A/N: This is just a little anger therapy in response to Kishimoto's wretched battle formats. Excessive language and some dialogue lifted from the episodes.

It goes without saying that I don't own anything.

When Silence Should be Golden

This was it. After twenty long years, Sasori of the Red Sands finally came face-to-face with his greatest enemy; his grandmother.

Well, not literally face-to-face since he was still inside Hiruko, but it was close enough. She'd brought with her some little girl who was supposed to serve as back up. What a joke. Did his grandmother seriously underestimate him that much? Well, he'd have fun bursting her bubble.

"Sakura, don't be afraid." Grandma Chiyo told the frightened girl. "I'm here, you step back."

The old woman then took a few steps forward and pulled a string of kunai from her sleeves. "Assault Blade!" She cried and threw the knives toward Sasori, who brought up his mechanical tail in time to block the onslaught. But, of course, the old hag just had to be a puppet master. So when the knives, instead of falling to the ground, turned and flew straight for him, cutting through his cloak, he wasn't the least bit surprised. Just mildly irritated.

"If you're going to defy me, then I guess I have no choice. . ." The rogue nin growled out and finished ripping the black fabric, which fluttered to the ground. What a waste of decent cloth. In a matter of seconds, he (or, rather, Hiruko) was bared to the world.

"Will you join that kid as additions to my collection, Grandma Chiyo?" Sasori asked as the two women stared on in horror. In all honesty, he didn't think they'd make very good battle puppets but he was just two shy of three hundred and there were two of them, so he figured what the hell. Besides, then he could collect his earnings from Hidan for the bet they'd made regarding his collection. That'd show that bastard zealot to doubt his abilities!

"Wh-what's that. . . ?" The girl asked Chiyo, staring pointedly at Hiruko.

'What does it fucking look like?' Sasori thought but wisely kept his mouth shut.

"That's not Sasori's real body. . ." The old woman said ominously.

The pink haired girl turned slightly to face Chiyo. "Yeah, I think I got that much."

'Heh. I think we have a genius on our hands, Grandma.'

"Yes. . . That's. . . a puppet."

'Or two.'

Sasori was suddenly glad for Hiruko's protective shell because he couldn't stop from smirking at his own wit. At least, he thought he was pretty clever. Deidara wouldn't agree, of course. But he was one to talk. That stupid jerk wouldn't know wit if it came and bit him on the ass. Because, seriously, who found 'your mom' jokes funny anymore? Considering they were a group of orphans, Sasori found it in seriously bad form.

He came back to the real world to find that Chiyo was monologuing about something or other to her subordinate, who was doing her best to look attentive. He almost felt sorry for the girl. He knew how much his grandmother liked to ramble.

"Uh, not to be rude or anything, but some of us have a schedule to keep." The ex-Suna nin said curtly after a few minutes.

"Oh, right. Of course." Old Chiyo coughed delicately and ended her speech, much to the poorly hidden relief of the pink haired girl. "So, anyway, I'll take care of him, Sakura."

"But Old Lady Chiyo-" The girl began before she was cut off by the (not so) retired ninja.

"Sakura, listen to me. I taught him everything he knows, so I have the advantage here. Let me wear him down then you can deliver the final hit." The hag reasoned. Sakura still looked unconvinced but she nodded an affirmative and backed down. The old woman stepped forward and faced Sasori, who was growing more and more impatient with every passing moment.

"So we're finally going face-to-face." Chiyo said.

"Seems like it." Sasori answered idly, relieved to finally begin the battle.

Before either kunoichi could blink, a shower of needles was flying towards them. They miraculously managed to somehow dodge every single one and Sakura charged at the Akatsuki nin, kunai in hand. She then skidded to a stop in time to avoid impaling her face on Hiruko's tail. Sasori tried to get the mechanical appendage to move, but it wouldn't.

'It won't move!' He thought desperately before he noticed blue threads of chakra attached to the tail. 'I get it, Grandma. . . !'

"Now Sakura! Smash him!"

As soon as the order left that toothless mouth, Sakura gathered chakra into her fist and ran at him. "Right!" She yelled then threw her punch. Her fist connected soundly with Hiruko, and the puppet's body gave in. It crumbled down around the body concealed inside, which instantly leapt away. The figure was covered in a black cloak, so Sakura couldn't see the features of the person. But she knew who it was all the same.

"So you've finally come out, huh?" Chiyo inquired.

"That's his real body!" Sakura exclaimed. Sasori rolled his eyes, though the kunoichi couldn't see it.

"I've come this far to see my grandson's face. After twenty years, what say we face each other?"

The ex-Suna nin withheld a sigh. 'Damn it. There goes my best puppet. Stupid little bitch.' He shifted his hand out from under the dark cloth and faint blue chakra strings flowed from his fingertips to latch onto the wooden head of Hiruko.

He heard Sakura gasp sharply when the puppet's head flew up in the air and began shooting out needles. His grandmother quickly pulled the girl to safety using her own chakra strings.

"As I thought," Sasori began as he stood up. "Just what I'd expect from my old granny. No wonder this little girl was able to dodge all my hidden weapons. After all, the old lady who can see past all my attacks was controlling the little girl with chakra threads used for the puppet master jutsu." He knew it was rather unnecessary to point all of this out but, damn it, if his grandma could monologue, then he could too.

Sakura looked shocked that he'd figured it out. He didn't know why. It wasn't exactly difficult.

