The roads where slick, I could feel my tires slide over ice patches, silent prayers filled my mind.
The radio stations signal was full of static but the advisories where coming in loud and clear. "For everyone driving around tonight, be careful and drive slow! The roads are slick and we've just gotten word that a snow storm might be hitting the Konoha area in about thirty minutes, so please take the proper precautions! Now we'll be playing some more Christmas hits, non-stop after this commercial break!"
The temperature had dropped three degrees when I looked back up to my built in thermometer, and as the radio personality had predicted the snow flakes got fatter and came rushing down faster.
It was a beautiful Christmas Eve in Konohagakure. The Christmas Angels that looked over the town had been put up at the beginning of the month and perched against the lamp posts, bathing the streets in a soft glow.
Not a soul was found on the road, no children throwing snow balls, no couples out for a romantic walk through the snow, only a lonely woman trying to get to her empty home.
Mother had been tired and with a soft sigh asked that I return home early, her back was acting up. I knew she was lying. I knew what was truly bothering her. It was an annual thing, around this time every year she went into morning for my father. He died so long ago, when I was a child really and his memory, I'm ashamed to say have long since faded from my mind.
I had smiled and helped her put away the left over food, she always made too much food. She had come from a large family but after the war, almost all the males had been killed, my father included, and she had only had two sisters who know had their own families to tend to. She gave me a kiss and a tight hug, telling me to be safe and call her as soon as I got home. With a last kiss on the cheek and wishes for a merry Christmas I was on my way.
I was feeling sorry for myself, I know, but it was Christmas Eve, your supposed to be spending it with those you love, not alone with your dog begging for food.
Sakura, Ino and Hinata had their own families to be with, besides it would be like intruding. Christmas Eve was for family, not friends.
I was on the verge of tears when a figure came into sight. He looked almost ethereal in the falling snow, His eyes the exact same shade of white lace, his skin was a beautiful ivory, but his hair was his most shocking feature, it was longer than most girls I knew. He wore a trench coat, the golden buttons radiantly shining. This man was handsome beyond compare!
He threw his hand and waved, his cheeks where flushed from the cold winds, his breath was coming out in white puffs as I pulled over and rolled down my window.
"Where you headed?" I asked looking into his eyes. They where like Hinatas'. It made me wonder if there was a connection between the two.
He looked me over apparently coming to the conclusion that I'm not psychopathic cereal killer, "Hyuga Compound, about thirty miles north." He said, his voice like a deep baritone, sending little waves of electricity down my spine.
I bit my lip and looked out into the oncoming storm, flakes where coming down hard on my windshield, piling up faster than my wipers could brush them off. Hyuga compound was about thirty minutes away. No way was I going to make it there and back before the storm hit. I could get into a wreck and be stranded just like him, or worse. "You're related to Hinata Hyuga, right?" I said turning back to him.
"She's my younger cousin." He answered brushing snow off his shoulders and out of his hair.
"Okay, Look I can't take you to the Hyuga Manor but I could let you use my home phone to call someone to come and get you." Unlocking my doors I put the truck in drive when he gets in.
"My name is Tenten, I'm good friends with your cousin." He reaches out and shakes my hand.
"Neji Hyuga. Nice to meet you." Though he is quiet for the rest of the trip he doesn't seem stoic, the silence is almost pleasurable.
As my house comes into view he looks at me questioningly, nodding I smile.
"That's it." I answer parking my truck and getting out.
We enter my two storied home, a brown ball of fur rushes past me and begins to growl and bark furiously.
Neji stares at the Cocker Spaniel, not even flinching when the dog pounces at his shoes.
"Kuri!" I scold quickly restraining my furry companion. " I'm sorry, he's usually not like this." Apologizing I walk the dog upstairs and lock him in the bathroom.
When I return to the living room I find Neji still standing beside the door and quickly usher him in. "The phone is in the kitchen, would you like anything to drink?" Plugging in the coffee maker, I fix my cup and wait for the liquid to fill the maker.
"No thank you." Neji says, trying the number again before hanging up the receiver and looking up at me. "The phone lines are down."
"Oh…" Looking unsurely down at my hands choices run through my mind until I come to the only one that makes a little bit of sense. "Well…unless you would rather take your chances and walk to the Hyuga Compound…I guess you could sleep on the couch for the night." I offer.
Weighing his decisions Neji looks around the little kitchen and finally nods, "I would appreciate that, Tenten." He says taking a seat at the small round table.
