This is . . . different than other stuff I've written.

It's just . . . yeah.

Okay! This includes a theory of mine for Naruto: Sasuke's gonna die. Very, very soon.

Great theory, huh? XD

Alright.

Go ahead and read.

Disclaimer: M. Kishimoto owns. :P


Retrospect.

Kakashi had always hoped it would turn out different.

He had waited patiently for the ultimate outcome, in no hurry to speed up the process.

But, as usual, his subordinates had other ideas.

Kakashi casually glanced at Naruto and Sakura.

Naruto had his arm around Sakura, comforting her as she cried uninhibitedly.

Kakashi wondered absently if he had ever expected it to end differently.

Sure, he had hoped, even prayed, for this to turn for the better.

However, deep down, Kakashi knew in his heart that this was what would happen; there was no other way.

Kakashi shoved his hands into his pockets, contemplating.

He took a deep breath, squinting up at the sky.

Weather always had an incredible way of being ironic on particularly dark days.

The sunshine was brilliant, even when it had risen early that morning, startling Kakashi from sleep.

Kakashi turned back to the ground, feeling unbelievably sober.

Death always did that to you.

Kakashi knew; he'd experienced it far more than he should have in his short life.

His father. . .

Obito. . .

Rin. . .

His sensei, the Fourth. . .

And now Sasuke.

Kakashi pursed his lips.

So many funerals, so many tears wasted.

Of course, there were others, but . . . these people had been close to him. So close.

His father. . . The depression had affected Kakashi deeply. He cared for his father, and his depression and (eventual) suicide broke Kakashi completely. This disappointing turn of events left Kakashi cold and judgmental, deciding to live life by the ninja code. The mission was everything, and Kakashi would not make the same mistake his father had.

Obito. . . Kakashi had always thought he was just an annoying little pest. But their last mission together with him had proved Kakashi wrong. Obito lost his life. . . Kakashi gained an eye (and some perspective) and forgave his father. . . And they both received a friendship that would last to the very end.

And Rin. Kakashi hadn't been able to keep his promise to Obito and keep Rin safe. And the end result had been her murder.

Kakashi swallowed past the lump in his throat.

Minato-sensei had been Kakashi's last hope for some sort of normalcy. As Kakashi entered into young adulthood and ANBU Black Ops, the Fourth Hokage had continued to remain Kakashi's sensei and confidant. Kakashi was happy for both his sensei and wife Kushina when they got pregnant, and even more happy for them when Kushina gave birth to a baby boy, the spitting image of Minato himself. Unfortunately, the fourth Hokage made a fatal sacrifice and gave up his life, gifting his son with a nine-tailed monster sealed inside his body to save the village he loved.

Kakashi would be lying if he said he hadn't been angry at Naruto for stripping him of his last teammate.

Kakashi was no longer the type to hold grudges though, and as soon as he saw the sleeping boy with the seal on his stomach, his heart broke.

Over the years, Kakashi continued to keep an eye on the young Uzumaki, watching out for him before it was even his duty as his sensei.

Things really do come full circle.

Kakashi sighed and closed his eyes.

Sasuke had left to further his fighting, his fuel being revenge on his brother.

Kakashi had thought that Naruto and Sakura would be able to persuade Sasuke away from the darkness. . . but Kakashi had underestimated Sasuke's thirst for power.

And once more, Kakashi had lost a teammate, this time it being his own subordinate.

Sasuke went to Orochimaru. . . Then he lost Naruto to Jiraiya. . . And Sakura to Tsunade.

Again, Kakashi was alone.

He buried himself in missions and books.

Really, Kakashi shouldn't have expected any different. He'd been in ANBU, taught a team to the best of his ability. . . Change was something Kakashi knew like the back of his hand.

Still. . . now that he was used to the company, it was odd and left him feeling empty once it was taken away.

Kakashi blinked, perusing the faces that lined the small crowd.

Guy and his protege, Lee; Neji and TenTen, side-by-side like always.

Team Asuma, without their beloved sensei; Ino was crying freely, Shikamaru clutching her hand, Choji standing behind them protectively.

Kurenai, cradling her son in the crook of her arm; Hinata, Shino, and Kiba standing around their sensei with respect, Akamaru standing tall at Kiba's side.

Yamato shifted beside Kakashi; blocking Sai's almond-eyed view.

Kakashi's grey eye slid back to Naruto and Sakura.

Naruto. . .

Kakashi had always wondered if Naruto would be able to kill his friend, whom he had fought so long for.

But in the end, he hadn't had to.

It was strange how Fate knew how to handle things that were uncertain.

Kakashi blinked.

Did it even matter how things worked out? Or was it always the result people were searching for? Were details that important, now that this was finally settled?

Kakashi stayed in thought, until he was aware of movement around him.

The black was retreating, returning to respective homes.

The ceremony was over.

With a clap on the shoulder, Yamato left, Sai absently following with a glance at his sensei.

Kakashi sighed and left also, taking his favored way home.

Kakashi stopped several yards away from the ninja memorial that was his usual motivation for tardiness.

But, he thought better of it, turning and heading home instead.

Kakashi entered his minuscule apartment, sighing.

The size didn't bother him; it was better that it was small, considering the flexible lifestyle he had chosen to lead.

Kakashi unzipped his flak jacket, throwing it carelessly onto a simple chair.

What to do?

Kakashi slowly looked around the room, spotting a particular source of pride he favored.

Kakashi rarely boasted, but when the opportunity presented itself, he boasted of his beloved Mr. Ukki.

Mr. Ukki, unlike most things (and people), had been with Kakashi for many years.

And it would continue to be that way, as long as Kakashi recalled to nourish the small plant.

The plant was a constant in Kakashi's life, which made such a thing quite remarkable.

Kakashi thoughtfully picked up the cup set aside for Ukki and poured water into the plant's soil.

He smiled and pushed the pot lightly towards the sun.


Ugh, so many ellipses!!!! XD

Review!