata whispered.
During the next 5 months, Hinata barricaded herself in the West Wing of the mansion, caring for her baby. Usually new mothers complain about the long hours due to the baby's activities – diaper changing, feeding times, playing time, and cries throughout the night. However, Hinata's patience level is immeasurable. She can wake up at odd hours in the night to feed her child and still wake up feeling refreshed.
As for the infant's name, Hinata had trouble thinking of one that was suitable. Due to the fact that Naruto had been there when she was able to go into labor, she decided the most appropriate person to take on naming-task should be him. Naruto researched for days, gathering a list of names, and trying to narrow it down during his visits at Hinata's place. Finally, there were able to agree on Hiroyuki, meaning widespread happiness. Hinata thought that in this life she was not able to obtain happiness and the life that she wanted. However, with little Hiroyuki being born, his warmth and presence granted her happiness. She hopes that in the future, he will be able to do the same for others and for the person that he loves.
During the few months, Sasuke was able to see Hiroyuki for an hour at a time. His time was preoccupied with things that were happening in the Uchiha Company. Unfortunately, the company has encountered some issues with the overseas oil drilling project. Additionally, the underground operations seemed to have stalled, lowering income by 15%. Itachi, the rest of the Uchiha and Akatsuki Operation teams and members have consistently met to rule-out possible interferences. But the system of operations that could have infiltrated their own was complex and secretive that it required more time for them to be certain. Of course, Sasuke had mentioned the possibility of Neji controlling these operations. However, as Itachi reminded him, Neji was his secretary therefore he had to report most the operations to him. Not only that, Sasuke has always kept a close eye on him, so how was Neji able to create these large scale changes without him noticing? Sasuke was confounded by this, but his gut has never betrayed him before. Until he had more substantial evidence, he will openly declare his thoughts on this issue.
His only solace and comfort was the little amount of time he spent with Hiroyuki and Hinata. The only thing is Hinata would not allow him to bridge the chasm between them. When he visits, she either ignores him or pretends to be occupied by some nonexistent task. Because of this, he has run out of ideas on how to make Hinata talk to him again.
On top of these issues, Sasuke's health has not been in its top condition. Initially, the migraines only occurred once a week for the first two months. Eventually, the frequency of the migraines increased as the months went by – from twice a week to almost three times per week. Sasuke thought to himself that it was only due to the stress. Anyways, if it is something that painkillers can take care of, it probably isn't something that requires critical attention.
The shock of seeing the child as not his own has left Neji in the depths of depression. As a way to deal with this, he would visit the bars every night, drowning himself in brandy, vodka, and rum. And each time he drinks himself to unconsciousness, Tenten would be nearby to escort him home.
One night, Tenten met him inside a bar, and said flatly, "I'm not going to keep this up. Either you need to stop with this… drinking habit, or you will not see me anymore."
Swirling the drink in his glass, Sasuke didn't seem bothered by the ultimatum. "It doesn't matter to me whether you come see me or not. Don't think that after one night—"
"I'm pregnant," Tenten interjected.
Neji stopped swirling the cup, but held it in place. Maintaining a bland tone, he asked "What does it have to do with me?"
"I thought you should know, but I guess it doesn't make a difference at all." Tenten straightened her spine. If she was going to make this last night, she wanted to leave a dignified memory. Taking one last glance at Neji, she strolled out of the bar.
"Not wanting to butt into your business, sir. But shouldn't you go after the lady? After all, she is pregnant with your child. As a man, shouldn't you take responsibility?" The bar tender timidly asked Neji, not wanting to draw strong reactions from a drunken man.
"There's no hope between us." He tapped his glass and said "Just serve the drinks. If you give me a few more, I'll let you on a little secret."
"Sir, I hardly think I'm the person to talk about your secrets with," the bartender responded uneasily.
"Let me ask you," Neji's eyes were glistening with fierceness, but his tone remained calm. Through the dim lighting, the bar tender caught a glimpse of a smirk on his customer's face. He was afraid that what he's going to hear is not something that should be heard at all. Neji continued, "Did you make some investments into Uchiha stocks? I think this would be a good time to pull out your investments before you lose it for good." Chuckling at his own words, Neji gleefully cheered, "Drinks up to that!"