Sneaking a peek over my shoulder at Neji, my heart pounded in my chest. He looked so elegant, so out of place in my little kitchen yet he made himself right at home.
"Are you sure you don't want anything to drink?" Once again asking I take my steaming coffee over to the table and pulling out my seat.
"Please." He said eyeballing my cup.
"How do you like it?" I ask pulling out another mug.
'Figures' I think to myself pouring his drink. Handing him his glass I smile and sit down.
"So what happened to you?" I say trying to make conversation, gulping down my coffee, it's heat sending warmth throughout my system.
Taking off my jacket I hang it on the back of my chair. Blushing when I catch his eyes wondering over my body.
My Christmas outfit consisted of a snug long sleeved sweater with a white undershirt, jeans and black boots. I had even bought a matching bra and underwear set with Santa hats imprinted on a red background. I had bought them on a whim, but now I felt ridiculous, and wish I had bought the sexy bra with white lace along the edges, and crotch less panties, even though I probably never would've worn them…still.
"My car broke down a few miles out of town, I didn't know about the oncoming storm, otherwise I would've walked back to the nearest hotel." He said looking at my face as if he was studying something he'd never seen before.
Self-consciously I brushed my bangs out of my eyes. "No cell phone?"
"No." He finished his cup and stood, dropping it in the sink.
Silence rested between us. It was uncomfortable this time, he made me nervous, I wanted to take off his coat, and peel away what ever else he had, just to see if his body was as stunning as his face, but the sensible part of me was mocking me for having such crude thoughts about some man I barley met.
It wasn't that I was ugly myself, I just wasn't gorgeous. I came from a town where the girls where all drop dead gorgeous, where they all held something unique about themselves. Sakura had strawberry blonde hair, so beautiful it made me consider doing a paint job on myself. Hinata was soft and giving, her eyes making her look vulnerable but alluring. Ino was just plain beautiful, she was strong and had a heart of gold.
I was just…me. My looks where overshadowed by everyone else, even my own mother could pull men from my age group and she was twenty-two years my senior!
Pretty, is a good word to describe me. I've never been called anything else at least. I had an okay body, and my eyes where a nice shade of light brown, almost hazel in some very bright lights. Even so, I'd only had one serious boyfriend in my life and that was well over three years ago.
"Why where you alone tonight?" Neji asked breaking me of my depressing thoughts.
I blushed and looked down at my empty glass. "My mother wanted to turn in early tonight, so I came home." I answered embarrassed to admit it.
"That's depressing." He said, a hint of amusement in his voice.
"I know huh? Kicked to the curb on Christmas Eve, by my own mother no less." I said trying to make a joke of it.
To my amazement the smallest of smiles graced his lips. "It is alright to admit you're lonely every now and then, Tenten."
I blushed and looked down cursing when I felt my eyes heat up, tears on the verge of spilling out, "Come on, I'll get you some blankets and pillows." I race out of the kitchen, angry at myself for actually crying over something that stupid.
'What is wrong with me? Why am I being so stupid?' I wonder, grabbing two blankets out of the closet and handing them to Neji. "How many pillows?"
"One." He's watching me now, his eyes following me like a hawk.
"The loveseat has a pull out bed, you can sleep on that tonight. Do you want me to pull it out for you?" I ask.
"No I can handle it, thank you, Tenten." He says taking the pillows out of my arms.
My heart is racing, I hope to god that he can't hear it hammering against my chest. I know I should turn and go up to bed but I don't want to just yet. I feel the need to be with someone and just talk. Not just anyone, but this man.
He looks as if he's been kissed by the stars themselves. No woman in the world could deny that they wanted a piece of him and although the feminist inside was fighting it, I had to admit it, I was no exception.
"How long has it been since you've last seen Hinata?" I ask, raking my mind for an excuse to stay.
His hands went to the buttons on the long black coat, pushing each button out and slipping it off. His shirt was white, his clothes took me off guard, they where at least a decade out of date. "Eleven years." He murmured sitting down on the love seat, while I took a seat on the longer of the two couches.
"Wow, that's such a long time! Do you guys still keep touch?"
"No, this is…a surprise."
"Merry Christmas, Hinata." I said smiling.
We carried on our conversation, I learned that Neji was enrolled in the Armed Forces, and that he had served in the raging war against The Hidden Mist village, although he wouldn't tell me how long he had been in, nor would he tell me his birthday or age, simply stating that he was older than me. He had explained that he was going into business, His favorite animal were birds, because as he put it, 'They where free to do as they pleased and served no one.'
