I SWEAR

By Notgonnasay09

An Extended Song-Fic

Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto or the song "I Swear." Naruto and all associated characters and quotes from the manga are owned by Masashi Kishimoto. The version of the song "I Swear" that I am using for this was performed by John Michel Montgomery, so I can only assume that he owns the rights to the song. The purposes of this are strictly for entertainment. I do not wish to make a profit off of this in any way, shape or form.

Note: Comments are appreciated, but I would prefer that they be in regards to the actual piece of writing, not to the pairing…the last thing I want to read is that someone thinks this is a piece of crap because they prefer NaruSaku or something. Anyways, this takes place post-Chapter 470, which is after Naruto and company return to Konoha. The quotes I use are from chapters 437 and 469 of the Naruto manga, again with credit going to Masashi Kishimoto.


The sun was high over the Hokage Monument in Konohagakure no Sato, or the Village Hidden in the Leaves. As the sun rose, one could see that the village was still slightly in the stages of reconstruction. The damage made during the assault made by the Akatsuki leader Nagato and his Six Paths of Pain still left the village battle scarred. Granted, it had been over two months after the attack, and most of the village was back to the way it was thanks to the shinobi of the Leaf. Now, the village seemed to look similar to how it was before the attack caused by the master of the Rinnegan. Granted, the buildings were still new, but most of the village didn't mind. In fact, between the sight of the village and the attitudes of the villagers and the ninja, you would never have guessed that the village had ever been a war-zone at all. Everything seemed right with the world. Well, almost everything…


Naruto Uzumaki couldn't complain all that much about his status among the populous currently in the village. For once, he was respected. For once, he wasn't "the demon brat," or "the village pariah." No, he was respected by the whole village, something he only dreamed of. But, this was not what was currently on his mind. In fact, some of his friends were starting to poke gentle fun at Naruto nowadays because it seemed like he was almost constantly in deep thought about something. Clearly, it must have been a sign of the Apocalypse. Most just assumed it had to deal either with the battle with Pain or about whatever it was that he had learned about concerning Sasuke Uchiha, a man he had once considered a brother and teammate, in the Land of Iron. So, most of his friends would either leave him alone or at least try to entertain him.

Well, his friends were on the right track at least. Yes, Naruto was in deep thought. But, much to Naruto's own surprise, it had nothing to do with either his battle with Nagato or his revelations concerning Sasuke. He had mulled over his thoughts about the both of them when he was on his way back to the village from the Kage Summit. Some of the revelations he had learned the day of the attack and the subsequent meetings with the other Kage didn't really bother him too badly.

He slowly but surely accepted the fact that his own father, the Fourth Hokage, also known as Minato Namikaze or the Yellow Flash, had no choice but to seal the Kyūbi no Yōko into Naruto. After all, what kind of Kage would his dad have been if he had not been willing to put his own flesh and blood on the line to save the village instead of some no-name orphan? He had accepted that. He was upset, but realized that there were no other options and, if Naruto were honest with himself, he would have made the exact same sacrifice if he needed to.

He could also accept that Nagato hadn't really wanted to do what he did, he just wanted there to be peace throughout the world, much like their former sensei Jiraiya the Toad Sage. Granted, he had a screwed up way of going about it, but at least he had been doing something to try and realize his former sensei's dream. He wasn't evil; Nagato was simply an eccentric with a Utopian complex that required mass murder and mayhem to the point of shocking people into submission. Yeah, it was a screwed up ideology, but one that had certain merits, if only in an absolutely-no-other-choice-evil-mastermind kind of way.

Heck, he could even come to terms with the idea that it might be impossible to save Sasuke from the darkness that had surrounded him since the Uchiha Massacre. He didn't like it, but Naruto came to accept that Sasuke would have to save himself if he wanted to escape the darkness that had surrounded him. He simply was too hell-bent on his revenge against Konoha and being an avenger to be saved. If Sasuke was going to live to see the next day, he would have to be on his own.

No, Naruto's mind was set in stone on those issues. He came to terms with what he knew he needed to do for the village and accepted it. What was on his mind was something far more personal and had far greater consequences if he made the wrong decision. It was a problem that could affect not just his life, but the lives of two of his precious people.

What could be bothering Naruto so badly that he pushed all other thoughts out of the way?