"I knew this was going to happen, but I didn't know how soon." Itachi looked worriedly at the stock market paper headlines. In bold font, International Crisis for the Bigs! was written at the very top. Apparently, the recession in United States has led to companies pulling out investments from the country. This not only affected the US and its investors, it also impeded the growth of companies outside of US who had relations to those. Now European Union was in financial crisis because of the loans and low GDP. Asia was not faring any better, especially this cause a major shift in their fiscal policies and allied relations. Big corporations were especially in jeopardy, considering that the alliance shifts caused uncertainty in investments overseas. And this morning, their stock value reflects strongly of that fluctuation.
"Itachi, I thought we've already made the proper precautions," Sasuke pointed out. Surely the situation is not as bad as he imagined it to be.
"Precautions or not, those ties seemed to have dissolved when we were not looking. And now the political upheaval in the Middle East has put our investments on stall, we cannot continue the oil drilling project there." Itachi ungraciously raked his fingers through his hair, causing it to stand up from its gelled style. "Not only that, it seems that none of our business associates hope to continue our previous proposed projects. This is just unprecedented. Our losses are totaling near billions."
"Businessman," Sasuke snorted out of disgust. Being one himself for such a long period of time, he knows there are unspoken rules in the game – if it does not benefit you, getting rid of it or detaching yourself from it is the best option. "You know those pigs are only looking after their own skin. But the bigger problem lies with our underground operations. It's like the Akatsuki organization is being led by a new leader, Danzo. He has been banning every single operation we've been trying to put through. I've been trying to get the private investigators on his tail, but they usually end with nothing."
Itachi sat next to Sasuke, chin on balled up fists. "Look at these pictures and let me know what you think." He flung a dozen pictures onto the coffee table. Sasuke spotted one with Danzo standing in front of the Hyuuga Corporation. Not believing his eyes, he scanned all the scattered photographs. One photo was in a very dark club with Danzo standing near a girl with a dark sequin dress. Upon closer look, he made out the silhouette of the girl, it was Hanabi. Trying to deny it, he hurriedly said, "Anybody can appear in the public places."
"Being blind to the evidence isn't going to help you at all," Itachi softly muttered. "How is Hinata? How has she been doing?"
"If you are trying to accuse my wife of leaking news of our operations- just so you know, she has not contacted her family, not even once, during these past months.
"You sure there's no way she would have contacted her family? Like flying pigeons," Itachi jested.
"Why are you trying to accuse her instead of Neji?! Obviously he has more beef with us than Hinata. Plus she is my wife!" Sasuke bellowed. There was no way this could be true. He believed wholeheartedly that Hinata would not be capable of such treachery. Suddenly, excruciating pain pierced through his head.
"Sasuke... Sasuke..." Itachi called to him but the voice becomes more and more faint. Before he was able to grasp the situation, he fell cold on the floor.
"This better than we've planned. The rats in suits are running with their tails between their legs, and the black market sharks are hunting for us." Hiashi slowly glided towards Danzo and Hanabi, with two flutes of his finest champagne. "Cheers to our plan."
"But perhaps it is still too early to celebrate our successes because we haven't heard from the mysterious inner operator that has been collaborating with us on this scheme. I feel that the business corporate leaders would not have backed down as easily as they would have if it wasn't for the intel that he has been sending. I can't quite pinpoint it, but I feel that his plan is still in progress."
Danzo nodded in agreement. "Hanabi-sama is right. It is good to be careful. After this outbreak, we need to follow up with putting pressure on the government to force them to put sanctions on Uchiha's import and export activities. I know of a good way to expose the illegal dealings of the Uchiha's and the Akatsuki's for these past several years."
"I'm not sure if I want to sacrifice the Akatsuki's, when they could be used for our benefit." Hiashi looked concerned. It wasn't easy to build relations with an operating group of the undergrounds as large as Akatsuki's. Plus, if he could take advantage of that connection, he could be expand to Uchiha's industrial level.
"Hiashi-sama, it is a necessary sacrifice for the sake of toppling the Uchiha's empire. However, I have managed a side group who operates alongside the Akatsuki's. If you ever need any of our assistance, we'll be glad to lend it."
"Well, if you say so..." Hiashi disappointingly sipped his champagne. A thought suddenly hit him, which made him almost choke. Hiashi sputtered, "Oh yeah... Hanabi, any leads on the mysterious person?"
"Nothing yet," Hanabi reported.
"I think it is time to see how your sister is doing," Hiashi smirked.