Disclaimer: I don't own Naruto. if I did, Lee would be gayer than a purple sequined pineapple. ...Oh wait...

Author's Note: This was written a good many years ago. I found it while browsing through old files. It's outdated, but it's still kind of spiffy. So, enjoy.


"I came here to bring you home."

"I am home."

"Home is Konoha! With me and Naru-!"

She is silenced with a look.

Sasuke walks under the trees; the battle had long been left behind. Orochimaru and Naruto locked in their own personal war; one of them would kill the other. He didn't much care which, so he didn't stay. Sakura followed him--

(she speaks of loyalty yet leaves her friend to walk with her enemy)

--battle-worn and so much more than the twelve year old girl he'd left behind. The look in her eyes reminds him of something he sees in his own reflection, and he thinks maybe he doesn't hate her.

"I loved you, you know."

"Then you are an idiot."

"Don't make me kill you."

She can't and they both know it.

Sasuke hasn't looked back at her once. His sword is drawn, the tip dragging along the bark of the trees. A relaxed gesture, reminiscent of dragging sticks along Konoha fences not so long ago...

"Naruto's going to kill him."


"Then what will you do?" It was not a mock or a threat, but was sincere curiousity. Perhaps even concern.

(I'll help you get your revenge just take me with you I love you)

He doesn't answer.

He walks a little more; he hears a rustling in the branches overhead, and knows this conversation will be ending soon.

"Do you still love me?"

The question marks a sudden silence.

"....Does it matter if I do?"

"Not particularly."

"Then I won't tell you."

There is a shiver of motion in the air, and suddenly Sasuke is standing behind her. The scene brings back a memory and he smiles, just slightly.

She turns to face him, confusion etched on her face. There's a cut under her eye, and he thinks that the colour of blood suits her.

She recognizes the words before he's even finished saying them.

("Do you love me?" "I won't tell you")

"Thank you."

Sasuke doesn't even flinch when blood suddenly splatters onto his front. On the ground between them, rebellious droplets fall, mixing into the mud and turning it a sick black.

Sakura stands there frozen. Green eyes search and settle on his chest, widening in confusion at the sight of her own blood.

"Your shirt...."

When she falls forward, Sasuke doesn't move to catch her.

"Couldn't you have waited?" he asks after a pause.

Kabuto steps out of the shadows, polishing his glasses on his shirt. "You didn't want her to die?"

"…" Sasuke watches his companion kneel at the girl's corpse, roughly yanking the kunai out of her back; blood gushes from the open wound. No emotion crosses his features. "I would have done it myself."

Kabuto glances up at the boy, a curious look on his face, as if Sasuke had just said something of particular interest. "Would you have? Really?"

He doesn't wait for an answer. He rises, wiping the blade off on his shirt and sheathing it, then turning away. He walks far off into the woods, into the shadows, and out of sight.


The silence is deafening.