Well, it could be said that it had something to do with the previously mentioned events, but not entirely. What Naruto's mind was concerned with involved two members of the Konoha Twelve, which was the nickname given to the four rookie teams that were considered to be the best ninja in their generation. In particular, it involved two women who, up until now, Naruto had clearly defined his relationships with. One was supposedly his true love, the one person he would give his heart and soul for if asked, and the other was the shy, dark, and weird friend whose type he kinda liked. Now, it seemed that those relationships were in question.

The first person on his mind was Hinata Hyūga, who was the heiress to the prestigious Hyūga clan. Up until a few months ago, Naruto had thought of Hinata as a close, if not weird, friend. She was one of the few people Naruto could be genuine around, she always seemed to support him, and she was strong in many ways that most people overlooked. Granted, she was still a shy person, given how he was first greeted by the Hyūga heiress after his training with the late Toad Sage Jiraiya. However, his views of the young woman, who he had once called a shy, dark weirdo, had changed on that fateful day…


Flashback:

"Hinata! What are you doing here?" Naruto screamed

"I used to always cry and give up... I nearly went the wrong way..." The Hyūga heiress had turned her back towards Naruto, facing Pain. "But you... you showed me the right way..."

She continued as Naruto began to panic. Here he was, pinned to the ground by Pain's chakra rods and was about to be killed. Then, Hinata Hyūga, a girl Naruto only had begun to get to know after his training trip, had decided to jump in, despite Naruto's warnings about wanting to fight alone in order to avoid losing anyone else. He didn't know quite what would happen next, but nothing could compare to what she revealed to him before what many thought was an attempt at suicide.

"I was always chasing you... wanting to overtake you... I just wanted to walk with you... I wanted to be with you... you changed me! Your smile saved me!"

He then heard the words that would forever change how he approached the Hyūga heiress.

"So I'm not afraid to die protecting you! Because I - love you..."

With that, she charged in to attack Pain, after that, most everything else was a blur. The sound of metal piercing flesh, an angry roar, then nothing…


End Flashback

Needless to say, the scene involving Hinata played back over and over in his mind. He couldn't believe what he had heard! Hinata, the quiet girl, the one who sat in the back of the class, the one who always stuttered when she talked and fainted every time he was in her presence, loved him? It was almost too much for him to grasp for the blond knucklehead. Forget all of the reasons that most would associate for her avoiding him, why would she LOVE him?

Then there was the other woman on Naruto's mind. For a while, he thought he was in love with her. After all, he had been working hard to try and have her notice him. He even promised her that he would help her find their missing teammate for her. He was willing to do anything, even if it meant killing his own happiness, just for her to love him. She was someone who, if it were at any other point in his life, he would gladly spend the rest of his life with. However, after coming back from the Kage Summit in the Land of Iron with the rest of his team, he wasn't as sure anymore…


Flashback:

"Naruto…I said I love you! I said I don't care about Sasuke anymore! And I was crazy to ever love him…"

Most of the rest of Sakura Haruno's words were lost to him. Naruto didn't really register much else of what was said to him. For the longest time, he had a crush on the young pink-haired kunoichi, he knew that. Heck, he maybe even loved her. But…this seemed liked it was forced. It was as if she was saying these things to try and convince herself…

Naruto was both hurt and irritated. He didn't know exactly, but he had a feeling that Sakura was put up to this in order to bring him back to the village. He was mad because she was lying straight to his face, yet he was sad that she didn't genuinely seem to believe what she said. Besides, he could see in her eyes that she didn't mean what she was saying. She went on to say something to the effect of how a woman's true feelings were like the changing seasons, or something like that. That was the final straw…

He grabbed Sakura's shoulder and said something that, at the time, Kakashi, Yamato, Kiba, not even Sai or Rock Lee, could not have even imagined. Even Sakura was shocked at what Naruto said after her sudden confession.

"I…hate people who lie to themselves!"


End Flashback

While Naruto knew that what he said was true, it still didn't help him out when Sakura tried to talk to him as he was coming back from the mission. Sure, they were still friends and teammates, but now Naruto had to think hard about what went on these past two months.

