Sakura: Age 20
Mirai: Japanese for the word Future
Mist Village: Diplomat and Surgery
Sakura crossed out her most recent assignment from her little leather bound notebook, as she headed towards the gates of the Mist Village. The two shinobi's standing guard gave her a polite nod that she returned gracefully as she placed her leather-bound booklet back into her small messenger bag that she had slung over her shoulders. She walked onto the empty dirt road surrounded by tall luscious green trees, behind her she could hear the wooden gates being closed. After Water Country's Civil War, all villages were being precocious of visitors, not that the beautiful blue country housing the largest number of missing nin had been very hospitable prior to them trying to slaughter one another for verbal accusations.
Sakura looked ahead towards the slow sunrise over horizon before her.
She had time, she assessed, plenty of time.
She was dressed in her traveling attire. Black gi pants stuffed into black traveling boots, and a dark gray turtle neck top with removable sleeves. Nothing special, besides it took her five days to get to Mist Village and she had to go through three different climate changes – she didn't need to go out of her way to look pretty or appealing.
The only item which looked remotely fashionable was her green shaded glasses that hid her coal black eyes. She found that her new color eyes had little sympathy in them – and it wouldn't do to waste chakra on genjutsu while healing patients and when engaged in combat, she didn't give a damn what her enemy thought of her eyes. So the only reason for her glasses was to give the illusion that her eyes were dark green, it comforted her patients and associates.
She brushed her hair off her shoulders lazily with her hand and allowed it to sway behind her in the wind. She used to sport short hair for practical purposes, but the cons began to out way the pros when she realized the advantages of long hair. A female with long hair meant that others underestimate you as a shinobi, and it also provided the extra feminine touch that Sakura needed on undercover assassination missions.
She was used to being underestimated, for being a girl, for being a Haruno, for being 'just a medic', in the end, her very existence was reason enough for strangers to think of her as weak. But when she traveled to other villages, her passport and documents stated who she was and her presence demanded respect, most ninjas and intellectuals recognized the Ying Seal on her forehead – identical that of the great Hokage.
In her recent mission, the leader of the village was very respectful, after all he expected her to cure his child of a devastating illness.
She, of course, knew all thirteen different methods on how to cure the illness before leaving her home town of Konoha. Then about half an hour before meeting the child, she had deduced the best means of healing the child that would result in minimal brain damage and almost no blood loss. Her Mirai made life easier for her on so many levels.
More levels than she'd be willing to admit.
After all, she would kill Sasuke in cold blood. That hadn't changed in years and no matter how often she tried to deny it, it remained true. Her visions never lied and her Mirai was the only truth Sakura knew anymore. There was no softening it, no sugar coating – it was only a matter of time before her hands would be stained with Sasuke's blood and the more she saw it…the less impact it had on her. Hundreds of times she had seen herself give a final and devastating blow to Sasuke…and she finally accepted it without an ounce of guilt or remorse. It would just happen and there was no reason to feel anything over the inevitable…she had done enough feeling for him already anyway.
Sakura sprinted out into a run after she declared herself a good distance away from the Mist territory. She was faster than she was eight years ago…the day she met her team – the now Legendary Team Seven. Time had changed everything, and now she even had a name in the Bingo book, high A class at that. Yet her teammates had no idea how good she had finally gotten unless they listened to rumors, and Sakura had a feeling that they probably scuffled at them and rationalized it as exaggeration.
She was finally better than all of them, and they had no idea. In actuality no one knew just how good she was. She knew she could probably put up a good fight and defeat Sasuke, Naruto, Kakashi, Yamato, and Sai and that was taking into account of the possibility that their powers had doubled since they left. The only way Kakashi would guarantee his win would be if he traded his remaining natural eye for a Byakugan eye. After all, it would take a Byakugan eye and a Sharingan eye to copy her moves.
She bit her lip in discomfort as her gut clenched in a strange way – a signal that her Mirai was warning her of something.
Something bad was about to happen.
Fog immediately clouded her vision faster than nature would have ever intended. She stopped running and her Mirai played out a hundred different scenarios in a mere second as she realized it was an illusion. Quickly she dispelled it with a simple hand movement.
The fog dissipated with her command.
The pink haired ninja knew most genjutsus and dispelling them had become second nature to her. The only threatening ones that she knew of were those of the genjutsu weaver in the East and Itachi's Demonic Illusions. Thankfully, she had no intentions of encountering either man.
Through her eyes she examined her black and white surroundings – she sensed nothing.