"What's more," He continued, much to the apparent chagrin of his enemies. But it was finally his turn to talk and he'd be damned if he let them ruin it. "You were so kind as to attach threads of chakra to Hiruko's tail." 'Kind, my ass.'

"I suppressed my chakra as much as possible so as not to be seen, and yet you still figured it out. Amazing."

"But of course." The Akatsuki member said after he turned to face the two kunoichi. "After all, the one who hammered the principles of puppetry into me was. . ." He paused for dramatic effect, reaching up to grab the cloth above his head. "None other than you."

"Yes." The old woman hummed in agreement. "But the show ends today!"

Sasori began to pull off the black veil. "That is my intention as well." Once it was completely off, Sakura and his grandmother gasped simultaneously. "Well then, will things proceed as simply as that I wonder. . . Granny Chiyo?"

Standing before them was a small red haired male, who looked no older than fifteen. He had delicate features and a cocky smirk.

"Old Lady Chiyo? Is he. . . Is he Sasori?" Sakura inquired to the shocked old woman.

"Are you fucking with me right now? Who the hell have you been fighting this whole time?" The redhead hissed in annoyance.

His comment went unheard as his opponents continued to gape at him.

"How can this be?" His grandmother breathed and fell unnaturally silent.

"What's wrong, Granny Chiyo? Are you so filled with emotion that you can't speak?" Truthfully, Sasori was relishing in this rare silence. And now that he was finally able to have his fill of words, he was finding it difficult to stop talking. Oh shit, he must be more like her than he thought. "That's not surprising. After all, it's our first reunion in twenty years."

"Sasori, you. . ." Chiyo whispered.

"Old Lady Chiyo?"

"You look just like I remember!" The old kunoichi suddenly squealed. "Still my adorable little grandbaby!" The redhead fought the urge to slap his forehead. This was not the reaction he'd wanted at all, damn it!

"Um. . ." Sakura said intelligently.

"You know, this reminds me of a ridiculously long and tedious flashback, that in no way relates to our current predicament, from when Sasori was a child. . ." Chiyo instantly became dead to the world.

"God damn it all! Can we please get on with the battle already?!" The red haired male snapped in frustration. "I mean all we've been doing is talking this whole time! Aren't we ninjas? Where the hell is the fighting?!"

Sakura glanced apologetically at him and tried to rouse the old woman from her memories. "Um, Lady Chiyo? We kinda need to finish this fight. . ."

"Not now, Sakura. I'm building Sasori's character."

"You know what? Fuck this and fuck you." The missing nin spat angrily. "I have better things to do than waste my time with this bullshit. I'm outta here." With that, he stomped right past them and out the cave's entrance. Sakura made no move to stop him.

Once he was out, he looked around and could see Deidara's white bird flying in teasing circles in the distance. 'Seems like they didn't get too far, either. What a fucking waste of time this was.'

With an irritated sigh, Sasori climbed up the cliff opposite the cave and made his way down to his comrade. He could hear the nine-tailed Jinchuuriki yelling from back here. 'Loud-mouthed brat. Damn.'

After a few moments of sprinting, he finally caught up to the group. "Oi, Deidara." He called.

"Hey Sasori, hm." Deidara answered, controlling his clay bird to swoop down so his partner could hop on.

"Damn it, not another one!" The Nine-Tails yelled, pointing wildly at the new comer. Sasori was about to retort, but then he remembered that he wasn't wearing Hiruko anymore, so of course they wouldn't recognize him. "Where do these bastards keep coming from?"

"Naruto! Calm down." The gray haired Jounin ordered, but was ignored.

"So my good man, how did your fight go, hm?" Deidara inquired when Sasori was safely aboard his clay creation.

"I don't want to talk about it. . ."

"That bad, huh?" The blonde chuckled, choosing not to see the dark glare from his shorter partner. "At least they managed to get rid of that creepy Hiruko."

"And how is that a good thing? He was my best puppet."

"Because now I have something pleasant to look at, hm." Deidara winked. But it looked more like a blink, considering he only had one eye. So the entire effect was completely lost.

"Stop ignoring us, you jerks!" The Jinchuuriki demanded angrily, his demeanor becoming wilder by the second. "And give back Gaara!"

"You'll have to beat us first!"

"Just give him back, Deidara." Sasori muttered dispassionately.


"If the kid wants him so damn bad, just give him back." The redhead sighed, crossing his arms. "Besides, I'd rather not see these guys again for a while."

"Good point." Deidara conceded. Then he turned to the two ninja below. "Fine, take him back, hm. He's dead anyway!" With that, the giant clay bird they were riding on opened its beak and spat the One-Tail out. The Nine-Tailed demon boy, though surprised, reacted immediately. He jumped up and caught the falling body.

"Now let's get out of here." Sasori said, rolling his shoulder joints and missing Hiruko more with every passing second in the company of the enemy.

"Way ahead of you, hm."

Meanwhile, Sakura and Chiyo hadn't yet moved from their spot.

"Um. . . Old Lady Chiyo?"

"Huh? What?" Chiyo snapped from her memories and looked around. "Where did my grandson go?"

"He left a while ago. . ." Sakura said awkwardly, fiddling with the handle of a kunai she held in her hand.

"He did, didn't he?" The Sand kunoichi observed mildly. Then she shrugged. "Oh well. Maybe next time."

Sakura decided then and there to never work with the senile old bat ever again.