"Naruto! Keep your eyes on the damn road!"
The blond man laughed as his pink-haired passenger assaulted his arm. Normally she packed a punch to reckon with, but seeing as how he was driving (rather recklessly, in her opinion) on a winding mountain road in the middle of the night, she decided to take it easy on him.
Live first, kill later.
That was her motto of the night.
Naruto kept a grin on his face even after she stopped. It was rare that he got immunity from her wrath, so he fully intended to take advantage of it. "C'mon, Sakura! I'm totally in control. Just chill."
He heard an exasperated huff and chuckled at her expense. "I've never had a wreck before, you know that! So quit freaking and tell me about Sai and Ino."
Sakura slowly brightened to a smile. The sound of gossip was sweet to her ears. "Well, I totally thought that Ino was into Shikamaru, right? But Sai..."
And for the next twenty minutes, the two sank into a comfortable conversation about their two friends. Naruto sided with Sakura about the absurd relationship, seeing as how Sai couldn't possibly think Ino was beautiful. The dude was still taking a crash course through friendship, for crying out loud! He called Sakura ugly! For him to outright be polite to someone was...unthinkable.
At least it was in the biased opinions of Naruto and Sakura, two veterans in the war field of Sai.
"Yeah, I still think it was a fluke. There's no way he has feelings for anyone but us." Naruto nodded at his statement. Sakura just giggled.
"How do you even know the word fluke? I'm impressed!"
Naruto's eyes squinted into a glare at the insult. "The movie Fluke! You know, the one with the cute puppy?"
Sakura giggled again, leaning against the car door for support. Naruto looked over at her, ready to scold her teasing, when suddenly her voice faded and a look of terror spread over her face. Naruto snapped his attention back to the road, but it was too late.
An impact. The world span. Turning and whirling and hit after hit until stillness, silence....
Naruto blinked as the haze in his mind began to clear. The truck was filled with a putrid smelling gas, causing him to cough and reach for the window button. That's when he realized-his arm had difficulty moving. His face felt like he had been sucker punched. And his hips...god, he couldn't even fathom the pain.
To put it simply, Naruto was pinned. His body was pressed so tightly against the steering wheel that the device halted all movement from his lower half. He could move his arms, but the positioning was awkward, not to mention the burns starting to pronounce themselves under his jacket sleeves and the bruising ache on his chest.
The more he took in his surroundings, the more alert Naruto came to be. Broken glass littered the dashboard, the steering wheel had traces of his blood, and when he looked to the passenger seat...he blanched. Sakura's hair, a perfect cotton candy pink, was matted with her favorite color of red as blood seeped down the side of her head. The passenger window was cracked, blood etched into some of the spider veins, but her body rested against the seat, turned toward him as if she were sleeping. Naruto stared at her chest a while, focusing his eyesight to see if she was breathing, but through the dark it was hard to tell.
A small movement. Maybe even his imagination.
It was enough for him.
With a sudden burst of energy, he remembered his phone in the nook under the stereo. He reached for it carefully and flipped it open, dialing the one number he'd always known about but never used.
"9-1-1. This is Sasuke, what's your emergency?"
For a split second, Naruto recognized the guy's name, but just as quickly it was gone. More important matters had to be dealt with. "My friend and I had a car accident. She's unconscious and i'm pinned to the wheel."
"What's your location, sir?"
Naruto's brow furrowed. He had to tell his description accurately. There were plenty of mountains in the area and he was just on one. "I'm on a mountain south of Konoha city limits. The street is called...Konan Oaks, I think."
"Was there anyone else involved in the accident that may be injured?"
"Yeah." Naruto's voice cracked as he remembered the blaring headlights. "There was another car. I didn't get a good look at it. They were coming from the other direction and hit us head on. We're stuck against a tree now. I can't see anything..."
The reality of the situation weighed down on Naruto. He couldn't move. He hit other people. They and Sakura might be dying. And it was all his fault.
Sasuke put him on hold, but he hardly noticed. He could never live with himself after this. Especially not if Sakura...
"Sir? Help is coming. Can you tell me anything more about the situation? What injuries do you and your friend have?"