She used the first stage of her Mirai and jumped ahead seeing what would occur if she would remain in place, and if she would continue her journey.
She returned back to the present and did a final search for chakra energies around her. She was unable to locate anything threatening, dangerous, or foreign so with a deep breath she relaxed her tense muscles. Just because she couldn't find anything in twenty minutes didn't mean that there wasn't something waiting for her just a little later.
So to be on the safe side.
She began walking down the open trail, and activated her Mirai – escaping the presenting and walking five minutes into the future. At least if she would die in five minutes she could prevent it.
Because she could prevent everything.
There were a handful of futures that Sakura was well aware she couldn't prevent – like murdering Sasuke, the boy she once loved. She thought maybe she still loved him, maybe…but no. Sakura didn't love anyone anymore; she had nearly forgotten how to feel any sort of true companionship since she was always prepared for someone to backstab and leave her.
Sakura justified that she no longer loved anyone, because love hurt and it was human nature to avoid pain. It was an act of self preservation. She was tired of the distrust and even more, she was tired of the lies. She was equally tired of getting left behind and not being accepted.
But now, being able to see the lies before they happened, discovering the deceits before they were revealed…Sakura no longer wanted anything to do with anyone…especially not Team Seven. They could go off on their little save Sasuke mission for the rest of their lives if they wanted to.
She closed her eyes as she continued her peaceful walk – she was becoming agitated with her own thoughts and with intense concentration she went through the motions to clear her mind, unfortunately, with outstanding failure. Her mind, against her own wishes, traveled to the day Team Seven truly fell apart. Or maybe it had fallen apart long before then, and Sakura was unable to pinpoint the underlining hints in time to prevent it.
Sakura internally mused that it would be the five year anniversary of their departure from Konoha in a week and the four year anniversary of her removal from Team Seven.
Her mind displayed the vivid memory without a speck of color.
She had long forgotten what color looked like and it had been years since it actually bothered her. The steady progression to color blindness came natural to her and it was a very small price to pay for what she gained.
Sakura recalled Naruto, Sai Kakashi, and Rin? No, Rina…Sakura nodded to herself as she remembered watching them leave with their new medic. She didn't shed a single tear in front of them as Naruto promised to bring Sasuke back, her one true love.
Of course it was a lie; both Naruto bringing him back and Sasuke being her one true love.
She didn't wish the team good luck or give them any encouragement. She just stared at them, like a ghost silently observing its surroundings moments after death – there but not there; an intangible entity. She didn't see their mission as a mission to bring back Sasuke. Instead, in hindsight, she now saw what really happened. Her team moved on without her. Rina was a more experienced medic ninja and Tsunade didn't believe Sakura was ready. The unfairness of being a medic was if you were capable of A-class wound healing, you could only go on B-class missions. The reasoning was for safety precautions because medics were considered support and support was considered the weakest link. Especially since most medics were not skilled in offensive styles and their defenses were usually just subpar which meant they had to be protected. By not sending Sakura, and sending an ANBU alumni medic who had been through much worse than the S-class mission of Sasuke Retrieval – the chances of success tripled. Sakura was a hindrance.
Tsunade tries to comfort her apprentice, saying that she was only fifteen years old and just needed more practice. It was easy for Sai – he was trained since birth to be an emotionless, heartless, ANBU killing machine. There was always someone training him – always someone looking over his shoulder and making sure he was perfect. Naruto had someone too – Jiraiya. Besides the short escapades of wandering into bathhouses, the old man placed Naruto as his top priority…Sakura – she wasn't anyone's top anything. Tsunade was Hokage, and Hokage meant that the blonde busty woman was lucky to have a few sober hours a week to train with her student.
Sakura's internal self snapped at her. She was losing focus. She silently reprimanded herself for dwelling on what was for much longer than necessary. It didn't matter what happened in the past. The future was what was important; her Mirai was important.
Nartuo wouldn't find Sasuke. She would.
They wouldn't bring him back. She'd kill him.
That was a fact.
Suddenly a huge curved blade with no hilt came from the darkness of the forest and struck Sakura at her slide, slicing right through her rib cage. She didn't notice it coming at her because she wasn't concentrating enough on her surroundings. It just proved that the past was what would get her killed. She didn't scream as she felt the pain vibrate through her body and her knees gave out sending her to the ground.
She had no reason to heal the wound or even get up to fight her enemy.
With a blink of her eyes she returned back to five minutes ago.
Thirty degrees to my right in four minutes and fifty-seven seconds.
