This is something I had posted on my LJ that I decided I wanted to share with everyone. I'm starting school next week so I won't be able to update frequently. I have eight of these very very short chapters written that I'll post every so often as compensations. They're much different than anything I've written before so I hope they don't bore you.

Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto.


They were calling it "the hundred years war", but not because it had lasted a hundred years. It had been five years and the war didn't look like it would be over until the entire population of shinobi had been wiped off the face of the planet. They called it the "hundred years war" because it was the worst war to have broken out among the five nations in hundreds of years.

Death did not discriminate. It wasn't just the shinobi who were dying. The casualty count of civilians was in the tens of thousands. Men, women and children of all ages were being slaughtered in their homes and towns. They didn't stand a chance against foreign shinobi who had the power to kill effortlessly.

Naruto insisted that Sakura stay away from combat for no reason other than that her skills were too valuable to risk losing in battle. So the kunoichi stayed behind at military camps and put back together the broken soldiers that survived the fighting. She fixed them up so they could go right on back out there and kill or be killed.

She had been stationed to a small village outside of Suna. Naruto had wanted his best friend to protect the Kazekage and the Kazekage to protect his best friend.

Gaara fascinated her. One moment he would be sitting calmly watching Sakura heal one of his men and the next moment waves of thick golden fury would roll off of him like steam over a pot of boiling water. The walls of the tent would vibrate from the intensity of his anger and Sakura would hear the sand furiously whipping the air around them. And then, almost as suddenly as it had begun it was over again and he was back to watching Sakura with an undecipherable expression on his face. It was a mix of forlorn, anguish, exhaustion and something Sakura couldn't recognize. She never expected him to be so forthcoming with his emotions. She expected a statue made out of hardened and sun-bleached sand.

They had been sharing a tent for two entire months before he ever spoken to her. Sure he would follow her around the room with his eyes and subject her to a deep-seated frown. And then one day out of the blue he opens his mouth and says, "Even if it were not for Naruto's whishes I would still protect you with my life."

To say that Sakura was unnerved would be an understatement. His unusually monotonic voice was rich with conviction and resoluteness. She told herself that it was just his way of saying that he would protect an asset. He was referring to Sakura's worth as a medic and not to any profound feelings for her. She should have taken comfort or maybe even pride from his words but instead she felt confusion. When she would lie awake at night waiting for him to return from battle she would recite his words over and over again in her mind. Even if she wasn't sure why, he cared about her. Sakura needed to hear that someone alive still cared for her.

It was dusk and the base was silent. All of the regular inhabitants were safe within the boundaries camp but one. Sakura tended to the shinobi in the infirmary and tried to keep her mind off Gaara's absence. It wasn't unusual for him to be missing. He was the Kazekage after all. He had important business to tend to. Sometimes he was gone for weeks at a time. This knowledge did nothing to suppress her anxieties.

I know, I know, short and strange. It's my first try at writing something Narutoversey. This is only a prologue, thought it won't get much more exciting than this.... or will it? I guess you'll have to read and find out.

Reviews are much, much appreciated.