"Uh." Naruto calmed his thoughts and tried to focus. For the next few minutes he answered Sasuke's questions and described everything to the best of his ability, right down to the music playing when it happened. Meanwhile, Sasuke referred everything of importance to those coming to Naruto's aid. According to the know-it-all operator, it would take at least a half hour for them to reach him. Until then, Sasuke would stay on the line.
"Can you tell me your name, sir?"
"Naruto Uzumaki." A pause came from the other line. Naruto was used to it. Most people knew of his father, the former governor of Konoha, who had passed away before his birth. He figured this guy was just another shocked citizen who would quickly recover.
"...Naruto." The voice suddenly sounded more human. Naruto knew, of course, that the guy talking to him was human, but whereas he held a detached tone before, his voice now portrayed a sort of...somber recognition?
"Yeah. Do I know you?" Naruto thought back and tried to remember any Sasukes he knew.
He could only think of one.
"I used to know a Sasuke back in high school. Are you him? Uchiha?"
"I'm sorry, Naruto. I don't believe we've met." The detached voice was back. Naruto frowned. "Please hold, I have another call."
And so Naruto waited.
He realized, some time in the ten or so minutes he was on hold, exactly how tired he was. He and Sakura had left late at night, after both of them had clocked out of work and packed their things. Probably around midnight, he would say, was the time they climbed into his truck and headed out. So certainly, by this point in time it had to be nearing one in the morning.
To put it simply, Naruto was tired.
He closed his eyes.
"Naruto? Are you there?"
"Mmm." Through the haze of incoming sleep, Naruto peered open his eyes again and looked at the phone in his hands.
"Naruto! Don't fall asleep! You could have a concussion!" The irate (and by no means concerned voice) made Naruto cringe in annoyance.
Slowly, he lifted the phone back to his ear. "Chill, Sasuke. I'm awake."
A huff could be heard, if barely, on the other line. "How's your friend doing."
Naruto rolled his eyes at the subtle command and stared over at Sakura, watching her breathe. "She's fine, I think. The blood looks like it stopped flowing from her head."
"Good. Now...we need to keep you awake."
Naruto groaned. "C'mon. I just got sucker punched in the nose! That's all! Why can't I sleep?"
The operator ignored him.
"Tell me about your Sasuke."
Naruto sighed and thought back to three months ago. Senior year of high school. The black hair and dark eyes watching him walk across the classroom as if he were dirt. The pale skin turning red after a fight. The good days.
"I admired him."
The collected voice didn't miss a beat.
"And why is that?"
Naruto's face cinched up as he thought of the right words. "He...was everything I couldn't be. In both the best and worst ways."
Naruto continued. "I admired him for it. I hated him for it. And I even...crushed on him for a bit."
A series of discrete coughs emitted from the phone, making Naruto smile. "Yeah, i'm gay." He chuckled. "How about you?"
"I..." Sasuke seemed to be thinking, which Naruto considered ridiculous. It was a straight forward question. What was there to think about? "I...never really thought about it. I figured that I would just like someone, and that would be it."
Naruto laughed, ignoring the pain in his chest. "Well you can't just wait, Sasuke! You have to get out there and love other people. It's the human thing to do."
"Hn. Humanity is what landed me here, in this job." The speaker rustled. "Hold on."
The line went silent again. Naruto tried to shift in his seat, but the pang of pain in his hips kept him from moving at all. In defeat, he rested his forehead against the steering wheel, keeping the phone pressed gently to his ear. Three minutes this time.
"Yeah. I'm here." His voice sounded groggy, but he was still awake. It was an improvement. "So how does humanity land you a job? I gotta know."
Sasuke sighed in frustration. "It's what landed me in the job. My brother made the argument that I couldn't go into the family business without having some humanity. So he set me up with this job, claiming that he would know when I learned my lesson."
Naruto chuckled. "Then why do you work the night shift? Aren't all the people awake during the day?"
"My brother can't control my schedules." Naruto could practically hear the smirk through the phone. "This way, I can sleep through the day and avoid people when possible."
Naruto jerked his head back and looked at his phone dramatically before placing it back with apprehension. "You really aren't human, are you."
A soft laugh, low and rare, passed into Naruto's ear. "No, I guess not."