When we broached the subject of our love lives he told me that he had once thought himself in love with a woman from a far away village, but she had been in love with his best friend. He said that at the time he had been a fool, believing that fate had not intended them to be together, and he left.
"What makes you think differently now?" I ask.
It was as if he was in a trance as he told me his story, breaking it he smiled, making my heart skip a beat. "Someone once told me that our lives aren't run by the gods. Our fates were not decided at birth."
"Such wise advise. Who was it?" I wondered confused when he begun to chuckle.
"A big mouthed, back talking soldier in my squad." Neji said quietly.
I could almost see him reliving the moments, as if he was still there.
"What happened to him?" My mind had already come to a conclusion but I was afraid it might be confirmed.
An odd look came over him, he looked up to my face, "We had just barley gotten to the battle field when a sniper's beam was pointed at his back."
I gasped and leaned in to hear the rest of the tale.
"Someone pushed him just as he pulled the trigger, He's still alive as we speak." He finished.
"And what of the mans savior?"
"Dead. The bullet hit straight through his heart." He murmured.
My heart went out to the man. "How tragic." I whispered feeling a chill go down my spine.
Turning back to me Neji stood. "Do you think so?"
I nodded my heart beat racing as he walked towards me.
Bracing his hands on the couch behind me he leaned forward, his lips just barley grazing mine. "I think of it as gratitude." He said against my lips before capturing them in a deep searing kiss.
So many thoughts raced through my mind, on one hand my mind was screaming for me to push him off, and kick him out of my house, for all I knew he could be carrying some disease, while on the other I wanted to pull him closer and let myself be irrational for once. To just let myself be set free and make slow mind blowing love to this beautiful man.
'Why not?' I asked myself feeling his hands push my bangs out of my face. 'Tenten, get a hold of yourself! You are not some slut looking for a wham bam thank you ma'am! Your classy, you have principals and respect for yourself!' My mind screamed.
Neji made a slow trail down along my jaw, stopping just below my earlobe, a place I never knew was so sensitive until now. "Oh." I moaned running my hands through his hair marveling at how soft it was.
'Every girl should have at least one, one night stand in her life.' A silken voice made up my mind for me.
"Neji, wait." Stopping him, I took his hand in mine and walked up the stairs.
Kuri barked as we passed the room he was locked in. Ignoring him I lead Neji into my room and shut the door behind us.
He stood looking at me, a challenge in his eyes, daring me to make the first move.
My hands were trembling as I clumsily unbuttoned my shirt and let it fall to the floor.
His eyes roamed my body, making me blush. His hands gripped the bottom of his shirt and pulled it up and over his head.
As I had predicted, his body was just as beautiful as his face. Muscles rippled with every movement he made, He had no hair marring the perfection of his chest as it all but glowed in the dim light that shone through the curtains.
It was my turn again. I smiled and slipped off my shoes.
He smirked and shucked his pants and shoes. He was left in plain white boxers now while I still had my bra pants and panties.
"Nice boxers." I teased blushing when he raised his eye brows and reached out, lightly tracing one of the hats on my bra.
"Nice bra. Do the panties match?" He asked, his finger running across my breast, down my stomach stopping at my jeans.
My legs were shaking threatening to collapse while my breathing labored as I gripped his biceps, holding myself up.
He stopped just as he unzipped my jeans and looked up into my eyes.
"I can stop." He said backing away.
"No!" I yelled, my cheeks on fire. "I…I mean, I'm just nervous that's all. I haven't done this in a long time and I know that you've probably had a lot of beautiful girls in your life and I-" Neji stopped my babbling. He kissed me, one hand resting on the small of my back holding me tightly against him, while the other was holding my chin, tilting my head back.
"Tenten, you are very beautiful. Don't doubt that." He said panting when he broke the kiss.
Embarrassed beyond belief I shrugged and unhooked my bra, letting my breasts spill out. Slipping my fingers over my panties I took them off along with my pants and stood before him totally naked.
We both looked at each others body without shame, neither touching, just observing until I reached out and ran my hand over his torso excitement running through my system when my gaze went lower.
His manhood sprang from a nest of dark hair, I knew he was watching my reaction and I had no shame as I reached out, closing my hands around his shaft.
Neji leaned his head back and moaned as I made a tight circle with my hands and begun to milk him.
He grabbed my wrist and pushed me up against the wall taking my right breast into his mouth while his knee found it way to the junction between my legs and gently rubbed it.