So, here he was. Naruto, the one ninja in all of Konoha who had defeated Pain and was now highly respected, the man who now had to face the possible reality of killing the closest thing he had to a brother, now faced with either the ultimate destruction or construction of his relationship with the two women who had captured his heart: the pink-haired crush and the devoted cobalt maiden.

He decided to try and sort things out atop of one of his favorite spots in all of Konoha, the head of his father, Minato Namikaze, the Fourth Hokage, on top of the Hokage Monument. It had always been a place of solitude for him, but today just seemed to fit for wanting to do more. As soon as he reached his destination, Naruto lay down and began to think.

On the one hand, he had Sakura. For the longest time, his entire world revolved around her. Every action, every bit of training, at some point or another, was to prove to her that he was someone worth paying attention to. It was even at a point where Kakashi and Yamato had to sit down with him and tell him to stop doing everything for her sake or it would kill him. He thought he was doing it to keep his family together and to make Sakura happy. But was he doing it for love anymore? After thinking about it, Naruto realized that he just didn't feel that way anymore. He didn't know exactly when, but somewhere along the way, he stopped thinking about Sakura for everything. Somewhere, she became less of a focus. As if hit by an epiphany, Naruto realized that he had gotten over Sakura.

But where did this leave Hinata? Was he in love with her? Well, he knew he was relieved when he found out she was still alive. She also was one of the few people who saw the "real Naruto," or at least the side that he didn't really show to people, the side that was venerable and scared. Only the Third, Jiraiya, Tsunade, and Iruka could claim that. But he couldn't fall in love with her! Her clan, and especially her father, would never let them be together! She was an heiress to the most prestigious living clan in the village, a virtual princess! She could have any man she wanted with the snap of her fingers! She, she…

And yet, she chose you.

The voice of reason in Naruto's mind made its point. Hinata didn't care. She was willing to throw away everything: her loved ones, her title, her safety, her wealth, even her life, for him. Only Iruka could claim that, and even he had hated Naruto a little in the beginning. Hinata had loved him from the start. And, somehow, those little facts, those simple reasons, captured Naruto like no other. The idea of someone giving them their whole heart was something Naruto thought would never happen. He had always given for the village, yet never thought that he would get something in return. In that battlefield confession, Hinata had done something that he never thought possible. She had captured Naruto's heart. There was no denying it now. He, Naruto Uzumaki, was in love with Hinata Hyūga. Now the question was how to tell her…

"Wait! Ino's party! That's it!" Naruto remembered hearing Ino say something about throwing a party to "officially" celebrate Naruto's defeat of Pain at the newly rebuilt Ninja Academy. If he knew Ino, which to a certain extent he did, she would more than likely have all of the trimmings for her party, which could include a karaoke machine. He remembered a song that he and Jiraiya had heard on their travels that would work perfectly for this. Now, he just needed to get ready…


Hinata was a little nervous about attending Ino's party. Rumor was that Naruto was going to be there. Ordinarily, this would have sealed the deal with the heiress, but for the past two months, she was even more nervous when the subject of conversation came to Naruto. She realized that he had more important things to think about lately, but the idea that he hadn't even sought her out after her confession unnerved the young woman. Did he forget? Did he not care? Was he still in love with Sakura? There were so many questions and not enough answers. But, she hadn't had a good time with any of her friends in a while, so she decided to go ahead and attend anyway.

When she arrived at the party, she gazed around at who all else was in attendance. The room itself seemed to be a living greenhouse, with flowers and plants of all kinds livening up the otherwise dull classroom. Her teammate Shino was in a corner having a conversation with her other teammate Kiba. Her cousin Neji was sitting in a chair next to his teammate Tenten, who for some reason had a blush on her cheeks. Choji seemed to be conversing with Ino, who had just announced about a month ago that they were seeing each other, much to the shock of the rest of her friends. Naruto's rather pale teammate, Sai if Hinata remembered correctly, was by himself drawing something, and Sakura seemed to be holding her own in a talk with Rock Lee. Even Shikamaru was currently in the middle of a game of Shogi with Temari of the Sand, who was in the village on diplomatic business, but was there unofficially to represent Gaara and Kankuro at the party. But, no matter how hard she looked, Hinata couldn't see Naruto anywhere.