She absentmindedly placed her hand into her bag and kept it there, making sure the position she had her arm locked in looked comfortable and natural – not at all suspicious. As she walked, she went ahead in time in real-time to conserve chakra and decided not to do anything about the attempted murder to see if maybe she survived the hit and could identify the one responsible. 6 minutes and fifteen seconds into the future, a rogue ninja with an unidentifiable headband around his large tanned bicep walked from the depths of the forest and approached her lying body. Sakura couldn't make out the symbol of his headband because of the way he had tied it and she took note that he didn't wear a shirt or any form of protection – cocky bastard. The kunoichi also saw the different cuts and deep scars that he sported around his body.
She scuffled to herself internally, wondering if he thought himself as a powerful ninja, as her present self placed a fingertip on a kunai that was carefully hidden in the lining of her bag. She silently activated the fire tag on it with a one handed seal and continued watching her soon to be murderer approach her limp body in another when.
"It's her, she's down," his husky voice echoed in Sakura's ears as he bent down to examine her injured body.
So there's more than one she deduced, unless he really was talking to himself so loudly. Sakura wouldn't dismiss the idea of the man being insane.
The man tugged Sakura up by the hair, and she could feel a sliver of blood escape the corner of her mouth. Again she refused to heal herself because she wanted to see if the man was there for kidnapping, murder, or torture. "Doesn't look like much, does she?" He asked as he turned over his shoulder but Sakura couldn't see anyone behind him.
She gritted her teeth as her index finger hooked onto another two kunai.
Apparently her murder's friend didn't want to come out. He probably noticed something was wrong when the medic ninja got attacked and refused to heal herself. Smart boy.
She dispelled her Mirai completely and returned to the present.
Two minutes and forty seconds.
She sighed as she looked up to the gray sky which was probably a spotless crystal blue to others. She supposed it was a lovely day.
Lovely day to die…I guess.
She repeated the scenario again in level one Mirai to see if the second man would come out if she healed herself and prepared for a fight. He didn't.
So she remained in the present and tried to keep herself from trying out another scenario – she had to conserve her chakra for the actual fight that was about to occur.
She was almost invincible in battle because her Mirai could be activated quickly, allowing her to look at hundreds of possible decisions in the time it took someone to blink or she could examine her future in real time. She preferred to use it in real time when there was no eminent danger since the slower version used up almost no chakra and placed very little strain on her body. Especially with the upcoming scenario she wanted to wait to see if there would be real danger before putting her Mirai into full drive. She was at a little under fifty percent chakra because of the surgery she had done throughout the night. Using her Mirai in its full potential in its first stage would have been foolish if she wasn't engaged with the enemies.
She also knew that her enemies could only sense six percent of her current energy which would greatly undermine their belief in her ability to fight them off. Excellent chakra control was good for disguising her chakra supply. She had learned a long time ago that having people presume her as weak always gave her the advantage. Plus it had made for a sweeter kill. She had become a vindictive little vixen.
Sakura decided to risk losing a little more chakra because she was just impatient as hell and time was moving too slow. She went ahead two minutes and thirty-four seconds in real time and threw the three explosive kunia's where she knew one of her murderers were located and the other two in the most probable locations of the mysterious enemy.
Hearing a hoarse scream, she knew she hit her intended target but she also felt, more than saw, someone dodge her attack with unparallel speed and run away. It was just a momentary feeling but she had sense that his chakra reserves which were nearly three times her own at max.
Sakura decided to follow the man who ran away, ignoring the injured one in the bushes. She assumed the runaway was also the one that refused to come out but his speed out matched hers tenfold and all her energy spent on trying to catch up was hopeless and seemingly useless.
So she returned back to the present as her mind nagged her with its mental countdown, twenty seconds. She counted backwards with each calculated and collective step.
Sakura wondered if she should have tried to avoid the fight altogether, but it was already too late, her decision was made and she hadn't bothered to look at the outcomes of running away.
She kept her clam exterior as the only sounds in the forest were her footsteps and birds singing in a distance. They were good at hiding; she complimenting them neutrally as she made sure her eyes avoided the spot she assumed them to be waiting in.
Her kunais flew out of her fingers and into the forest with a loud explosion. Quickly she jumped into the depths of the forest on the opposite side of the road and created two clones. She lent both of her clones minimal amounts of chakra – just enough to be detected. She sent one after the man who ran away, and the other scouted the explosion.