I was on fire as I arched my breast into his mouth, frustrated when he kept my wrist locked against the wall, not allowing me to touch him.
"Neji…" I called holding him closer.
He kissed me again, gliding his tongue over my lower lip, begging for entrance which I quickly allowed. He took my tongue into his mouth gently sucking.
A burst of energy hit me as I went over the edge, I moaned as I came.
Neji eased me down onto the bed chuckling, "Calm down speed racer." He whispered in my ear before plunging his tongue into the shell making me jolt up.
He pressed his forehead against mine looking into my eyes before he placed butterfly kisses on the lids, over my cheeks until he found my mouth giving me a slow languid kiss with so much intimacy, it had me reeling over the edge.
When he surfaced for air he smiled down at me and kissed his way down my neck, between the valley of my breasts, over my stomach until he was perched over me.
Throwing my legs over his shoulders he feasted on me. "Neji!" I yelped moaning and withering, while my body went up in flames. His tongue dipping in and out one moment and the next he was sucking greedily on me.
Sweat was running down my body, and I was aching for release, amazed that he could make me ready for him again in such short time. I was perched on the verge of another climax when he made me wait again, pleading with him I was muttering nonsense but I had no power to stop it. My thighs where quivering, my body tense and ready to come when he backed away lightly kissing the insides of my thighs.
I let out a frustrated cry when he leaned over me, "Please, Neji…"
"What?" he murmured as he slipped the very tip of his manhood inside making me close my eyes as pleasure shot straight up my body.
"Don't make me wait." I pleaded feeling my body expand, waiting for him.
He entered in one swift movement. I bucked against him calling out his name.
He drove into me, hard and fast. I raised myself up to meet him dragging my hands through his wet hair struggling to kiss him as my body weakened with each stroke until finally I felt my body clench before giving in to a hard powerful wave of pleasure as I reached my climax.
His came soon after. Collapsing on top of me he rested against my breasts, suckling every now and then.
"Neji." I whispered as sleep swept over me.
"Hm?" He whispered pulling the covers over us.
"Please don't leave, at least not tonight." I requested before giving in and drifting off to sleep.
I woke with a start, looking around puzzled when I didn't find any trace of the man I was with the night before. "Neji?" I called downstairs.
Kuri scratched at the door as soon as he heard my voice, whining to be let out. Grabbing his leash I led him downstairs looking for any sign of the man.
The blankets and pillows where no longer out, 'He had obviously come down at one point during the night or early this morning,' I thought to myself.
My heart dropped when I walked into the kitchen to find that he was not in there either. I opened the door to find that my backyard had been transformed into a winter wonderland. Snow fell delicately from the sky, the ground was covered in at least one foot of snow. Kuri bounced into the yard doing her business and ran back in trying to escape the cold.
I walked back into the kitchen and sighed, 'What did you expect? You knew what you were doing! Of course he wouldn't stay!' I thought to myself and stopped dead in my tracks.
A white letter lay on my table, a tiny bow rested on top of it. "That wasn't there before." I whispered, goose flesh going up and down my arms as I reached for it.
I took off the small bow setting it down on the table and opened the white envelope,
Last night was one of the best nights of my life. You're a beautiful woman, Tenten. I hope you always remember that, and never doubt yourself. No matter what life gives you, you can always change fate. I wish I could be the one to have your hand but as it stands, I can not. Be happy, and live strong, Tenten. If not for yourself, than do it for me.
Tears pooled in my eyes as I finished reading the short passage. I'd only just begun to get to know him, and yet it seemed as if my heart was breaking.
I wanted to run and find him, wherever he was until a thought struck me.
I raced to the phone punching in Hinata's number.
"Hello?" A bell like voice inquired.
"Hinata! It's Tenten!" My nerves where on a rampage, and I was trying to keep calm.
"Hello, Tenten! M-Merry Christmas!" She greeted cheerfully.
"Hinata, I need you to tell me if your cousin made it back to the compound this morning." I said pacing back and forth.
"Which cousin? H-Hikaru just made it in and Hana came last night." Hinata replied.
"No, Neji. Is he there now? Can I talk to him please?" I asked my grip on the phone tightening.
The question was met by silence.
"T-Tenten…what are you talking about?" Hinata asked her voice shaking.
"Neji! Please Hinata, no matter what he says just hand him the phone, please!" I begged.
"Tenten…N-Neji…Neji is dead." She said her voice shaking.
My body froze, my heart beat pounded in my ears. "Wh-what?" I asked dumbly.