There was a short silence in which Naruto lifted his head up, glanced at the steering wheel, and paused. "Uh..." His breathing quickly hastened, blue eyes staring wide at the mess before him.
"What's wrong?" The detached voice-which Naruto was never aware had left-returned with a vengeance.
"I-uh. The steering wheel. There's more blood on it now. A lot more." His eyes followed a thick drop that traced the nylon of the air bag.
"Was it from your nose?"
"No. It dried up a while ago." His panic increased when he realized how stuck he was, far out of help's reach. "...Fuck there's a lot." His voice pitch heightened, but Sasuke stayed completely calm.
"Naruto, I need you to gently feel around your head for any wounds."
The blond did as he was told, starting at the front of his head and moving to the sides. Not two seconds later he whimpered as a finger brushed a spot near the top of his head, somewhere over his left ear. He reported this to Sasuke.
"Alright. Hold on while I talk to dispatch."
While the silence sunk in again, Naruto realized he was shaking. He was scared. For Sakura. For himself. For the people in the other car. He was terrified. And the only things he could depend on throughout the whole ordeal were Sasuke and the soft sound of Sakura's breathing.
He decided, as he tried to be like Peter Pan and think happy thoughts, that Sasuke should stop putting him on hold.
"Naruto, they're only about five minutes away. I need you to stay awake until they get there. ...Naruto?"
Dazed blue eyes blinked slowly. How had his head ended up on the steering wheel again? Where was the phone? "Naruto! Don't be an idiot and answer me!" Ah, there. In his hand which was resting...somewhere. The rest of his body was beginning to feel heavy. He had to fight to lift the phone back up.
His voice was barely a whisper now. A murmur, even. He wondered if Sasuke could actually hear him, or if he was talking to dead air. "Bastard. It is you."
Another sigh. "Very good, moron, now stay awake. They're almost there."
"I can't believe I told you....I had a crush on you." The little he could see meshed in and out. He probably sounded like a drunkard, or a toddler who stayed up too late.
"If it keeps you awake, i'll tell you a secret."
Naruto's interest immediately perked. He made a more valiant effort to stave off the sleep. "What secret?"
"I'll tell you only if you stay awake for the next three minutes."
He groaned, but silently agreed.
"Good. Now tell me about Sakura, about your friends. Why were you up in the mountains so late at night?"
Naruto clung to the question and answered it. "My friend Kiba, his family owns a lodge near the top of the mountain. We planned a weekend for our friends from high school to go up there and chill out..." He faded, relaxed.
With a sharp intake of breath and a few blinks, he continued. "...and, uh, Sakura and I were going up tonight to get the place ready. We volunteered."
"Only you would volunteer to do something strenuous."
A small smile spread over Naruto's face. "Heh. You sound like Shikamaru. Remember him? You guys were put on the same team in gym once..."
"Yes, and if I remember correctly, I spiked the ball into your head that week."
Naruto frowned slightly at the memory. "Yeah. Then you...carry me to the nurse's...cause Coach Gai thought I...a concussen. You looked...like you thought the wurl was gonna...end." It was getting worse now. He couldn't remember if he said everything he thought he did. And judging by the impatient clicking of Sasuke's tongue from the other line, he guessed not.
"Stay with me, Naruto. Just a little while longer. Keep talking."
Just as he was about to ask what he should talk about, Naruto heard something. It was loud. It was nearby. Blue and red lights illuminated the truck. "Sasuke, they're here. I see 'em. Blue an' red."
"Good. You'll be okay, Naruto."
"Hmm..." Naruto closed his eyes, trying to think of what he needed to say. "What was...the secret?"
Sasuke huffed into the phone, this time somberly, and answered.
"I had a crush on you, too."
Naruto's eyes peered open. He was losing consciousness and yet, he could still feel his heart speed up at the sound of those words. Before he could make an attempt to say anything back, his door was yanked open, revealing a man with very dark, long hair. Without saying a word he plucked the phone from Naruto's hand and held it up to his ear.
"You did good, little brother. See you at home."
Naruto remembered thinking that was strange.
And then from there, he remembered nothing.