Sakura remained nearby with eyes closed behind her green shades and her vision became engulfed by darkness as she concentrated on staying connected to her clones. It was her own special jutsu, she created them like normal but placed a copy of 65 percent of the chakra into the clones eyes and concentrated the same amount into her own. This allowed for better control and she could observe what they saw instantaneously. Her left eye saw one clone and her right eye saw the other – her Mirai worked subconsciously to keep her safe.
The man who had escaped had outran her clone and that was a given so she wasn't surprised, but for her not to chase the man who she had supposedly sensed nearby would have been illogical. She had to make the runaway believe that she was the target he was after.
The other clone examined the area of explosion and noticed that her would be murderer had performed a suicidal jutsu with a final message written in his blood beside him. "You haven't won."
Ironic. He was the dead one after all.
Sakura dismissed the nearby clone and waited five minutes before dismissing her other. After all, five minutes was more than ample time for an average ninja to understand when they are out of their league. At least that's what Sakura wanted the man to think; she was just an average ninja.
The pink haired girl looked ahead into the future once more. Five minutes after she called off her clones nothing occurred to her.
Ten minutes, and she walked peacefully along the road.
Twenty minutes, and she just passed by an elderly man in a wagon pulled by two oxen.
Thirty minutes, and she was crossing a wooden bridge while a pale bird landed in the middle of the railing and stared at her.
Forty minutes and she had reached the spot where she had hidden her ANBU uniform and weapons for the next mission.
Sakura gasped as she returned to the present, it hurt to look further, so she calmed her eyes and sent a wave of numbing chakra into her temples. She began jumping from branch to branch into the depths of the forest for eight minutes before returning to the designated road. Everything went as she had seen it go.
The old man had greeted her and Sakura smiled her soft warm smile – a smile that would rival Sai's in terms of realness. Ten minutes later, Sakura rejoined the depths of the forest and continued east – sidetracking from the civilian road leading to the next Water Country village.
She felt a warm breeze caress her skin like finger tips and shivered – she hadn't felt that kind of soft touch by the wind since…
Sakura's eyes narrowed.
She hadn't felt that type of warm and comforting breeze since she had been cast down into the private library with ancient scrolls to organize – back when she thought herself as truly useless. It was about a year after her team left her and she had committed herself fully to hospital duty, training with Tsunade and Shizune, while simultaneously drowning herself in self pity. No one could say that she wasn't a good depressive.
Sakura unwillingly recalled the day Tsunade had called her into her office after her morning shift in the hospital. It was a time of peace with all the nations and the Hokage was in a wonderful mood. And just like any mood she had, it was a worthy occasion to acknowledge with sake.
Sakura walked into her mentor's office, which was in disarray, since Tsunade declared that paperwork could wait – for a week. Shizune greeted her with Tomtom cradled in her arms and the blonde slammed down her sake cup after taking a healthy shot.
"SAKURA!" Her mentor greeted her with a huge grin.
"Hello, Tsunade-sama," Sakura said bowing down politely.
"Great news!" Tsunade said with a sparkle in her eye.
Sakura cringed, last time there was good news, Tsunade wanted Sakura to knock down a mountain for training. She was too weak to do it at that time and felt her ego take a huge hit. The young girl didn't want to feel anymore insubordinate at that moment.
"I have just discovered that our medical and historical library is a total mess…" she smiled sheepishly.
Sakura sighed, but she was inwardly grateful. The less time she had to spend at home, the better. She loved her family and all, but her ninja career seemed to have come to an end since she was a chunin and remained in that position showing no promise of excelling. The disappointment in her father's eyes as Sakura had to tell him about her friends who were advancing to Jonin and going on missions that cemented their reputation as ninjas who protected and served the people of Konoha could have been seen by a blind person.
Sakura was a medic.
Not a ninja.
And even if she wanted to be a field medic, she had to be better than her counterparts to even be considered being allowed to join a mission.
Sakura growled internally as she pushed the thoughts out of her mind. She was not just a medic anymore; she was an ANBU captain in Bark – Tsunade's counter action against Danzou's Root. There was no reason to dwell on the stupid.
Stupid was how she often referred to the past…since she could rarely find anything truly useful in it.
There was absolutely nothing in the past worth looking at, she declared to herself wordlessly, as she jumped out of a tree and landed on the ground gracefully.
The past had never saved her.
But, Sakura mused as she walked towards a tree which had two long broken branches lying near its trunk forming an X, the past held some influence on who she'd become.
A/N: If you're confused on her abilities and such...good ;)
Everything will be cleared up shortly.
Thank you for reading! I really appreciate all the comments 3