"T-Tenten, N-Neji is dead, h-how do you even know about h-him?" She asked.
All at once it hit me, my body begun to shake and my heart was beating at a hundred miles an hour, "No, no! Hinata I swear he was here last night!" I said turning around racing back to the kitchen.
I froze when I got there, my heart froze and I dropped the phone. My lips trembled as I gaped at the barren table. "Th-the letter."
"Tenten!? Tenten!?" Hinata yelled into the phone.
My legs where trembling so hard it made it almost impossible to walk, "H-Hinata, I…I think you should come over." I told her hanging up the phone.
The doorbell rang thirty minutes later, the letter had disappeared. It was no where to be found, I had searched the whole house, even checking Kuri's teeth trying to see if the dog had eaten it but no, it had vanished into thin air.
Dazed I walked over to the door, letting Hinata in.
She looked up and me, tears streaming down her cheeks.
"P-Please tell me everything." She said leading me over to the couch as I began my story.
She sat in stony silence as she listened to every detail I offered up until our last moments together that is, I left that out.
"Tenten," She said looking into my eyes, "What did h-he looked like?" She asked quietly.
"His hair was long, and loose. His eyes where like yours but more of a white shade. He was tall, about a head taller than me, and he was built. His skin was very pale, like lavender. And his voice was deep, he had a strong jaw line." I described remembering ever inch of him that I could.
Tears fell once more as she listened on.
"Hinata…" I whispered almost afraid to break the silence, afraid to find out the truth.
"Tenten…N-Neji is dead. He died a decade ago, w-when the war first started." Hinata said grabbing my hand in a tight squeeze.
"That's impossible, Hinata! I know what I saw! He-He was here!" I said jumping up. "I picked him up! He said he was trying to reach the Hyuga Compound! He said he was on his way to see you!" I yelled, tears clogging up my throat before finally cascading down my cheeks.
"Oh Tenten!" Hinata wailed wrapping her arms around me.
Taking a few deep breaths I wiped away the tears and stared out the window. "How did he die?"
Sadness and pride filled her eyes. "He took a b-bullet meant for a c-comrade. They said he didn't even yell out in pain when it went through his heart."
I gaped at her, my mouth wide open.
"W-what is it?" She asked
"Wh-who did he take the bullet for?"
"I was told it was his best friend, Naruto Uzumaki. C-Can you believe that? One of the greatest warriors of our time. He came by the M-Manor when I was twelve and told us the story. H-He said that he was grateful to Neji and that he was a true hero. Naruto stops by the Compound every now and then a-and retells the children how great Ni-san was."
It was then that I sat on the couch and promptly passed out.
"TENTEN! TENTEN!" Hinata screamed alarmed, shaking me. "TENTEN!"
"I'm okay Hinata!" I say brushing her arms off me and sitting up.
"Oh! T-Thank goodness!" She said eyeing me warily.
We sat in silence as we each contemplated the situation. My mind was racing, my heart was still racing from the shock when I finally broke down.
"Would you mind telling me about your cousin?" I ask gazing out into the falling snow.
"O-Of course." She says settling into the couch.
That night I lay in bed, the sheets washed and dried, after Hinata had left, I called everybody, wished them a merry Christmas. Drove over to my mothers, unwrapped a few presents, and gave her some of her own. I stayed with her watching Christmas specials until nine before coming home.
Kuri lay snuggled up next to me, his ear twitching every now and then, while I looked out the widow to the full moon.
"Neji Hyuga." I whispered to myself.
Had it all just been a dream? Hinata and I ran over the different options only to be left at a stone wall. Maybe I just needed to see a psychiatrist.
Or maybe it was something different all together.
Maybe he had been my angel. He came to me in a dark hour of need and made me feel almost happy, as I hadn't been in a long while. Maybe in another life, where he had survived the war, we could've been together. Had he known that? Is that why he came back? Was Neji Hyuga really my Guardian Angel?
Exhausted I rolled onto my side and studied Kuri. "You knew, didn't you, boy?" I asked recalling how he had barked and nipped at Neji.
Sighing I let my eyes drift shut and there he was locked away in my secret heart smiling back at me.
"Neji." I whispered falling into my dream.
Maybe he is my Guardian Angel after all.
SUENA: I do not own Naruto or any of the characters affiliated with it. (But I do own Kuri!=^.^=) lol Have a Merry Christmas Everyone, be safe and remember to wish a Merry Christmas to the soldierss fighting for us and all our traditions in Iraq!