'He's not here…I guess he's avoiding me. Stupid Hinata, running out and confessing when Naruto-kun clearly had other things on his mind.' She was so busy chastising herself, she almost missed Ino make an announcement to the crowd.

"Hey guys! Before we continue with this party, we have a special treat for everyone," Ino boomed above the crowd. Everyone stayed silent as she continued. "Tonight, we have the first person to volunteer to go first for the karaoke machine, our very own village hero, Naruto!"

There were murmurs in the crowd about what this was about. Naruto was going to sing? Could he even carry a tune? Before anyone could ask if this was some sort of prank, Naruto came in from seemingly nowhere and sat down at a stool that was set up right in front of the machine.

Naruto cleared his throat. "I would like to dedicate this song to a special someone. I don't know how she did it, but she somehow has given me more than I deserve and I hope she will let me say what I need to say. I found this song in my travels with Ero-Sennin and I hope you all enjoy it." As the music began to play, Hinata became slightly hopeful. Naruto never said who it was that the song was for, but she hoped and prayed that the song was for her.

I see the questions in your eyes.

I know what's weighing on your mind,

But you can be sure I know my part.

'Cause I'll stand beside you through the years.

You'll only cry those happy tears

And though I'll make mistakes, I'll never break your heart…

Hinata, as well as the rest of the crowd, was stunned. They never knew Naruto could sing like that. And the song, it was so out of character for him. Hinata still didn't want to get her hopes up, but she kinda liked the idea of pretending that this was about her, and not Sakura. At least, that is what she thought.

I swear, by the moon and the stars in the sky

I'll be there.

I swear, like a shadow that's by your side

I'll be there.

For better or worse, 'til death do us part,

I'll love you with every beat of my heart

I swear.

The women in the room were moved to tears. Obviously, whoever he was singing about was someone he was madly in love with. The guys just seemed to be at a loss of what this was all about. Well, all the guys except Shino and Shikamaru. They had an idea, but decided to keep silent until they knew for sure.

I'll give you everything I can

I'll build your dreams with these two hands

We'll hang some memories on the wall

And when there's silver in your hair

You won't have to ask if I still care

Cause as time turns the page my love won't age at all

I swear, by the moon and the stars in the sky

I'll be there

I swear, like a shadow that's by your side

I'll be there

For better or worse, 'til death do us part

I'll love you with every beat of my heart

I swear

This was getting to be too much for Hinata to handle. She didn't know what was going on, but it appeared that Naruto was trying to tell his feelings to someone. But, before she could do anything else, she saw Naruto pull a purple rose out of a pot next to the machine. Then, as the instrumental solo was playing, with mike and rose in hand, Naruto started to approach the Hyūga heiress.

'Is this a dream? Is this a dream? Oh, please let this be real!' were the only thoughts going through the shy girl's mind. At that, Naruto bent on one knee, with the rose offered to Hinata in one hand and the mike in his other hand. Sapphire blue met pale lavender as he began to sing the final verse.

I swear, by the moon and the stars in the sky

I'll be there

I swear, like a shadow that's by your side

I'll be there

For better or worse, 'til death do us part

I'll love you with every beat of my heart

I swear

Hinata was in tears as he finished the last verse. The crowd was lost as she looked into Naruto's eyes, looking for any signs of deception or uncertainty. There were none. There was nothing except love and admiration in his eyes. She tried desperately to blink back the tears that were trying to escape her eyes. She was failing miserably.

"N-naruto-kun, d-do you r-really mean it? I-is this a d-d-dream?" Hinata asked in the loudest voice she could muster without going into hysterics, which wasn't much.

"This is no dream, Hinata-hime. Sorry it took so long. I know I am not all that great at things, and I know that there are still threats to the village and to me personally, but I can think of no-one else I would rather have at my side to help me and to be in my life than you. What I am trying to say is, I love you, Hinata. I swear."

With that, Hinata and Naruto shared their first kiss. Everyone couldn't help but 'aww' at the sight. The only ones not sporting any tears at the sight seemed to be Shino and Shikamaru, who seemed to be sporting smirks instead.

No one knew what the future held for these two. There were still threats to the village that needed to be taken care of. But, for one night, just for one night, everything seemed right with the world. It was just the two young ninja, sharing their love for one another that, with any luck, would last for years to come.

FIN

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