Waking up, for Naruto, had never been more painful. He was sore everywhere, and he felt like he had the worst migraine in history. Where the hell was he? ….Hell?
"Wake up, idiot. You've been asleep for three days."
Fuck. He must be in hell if Sasuke Uchiha was there.
Images of blood, of Sakura, and the totaled truck came to mind. Naruto forced open his eyes. There, sitting in a cushioned recliner next to his bed reading a book, was Sasuke Uchiha, every inch as perfect as Naruto remembered. The bastard didn't even look at him.
He went for the corny approach. "Did I die?"
Sasuke spared him a glance, then returned to his book. "No. You were in a coma for few days. Two of which were medically induced."
Naruto blinked. "They can give you comas?"
"To aid in your healing, yes." He laid the book down on his lap, holding his place with a finger, and turned to face Naruto seriously. "You have staples in your head-"
"What the hell happened to stitches?!"
"-two burns on your arms, your nose was broken in two places, and your hips were fractured. Other than that, you're fine."
Naruto growled impatiently as he took it all in. His hips were gonna hurt like hell. And what if his nose healed ugly? Sakura would have a fit... "Oh, fuck. Is Sakura okay?"
Sasuke nodded. "She's fine. Just a minor head injury and a dislocated shoulder."
Naruto sighed in relief. "And the other car?"
"A father and two kids. He only suffered a head injury and a broken arm. The kids were fine." Sasuke's eyes narrowed as a guilty look crossed Naruto's face. "It wasn't your fault. One of the kids threw a toy at the man's head. He turned around to scold them and swerved into your lane. He confessed to it, so you can sue him if you like."
"Nah. The guy has kids! He's gotta be poor already." A few seconds of silence. Then- "How did you know all that? You aren't family. How are you even in here?"
Sasuke's nose scrunched in distaste. He never liked explaining things. "Do you remember that family business I told you about?"
"Yeah..." Naruto's brows furrowed. What did that have to do with anything?
"My father was a neurologist, my mother is a nurse, and my brother, Itachi, is a paramedic. The same one who saved you, in fact." Sasuke looked away for a moment, almost seeming embarrassed. "My mother is a floating nurse, sometimes working on this floor. She knows the nurse who takes care of you."
Naruto's eyes nearly bugged out. It couldn't be possible. "So you're saying...I just got saved by the Uchiha family?"
Sasuke's cheeks tinted pink. He was still looking away. "Two of our family, but yes."
First Naruto smiled, then he outright laughed. The irony was impeccable. The coincidence was reveling. From the worst moment of his life, he felt like he had been given a second chance at something he once considered hopeless.
Slowly, he calmed back down, and he asked the inevitable question.
"Did you mean it?"
Sasuke finally returned to looking at him, face of indifference back in place. "Mean what?"
"That you had a crush on me, too."
Naruto waited with baited breath as Sasuke took the time to stare at him, not an inch of his perfect porcelain face moving. It was a few seconds of tense silence before Sasuke simply looked away and reopened his book with one hand. "You're an idiot."
Crestfallen would be the only word to describe Naruto's face at that moment. And then, a second later, it would be confusion as Sasuke's free hand gently held onto his.
And finally, realization as the unfinished sentence played through his mind.
You're an idiot.
Of course I did.
Naruto smiled as he threaded his fingers with Sasuke's, feeling surreal and lucky. Most people would say that what happened was coincidence. That out of eleven emergency operators, he just happened to be answered by Sasuke. That out of all the paramedics on duty that night, he just happened to be saved by Itachi. And that out of the three major hospitals in the Konoha area, he just happened to be brought to the one Sasuke's mother worked at.
But Naruto didn't believe those people, because some things weren't coincidences.
Some things were meant to be.
A/N: Holy freaking crap, guys! Two stories in one week! T.T And this one's actually long(ish)! Hahaha. Sorry there's no smutty moments or kissing or anything. I just thought the idea was pretty cool.
And also: Since this is a one-shot, there won't be another chapter. BUT, after the end of this story I imagined what it would be like for Naruto to try and drive again. It consisted of him having to sit on Sasuke's lap like a four-year-old and turn the wheel. XD Lol.
Disclaimer: I do not own the Naruto series....or the number 911...yeah.